Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday, March 14th

Day 2 in blogland....

So, as you all know, we have gotten back into agility over the last couple of months. We are having a blast! the dogs are doing the weave poles almost straight up and are starting to master the teeter (seesaw). We planned to compete in our first trial next month, but it filled up before we could send in the entry form.

An interesting topic has come up for discussion at work relating to agility dogs and dewclaws. As a field person I was always taught that dewclaws should be taken off at birth because of the risk of injury to them. There are studies now showing that dogs actually do use their dewclaws to grip the ground when turning. Christine Zink, DVM, who is a noted sporting dog veterinarian, says that she has never seen a dog with "normal" dewclaws (not the dangling, double dewclaws), with an injury to them. She has seen, however, many injuries related to the lack of dewclaws, most notably wrist injuries. Apparantly, without the dogs "thumb" there to lean on the ground, they put a lot of strain on the tendons and ligaments in their wrists, which can lead to injury. She sees dogs with arthritis in these joints that may be preventable if their dewclaws were left intact. Thinking back to my veterinary career, I have never seen a dog with injured dewclaws, and the majority of dogs have their dewclaws still intact. I have been in the field for 15+ years...

This leads me to wonder, with Kyler's pending breeding, how I feel about this whole thing? Being back into agility, and hoping to continue, concerns me for the future of my puppies and their dewclaws...Since we plan to keep a puppy from this litter, do we leave the dewclaws on the litter? It is not as if we can pick our puppy before day 3 when they typically have their dewclaws removed. I think I will discuss it with Wendy at Widdershins and see how she feels about it, since she is also keeping a puppy.

Any thoughts from you bloggers?

On another note, we are off to the VCCNE's specialty show in Fitchburg, MA tomorrow. Kyler is entered in Open Bitch and the Hunting Dog class. We are not expecting anything, as there are 59 Vizslas entered, but it will be good to see everyone! Up at the top is a picture of Kyler from the last show we did early last fall. I can't seem to get it to paste anywhere but at the top...How do you put pictures further down in the posting?

1 comment:

Andrew Campbell said...

Kim: to move pictures down in the text, just click on them once (and you'll little white boxes show up on the corners), then just drag the picture down the text to the approximate place you want it. Once you've dragged all the pictures down to where you want them, then go back to the top and delete the white space they've left behind.
Hope the Specialty went well.