February’s Pet of the Month, Stravos Antonova, is perfect because his story is one of true love. When Maria and Steven wanted to find a companion for their mini-lop, Zoe, they found themselves at Midwest Rabbit Rescue, a no-euthanasia shelter. They had concerns about finding a match because Zoe could be a little aggressive and short-tempered at times. The first few rounds of bunny speed dating didn’t do much to ease their fears. Zoe beat up each of the male suitors despite their bigger size, until she met Stravos. She was curious and though she put him in his place, she wasn’t aggressive. Our young Romeo didn’t fight her or run away; he just bowed his head and used his sweet personality and charm to win her over. Maria and Steven tried a few more Casanovas, but none could charm Zoe like Stravos did. They followed their heart and took him home the next night. Within days, Zoe was cuddling and grooming him. Their owners credit Stravos with turning their crazy bunny into a little sweetheart.
Stravos has been settling in comfortably with his new family and has already learned a few very important things. He’s already learned where the refrigerator is and also the most important sound a bunny can learn: the sound of the fridge door opening. As soon as he hears the door open, he zooms straight to the bottom drawer and grabs a whole head of lettuce-his favorite treat (see picture). Unfortunately for him, a head of lettuce is just a bit too big and he doesn’t get too far. The final thing he’s learned is if you run in front of your people and they trip over you, it leads to treats and cuddles, something his owners report he uses to his full advantage.
How could we not pick Stravos as our February Pet of the Month? His story is one of second chances and a handsome charmer. Soul-mates and lettuce. Family and refrigerators. But, most importantly, it’s a story of love.
This story of love was made possible by Midwest Rabbit Rescue. If you are interested in adopting a new rabbit companion, please visit their website: www.rabbitrr.org
We wanted to start 2017 with a very special Pet of the Month for January, Scamp! He and his family, Orsi, Bob, and Anika, have one of those heartwarming stories that makes you want to cry...who’s crying? You’re crying!
Their story starts with a small pup laying in the middle of a road in Ypsilanti. He was motionless and Orsi actually thought he may have been dead. When she approached him, he lifted up his head and looked at her. She rushed him to the vet and Dr. Hui diagnosed him with parvovirus. Left untreated, parvo has a mortality rate near 90%; fortunately for other puppies, there is a highly effective vaccination available. Scamp was hospitalized for 5 days and recovered like a champ. He has been a part of the family ever since (he's now 8.5 years old). Scamp is one of those dogs that loves everybody and everybody loves him. If you're within a foot of his face, he will plant a big kiss on you. It's probably why he loves children so much, they are at his level. He has endless patience for all their crazy antics.
Then, when Scamp was a year and a half old, we found that he had bilateral elbow dysplasia and the early signs of arthritis. Orsi and Bob collaborated with Animal Rehabilitation Facility in Dexter to get him on a rehab program to slow the progress. Swimming was introduced as part of his therapy and it quickly became a love of his that continues to this day. He also loves playing fetch, sleeping in front of a fire (regardless of the season), snuggling, being a giant couch potato, and warming his parent’s feet under the covers every night.
In December, Scamp was diagnosed with lymphoma, a major shock to all of us. His family quickly started his treatment at Blue Pearl and he’s been responding beautifully. They are cautiously optimistic they'll still have a good bit of time to spoil him rotten. Even with such a heart-wrenching diagnosis, Scamp continues to help his family live a life full of love and happiness: “Everyday we have with him, he reminds us to have fun no matter what, share a hug and kiss, and just take things one day at a time.”
We love the holidays here at City Pets. Family, friends, food, and fun; what is there NOT to love? It's the days following the holidays we dread. With the increased number of visitors, all the tempting bones & side dishes, and all the sparkling adornments on the tree, how is a pet expected to NOT get in trouble?
As the old saying goes, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" and a whole lot cheaper. Here are a few steps to take to keep your festive fur-baby safe this holiday season.
The holidays can be a hectic time and it's easy to overlook something, please don't hesitate to call us with any questions or concerns. Have a safe, happy, and furry holiday season!
Oh, yeah, chocolate; always chocolate.
AH AH AH Choooo....Darn those allergies. September brings those nasty seasonal allergies but we're here to cheer you up with our Pet of the Month! September's featured pet is Archie, a cute 4 1/2 year old Cairn Terrier. He lives with Brooke, Shawn, Lily, and Chloe Gates; you can thank Chloe for helping keep our clinic nice and clean. She recently left us to pursue her studies and while we miss her greatly, we still get to see her and Archie occasionally.
At an adorable 8 weeks old, Archie was a Christmas present from Shawn to Brooke. Brooke had a Cairn Terrier growing up and always wanted another. What a wonderful gift! Archie now has a little Yorkie sister named Maude. Like most big brothers, he both tolerates and loves her. Archie loves to sleep in late, ride in the car (his favorite!), take walks, and hang out with his favorite toy, his "santa" pillow. He can't fall asleep at night without his santa pillow; he falls asleep with it in his mouth and will walk around and whine until he finds it. Archie must be having a tough time this week because he hates wet grass and refuses to go outside in the rain.
