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About Allyalbon

  • Rank
    Still wet behind the ears
  • Birthday 07/14/1982

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  • Location
    Dallas TX
  • Interests
    Art, greyhounds, computer games, tropical fish, amphibians and oddballs. Carnivorous plants, baking

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  1. Thank everyone, very much. Happy Paws is the one I was thinking of using so that's great it's getting good recommendations from fellow greyhound owners and glad to hear it has helped you out. I'm pretty sure if Charlie has any more tum or webbing issues it won't be covered, however I am ok with that as it's never reached a high cost (yet, touch wood) so am happy to pay out of pocket for that. It's more in case there's an accident or emergency or the dreaded C word etc where costs can escalate quickly that I want to make sure there is something in place to help. Heartbreaking enough to deal with these things! Thanks again!
  2. Hi everyone! I'm thinking of putting my gals onto pet insurance. I was on one that was specifically for the vet surgery I use - which was very useful as Charlie managed to rip the webbing between her toes last year and had to be put under and stitched up), however because she is the clumsiest poop in the known universe, I figure it is probably worthwhile getting her insured by one of the big players, as the local insurance didn't cover emergencies etc. However, all I am seeing is $$$ and 2 star reviews for everything, or suspiciously happy 5 star reviews that look paid for, and now I am confused and annoyed. Does anyone have any recommendations for insurers? Those that will pay something out for big events is more important to me than small, frequent payouts such as cuts and grazes I am happy to cover smaller visits/surgeries as/if they happen, I am more concerned about any big emergencies happening that costs megabucks. I don't mind if they take their time paying out, only that they do eventually. I think I would like to go for 80% payouts with a larger deductible and lower monthly payments. My one concern is that they really seem to try and play on preexisting conditions. Charlie has had very bad stomach problems when she was younger (empty stomach syndrome) and of course cut her webbing. Does this mean if she suddenly has unrelated stomach problems, or gets cut again, they are less likely to pay out? Help, opinions and experience would be very much appreciated!
  3. I have a dog that delights in investigating and ripping paper things. She is non-destructive in general, but I do give her a big cardboard box every week or so, with new things (junk mail, toilet rolls, paper, a new toy, a few treats scattered in there etc etc) which she loves rummaging through, destroying bits, finding the food, making a total mess and enjoying new smells. I wonder if diverting your dog to one particular thing to destroy may allow her to express the behaviour but also understand that she can destroy these things, but not other things? my hound will wreck paper in her box, but will not touch any other paper lying in the house as she knows its not "Hers" - just a passing thought.
  4. Hello everyone! Thanks for all your tips and advice - actually managed to solve this issue (so far)!! It took a few experiments though - the pyjamas of different shape and style just didn't work, the hellhound just kept getting tangled - she does a strange sliding thing in the night that pulls anything under her really tight till she just can't get up, so clothes at night are a no. I bought a stronger dog electric blanket but they are too plasticy and she is very unhappy at lying on them, and they just don't warm up enough. Tried a small heater - husband hated the noise from the word go, so it was a non-starter... Tried to build a cave/nook for her but she refused to go in it, and husband threw a fit at the appearance of the bedroom! In the end, I suddenly remembered that we had a double electric blanket that we hadn't used in a couple of years, which is specially made that you can lie on it while it is on without it cooking you/burning up in flames and have it on all night if you wanted - we were going to give it away as we just don't use it - so I grabbed it out and threw it over Char's slumber ball for the afternoon to see if it still worked and didn't get too hot/burn the house down and the instant it was turned on, she was on it and refusing to move. I lay on it for a while with her too and it was just lovely and cozy but not too hot. I kept it spread out over her bed and part of the floor, and she can properly stretch out and still be warm. I have used it 3 nights in a row now, and Char didn't get out of bed once! I actually got up before the dogs this morning too, which never happens. She actually seems brighter during the day too, so I think the poor hellhound was missing out on sleep too. So a total win! It's also only going to be for a couple of months of the year, if that, so I am happy to keep an eye on it and keep using it. And yay, husband actually is getting a full night's sleep too!
