Giving CPR to your pet

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Coping with the loss of our furry friends

Two years ago, on 6th December 2010, our beautiful Border Collie,  Lady gave up on life.  She just lay down in the kitchen & had no more strength to carry on.

Lady

Lady

She looked so sorry for herself and that look in her eyes said so many things to me.  The main thing she said to me was let me rest now please.  So we did.  We wrapped her in her blanket and carried her out to the works van.  I lay in the back with her giving her cuddles and as much love as I could on that fateful journey to the vets.  We said our goodbyes in the surgery and she fell asleep in my arms.  She was 17 years old and after 2 years it still brings tears to my eyes when I think of that day.  I coped with her loss mainly because we still had her big buddy Jake (our German Shepherd) and I poured all my love and affection into him.  He kept me company in the day while I worked in the home office and although he was getting old himself he was always there for a cuddle when I felt sad.

Jake

Jake

Last year became a bit of a struggle for the old boy as his hind quarters succumbed to the usual complaint for these big dogs.  He slowed down and spent more time in the house lying outside the office door, creeping in & settling down behind my chair when he thought I wasn’t looking!  I cursed him many times as he was prone to quite a lot of flatulence in his old age but it didn’t stop me loving him 😉 As the year progressed, his legs & hips got worse. He never winced with pain but bravely took each day slowly walked a little slower and eventually needed help getting up from a lying position.  I’d been giving him medication to help with his joints for a few years but they didn’t seem to be doing much good anymore and his muscles were now almost non-existent and in December 2012 his struggle got worse still.  He was losing all the strength in his legs and could only walk a few yards before collapsing in a heap 😦

Suffice to say, I had stern words with him, saying that there was no way I was losing another ‘family member’ during December.  Dad, Nan, Uncles, Aunts, Lady and in 2009 my Mum topped the lot by passing away on Christmas Day so another December loss was not going to be acceptable to me!

He kept going through December and through the Christmas festivities, but on New Year’s Day his body said enough was enough.  He was still obviously trying to keep going but the frustration got the better of him on 1st January 2013.  It could be seen in his eyes which asked ‘why can’t I get up anymore?’. It was different to Lady, she wanted to give up, Jake wanted to get up!  We helped him as best we could, with Andy supporting his hind quarters while he moved round the kitchen in ‘wheel barrow’ mode but he could no longer go outside to do his basic functions and was trying to be such a good dog by not doing it in the house :S  He stopped eating and needed his bowl of water brought to him to drink.  This would be no life anymore 😦  so on Wednesday 2nd January, the vet came to the house and we said goodbye to our big boy.  Jake would have been 14 at the end of January – a brilliant age for such a dog!

He and Lady are now laying side by side at one side of the garden just as they used to in life.  They were the best of friends and were my best friends too.

People tend to understand the loss of a loved one and give so much sympathy.  You don’t expect it when you lose a pet, but the comfort I received from friends & family alike has been wonderful.  Losing a pet is like losing the best friend you ever had.  I will miss them so much.

Don’t be put off having a dog as a pet.  Yes, it’s hard when you lose them but they love you irrespective of your actions unlike most humans.  A dog is the most loyal friend you could ever have.

We will get another dog, maybe even 2, but in a while and not just yet.  I’ll let you know when we do.  There’s sure to be some interesting stories when we have puppies in the house 😉

If you’ve lost a pet or have an old or infirm pet at home I recommend the following to help you cope with whatever has happened or may happen soon. Just click on the button below.

Ten Tips on Coping with Pet Loss

Ten Tips on Coping with Pet Loss

HOW TO SURVIVE A HEART ATTACK WHEN ALONE

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Let’s say it’s 6.15pm and you’re going home (alone of course),

…after an unusually hard day on the job. You’re really tired, upset and frustrated. Suddenly you start experiencing severe pain in your chest that starts to drag out into your arm and up into your jaw. You are only about five miles (8kms) from the hospital nearest your home. Unfortunately you don’t know if you’ll be able to make it that far. You have been trained in CPR, but the guy that taught the course did not tell you how to perform it on yourself..!!

NOW HOW TO SURVIVE A HEART ATTACK WHEN ALONE..

Since many people are alone when they suffer a heart attack, without help, the person whose heart is beating improperly and who begins to feel faint, has only about 10 seconds left before losing consciousness.

However, these victims can help themselves by coughing repeatedly and very vigorously.A deep breath should be taken before each cough, and the cough must be deep and prolonged, as when producing sputum from deep inside the chest.

A breath and a cough must be repeated about every two seconds without let-up until help arrives, or until the heart is felt to be beating normally again. Deep breaths get oxygen into the lungs and coughing movements squeeze the heart and keep the blood circulating.

The squeezing pressure on the heart also helps it regain normal rhythm. In this way, heart attack victims can get to a hospital.

Smelly Trainers

To freshen up smelly trainers, Get a fabric softener sheet, you know, the ones you bought to use in a tumble dryer, but keep forgetting to put in. Cut it in half & place into each trainer.  Leave overnight & get up to sweet-smelling trainers 🙂

Making Real Lemonade

 

Real, home-made lemonade is first mentioned in a play from the 17th Century called ‘The Parson’s Wedding’ and was sold in coffee houses at the time – and no they wouldn’t be called ‘Costa’ or ‘Starbucks’!

It’s thought that the recipe came to England originally from Italy and it became very popular in the 18th century when it was a refreshing summer drink for wealthy households.  During the 18th & 19th centuries, lemons & sugar became more affordable for the middle & lower classes and refreshment stalls became commonplace selling the refreshing, cloudy liquid to the masses.

In the 1840s it’s believed there were over 50 soft drink manufacturers in London alone.  Many were thought by then to use  proprietary essences & compounds in a sugar syrup rather than natural juices.  Home-made lemonade began to go into decline although it’s quite a popular ‘home-brew’ even now for some American children to sell by the roadside in summer to earn a little pocket money.

In Britain, the availability of the clear, sweet, fizzy drink called lemonade by certain manufacturers brought the demise of the ‘real’ stuff.  It is lacking the fruit juice and full of artificial sweeteners & preservatives and nothing like the original, flat, cloudy drink.

Here is a recipe for REAL Lemonade as made by many in the past.

To make around 1.75 litres (3 pints) of lemonade, you will need 6 lemons (unwaxed), about 150 grams of granulated sugar & water.

Method

Wash the lemons well, then thinly pare their zest with a vegetable peeler or zester (make sure to just remove the top layer of yellow zest & avoid the bitter, pithy white underneath.

Place the zest in a large heatproof jug or bowl, then squeeze the juice from the lemons & add that too. (hint –  to ease squeezing juice from fruit, first roll the fruit apply pressure on a board to break down the juice holding sacs before cutting & squeezing).  Add the sugar and pour on 1.4 litres (2.5 pints) of boiling water & stir well.  Cover and leave to stand somewhere cool overnight.  Stir again & taste for sweetness.  Add more sugar if required.  Strain through a sieve.  This will keep in sterilised bottles in the fridge.  Sparkling mineral water can be added for gentle fizz if required before drinking.

More ‘How to’s’ to be added soon!

 

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