Monday, August 30, 2010

Bark World Expo

     What an amazing event Bark World was. The sessions were wonderful and so were the participants. While it was geared more towards dog owners, businesses, and bloggers, the event was informational for all other types of owners, businesses, and bloggers.

     I can’t say enough about GMC’s representatives and how caring they were. Like many people who have never dealt with ferrets they didn’t know what kind of treats to get James and Manny but they took the time to find out and then went to the local pet store to get a bag of bandit treats. James loves his bandit treats. PICT0679

     James and Manny were a big hit not just with the people attending Bark World but also with the people of Atlanta. Who asked a lot of questions about James and Manny and ferrets in general. I also clear up many misconceptions about ferrets as well.

     PICT0699 One of the best parts of Bark World was making new friends and the informal session we all had at the coffee shop. Being able to have some things explained in a different way than perhaps had been told to us in one of the sessions and being able to know about a program that might not have been talked about.

     Bark World also reminded me that not every place is ferret safe but thank fully did not end in a tragedy.

     This was the first big trip that I took James and Manny on. It showed me that there is no such thing as packing light when it comes to ferrets but it also let me have my fur friends with me. Both seemed to enjoy the attention but at the end of the expo James showed me just how tired he was by climbing into my suitcase.PICT0711

 

 

 

 

 

     Next adventure happens…

Possibilities:

Blog Paws West Sept 9-11 Denver, CO

Happy Paws Pet Expo Nov 13-14 Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Pet Writing Convention Feb 12 2011

     The last two would be without James and Manny in attendance.

Have a Chittering day,

Jo

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ferret Education 101

     Manny reminded me today why a pet owner needs to be alert at all times when outside of their own domain. It has been a while since I have had to ferret-proof because I hadn’t traveled much with my ferrets until I went to the Bark World Expo.

I got my ferrets a carrierPICT0697 PICT0696 that would be safe and secure for the ride down to Georgia in the GMC Terrain but forgot about having to ferret- proof the hotel rooms we would be staying in this could have been a fatal mistake but thankfully it wasn’t and reminded me that new places have to be checked and rechecked daily.

Can you spot the problem spots in these pictures?

 PICT0681 PICT0682 PICT0683 PICT0684   PICT0687 PICT0688 PICT0689 PICT0690 PICT0691 PICT0692 PICT0693 PICT0694 PICT0695

     If you have been following my posts you know that a ferret is a very curious creature and can get into mischief wherever they are.

1. While it doesn’t appear to be any problem spots in this picture. The desk at the end of the hall has a lot of stuff a ferret would love to get and hide some where.

2. There is no door knob on the door and it is locked there is enough room at the bottom for a ferret to slip under. I have no idea what is in that room.

3. The kitchen area. Lots of problems here. The space under and around the refrigerator. The same problem with the stove.

4. The dishwasher is the reason for this post. Most have a vented plate that goes over the 4 inch high space that houses the wires and motor for the dishwasher. Manny decided that he had to check out all those nifty spaces under there. I was lucky that he didn’t get his collar caught and that he didn’t go into any of the smaller spaces. I got him to come out with tapping his food bowl on the floor near the opening.

5. There is room under the television to get to the wires and some ferrets like to chew on wires and others like to climb.

6. Lovely view but it is six stories up and ferrets have bad depth perception.

7. May not look like there is any problems here. But if you lift the edge of the blankets there is no baseboards and the bottom of the mattresses are exposed. Great place for a ferret to try to use as a hidey-hole.

8. The mirror isn’t attached to the wall and could easily be moved.

9. An easily opened closet door leads to exploration of any thing that is in there. This could lead to ingestion of something that could be fatal.

10. The bathroom can have many dangers for ferrets. The most obvious is the toilet.

11. The trash can. Anything upright must be tipped over it is a ferret rule. Pick the can up and place on the back of the toilet. You’ll hear it fall and can immediately see what your ferret(s) are into.

12. The shower may seem like the least likely place a ferret can get into but the one in my hotel room swings both ways and the soap and shampoo bottles are placed on the floor. Also don’t want my boys drinking from the drain.

13. The bathtub. Once in they can’t get out and if you have just gotten out of the bath and not let the water out…

     Bark World Expo has been educational for me in a number of ways but I was influenced the most by my ferrets in a way that won’t easily be forgotten.

     How many of you have been educated by your pet?