  5. I am pretty sleep deprived as I write this! Wondering if anyone has any tips for a hound who is waking up in the middle of the night feeling cold and waking us up to fix it! This only happens for a couple of months in the winter time but it's really disturbing our sleep. Our second dog is a lot more "padded" and chilled and seems to cope so much better, sleeps through the night and I have to wake her up, but Charlie has had issues every winter and I feel pretty sorry for her! Charlie doesn't keep weight on very well (has been checked out medically, just manages to burn it all off quickly - I am jealous) and she tends to be on the thinner side. I am giving her bigger meals with more fats and carbs and that's starting to fill her out a bit more (until she goes running then back to square one...) Also, when she is cold and doesn't want to disturb us by getting up, she will smack her lips every 5 seconds which also wakes husband and disturbs his sleep. I have tried about 5 different jacket and pyjama designs for night but she manages to either slip out of or get tangled in them to the point she can't move.... Different beds - flat ones, heavily padded ones, bean bags. Lots of blankets on top but she will always get up to rearrange and then she is on top of them. Dog electric blanket - she is very aware of it in her bed, and it also doesn't seem to heat up to a good temperature, seeing as greys run so warm. leaving the heating on - this does work, but then we overheat at night and my husband gets very dried out and it gives him a headache, also the sound of the heater coming on will wake him too. I have just bought a small standalone ceramic heater with the thought that it can go into the dogs' corner of the room and keep the ambient temperature higher there, without hopefully heating the entire room (and is quiet, I hope). I have got a second humidifier for our side of the room so that we don't dry out too much. I am really hoping that this will work! I am also contemplating moving the dogs to the spare room at night, then they can have the heating on in there without it affecting us - but this will be a hard thing to do and the dogs will probably complain and argue about this, so it's very much a last resort. I am also wondering if building her a tent of some sort will help her retain warmth but I know my OH will kick up a fuss at having a structure like that in the bedroom, even if only for a couple of months of the year. Just wondering if anyone else here has the same issues and what worked for them to overcome it?
  6. I have a female, 4, who never showed any signs of anxiety, very chilled and laid back from the first day, then we got a second female, 2, who had very bad anxiety at first which we hadn't realised could happen, as we figured they would be happy with each other there, not realising that it may be the lack of human in the house that could cause it! Luckily, with a lot of practice and patience and some calming pills, she settled down within a couple of months. The non SA girl is very laid back, strong willed and stubborn and pretty independent whereas the girl with SA is very sweet, gentle and cuddly and I suspect that the individual personality has a lot to do with it.
  7. Thank you everyone for your comments! I have a couple of further questions - What do you do about beds/resting spots? Do your dogs tend to have a preferred bed/place to sleep and that is their spot, or are they pretty good at sharing and swapping? I'm trying to decide how many more beds to get Secondly - did you find that the second dog added to your family had less/no separation anxiety? Did having a dog already in the house and knowing the routine mean that the second one settled in easier, and without SA? Thirdly - how do you distribute treats? Do you stand over them until they have eaten their treats? Does one dog tend to run off for privacy to eat? (Char is a bit overprotective over her treats and still gets anxious and tries to hide when she gets high value yums) I won't give anything of value when we are not home. We have been to a couple of meet and greets - we met a very darling older gal who was perfection, however she had been snapped up by a couple that got to the greet a few minutes before us. The other female we were there to meet was very big and didn't quite click with us, and the male was insanely sweet but also closer to 100lbs which is just a bit too big! (he was a mountain!) But today, we were asked to come out and meet another female that the adoption organiser felt would be a good fit, having chatted with us last week and so they brought another black female for us to meet, who had been in foster a couple of weeks. Aaand she was pretty much perfect - smaller size, very sweet, but had the confidence we want as support for our own girl - very interested in other dogs and people, tail (very long!) wagging, she leaned into us immediately, lots of eye contact and she just feels right. She is young at 2 years old and apparently is a bit of a chewer at the moment but that can be worked with! She is meant to be very sweet, playful and a funny character, but doesn't feel bossy or too alpha, which is what we are looking for - and she has a small roman nose! She has a shorter muzzle and a bit of a bump on her nose and it makes her look very cute. It just felt very right. We are going to do an overnight stay soon and see how she does with our home and with Charlie and if it goes well, the overnight stay will be a long term one, so that's very exciting!
