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Pet People

Sunday, September 30, 2007

When Animals Attack!

Yesterday I was playing with the cats over in the apartment. Now, anyone with cats has been scratched a time or two, right? Especially when you are playing with them and teasing them with a toy. I was wiggling Catfish's snake toy across the bed then holding it up in the air. I figured my hand was safe, as the snake was long, but I was wrong. Catfish swiped quick, fast and hard, and his nail not only scratched me, but put a puncture in my finger. OW. And I don't clip my cats' nails, as they have an outdoor tree to scratch on and give themselves manicures (and never scratch on anything inside they're not supposed to).

I immediately washed it and put Neosporin on it, after "bleeding" it a bit. You have to be really careful with cat bites or any kind of puncture wound, because germs get embedded deeply into your skin. A relative of my Mom got blood poisoning from a cat bite. She had red streaks going up her arm and it was a good thing she got to the doctor right away to take care of the infection. You could die from infections, because today, so many strains are resistant to antibiotics.

One time when my Mom was visiting (she stays in the cat house) she was lying on the bed when Tarzan, for no reason, bit her big toe! Tarzan is a biter when you fool around with him, and he's like a dog in that if you try to use a pencil he wants to chew on it. My Mom, the worry wart on a worry wart, never relazed with a bare toe available after that!

So, what kind of wounds or scars do you have from your pets? We know Brett got a nip on the nose from Hines the squirt when they first met and Hines was unsure of what the heck was going on. I've never been nipped or bitten by one of my own pets, but have got plenty of scratches from playing with the cats. I've also had pretty bad scratches on my legs when wearing shorts from Zoe jumping up in exuberant greetings.And Glen has got hit a few times you-know-where when Zoe greets him. Then there are the times we trip over pets and either bump into something and get a bruise, or worse, fall to the ground.

Then of course, you have the spats and fights between pets. I've had several altercations among the dogs and cats over the years. With the dogs, it was always one huge fight between two, then that settled pack order. Let's see, Penny had to have a stitch in her back from Zoe, Peanut got a hole in his ear from the infamous Christmas 2004 fight over a piece of ham with Scooter. Zoe bit through her own lip during a two second spat with Scooter. Tramp needed a stitch in her back from Zoe.

The cats have had their hissy fits, but so far, no damage done, just a noticeable scratch on one of their noses now and then, or tufts of hair on the floor.

Fact is, when you have multiple pets they are going to have disagreements, just like if you have multiple kids, they're going to go at it sooner or later. The trick is knowing how to break it up, and the best way to do that is WATER.

Dog picture above is Scooter playing with my friend Laura's dog Freeway during a weekend visit here. The head in the forefront is Zoe watching the show. Laura is the one who orignally adopted Scooter. It looks viscious, doesn't it? Teeth at the throat and all that, but these two LOVE each other and play and wrestle nonstop when together. Sadly, Laura and Freeway now live in North Carolina, so who knows if they'll ever get to play again.

Cat picture is Tarzan in his tree, ready to pounce to the ground. He probably sees a lizard or mole movement. The cats will sit in the yard, still as a statue looking at a spot in the ground: the mole hole. They show such patience in waiting for their opportunity to attack!

posted by Sandy at 9/30/2007 02:29:00 PM


Blogger Adrienne said...

My all time worst dog bite was when I was 12. I was bitten by my moms dog Jake. He had been mistreaded by some of my moms neighbor kids when she was not at home. The only reason she found out was being home one day when they thought she wasn't. They burned him with cigrettes and threw rocks at him, so he learned to hate kids. This happened when I was with my grandparents for a summer. When I returned home, Jake didn't want anything to do with me. He eventually warmed up to me some, but not enough. One afternoon I was laying on the couch watching TV and he came up to me like he wanted to be petted. Instead he lunged at me and bit me in the face. Mom rushed me to the ER where they determined that I had to have surgery to repair the damage. I was lucky that I didn't loose my eye. I had lacerated tear ducts, a hole punctured in my nose and my eye lid was almost torn off. I had micoscopic surgery since it is such a delicate area. They were able to reattach everything. I had to have a tube run through my tear ducts for over a year so as they healed they wouldn't close with scar tissue. To this day I have a small hole that runs from my eye to the inside of my nose. I can blow bubbles out of my eye. HA! You would think I would be afraid of dogs, but no. I don't like it when they get too close to my face, but otherwise I have no issues. I still have a picture from just before the surgery that the doctor gave me.