We first met Archie in 2014 and he's been coming to see us regularly ever since. Those awful allergies not only attack me but poor Archie too. The skin allergies started when he was about 2 years old, started seasonally but then continued all year. He was miserable, scratching his whole body and causing infections. His owners tried everything – food changes, oatmeal baths, food supplements, coconut oil, olive oil, antibiotics, and steroids. We could clear up the infections but the allergies continued. They finally did allergy testing at MSU and discovered an allergy to mites. Archie now gets bleach baths (following strict dilution instructions from MSU) and is on an allergy medication, Apoquel. Within a couple of days the itching was gone! It’s been just over a month now and his skin is looking great and he is so much happier.
We’re so happy for Archie. Hopefully the rain will stop soon and he can enjoy going outside again, allergy free!
Well don’t you know about the bird? Well, everybody knows that the bird is the word! Our August Pet of the Month is a special b-b-bird by the name of Xolani. She is a 7-month-old Cape parrot with lovely red, gray, and green coloring. Her parents Anita and Scott, experienced bird owners, did their research and decided young Xolani would fit right in with their flock. They were getting her from a breeder in Oregon and after deciding she was the one for them, were told she had a crooked beak (known as scissor beak). Left untreated scissor beak can have devastating effects on a bird’s health and quality of life.
Xolani was lucky to have been taken under the wing of such caring parents. Anita and Scott make sure she has what she needs, lots of things to chew, and has her beak trimmed regularly to keep it healthy. They contacted City Pets regarding Xolani’s special issue; Dr. Weinrick looked over pictures to ease her parents mind before she was even a patient. After her initial exam, Dr. Hui started trimming her beak, graciously accepting the role of the “bad guy”. This is no small sacrifice because parrots have long memories and are known to hold grudges.
“She loves toys! Her favorites are brightly colored wooden blocks and chunky wooden puzzle pieces. These help keep her beak worn down between trims. Snap peas are relished and kale is refused every, single time. She likes to "talk" and we often hear her practicing new words. Most mornings during feeding she will fly over, look in her dish and ask "what's that?”. Xolani is a wonderful girl and we are so happy she is with our family.”
We took a break from all the Pokémon Go hype to search far and wide for our Pokémon, er…Pet of the Month, and we found one worthy of the hunt! We’d like to introduce JoJo, the crooked tooth bunny. JoJo was adopted by Donna and Hsiao-Wen in June of 2015. Donna and Hsiao-Wen already had an impressive menagerie of animals, but JoJo fit right in. He gets along well with his pit bull, chihuahua, and two cat friends. He even loves his bunny roommate, Coffee Beans, as long as there is a fence between them. He enjoys nice weather outdoors in his playpen and has free run of the house. While we can’t confirm he likes “Razz berries”, his favorite occasional treats are blueberries and blackberries. This is actually what brought him into our clinic.
In September of 2015, Donna brought him in for a wellness exam and because his front four incisors were severely mal-aligned. Donna knew he would probably need a tooth trim because he had a history of dental issues. Doctor Hui was able to trim his teeth back to a reasonable length. Rabbits' teeth are continually growing, but are kept in check naturally by their diet. Due to JoJo's severe misalignment, Dr. Hui recommended removal of all four of his incisors. After some discussion, it was decided regular trimming would keep JoJo the most comfortable with minimum risk.
So now whenever he tries to eat his blackberries and they escape his mouth, Donna brings him in to see Dr. Hui. He is doing very well and tolerating his trimming schedule, so for now, his family will keep him healthy with regular visits to City Pets. And even though he doesn’t like being picked up, he appreciates the forehead and cheek rubs he gets when he comes in.
Don’t forget to “Like” or “Share” JoJo’s story. You can also find all our other Pets of the Month on our Facebook page or website.
Our June Pet of the Month, Gimli, is a diamond in the "RUFF". Gimli was adopted by Bobbie and Don Kocol after Bobbie retired. She was scanning the Humane Society’s website daily, when she came across our honorary pet and knew instantly he was the one. Of course, because she’s retired, she had to change out of her PJs, but then she was off to adopt her new furry buddy.
She was ecstatic to find he was still there, but there was one little problem; Gimli wasn’t so furry and he had just the craziest haircut. He was suffering from severe skin issues and intense diarrhea. The poor guy was also so malnourished every rib showed, but his spunky personality couldn’t be hidden and it warmed Bobbie’s heart. Thus began Gimli’s transformation from “scrawny little dog” to “healthy, handsome little dog”.
Gimli first visited City Pets Vet Clinic in December of 2012 because his diarrhea proved to be chronic. Drs. Hui and Weinrick prescribed antibiotics and steroids to great effect, but Gimli’s relief proved to be only temporary. After several different antibiotics failed to resolve his diarrhea completely, Dr. Weinrick suggested a diet trial to see if a food allergy could be the cause. After warning the Kocols it may take three months to see a change, they started him on Royal Canin Hydrolyzed Protein food. He hasn’t looked back since.
