Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Great Pet Parent's Bad Mistakes

   We love our pets as if they were our children. We try hard to keep them safe and healthy. That's what makes us great pet parents. However, there are times when bad things happen in spite of our best efforts. We instantly question our worth as reliable guardians. I was discussing this the other day with my friend, Carol Bryant from Fidose of Reality. We decided to share some of our experiences to make everyone feel a little better about great pet parent’s bad mistakes.
Puppies and kittens don’t come with instructions printed on their butts. We read the books and hope that we can share a long and happy life with them. Along the way, accidents occur that are not necessarily our faults. That doesn’t mean that we don’t blame ourselves. We believe that we should have somehow been able to shield them from harm. There are times when we have to cut ourselves some slack. Neither pets nor people are perfect. I’m going to share some examples to make you feel better about your “Oh No!” moments.
Bentley Nailed It
   Two weeks ago, Bentley came over and put his paws on my lap. I immediately noticed his dewclaw was missing. I don’t mean it was short, it was totally gone! How in the world did I not notice that he had somehow torn out his entire claw? There was no blood, he wasn’t limping, and I didn’t hear him yelp. The first thing I did was clean it and apply Dr. Harvey’s Healing Cream. He whimpered when I touched it. I promise that I cried harder than he did. I felt like a total pet parent failure. Did I let his nail get too long? Did I walk him somewhere that he got it caught? A million questions without a single answer. This was on a Friday night because my dogs never get sick or hurt during office hours. Luckily, we had a scheduled wellness appointment on Monday. The vet assured me he was fine but cautioned me to watch for it growing back at an awkward angle. It has begun to grow so I’m keeping a close eye on it. I still wince when I look at it. My only comparison is when I cut my nail to the quick. #Ouch!
Playing Chicken
   We all know that dogs should not eat cooked chicken bones. They can splinter and cause a lot of damage to their insides. All our dogs know is that chicken tastes delicious. I cannot tell you how many times we have been walking and Bentley finds a chicken bone. Why chicken bones end up on the street is a mystery but a certain Basset nose can find one in a split second. He will pretend to be sniffing along and then CRUNCH! I usually end up with my fingers in his mouth chasing a slobbery chicken bone. The commands “Leave it” and “Drop it” don’t matter when you have a Basset with a bone. We have been fortunate that he hasn’t swallowed a bone but others are not so lucky. 
   A friend recently had a counter surfing incident and lost an entire chicken to his dog. He did the proper thing by watching the dog, checking its stools and cushioning its stomach with cooked rice. It is not advisable to induce vomiting. Bones can cause more damage coming up than going out. The dog was fine, but the owner felt like a bad pet parent. They weren’t bad, just too trusting of a dog and a savory chicken! #PawLickingGood
You Forgot To Take Your Medicine
   As you can tell from the last example, counter surfing dogs can get into a lot of trouble. If your pet has never counter surfed, then you are certainly surprised the first time they do it. If you are lucky, they won’t find anything that will cause harm. If you are unlucky, they discover your medicines. This was a case that I am familiar with and it was definitely a cause for alarm.
   A puppy, who shall remain nameless, decided she was bored while her parents were out buying her some delicious food. Instead of waiting, she went exploring. The first thing she discovered was that she could get on the cabinets. The second thing was that her parents had some fun medicine bottles on the counter. Playtime! She crunched and scattered colorful pills all over the kitchen floor. When her parents returned, she was so proud of herself and her new discoveries. They were not so proud. Of course, like all pets, she didn’t do this during office hours. Since they didn’t know if she had actually ingested any of the pills, an emergency trip to the vet was in order. The pup wasn’t acting lethargic or vomiting but they couldn’t take any chances. The poor thing had her stomached emptied at the vet and was given an IV to flush her system. She was fine but her parents felt horrible. They learned an expensive lesson about first-time counter surfing. Now, as long as she doesn’t learn how to open the medicine cabinet…#JustSayNo
The Moral of these Stories
   One of the reasons that we love our dogs is how forgiving they are of our faults. Perhaps they know that we are only human and far from being perfect. Great dog parents sometimes make bad mistakes. One of the amazing things about dogs is that loving and caring for them always makes us perfect in their eyes.
   Bentley and Pierre are such good-natured dogs. They have forgiven me for stepping on them, tripping over them, bathing them, throwing the ball after they have already brought it back to me, and having to work at the computer instead of playing. If I am late with their dinner, that is when they consider me a bad pet parent.

   It’s confession time. What have you done to feel like a bad pet parent?
Be sure to visit Fidose of Reality today for more on this subject.


