Friday, October 16, 2015

Katie's zig-zag back

Every so often over the years, I've noticed a zig-zag pattern in Katie's back fur.  Lately, since she's gained a few extra pounds, it's much more pronounced:

I finally did a search on the zig-zags this morning, and the only thing I could find is that this is "raising her hackles," which is a sign of fear or stress.

"Various types of dog fur exist, from super short to so long the fur touches the ground. One thing all dogs have in common, however, is a patch of fur along their backs that has a different texture and appearance than the rest of the coat. That section of fur might seem insignificant, but it serves a greater purpose."

"All dogs have hackles along the base of their spines, which usually presents as fur that is coarser and denser than the rest of their coats. Depending on the breed of dog, hackles generally have a wrinkled or zigzag appearance and run from a dog’s neck or shoulder blades down to the base of his tail. Dogs can use their hackles to communicate their feelings or to appear taller in a threatening situation."

"You may occasionally see your dog raise his hackles. The section of your dog’s coat that normally has a wrinkled appearance will stand on end, or puff up. This is called piloerection, which is an involuntary physical response your dog will have to particularly frightening, exciting or stressful situations. Similar to how humans get goose bumps when they’re quite frightened or nervous, piloerection is a physical response to a surge of adrenaline caused by a variety of situations or stimulants."

Interesting, huh?  The strange thing is that with Katie, there doesn't seem to be anything different going on when the zig-zags are prominent.  She even has them inside The Palms when it's just Katie and me, doing normal day-to-day stuff.

The link in the third paragraph is the best explanation that I could find with a quick search on-line and they have more information if you're interested.  The site is The Daily Puppy.

BTW, Katie went to Sierra Veterinary Services again on Tuesday to have her teeth cleaned.  She had some gingivitis on the gum over her left canine and she needed her teeth cleaned to make sure it didn't become infected.  I was really worried about her; I've never had a dog with gingivitis before and was afraid she might lose some teeth, but when I picked her up, they said her teeth are great, very solid.  And now they are bright, shiny white again.  That was a relief!   So that is done and already her gum looks better.  I don't know if gingivitis goes away or not without meds, but she seems improved without any Rx.

We're at South Monticello Campground right now.  The campground road is so level and smooth, I can easily push Katie in her stroller.  The last two days we've walked 3+ miles each day.  That's also a sign that temps are coming down - when we were here in the middle of the summer it was WAY too hot to walk much.  This time the weather has been perfect, but last night and today are VERY windy.

BTW,  at Katie's first vet appointment on September 23rd she weighed in at 16.0 pounds (Ouch! Overweight pup!).  When she went in for her teeth cleaning 20 days later, she had lost 4 ounces.  That might not sound like much, but she's now 15.6 pounds and losing more every day.  Since she's feeling better and can walk more, she's getting a bit more exercise.  Also going back to the Royal Canin Chihuahua food is helping.  She should probably weigh 12 or 13 pounds, and hopefully we can get there.  The weight loss will also help her back legs.

From me and Katie, have a great Friday, everyone!  :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

This has to be a first!

Roadrunners for sale at Wal-mart!   LOL

I'll bet none of you has seen a Roadrunner at Wal-Mart.  I was walking around in the garden department of the Truth or Consequences Wal-Mart the other day and all of a sudden - there's a Roadrunner.  An employee was watering plants and when she saw him, she squirted him with a spray of water.  I'm sure they don't want large birds in their store, but that didn't make him leave.  He walked along, jumped up on the pile of bricks and bags of lawn soil, jumped back down, ran under the plant displays, he was having a gay ole time.  He let me get pretty close, too. 

Then finally he went under the pallets holding the large fertilizer bags and went out through the bars on the outer fence. 

You know me - that made my day!  Here he is:

Pretty cool, huh?

We had some real stormy weather last night - the electricity and free wi-fi in the park went out.  That's when it's nice to be set up for boondocking.  I went outside and unplugged from the electric post, just in case there was a surge when it came back on, and in just that minute outside I was drenched.  I had to change my clothes and get dry again.  It was POURING!  We had a brief bout of hail, and it sounded pretty big.  I opened the door to look outside on the ground to see the size of the hail, but it was coming down so hard, I closed the door.  Luckily the hail didn't last long.

It's cloudy and a little rainy this morning.  Katie and I went out for her potty break early (early for us - 7:30).  She usually stays in bed until 9 or 10, but today I made her get up early in case the skies opened up again.  Also, since it was pouring last night, she did't go outside for her last potty break, so she was ready.

The forecast is partly sunny today, the high is supposed to be 70 degrees.  Nice!   I think the really hot weather is finally gone for this season.

From me and Katie, have a great Wednesday, everyone!  :)

Friday, October 2, 2015

Lunar Eclipse in New Mexico

We were at Caballo Lake State Park in New Mexico for the lunar eclipse and we had a perfect view.  The air was clear, no clouds, no utility wires in the view and no other RVs in front of us to block our view.  It was a beautiful night.  I took photos intermittently until the eclipse was full, then stopped.  The rest of the eclipse would have been the opposite of the first half, so I didn't keep going out with my camera.  I remember seeing my first lunar eclipse at Quartzsite and it was amazing.  I think this one was even better. 

The moon itself started turning a rusty color as the eclipse evolved, but my camera - in order to get a good clear close-up - didn't pick up the red color except in one of the last photos that's not as clear as the others.

Here's the full moon coming up over the hill across from the campground.  You can barely see Caballo Lake on the bottom right.

Almost cleared the mountain, and it looks like the eclipse is beginning.

Isn't the moon beautiful in this closeup:

The lunar eclipse is starting.  We sure had a front row seat - it was right in front of The Palms:

Closeup of the lunar eclipse.

 Almost complete:

 Here's the almost complete eclipse with a different camera setting:

This one shows some of the reddish color - when I had clear photos, I lost the color:

Pretty much total:

And here's the total eclipse, you can hardly see it (move really close to your screen and you can see it right in the middle):

It's going to be a while before we see another one.  I wonder where I'll be for that one?   If it's in a city, I'll never get shots like this!

Katie is doing so well, she even wants to walk more.  I'm not wanting her to walk too much because it always enlarges her seroma when she overdoes it, but she's gained weight, and of course walking is good for her.  So, she's walking a little more now and riding in the stroller most of the time, still.  I took her to get a bath the other day and the groomer noticed she has some gingivitis on her left fang.  Luckily the vet is in the same building, so I went out and asked if they could look at her.  I thought the gum was infected, but not yet.  We scheduled a teeth cleaning for the end of October to get Katie's teeth back to pearly white.

Here she is sleeping with the tip of her tongue sticking out - I love that.  My little fatty:

From me and Katie, have a great weekend, everyone!  :)