Best Investment for Camping with Dogs

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I know a lot of people have dogs that can be off leash without wandering off, we do not have those dogs…we have dogs that would chase any small critter and never look back until they either caught the critter or lost it’s trail.  So with 4 dogs it’s not generally relaxing or easy to have them on leash, they tend to always get tangled up with each other or anything in their reach.

Now, we have a great portable fence!  It’s the BEST!!!  We have three sets, 8 panels per set.   The RV in the picture is 32 feet long, we used a hard plastic fencing below the RV which allowed us to make a bigger area.  We are able to fit 7 people and 5 dogs in the area with plenty of space!  No one gets tangled and the dogs love being outside so it’s the perfect fix for us.

Do you know how awesome it is just to open the door in the AM to let the dogs out verses leashing up all 4 to bring them out in the morning?  It’s absolutely amazing!!!  I only wish we would have found this sooner!

The fencing is very sturdy, our dogs have jumped on it and it has held up without a problem.  It takes about a half hour to forty five minutes to set up, but it’s well worth the time.  There are metal rods that connect the panels.  We have used the fencing away from our RV too, the fencing is so versatile it’s great for all camping situations!

We bought ours on Amazon, they are Oxgord Heavy Duty Portable Metal Exercise Dog Playpen, there are a lot of different brands, these just seemed to be the best fit for us.  Ours are the 40″ high set, there are three different heights.

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And of course we buy new chairs for the dogs and they opt to lay on the ground!

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3 Important things to know about Vestibular in Dogs

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Daisy’s 14th Birthday

I am starting blogging again, I had to take a break back in February due to Daisy, my oldest dog, having an infarct hemorrhagic stroke.  Very long story short Daisy was diagnosed infarct hemorrhagic stroke after showing abnormal old dog vestibular disease symptoms.  Old dog vestibular disease does not always accompany a stroke, but in Daisy’s case it did.

Daisy recovered after about a month and a half…other things came up after that kept me from blogging.

I had never dealt with vestibular disease with any of my previous dogs and I must say it’s an extremely scary thing to witness.  I came home to find my dog could no longer stand or walk without falling down/tipping over.  It was as if she was extremely drunk.  I rushed her to the hospital and found out that it was vestibular disease, something that normally resolves itself with little to no long-term effects.  Unfortunately, after further investigation her vestibular symptoms were getting worse with time and not better.  We went to a neurologist and discovered she had suffered 2 infarct hemorrhagic strokes.  The result was dealing with vestibular disease symptoms for weeks, but it was well worth it as Daisy recovered well from the experience.

Here are the three most important things I learned from dealing with vestibular:

  1.  Old dog vestibular disease isn’t rare, I found a large community of people that have weathered this with their dogs…which means there’s a great support group out there who are an absolute wealth of knowledge and sympathy.
  2. A well-padded harness with a handle is the best investment in the world!  The handle helped to steady her even after I didn’t have to use a sling, it also helped to catch her when she was losing her balance.
  3. Patience and Snuggles…The thing that helped Daisy be most comfortable was for us to ALWAYS be within touching distance.  The more she rested the better and if we were near by she felt comfortable enough to just rest…so for a couple of weeks (this is where patience comes in) my husband and I sat and slept on the floor near her…From all of the people I talked to supportive care was the only thing that helped.

I was absolutely devastated and heart broken when we started dealing with this, especially after her second stroke.  However, after reaching out to the local dog communities and hearing I wasn’t alone and how to best help Daisy I started feeling better.   If you are dealing with this, I will say hang in there, it’s so hard to see your loved one in such bad shape, but you are not alone and you will get through this.

The picture above was taken on her 14th birthday…a little over a month after her stroke.

Name Change…

I have not written for a long time, unfortunately life sometimes gets in the way.  I’ve changed the title to the blog because there were so many other things I would like to share but it didn’t fall under the travel umbrella.  Travel will still be a big part of it still, but I thought there were more advantages and disadvantages to expanding the blog.

 

Fairfield State Park, TX

Fairfield State Park wasn’t on our initial itinerary for 2015, but the original state park we planned on was flooded, so we ended up staying there a couple of nights.  While we were there it was usually pouring rain, so it made walking a difficult task as many of the trails there were flooded.

Between the rain drops we were able to get out a few times.  Here are just some of our thoughts on the park.

  • The sites were slightly smaller than average
  • There was slightly less foliage between sites
  • The sites weren’t very level, making for a small lake in our campsite and others as well
  • The one trail that was only partially flooded was pretty nice, it was easy to hike even though it was muddy and it was slightly wider than the average single file hiking trail

If given the chance I would like to check it out again in less wet circumstances, since the park has a lot of hiking trails I would love to explore.

If you have visited Fairfield Lake State Park and had a different experience, I would love to hear from you!

5 Items to Bring Along When Traveling with Senior Dogs

Having senior dogs there are few items we don’t ever leave home without…

  1. Anti-Anxiety Medicine…we travel with both prescription and a OTC supplement.  Even though the pups love traveling, they also suffer from anxiety, both at home and otherwise.  The supplement we use is called Quiet Moments, we really like it because it’s an all natural product.
  2. Hot Packs and Ice Packs…We travel with the hot packs for when Daisy is stiff and Ice packs in case her knee gets swollen…I think they are both great to have in your first aid kit, but especially with dogs that have arthritis.
  3. Steps or other aid to get up and down off of the bed…our dogs sleep on the bed and in the RV the bed is too high now for our seniors to jump up and down.  We use a Rubbermaid tote with a small rug that has a anti slip back, it makes for a great step for the pups and it also works for storage.
  4. Rugs…The floors in the RV are a bit slippery and rugs give Daisy the extra traction she needs in the RV either just walking around or getting up and down from the couch.
  5. Anti-Inflammatory medicine…obviously this is a prescription from your vet, but before we travel I always request a few rimadyl just in case we need them.  Even though we do a lot of training before we go, the dogs can still get sore from all of the hiking.

Churu…An Awesome Treat for Cats

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I love finding treats Lily loves…she is a picky eater and a small cat, so it isn’t always easy keeping weight on her.  It is especially difficult when we travel since she is unable to free feed like we do at home.

So last week for her birthday I was looking for fun treats for her and found Churu.  It reminds me of the yogurt in a tube…anyways, when I asked the clerk about it he said cats go crazy for it…he didn’t exaggerate…Lily loved it so much that she demanded more when the bowl was empty.

What I like about it?

  • It is grain free
  • It is high in calories
  • It has a lot of different flavors
  • It would be easy to pack in the RV for traveling