Rocky’s Viewpoint

Rockys Viewpoint

A blog for people who treat their dogs better than family

Have you ever had a massage? If so, I bet you felt wonderful afterward! Even if you haven’t had a massage, chances are you know what it is; the manipulation of skin, muscles and joints for the purpose of affecting physical or emotional changes in the body. While massage for humans has been around for millennia, canine massage as a practice is relatively new. The benefits of massage on humans are well documented, so why shouldn’t the same benefits apply to dogs as well?

Category: Massage

We’re halfway through Baylor’s boot camp, and he’s looking good. He’s lost 7 pounds and his endurance and muscle tone is really improving. And you can now see his waistline! He still doesn’t care for swimming (imagine that for a lab) but he tolerates it. He’s now running on the treadmill instead of walking, swimming more with less rest, and he doesn’t get as winded when he plays with the other dogs.

On Tuesday, our dear friend Lisa called to say that she had to put down her beloved “Eddie,” an 11 year old boxer that we all just adored. Lisa was our human massage therapist for a while and used to bring Eddie and his “sister” Emma to Rocky’s for play and fun times. As Lisa says, Eddie was a large presence and always concerned about others. It’s a very sad time for all. But it started me thinking, what about Emma, does she know what’s going on?

I have a friend who routinely mentions how she has an agreement with her dog that the dog will live to be at least 20 years old. She doesn’t understand how I could have a preference for bigger dogs which typically have a shortened life span. I told her we never know what’s going to happen in life.

There’s been a lot of discussion recently on the use of stem cells in the treatment of chronic conditions in humans. The use of embryonic stem cells has ethical and sourcing concerns in that it raises the question of whether these cells are viable and if they will be rejected by the recipient. With animals, this is not a concern as stem cells are sourced and harvested from an animal’s own fat cells, offering little danger of rejection.

Category: Health Management

Is it my imagination or are fleas already wreaking havoc on area dogs? It seems everyone we know is complaining about fleas! I don’t like using the chemicals currently on the market to control fleas, but occasionally I have to. If you don’t want to use chemicals, what are your other options?

Category: Health Management

My dog Yankee has walked all of his life in what’s called a “pace” gait. Unlike a standard gait where a dog’s diagonal legs move at the same time, a pace gate is where both limbs on the same side move forward and backward at the same time.

Thanks to DogTread, here’s a short video to show what I mean by a pace gait.

Has your dog been scratching a lot? I know my dog Yankee has. He doesn’t have fleas, so my next choice is some sort of allergy. After working with him and his diet, I’ve concluded that he has some environmental allergies. I only use natural cleansers in my home, limit fertilization and pesticides, so I don’t think that’s the problem.

Category: Health Management

I still find it amazing. Your dog knows when you’re happy, sad, angry, excited, upset, not feeling well – all the emotions we can elicit. As pet parents, we’ve become more in-tune with our dogs’ feelings and subsequently they are more in-tune to ours. Our dogs react based on our feelings and emotions and learn behaviors based on our actions. So be good! It’s been said that dogs are manifestations of their owners, you and me.

Three years ago, when one of the producers of Victoria Stillwell’s internationally known TV show “It’s Me or the Dog” contacted Toby to massage a dog (thinking Toby still lived in New Jersey where the episode was beingVictoria Stillwell visits Rocky’s Retreat filmed) we said to each other, “Wouldn’t it be so cool to have her visit Rocky’s Retreat?” Last week, it finally happened!

Category: At Rocky's Retreat