Sunday, September 30, 2007 2:58:00 PM  
Blogger pearcehart said...

Good heavens, Adrienne! How horrible for you!! I hate those kids too! I always wonder about the homes our babies came from before they invaded our lives... I hope it was nothing like what happened to Jake. And luckily, nothing like that has ever happened to me or the professor. We do get the occasional cat scratch but nothing serious. Herbie has bitten me once when I was cutting his nails, but again, no problems. My immune system is always on hyperdrive, that's why it attacks my own colon and joints. No germ stands a chance in this body! LOL

Sunday, September 30, 2007 8:54:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Oh my gosh Adrienne! I can't believe we never heard that story before! It's great that you have such understanding and aren't afraid of dogs, which happens to alot of people under the similar circumstances.

Sunday, September 30, 2007 11:26:00 PM  
Blogger B said...

All of our spats are usually food oriented, but Hines has learned that he needs to give Lucy a wide berth when feeding time comes (no pun intended on My Lucy's weight-LOL) All and all, Lucy is SO protective of Hines that it's getting ridiculous. When he takes off thru the yard, she wants to stop him and scold him for getting too far away. It was funny yesterday, because she was scolding Hines and Charlie ran up behind her and goosed her bottom as if to say "give it a rest!" Things have calmed way down-Hines is now at home and all four have made that permanent connection. They are the 4 amigos, and as long as those known boundaries are left alone, everything chugs along. THANK GOD!

Monday, October 01, 2007 8:00:00 AM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

Ouch Adrienne! Sorry you had to endure such pains and I am so happy the event did not take your love of dogs away…

B, I am happy all is turning out so well with your babies and the freedoms with the big fenced in yard for them! I can’t wait to see them happily romping and stomping together…

I was bitten in the hand by a horse as a child due to incorrectly holding the food. My fault and was happy that was explained to me or I could have hated horses from that day on. Our neighbors have horses and we take care of them at times when our neighbors are away. We love the horses and I don’t have a bit of fear of them but do recall my bite incident every time I feed them something. I recall the way I was taught how to hold the food! Just comes to my mind and I am happy to say, I smile when remembering that while hand feeding the big girls...

The girls have gotten us good with their claws during hair cuts. But I usually clip their nails the day before hair cuts so now we don’t get it as badly as in the past. I also recall the Saint getting clawed up on his shoulder pretty badly during a Flea Bath when the girls became infested with Fleas one summer. I am not sure how they became infested with Fleas being indoor only cats but we probably brought one in on our pants legs. Who knows, but now we keep Revolution on them.

Monday, October 01, 2007 10:37:00 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

I can't really say that the bite I had was all that painful. When Jake bit he tore through the nerves and I lost the feeling. I still have only a little feeling around my eye. The only time I really remember pain was when they said I would need surgery and I tried to cry. That stung.

I used to raise rabbits for 4H and have endured many bites from them. Especially the females. They are so mean. I have a couple of scars from that.

Monday, October 01, 2007 11:26:00 AM  
Blogger B said...

We have a friend with a teenage son who won't come to the huse anymore because Charlie growled at him. He was attacked and bitten when he was small by his uncles dog and is a bit skiddish. But when he and his family came to see us in December, he was literally terrified after Charlie barked and growled at him. I don't know what it was, but I have NEVER seen Charlie react that way to anyone. Charlie just would not let it go, and the boy would not come out from the gate in the hall way at all. I know the boy didn't do anything--except shake in his shoes --and I really think that was it--Charlie reacts to fear.