After three months, Gimli was a healthy boy with very infrequent bouts of diarrhea. His wacky ‘do was replaced with a more traditional Yorkie cut and he began to put on weight. When we asked the Kocols how he was doing, Bobbie had the following to say:
“What a healthy, handsome little dog he became. He loves his daily walk at Gallup Park. Give him a squeeky toy and he is over the moon with happiness. Jingle the car keys and he dances with delight ‘Where are we going?’. His comical acts keep us laughing! He's not perfect but close to it. He occasionally makes a fool of himself barking at large dogs. He is frightened by thunder but a cuddle in bed will calm him. The love and devotion he gives is beyond our dreams. He is a treasure we cherish."
Like we said, Gimli is a true diamond in the “RUFF”.
Birds are intelligent, emotional, and can make wonderful pets and our May Pet of the Month is no exception! Floyd is a green Amazon parrot that never fails to make us smile when he comes to visit. His exact age isn't known, but he's between 20 and 30 years old. The average lifespan of an Amazon parrot is between 25 and 50. Floyd was inherited by Tim and Dora Hanks from Tim's brother and he made himself right at home. He spends his days strutting around the house, climbing onto his owner's shoulders, talking, and laughing. His favorite treats are unsalted cashews, potato chips, french fries, and Ritz crackers.
When Tim first walked through our door in January, poor Floyd couldn't; he had sustained a pretty serious fracture in his left leg and was having trouble walking. His leg was in a splint and the break was so severe we weren't sure he was going to be able to use his leg again without expensive surgical repair. Floyd, however, had other plans. We kept his leg splinted and rechecked it several times between January and April. Boy, did Floyd learn to adapt. Tim would always show us videos and pictures of Floyd walking around the house and pulling himself around his large cage with his beak. As time went by he started using his leg more and using his foot to grip. We were very pleased with his progress, and by April 7th we were able to remove the splint! A bony callus had formed between the two fractured ends of the bone. The leg bone will likely never be normal, but it is functional and he is comfortable. Looks like Floyd got the last laugh.
Our April Pet of the Month really lives up to the old adage “April showers bring May flowers”. We’d like to introduce everyone to Mr. Haulie McIntosh and his person, Renee, who has enjoyed the companionship and love of many, many pets throughout her life. So when Renee found herself ready for new furry friends, she planned to adopt two cats, but fate interjected when her co-worker, Debbie, told her about a dog being abused by a group of teenagers who needed a new home. Renee is the type to help those in need, so with sight unseen and no more information than that, she agreed to adopt the dog. Haulie entered Renee’s life like a hurricane.
Renee didn’t realize the trouble she was getting into when Debbie dropped the dog off at her door, hissing and howling. Before she could ask anymore questions, Debbie was running out of the building, jumping in her car, and speeding off. She didn’t even stay for coffee! Renee’s first thought was, “What an ugly dog!” And his behavior wasn’t any prettier. The first week with Haulie was spent with him howling, growling, barking, bearing his teeth, snapping and giving Renee evil menacing looks all day, everyday. And in turn Renee thought, “I have to get rid of this dog,” all day, everyday. It was so bad, the only “good thing” Renee could find about Haulie was that he didn’t have accidents in the house. The bad far outweighed the good and needless to say, Haulie and Renee’s relationship was off to a stormy start.
Renee was also concerned because it seemed Haulie could never find joy in his life. He didn’t like to be petted, held, or combed (which is still true) and he never initiated play. Haulie wouldn’t even take treats out of Renee’s hand. Then something extraordinary happened at about six months. One day, while Renee brushed her teeth, Haulie came into the bathroom with his little blue ball and dropped it. He watched it bounce, grabbed it, and dropped it again. Renee watched him for 5 minutes, with tears in her eyes, while her dog played and experienced joy. It didn’t stop there either. Every few weeks there was another breakthrough in trust and play, but Renee knew if she was going to take on this challenge, she would need help. And that’s when our bright orange “City Pets” awning caught her attention.
Renee agreed to bring in Haulie after Dorie and Paul reassured her Haulie would be welcomed here and we would treat him with care, dignity, and respect. Renee says she still remembers her first conversation with Dr. Weinrick when she suggested Haulie could be helped with medication. Haulie had a history of seizures and was put on medication to help prevent those. Haulie also continued to make great strides in his behavior, but was still anxious and didn’t like when Renee left him. After another discussion, Haulie was put on an anti-anxiety medication and Renee reports this has made a world of difference. Haulie has become more playful, initiating playtime several times a day, and loves digging up and burying rocks. Haulie has developed close relationships with several new people as well and is finally enjoying life because of Renee’s perseverance and a little help from the staff at City Pets Vet Clinic.
Renee sums up Haulie perfectly: “A few days ago, someone asked, ‘Is Haulie a good dog?’ I said, ‘Yes, he is as good as he can possibly be.’ And that is good enough for me!”