  8. Hi guys, So I have read through all similar topics on the site, but thought I would throw out again and ask for people's stories and advice on adding a second greyhound to our family! We have a small black girl who is nearly 4, who was described as "ornery" when we got her, and can be described as "ornery and spoilt" now... we have had her for just over 2 years, and she gets lots of walks and cuddles - and in her head, probably too much of both She is a lovely dog, and doing so well - she is still showing us new aspects to her personality daily and I adore her. She seems fine on her own, however when she sees other dogs she likes when on a walk she becomes so animated and happy for a while afterwards, she clearly loves seeing and playing with them. She also gets very nervous at times on her walks, sometimes for seemingly no reason and especially if she sees groups of people or people laughing, children screaming etc... but if she is with another dog, especially a confident one, she will use that dog as her "guide" for the situation - ie, if that dog is happy, then she is happy. If it is sniffing something, she will sniff it. If there is a good pee spot, it will be her turn straight after etc etc... so I really think she would enjoy a friend. We have had greyhound guests before and aside from a bit of snarking when the new dog tried to take her toy, she gets on beautifully with them. Also, it's mostly because I would adore a second one, and I am getting a SUV next month so there is no excuse not to fit another beastie in We are in a large apartment and have access to enclosed yards and local dog parks (which she barely uses anyway...), gets a 30-40 min walk in the morning, a 20-40 walk in the evening, and a 10/20 min pee break at night. She sometimes gets a lunch walk too between 20-40 mins but she is lazy and often tries to avoid this one by hiding behind my husband. There is plenty of room for another dog! We are also looking to purchase a home in the next 10 months or less, and I don't really care about the house, I just want a nice big garden for my dog(s) and a place to grow my plants... so the situation will be temporary anyway. Husband is mildly nervous about adding a second dog to an apartment as they are such big dogs, but he is the one that hunts down Charlie on a daily basis for playtime, so he does realise that they fold away quietly in the corner. He is also aware that the first couple of weeks or so will be a bit crazy, especially in the mornings as everyone adapts. He likes his sleep but is aware there may be a bit of night time drama - we are also both going to take off a couple of days upon adoption so disrupted sleep will be less debilitating for him (I get up at 6:15 anyway, I don't know what sleep is anymore). I am talking to the local rescue and he has 2 black girls in foster and 2 black boys in the kennels at the moment so he is finding out more information about each dog for me right now! We are going to go to the meet and greet this Saturday to meet at least one of the girls, and then if things go well, we will do a couple of home visits with this one girl, and possibly one or two of the others to see who Char likes (we can't really take her to meet and greets as she gets too overwhelmed and won't pay any attention to the dogs, so it will just be my husband and I on Sat). I really like one of the girls and am very drawn to her, and also to her brother who is still in the kennel awaiting foster, so we will see! It's very exciting Anyway - I would love to hear people's stories of what they did and how they introduced a new dog to their current dog. Especially if their current dog helped choose the new one, or if you just brought new dog home and asked them to get on! In particular, how do they act with toys and treats? Do they learn to share or do they tend to have their own "special" toys that are theirs and theirs alone? I will give treats separately and keep an eye on things, and no toys or treats or food when we are out of the house until I am 100% happy there is no snarking. I don't crate Char (She hates it) and the new dude/ette will not be crated either unless absolutely necessary. And muzzling - do you automatically muzzle both dogs for a few days when they are on their own? Or muzzle the new one only? Or no muzzle needed? I am not too worried about things, I think it will go well if a little chaotic at first! But any tips or tricks or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