Keep on Chittering,

Jo

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Team PawsArt on the road

     We arrived in front of BZTat stuidos at 9:30am James and Manny were glad to get out of their carrier for a bit. James was a little upset that he couldn’t get into the neat looking flowerpots. PICT0624

     Both boys noses were in over time with the smells of Canton, OH. James was ready to get back in his carrier after 10 minutes but Manny was happy to keep on checking out the sidewalk while we finished loading up the GMC. PICT0625 PICT0626 PICT0627

After pictures were taken of Team PawsArt we made a stop to check out the Downtown Canton Cat Mural PICT0628  PICT0629 PICT0630 PICT0631

     We left Canton around 10:15 headed south on hwy 30. So far the GMC Terrain is a comfortable ride and one nice feature that I like is the fact that the seat is not so high that a short person has to jump in or out of the vehicle.

     One thing that I personally don’t like is the head rest but that isn’t just with the GMC Terrain but most new vehicles. It is angled forward so I am forced to have my chin almost on my chest. I am sure that the designers of the headrests must have been over 5 foot tall.

     We used the OnStar® to set our trip route that was kind of cool. Had to check the owner manual to reset the trip meter and it is kind of vague on how to reset or the fact you have to hold the button until it beeps at you.

    12:00pm Pit stop in Delaware, OH to take a bathroom break and get reserve a hotel room for tonight.Found one to fit my budget.

     12:30 Back on the road and used OnStar® again to get to hotel have about 8 hrs to get there. James and Manny had a Greenies® treat each and have gone back to sleep. They are being so good for their first long trip.

      Wow was a day sorry the post seems incomplete the battery died in the netbook and I didn’t get to the hotel until like 10:30 tonight. Both James and Manny are having a blast in their little corner of the room. Although both of them are proveing that they can get out if they really want to. Bath time is in just a little bit.

Here are some pictures from along the way: PICT0632 PICT0633 PICT0634 PICT0636 PICT0637 If you saw BZTAT’s Pic of the Truck this is the horse farm that was behind it.PICT0638 PICT0639 PICT0640 There had been an accident and the line of traffic was like 5 miles long and was getting longer.

PICT0641 Finally Tennessee.PICT0646This is what the control panel where the radio is looks like at night. It’s a bit creepy.

 

 

 

 

 

Keep on Chittering

Jo

Disclaimer: All opinions about the GMC Terrain are mine alone. James, Manny, and I would like to thank GMC for letting have such a cool ride to BarkWorld.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Have People gone insane or …

The more outrageous the conduct of our supposed role models the more media attention they get. First let me say I don’t know who Holly Madison is but this story tops even Paris Hilton and her ignorance for not getting her dogs fixed. The story I am talking about is about her marrying her ferret.

I am a ferret lover and think that they are one of the greatest pets I’ve ever had but I wouldn’t want to marry one of them. So it just comes down to the celebrities of the world have gone insane and the media isn’t helping with its “Oh how cute/bizarre/sexy.” You pick the word you think fits best stories.

Even if this site is a joke and it appears to be one. It goes to show just how low the media can go just to have a story for its readers.

My goal in life is to be a journalist and not a two bit faker but sometimes it’s hard to tell the fake from the real thing. Read the story but read it as a story and not as the truth just because it is posted on a supposed news site.

Just my two bit of Chittering.

Keep on Chittering,

Jo

Headed to Bark World Expo

     It’s hard to believe that next week at this time we will be should be at Bark World thanks to GMC offered up 15 GMC Terrains for people to carpool down to Atlanta.

     Our friend Brewski Butt’s mom was one of the chosen 15 and we are hopping a ride down with her along with some of her really cool art.

     With us going on our first real road trip it meant redefining the boys travel kit. Reducing it from a 5-gallon tote to a backpack.

     The main reason was space but having things closer to where their carrier in case James has an insulinoma episode would be a bonus.

     The backpack I chose to use is a JanSport® because it was what I used to carry all my college books in and it’s still in great condition.PICT0623

 

     In the front pocket is going to be the boy’s papers.