  1. Everyone makes mistakes! Absolutely everyone. This past week has been one big error in judgement regarding Phoenix and I am absolutely kicking myself for the couple of things that happened. :/

  2. We are none of us perfect Pet parents that's for sure. When my Husky was a little puppy we gave her a Kong stuffed with peanut butter in her crate & left the house for 40 minutes. We were trying to crate train her. We returned home to an awful mess in the crate & a whimpering puppy. We felt so horrible & guilty. Lesson learned; don't give your puppy a giant wad of peanut butter & leave the house! Duh!!
    Love & biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

  3. we made a lot of mistakes too and I felt like a cruelty monster after Easy lost the dewclaw with shredding a box I gave him once... and I felt the same way yesterday as Easy ate dirt from the street because I wasn't fast enough... but I've got my punishment as the whole dirty stuff landed on our carpet mixed with slimy stuff... :o)

  4. It's so easy to make mistakes no matter how careful you are!

  5. Great post....peeps do wants to do their bestest fur their furfriends but they are hooman so it do goes wrong sumtimes
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  6. So funny!! We laugh that Cocoa is saying, am I safe with you. Do you know what you are doing as parents, haha. One time we were walking and she started choking on a stick and I thought she stopped breathing so I had my hands in her mouth and Rodney was trying to do the Heimlich. Oh my goodness it was crazy. She was fine but I called the vet when we got home and they are like if she can eat and drink she is fine and basically CALM YOURSELF, haha.

  7. Wow, what a great post! My peeps did lots of wrong thingies, but I always forgive them. BOL. We basically live a very quiet life in the woods and they had no idea I wasn't getting socialized at all. BIG mistake. Mom once left a Hershey candy bar unsnoopervised and I ate the whole thing..foil wrapper and all. She was mad and worried at the same time!
    Grr and Woof,
    Sarge, Police Commish

  8. WE are TOO SHORT to counter surf... WE think our peeps need to leave a Step Stool out fur us, don't YOU?
    Also, we don't have any dew claws... our mom had them "REMOVED" when we had our Bobblectomys. That is beclaws she once had a dachshund who got his caught and ripped it off which she says was WAY WORSE than having them Surgically removed.

  9. I was feeling arrogant about all my knowledge to protect dogs. Then I got careless about cupcake papers and spent several days worrying about intestinal blockage and monitoring poops. It seems there is always something, but having small dogs who can't reach counters does simplify my life.

  10. Katie has lost a claw, and Mom's previous dog lost a claw a couple times. It really was never Mom's fault, it happens with play or romping in the woods. They do grow back at an odd angle, though. You are a great pet parent. I have no worries at all letting Bentley continue to live with you ;)

  11. We've all had similar experiences. Even with our best efforts to keep them safe, often times their sense of smell and cleverness far outwits us, not to mention a dog's stoic demeanor. Ironic too that they'll whimper when we try to treat them...after an injury where they made no sound. My heart's out to you with best healing wishes for Bentley.
    P.S. Can I just say, I LOVE your tattoo? ღ

  12. Mommy fur sure unnerstands this feelin'. And she's been feelin' it a lot lately. Da what ifs and ifin only are enuff to drive you crazy. In da end ya' just have to member dat nopawdy's purrfect and do da bestest you can.

    Luv ya'


  13. Yes, it is easy to do the wrong thing. one time dad cut Stanley's toenail too short!

    Your Back-From-Vacation Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  14. We've all made mistakes as pet parents. I know I've made more than I care to admit. We just do the best we can and hope our pets forgive us for our shortcomings. :) ~Island Cat Mom

  15. Jan is lucky. We're so accustomed to our dinner being late, we don't even notice any more.

  16. I feel like I've been waiting to see this post. It can be intimidating to read pet blogs - all this perfect training, exotic foods that you're made to feel guilty for not using, ideal this, ideal that. It's a relief to know I'm not alone in making mistakes and not being perfect! (Latest disaster - leaving the giant bottle of walnut oil on the craft table. Turns out Toby enjoys walnuts. Thank goodness for his cast iron tummy!)

  17. Things as you know happen in my house too! My dogs will find chicken bones on the road too!

  18. Oh boy. Sometimes things just happen and it is no ones fault.

  19. Pawsome piece!
    I tell my huMom to focus on solutions & the pawsitives.
    CEO Olivia

  20. This week our sweet Chipper who is 7 mths old cut his carpal pad...after hours of course...I went the local tack store and the lady told me to get some gauze, wrapping tape and antibiotic ointment that is ok for animals... went home and my husband and I wrapped it... of course he messed with it... well me being the worrying dog mom, I thought it was too tight, so I wanted to cut it off... WRONG... I should haveleft well enough alone... my husband kept trying to hold him while a tried to cut the bandage off... now he has not had hardly anything to do with me... its been three days... any advice? I am so heartbroken...I just wanted to help him


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