  9. Hi everyone! I wanted to follow up after being at work for a couple of months! Charlie has done *superbly* with both of us being at work all day. I am genuinely surprised at how very well she has done, beyond expectation. I get up at 6:30am (if I fall asleep again after my alarm goes off, she comes over to remind me!) and she gets fed. I do my morning ablutions and then she gets walked at about 6:45 for 25-45 minutes, as sometimes she just doesn't want a long walk. She then rejoins husband in bed and I go to work at 7:45. Husband leaves house at 9:30 (lucky) and gives her a treat ball or dentastick. I have been fortunate to catch him leaving the house a couple of times on the camera, so I can see her reaction - she stares with pointed ears at the door for 10 seconds, checks the kitchen for fallen tasty things, does a circuit of the living room and then heads into the bedroom for a few hours - I am going to put a camera in there too to see what she is up to. She then re-emerges between 2/3pm and snoozes on the couches. She is a bit unusual in that she never sleeps for long, more like dozes, and will move between the two couches, her beanbag and then the bedroom every half hour or so. She has never slept heavily though, even when we are at home. Then I get home between 5:30-6:30 depending on the day, and she is very happy to see me because then there will be more food. She has become more affectionate on having me arrive home, definitely! It used to be "oh, hi" and now it is "yaaaay! Muum! foood!" She then gets a 20-45 min walk depending on weather (Texas...) and then it is cuddle time. She has a pee spot on the balcony as mentioned, and she uses it a couple of times a week but seems to prefer to wait until we are walking her. She does this during the weekends too, she is just too lazy to go out and pee during the day even when we offer to take her on an extra walk... we have had no accidents at all which I am pleased at. She doesn't seem to drink or eat much during the day and tends to wait until we get home even though she has free access to water and some food. Her very mild SA when we both go out in the evening has almost gone! She used to whine and get underfoot when she knew we were going out, now she just lies on the bed and makes sadface. Getting to enjoy her alone time, I think! Occasionally, my husband or I would go home at lunch to check on her and she really didn't appreciate being disturbed. She really seemed to be irritated we were around during her alone time I did have a dog walker one day when I had to work stupidly late, but she didn't pee on her walk, was statue-ing and generally didn't want to do it, even though she knew and has walked with the woman before (who also has a grey) so she really doesn't want to do anything during the day! I have as of this week been chatting to the rescue we got her from, with the intention of getting her a friend soon. She is doing well on her own, but she really does like the company of other dogs, is so happy after seeing dogs she knows, and also uses them as a guide when we are on walks, so I think she would appreciate a companion. Also, we really want another one - so it will be interesting to see how that changes the day time dynamic!
  10. From a slightly different angle - my hound started having tummy issues last october and was getting me up in the middle of the night to go out and poop, and it was unpleasant poop... I was so very sleep deprived! In the end, I worked out that she has "empty tummy syndrome" and if she didn't have something to eat overnight, she would wake up with a bad stomach. horrible grumbling noises, obviously painful, desperate to poop and then later that day there would always be diarrhoea and vomit. Once I got her onto a routine where she gets fed a decent amount last thing at night - no more poop and tummy issues. Just a thought that perhaps Merlin might need an overnight feed? It seemed to be a strange connection that the lack of food made Charlie need to go poop but I thought I would throw it out there. (Charlie gets a large breakfast, a small dinner at 7pm and then about a cup of food again 15 mins before we head to bed) Or what about changing brands of food? When C gets dry kibble she produces a lot of poop, when she is on high quality wet food (Honest kitchen dehydrated) she produces less than half the amount and it's a lot healthier looking!