Monday, October 01, 2007 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Yes Brett, dogs can feel a person's emotions and instabilities and react accordingly. That's why the Dog Whisperer always tells pet owners they have to be "calm and assertive" as any pack leader would be. Charlie sensed that boys screwed up emotions and fears and reacted as any dog would. Such instability in a person or other dog CAN be a danger to the dog perceiving it and it's a natural reaction.

Monday, October 01, 2007 1:06:00 PM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

When does and what channel is the Dog Whisper on??? I looked in the schedule on Animal Planet channel (where I thought it would be) and did not see it! I have never seen the show and would like to catch it some time....

I have always heard that animal’s sense fear. I think this to be true too because I have seen ornery cats pester people with cat fears as if taunting them!

Monday, October 01, 2007 1:15:00 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Skeeter, Dicsovery channel

Monday, October 01, 2007 5:55:00 PM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

Thanks! I will look it up...

Monday, October 01, 2007 7:21:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

I think it's on National Geographic channel Adrienne. I guess you could just Google it! Or automatic TiVo it if you have it.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007 9:34:00 AM  
Blogger Pam said...

Adrienne, bless you and bless poor little Jake geting burned with cigarettes! How terrible, people are so mean! It's so good you learned not to be afraid of animals after all that trauma.
I am constantly covered with scratches it seems and I get bit a lot too. My Brittany and Penelope are the biters but most of the time it's within play although they will bite when it suits them. Courtney only bites when she feels threatened. Penelope thinks she needs to bite when we play and Brittany has the Hyperesthesia and that makes her want to bite more often. I can deal with it all since I love my girls.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007 6:05:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

My daughter was bit by a relative's dog when she was 3 years old. The dog was a little house dog and wasn't used to kids. My daugher loved animals so ran up to the dog to hug it. The dog was scared so bit her on the nose and tore a piece of her nose. She has a the scar today. Fly Boy was so angry when it happened he wanted to go shoot the dog. I told him it wasn't the dog's fault since it wasn't used to kids and it was just feeling it needed to defend itself to someone it thought was attacking it. He finally calmed down but that is the reaction of so many people. It's sad when they can't understand and they do manage to have a animal put down for a incident like that.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007 6:11:00 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Jake had to be put down b/c of my bite. Yes, it's sad that it has to come to that, but b/c of the severity of my bite the state of CO stepped in and said that was the only option. It was best in this case since he couldn't be trusted.

I believe that most animals can be rehabed, but some can't.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007 8:21:00 PM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

Our first family pet was a Hound Sheppard mix. Prince would follow us kids all over the place as we played. One day a neighbor that hated us in her yard, claimed we stepped on her grass so she opened up the door to scream at us. Her Chihuahua came running out of the door full blast and barking its head off and ran right up to our Prince and attacked him! Prince's instinct took over and they started fighting. The Crazy woman tried to pull the dogs apart in the middle of their fight and she was bite. So we had a choice, find a home in the country for our Prince or have him put down. Dad gave him to a friend that lived out in the country. I and my brothers were all together when this happened and to this day I say it was totally that woman’s fault for letting her dog loose on us. We were on the city sidewalk and when the dog attacked Prince, they ended up in her yard with the fight and Prince bite her in her yard and I think their dog died so we had to get rid of him. Not right in my book! Prince was only defending himself as well as us kids so we should not have had to give him up. But at least we did not have to kill him over this mess.... To this day I have a bit of a hostile feeling for Chihuahua breed and their aggressiveness but over the weekend while in Atlanta visiting our friends, I met the most adorable little Chihuahua ever! Lexi is a well disciplined little sweetheart and I would take her in a minute. So maybe they are not as bad as that childhood memory has led me to believe...

Wednesday, October 03, 2007 9:14:00 AM  

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Pet People

Sandy Britt, an animal welfare advocate and volunteer with Clarksville rescue organizations, takes care of three dogs: Zoe, Scooter and Peanut; two cats: Catfish and Tarzan; and one husband, Glen, and according to him she takes care of them in that order.

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