Saturday, September 11, 2010

Givin' the Dog a (Bath)

Today was quite the busy day!  The weather was (and still is) amazing and we had already planned on going letterboxing today.  Last night, the girls had a friend sleep over (so none of us got a whole lot of sleep!) and we had her accompany us on today's letterboxing trek.  After the usual morning routine (wake, walk dog, VidaCell, deep breathing, quiet time), I made myself some breakfast of two free range eggs, 1 slice of Ezekiel bread, and a banana.

Shortly after everyone had eaten breakfast, we headed off on our trek.  Of course, we took Ginger - our dog - along with us, too.
"Did someone say 'Ride?'"
Our destination was not too far from home - Smith Park in Middletown.  While I am not sure of the significance, the letterboxer - dubbed 'chthiker' - that placed the three boxes along the trail had the theme of 'building a concrete mixer' for the boxes.  As you walk the trail and find the three boxes, the stamps all work together to create a picture of a cement truck. 
It was a fairly short walk, but it was a really nice trail that led around a small pond.  While we were on the trail - well away from the park - we let Ginger off-leash.  The girls, my daughters and their friend - ran ahead of my wife and I.  Ginger had a blast running at top speed between both groups.  At one point, there was a small side trail that led directly to the pond (that was really green due to the overgrowth of plants - fortunately not algae).  The girls got to the edge of the pond first with Ginger racing along behind them.  Well...not being able to detect the edge of the pond, Ginger ran full speed into it!  SPLASH!  She immediately did an about-face and got back on the land.  It was too funny!  Thankfully, we hadn't yet made it to the third box at this point, so she had some time to dry off before we were ready to head home.  We also let the girls spend a little time on the playground in the park after we finished our trek.  When we got home, it was time to give Ginger a bath (hence the title - my homage to AC/DC's Givin' the Dog a Bone).  She absolutely hates it, but even before today's dunk in the pond she was in need of one.

Not wanting to end our outside adventures, we decided to head to Lyman's Orchard and do some apple picking (and whatever fruit we might be able to pick).  Lyman's is a wonderful place to go to spend a few hours or more.  They have a corn maze to navigate, the Apple Barrel store where they sell all of the fruit they grow (for those not wanting to pick their own) among other things, a golf course, and quite a few pick-your-own groves.  Our target was apples but pears, pumpkins, and peaches were also able to be picked.  We spent some time picking gala and ginger gold apples.  The raspberry patch was right near where we were picking apples, so we diverted through there on the way to pay for our apples.  No luck, was really picked over.  Victoria wanted to find some pears, so we hopped in the car and headed to the pear grove.  Rae and I decided to let Victoria and Tatyana go on their own adventure, so we sat down on top of a hill with an absolutely amazing view while the girls went off pear hunting.  They came back empty handed, though.  Of the two varieties of pears available, they didn't like the taste of the 'brown pears' and they couldn't find any of the other ones.  I can only guess that the brown pears were bosc pears...  Our plan was then to go to the Apple Barrel and buy lunch at their deli.  The line was way to long, so we ended up getting a couple of things to snack on.  We all pretty much had our fill on apples, so we really weren't all that hungry anyway.  We took our 'lunch' to another park right near Lyman's and spent some time there before heading home.

Having mentioned Ginger, I wanted to share another VidaCell testimonial with you...

About a year ago, Ginger began favoring her back leg.  At times, she just didn't want to put any weight on it.  There was no real pattern to when she would and wouldn't do it, though.  We took her to the vet and had her checked out.  They told us that she had a luxating patella.  Essentially, this meant that her kneecap would pop out of the groove that it rode in.  While it didn't really cause any pain, it made it difficult for her knee to bend properly.  This is fairly common to small breeds - which she really isn't 'small' - and the only fix for it is surgery.  We obviously couldn't just shell out the $2,700 for the surgery and they told us that it wasn't really an emergency and that we could schedule it once we had the money.
I had already been adding Omega-3s to Ginger's food in the morning to help with any inflammation that she might have had.  After the diagnosis, I decided to try VidaCell with her, too.  I didn't use a whole packet for her as she only weighs 40 pounds.  Rather, I would just split the packet I was using with her.  I would sprinkle just a small amount on her food, moisten it,  and add the Omega-3.
After about a week or two, her limping became less pronounced.  Not too many weeks later, it completely went away.  We took her in for a follow-up visit with the vet.  He was amazed at her recovery.  Surgery was no longer required.

1 comment:

Aly said...

Greg, thanks for another letterboxing tip! Glad to hear that Ginger doesn't need surgery, too!