     These papers contain the facts that someone would need if something happened to me. James and Manny each have a sheet inside a plastic sleeve. The information includes but not limited to:

  1. Name and birth date if known
  2. Vet name and number
  3. Who to contact in case of emergency
  4. A recent picture of each ferret PICT0583 (I’d split this one in half)
  5. Medication: Name, How much and when.
  6. Reason for the medication
  7. Any quirks that might seem unusual to someone
  8. Likes and dislikes
  9. Foods feed and the feeding schedule
  10. Litter used
  11. Sleeping arrangements

     I am sure I’ve forgotten some things for this list but as James Insulinoma progresses his sheet will get longer. At the top of his sheet will be a large red cross like you see on med alert bracelets but inside it will be the vet caduceus. untitled3

     The other items inside the pocket will be James glucose meter and his preloaded Nutri Cal syringe. The instructions for both will also be on his sheet. Extra batteries labeled about their use for the crate fan that will be on their new carrier.

     The main space will hold the grooming case, large baggies labeled with the name of the food and whose it is. Two large baggies filled with Feline Pine® litter, bottled water, and travel toys, two leashes and harnesses sets and a container for James used needles called a sharps container. Again this is just a short list and it may grow longer but by using the backpack I can’t keep adding things because I think James and Manny may need it.

I want my little guys to be comfortable but I also want to be able to enjoy our trip without it being a stressor to either of us.

Keep on Chittering,

Jo

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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

 

 

 

 

 

Trixie da bloodhound

 

This is Trixie. Comments, Captions, and/or remarks welcomed.

 

Keep on Chittering

Jo

Sunday, August 8, 2010

James and Insulinoma

     First I want to thank all of the anipals that donated to our listed charity Heart of Ohio Ferret Rescue and Association. Not only did we meet the goal we surpassed it.

     James had his first visit to the vets on Tuesday July 27 2010 it was an emergency visit. He didn’t want to wake up for his morning meal or move around too much. All I could think was it was going to be a repeat of Lance. James was having a few of the same issues that Lance had but to a very lesser degree.

     Waiting for the vet to call back with a time I could take James in to be seen I managed to get him to eat a few bites of Gerber® chicken baby food that I keep on hand for such emergencies. He seemed to perk up a little bit but not much and all he wanted to do was sleep. When I added a drop of ferret lax to the chicken James really went to town licking it all up and wanting some more. He also perked up a little bit.

     Finally the vet called back and off we went to Franklin Animal Clinic where we were put in a room and waited for the doc to come see us.

     James at this point had more spunk and wanted to run around I let him scamper the length of the bench in the room. Dr. Doverspike came in and did a quick examination where he noted that James also has an enlarged spleen something that is common in older ferrets.

     While Dr. Doverspike was talking to me about what the problem might be James energy level dropped and James became the way I had found him in the morning. Dr. Doverspike had James’ glucose  level checked. This is done by drawing some blood and putting some into a glucose meter http://http://www.animaldiabetes.com/home to measure the level of the blood sugar.

     In ferrets it should read between 80-120 mg/dl. James’ result was 27. This means he was in crisis and I was very glad he was at the vet so they could help  him. It also meant that he had a cancer called Insulinoma.

     Many people confuse Insulinoma with diabetes. Diabetes is also a blood sugar problem but Insulinoma is caused by a tumor on the pancreases causing it to produce too much insulin. Insulin’s job is to reduce the amount of sugar in the blood normally but too much decreases it to fatal levels.

     If James had been younger there would have been the option of surgery to remove the tumor but Dr. Doverspike and I agreed that it wasn’t worth the risk to James’ life that left us with only one other option. Maintenance of the insulinoma with prescription drugs, for the moment James is now on 1ml of Prednisone  to interfere with the tumor and thanks to Greenies(r) I haven’t worn the medicine.

     In only a couple of days I noticed a remarked improvement in James activity level. He is back to eating more that a few bites. This disease is common in ferrets and it does add more work to caring for them but I don’t care it’s worth it to me.

     What it does mean though is that James maybe only able to travel by vehicle and not by air. We have to see how well he tolerates the meds and how much it stresses his little body. It also means I have to update their travel case so that it has some emergency supplies for James. Like a couple packs of honey or some other high sugar liquid I also have to update his travel paper so that it notes in large red letters that he does have insulinoma.

     I must mention that James more than likely had insulinoma before he started eating Young Again Ferret food and Dr. Doverspike said the food may have keep him out of crisis for a bit longer.

     The three of us, James, Manny, and myself, are gong to be at Bark World Expo in Atlanta, Ga. August 19-22 but it maybe only Manny and myself at Blog Paws West, paws crossed, in September.

Keep on Chittering,

Jo