Sunday, September 28, 2008

"Describe her personality." ..... umm.. let's see...

I ask this questions all the time and when it was asked of me I got a little stumped. You'd think it'd be easy, but you should consider preparing an answer when you visit a vet that uses traditional chinese medicine.

Questions about personality help form a picture of the animal constitutionally. I was suprised at the difficulty I had summarizing, and for the remainder of the day I revisited the questions and realized what I'd left out that would've been helpful.

The main thing I left out was her possessiveness. This will be mentioned on her next visit.

I described her as generally confident, friendly and adaptable, a good negotiator with other dogs, a little phobic at times, and a bit of a worrier.

I've always struggled with characterizing her overall - Wood? Metal? I think, as with my lack of acupressure work on her, this is a symptom of being too close to work properly. My emotions become enmeshed in the process, and in her response to the process.

That is something I'm determined to work on in the two months 'til the next vet visit. Guess I'll be doing some flower essences! I did start Vida on a new essence today - Goldenseal. This is mainly because of a couple of structural things going on, and how they relate energetically to the big picture. It should help clear energy pathways (according to the description), so I'm trying it out - for me too, just to see how it goes.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Vida's 1st TCM Vet visit

The wait was worth it! Vida had her first visit with Dr. Weingardt today and he's exactly what we've been looking for in a vet, especially in terms of making sure this cancer doesn't show up again.

And I was totally geeking out on the TCM talk! Tongues, pulses, phlegm.... gimme more! I wanted to have him slow down so I could take notes and ask questions about it all, but of course the visit was to assess and take care of Vida, so I refocused on the purpose of the hour. (though I did get a copy of a great two-page food action and energetics chart... did I mention geeking out)

Vida was soooo nervous when we got there! It took her forever to get calm, despite the home-like atmosphere. She wasn't sure she believed us when we tried to assure her there would be no cutting or poking or narcotics. So much for the usual confident and calm demeanor.

So there are no plans for surgery. He thought that was extreme, especially considering the excellent condition of the site now. We're going to concentrate on food, supplements, and herbs (and my own bodywork on her) to clear stagnation and phlegm. He thinks phlegm is really the condition shown by this growth. It's exciting to talk to a vet that is really of the same mindset and perspective - it's a first for me. Her TCM assessment otherwise showed good strong chi, a little slippery aspect to the pulse, and a little softness at BL20 (spleen association point).
[I sure hope I'm remembering this correctly - blogging immediately helps]

So what's the plan now:

"Max's Formula" by Dr Xie of The Chi Institute, a chinese herbal blend to transform phlegm (in this case another way of picturing an anti-tumor blend). She's been on the Quantum Herbal A/T B/C for almost two months now, so it's time to let her rest from the strong blood cleansing herbs in the formula. She'll get this new formula for a month, then go back to the Quantum for two weeks, then back to Max's - then we'll see how she's looking and feeling.

Vetri-Science Cell Advance 880, an antioxident blend to bump up that aspect of her diet (this will be in addition to Wholistic Pet Canine Complete that she already get
s, which has a baseline of antioxidents).

Otherwise, it's continue with the NK-9, ensure she's getting enough Vitamin C (500 mg 2x daily) and Omega 3s (1000 mg 2x daily), and that she's getting foods that will move chi and transform phlegm (we'll see if she likes Primal's Pheasant Formula in the rotation, as it's veg mix has some).

I was going to switch from the Connectin to DGP for the anti-inflammatory herbs, but the fact that the DGP formula is "proprietary" (i.e. secret) makes it hard to compare. I've emailed the vet with the Connectin ingredients just to check.

OK! That's everything for now! Whew! Big report on the big day. Now back to feeding, observing, and thoughtful body work (I'll record some of that for the next vet visit).

Friday, September 19, 2008

The Sun is Shining!

Monthly photo day. Don't her teeth look wonderful? And lovely gums (and spit bubbles, haha). A beautiful sunny day and a beautiful mouth, who could ask for more?

So the supplements are gaining, powder, tincture... stir, stir...

I got a list of immune boosting and chi moving foods during a teleclass on feeding for cancer and recently took a look at it. I thought I ought to do my own veggies in order to better control the amount and type, but then, lazy me, came across the profile of Primal's Pheasant diet and will try that for a taste test and hope she likes it as an addition to her diet. It's only 15% veggies and it contains some of the foods on the list, like ginger, blueberries, rosemary, mustard greens, spirulina, cilantro, squash, almonds....

How cool is that? And how easy! I know that the fruit and squash are sort of on the bad list of foods for cancer because you want to reduce sugars, but I think that with all the veggies that are mixed to total 15%, the amount of those is so small that I shouldn't worry about it.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Taking Herb Breaks... stop worrying!

I admit to a little fear. Vida was due for an herb break, having been on her anti-tumor blood cleanser for about a month (seems I recorded the date on the blog but not in my date book, bad nurse!), and according to the company she should be getting routine breaks as with any herbal tonic.

I was worried already, and skeptical that the person answering the phone at the company had nothing to say about this mixture specifically. On the other hand I know that this is correct. They recommended a few days every two weeks, or in my case, a one week break after the month of constant use.

I couldn't help myself. I believe the herbs are doing good, and I didn't want to allow an opening for tumor growth. Paranoid or what! Not a good state of mind to be in, for me or Vida.

I wanted to have something else to give her as a stop-gap, but something different. At the store we had something I had ordered for this purpose, a mushroom extract called NK-9 that had been sitting on the shelf in obscurity. They happened to send along some articles about medical studies done on it and it looked really good, so I brought that home as her interim product, though I do plan on continuing it too.

I'm usually a whole plant proponent rather than using an extraction of only part of the chemistry of the plant. However, this particular extraction, AHCC (Active Hexose Correlated Compound), has had a lot of studies done on it, so I figured I'd give it a try (especially since I was the one who had ordered it for the store way back when). Hopefully I'll learn a little more, or get some additional guidance from the holistic vet we're seeing in a couple of weeks.

Vida was skeptical of eating it with her food this morning. I emptied the capsule and mixed it in (raw egg with fish and veg from Western Supreme, plus supps), and I could smell it, but it didn't smell bad. She sniffed it and gave me a look, but eventually ate it all. I told her it was important for her to eat it. Hopefully she keeps complying.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Back from vacation, and of course the dog is fine

I'm sure everyone who travels away from their dogs worries. I tried really hard to think positive thoughts about Vida for the two weeks we were apart (sheesh, we sound waay too close! haha!)

I know I have a bad habit of running through negative scenarios, and I'm really working hard at shortcircuiting that when it happens and turning it around to running positive scenarios.

I do believe our pets tune into that sort of thing, and it can only be detrimental to aim those negative filmloops their way. So I've been making a concerted effort to visualize good health, no stress, etc (for myself too). I know it's corny - these days everyone is putting out books about the power or positive thinking, but in this case I'm specifically putting it in terms of how our pets sponge up our stress.

Everyone needs to watch what they're thinking. Dogs are experts at living with us. For most dogs their job is to adjust to our emotions. We certainly don't want them taking on our negativity and absorbing that stress from us.

I consciously waited a couple of hours after getting home to peek in at her mouth. And it looked just like when I left - hooray! Of course I'm still going to take a photo in the next day or so just to confirm and track - but I swear, no changes! [I just took "yet" out of that sentence! See what I mean?] A good day! (dog got up on the bed during the night - aahhh.)