  11. Thanks everyone for their comments, gave me some things to think about. I have discovered that a 40 minute walk is the sweet spot - for the past 5 days she has had a morning walk of 40 minutes or more and then she is totally conked out for the day! She normally hangs around and harasses me for cuddles and fuss (and treats) on and off throughout the day but since the long walks, she actually abandons me to go snooze on the sofa or totally crashes out on the bed - I can even move around the house and make noise without those sparkly eyes and cold snoot appearing to see what I am doing. It seems to be giving her extra pee time and she doesn't even want to go out at lunchtimes when i've offered. Between the long morning walk and another 20-40 minutes in the evening she seems pretty happy with the activity level. I have also been going out and leaving her for longer during the day, giving her a big treat when I leave and now when I return I get a snarky face as though I interrupted her alone time... I think that a dog walker may be unnecessary actually, as @GeorgeofNE suggested - knowing Charlie, someone visiting and then leaving may very well feel like she has been "abandoned" twice that day. Although we will be getting a cleaner on Fridays and possible another day, so she will have some disturbance on those days. @rseig, I did make the suggestion of a cleaner every day to my husband but that idea didn't fly We will see how she does for a couple of weeks and then make the decision as to whether she needs a break in the day with company - I do suspect not. @GeorgeofNE - the potty area is very concealed and private and consists of a diy project of mine with active soil, fake grass etc, so it is very clean. I am a neat freak and the idea of letting pee run off the balcony is horrific, don't worry! She only uses it twice a week or so - and hasn't used it at all since taking her out on her long morning walk - and it gets cleaned and washed whenever she uses it. It's very useful though as it makes me less worried at leaving her alone during the day as she has an area to go and isn't forced to hold it for hours. And husband and I are in the more advanced stages of getting her a friend at somepoint soon which I am sure will also help. The current argument is whether it will be a greyhound or perhaps a rescue italian greyhound... if anyone has experience of italians with greys (albeit a small one at 54lbs!) I would be so appreciative.
  12. Hi everyone, I am looking for some tips or suggestions! I have been working from home the past 2.5 years, and I have had Charlie for 2 of those years - she has always had company at home during the day. However, in a couple of weeks I am heading back into a studio based job and so she is going to be at home on her own for about 8 hours a day. She is pretty laid back and although she sleeps surprisingly little for a greyhound, she does chill and lounge around a lot. She isn't very needy for attention and will often go lie in another room or on the bed for a lot of the time. If I move around though, she will come investigate. She doesn't seem to suffer from separation anxiety, other than becoming like glue when she realises husband and I are about to go out together, then she gets very underfoot and a bit whiney and sad, but from watching our camera, she settles down very quickly once we leave and snoozes or chills on the sofa. We have gone out for 8+ hours before, and she has been fine, however this is going to be the first time she will be left on her own consistently day after day. To prepare her, I have been leaving the house for longer and longer each day and I also try not to give her too much attention during working hours. I would still love some tips from others who may have been in the same situation! She gets a frozen yogurt/peanutbutter cup in the morning which keeps her nice and busy and seems to tire her out. She is not very food motivated, but she does like her topple toy, keeps her entertained for hours (I think she just likes the noise and mayhem it causes!) but I am going to put part of her breakfast in that to give to her when I leave. I am considering getting a dogwalker 2/3 times a week to break up her day. She is very lazy though and generally doesn't want to go on a lunchtime walk, hence why only a couple of times a week. We are probably also going to get a cleaner once a week (yaaaay!) and that should keep her entertained for a couple of hours on a Friday - she loves "helping" me clean... She has a pee area and a bed on our small balcony - she can look down into the enclosed quad on the ground floor where people walk their dogs during the day, which she quite likes. She is happy to pee out there if she needs to. I will leave my radio on too, as she is used to that. She gets a 30-35 minute walk in the mornings, which I will probably increase once I am used to getting up early again! She also gets a 20-40min walk in the evening. We are strongly contemplating getting a second dog too, but I will need a car before I am willing to do this (need to save up again...) and we are debating what breed to get - this changes on a daily basis! I want another greyhound desperately, but my husband is worried about two large dogs in an apartment. We are looking to buy our own place in about a year so we may wait and get a second dog when we have a house with a garden. This will give extra company and tire her out too but is not an immediate option. So that got a bit too long, but if anyone has any tips or experiences to share, I would be terribly grateful!
