Life with a Neurotic Bulldog

10/26/2014 Blog Post #9

Fast dates:

  • September 14th through September 25th: 100% Answers Raw Goats Milk daily
  • September 26th through October 9th: 50% Raw and 50% Answers Raw Goats Milk daily
  • October 10th through November 8th: 100% Answers Goats Milk daily for 30 days as it is supposed to be done.

I had a water leak in my kitchen recently and was it ever a joy to deal with. The plumber who came out saw Levi and said “boy, if someone I know was aware he was here he would not be here long.” I laughed and said “trust me on this, they would return him in an hour flat!”

I watched a Dateline episode on strange afflictions several months back. It covered several odd medical disorders. About half way through they covered something called Hyperacusis. I almost fell off the couch. I thought this is what Levi has. Now it mentioned nothing about this disorder affecting animals but it sounds an awful lot like Levi and why he needs his anxiety meds to cope with everyday life. I often think how miserable it must be to have everyday sounds affect you so much. I have tried to adjust my life to limit the things that bother him so much. My friends and family know that they may get punched in the throat if they come to my house and ring my doorbell. Well maybe a throat punch is a little extreme but if you want to piss me off—ring my door bell and send Levi into downward spiral of anxiety. I can say this – if old age can bring hearing loss without any other negative issues – to my boy it will be one of the best things that has ever happened to him.

I also believe Levi may have developed some form of Agoraphobia. When Levi was a puppy he used to go running me with and my two boxers. He loved it. And somewhere around age 2 that lazy, stubborn bulldog kicked in and he would just lie down on me and refused to move. After a few trips of carrying him back to the house I decided he would win this battle. He is very fearful of cats. In fact, if they hiss at him he will submissively urinate and run in the other direction. We have a few indoor/outdoor kitties in our neighborhood who will lay in the middle of the street when you are out walking without any fear of dogs or people walking by. At some point this may have became too much stress for Levi and I think he just decided no more walks in the neighborhood. Over time this has gotten worse and after a foster dog broke out of his crate and attacked him one day while I was work his neurosis hit a whole new level. (I do not mean to minimize that event by not giving further details. It is still a painful time for me to think about so I will not say anything more about it.) This was the point he had to go on prescription anxiety meds. Yes, I live with a neurotic bulldog. It makes life a challenge sometimes but I would not trade him for anything.

I am sure you are wondering what all this has to do with Levi’s allergies and this milk diet. Levi has been doing fabulous on this diet. My foster Bosworth has recently also started this diet. What I noticed when this happened? Levi would start licking his paws every time Bosworth would drink a bowl of milk. As soon as Bosworth was done the paw licking would stop and not return again until Bosworth had another bowl. Seriously, Levi? Stress much? Well of course he does. He is my little fat ball of neurosis.

Yesterday, it was time to take him into the vet for his monthly nail trim. It really takes two people to do it and I just take him and my other bulldog into the vet for this task. He has two girlfriend’s there Leigh and Carly and a good buddy Jason. Sometimes he gets too excited and gives Leigh and Carly a good leg humping because he thinks they are just fantastic girlfriends and he does not get to see them as much as wants to. I pulled his harness out of the closet and the games began. He started panting and getting stressed and ran circles around the house. I sat in the floor with treats and tried to get him to come to me. He would get close and run away. It took 30 minutes to get close enough to him to put that harness on. He then just laid down on me and became dead weight. No, Levi had no interest in leaving the house. I carried him to the car and got him set up on his favorite blanket in the dog hammock in the back and off we went to the vet. Once we were in the waiting room I could tell he was shedding more. A clear sign of stress but he was better than when we left the house. He met a few nice folks in the waiting room who gave him a few head pats and he thanked them with butt wiggles. Finally we were called back and Levi was ecstatic it was his favorite girlfriend Leigh who would be trimming his nails. He laid on his side while I held him and she gave him a manicure. Leigh asked how the milk diet was doing. Just as I was about brag about how well he was doing I look and see all the shedding he was doing and also that his ears were bright red inside. I immediately bit my tongue and thought “oh lord, is he having an allergy flare up?” So I just said he was doing well and left it at that.

That afternoon after he had a little nap with me on the couch his ears were back to their normal pale fleshy color and all that shedding was done. He was back to this fantastic new self I had been observing since he started this diet. Lesson here: my boy has two factors at play – anxiety and severe allergies. The milk diet is not going to solve all his anxiety issues but has lessened greatly all his allergy symptoms. We still have a few more weeks to go but I am confident this is working how it is supposed to.

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