  13. Hi everyone, Gosh - thank you for such comprehensive, fast responses! Her name is Charlie! A lot of you have suggested taking her to get her eyes checked - funnily enough, something I forgot to mention is that there IS something up with her right eye - a persistent papillary membrane. The vet said that it is stable and really shouldn't bother her, like seeing a floater out of the corner of your eye, but gosh - perhaps it's completely throwing her off. I had not thought about that at all. I will cancel the dog coat idea. I had concerns about her overheating, even when only wearing it to run, and it's just not worth it. I have spent one winter here and it really wasn't that cold, doubt a dog would really need it, let alone in the 100 degree heat. I just want to wrap her up safe! (I am still recovering from the incident, she is fast asleep with her kong right now). I used to be a dog groomer and think that I can generally get the personality "vibe" of a dog, and I think Charlie is a princess with a streak of Oops. I don't think her clumsy is something she is going to grow out of (my husband is hoping this is the case) and I think she is just a stubborn, happy go lucky pup who is going to keep trying to outrace all other dogs whatever it takes. I do have a sad feeling that dog parks may simply be a total no no unless they are small enough to keep things under control - the park we go to is pretty big and it has small trees and dog agility things in the middle but she has room to just go go go and too many dogs for her to show off to, and a few too many things to potentially hit. We do have an enclosed outdoor space - I live in an apartment - where I can let her run around without getting up to speed but it makes me sad that she can't go full out. What do you do with your dogs when you can't take them to the dog park? There is a very long corridor in my building though, that she adores rocketing down, perhaps that will have to be enough until we buy a house with a decent garden that I can Charlie-proof. I am planning on taking her to agility classes early next year when the beginner classes start again - they do a really good program locally - so hopefully that will help her bond further, learn herself and her surrounds and get rid of her excess energy. Thanks, guys. Any further comments are more than appreciated.
  14. Hi everyone! First time posting (will do a better introduction later!) I adopted (four months ago) a 2 yo female, who is of course the love of my life. She is 53lbs and never raced as she was considered too small. However, she still likes to run, and she is really, really clumsy. When we got her, she was already the proud wearer of quite a few scars, most of them fairly small, but she does have a couple of really big ones on her thighs. We don't know the reason for them but I do think it is because she really doesn't watch what she is doing, as she proved at the dogpark yesterday. She doesn't go to the park often as I tend to only go when there are few dogs around, however yesterday I took her and there were three other dogs there. She is a total show off and so she immediately started prompting them to chase her, which was fine, she always does that. Then she got distracted and managed to fall head over heels over a small "jump" that is set up in the middle of the park - like a horse jump but solid metal. She tipped over facefirst and was limping for a few minutes. This is the first time I have had a pet in an accident like that and if I was a cat I would be down to about 4 lives now. She caught the pole across her chest and has bruised her breastbone and has a couple of new cuts to add to her collection. None of them were deep, just the usual greyhound parchment skin jazz. She is now recovering nicely although I swear she is playing up on the attention she is getting. I think I was more distressed about it than she was. Anyway, my post is to ask whether anyone can recommend any form of jacket that could help her if (when!) she does this again. She has enough scars and bumps to last many lifetimes. Is it possible to pad a greyhound?! Any jacket recs would be great, cost no issue. I have been looking at these: http://www.amazon.com/Greyhound-Hunter-Wax-Coat-Green/dp/B0030ADVAI/ref=pd_sim_sbs_199_14?ie=UTF8&refRID=0NYZEV489YV9MCF82CRW http://www.amazon.com/Scooters-Friends-Greyhound-Coat-Large/dp/B008MIOJLI/ref=pd_sim_sbs_199_5?ie=UTF8&refRID=1JB3W1K8RNGJ8TTM5F00&dpSrc=sims&dpST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_ http://www.amazon.com/Greyhound-Extreme-Coat-Brown-51cm/dp/B008MZOSL2/ref=pd_sim_sbs_199_6?ie=UTF8&refRID=1JB3W1K8RNGJ8TTM5F00&dpSrc=sims&dpST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_ and would love to know if anyone has them/can recommend them. I am mostly thinking about her upper forelegs/chest/neck and hindquarters as these seem most fragile. Has anyone come up with a greyhound proof jacket that isn't going to overheat them? I should also add that I am in Texas, so it's gonna be hot. The jacket would pretty much just be for her running around/winter and would be taken off for the walk home etc. Can I just wrap her in bubblewrap and roll her around the park instead? Thanks, everyone.
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