My Favorite Furbabies, Oscar & Harley

One of my favorite subjects is my furbabies, Oscar & Harley. In July I switched their dog food, not brand, just type and am wondering if that is what set off Harley’s stomach issues. We have been feeding both of them Natural Balance Original Ultra Whole Body Health Dry Dog Food  for a long time. Harley is overweight, so we decided to change from the original to the weight management bag, but stayed with the same brand.

Within a few days of switching her food, we noticed she had been limping on her back leg, so we took her to the vet to get that checked out as she would not go up and down the steps at all. After examination and x-rays it was brought to our attention that her back left knee was going out of socket. She was put on Rimadyl to help with swelling and pain. We were to take her back in a couple of weeks for recheck.  

Harley & Oscar

By the time we took her back, she was vomiting after she ate, but mostly in the middle of the night. These episodes would happen off and on, but more on than off. I thought is was from the Rimadyl, but the vet said it could be a number of things including the switching of her food. They wanted to start her on a different brand of food all together.  For the next six days she was to eat Royal Canin, GastroIntestinal Low-Fat, which comes in a can. In addition, they took her off Rimadyl and put her on Sucralfate and Gabapentin. The vomiting stopped almost immediately.  

After six days, we could go back to dry food as the vet was trying to figure out whether the food or the meds might be making her vomit. When we went back to dry food we wanted to stay with the Royal Canin brand, so we switched her to Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Dachshund Adult  dry dog food.

The vomiting continued and some days was after every meal. We went back to the vet and was told that she might just be one of those dogs that have stomach issues and it could last a month, a year or forever.  He wanted us to go back to the GastroIntestinal low-fat canned food. For the past two weeks, we have had only a few episodes of her vomiting and most of those have been after she picked up something outside while going to potty.

I still think there might be something else going on because if she eats anything other than the canned food, she vomits. She is not on any medication at this time. What would be causing this to happen? We will be going back to the vet again for further analysis and testing and if our current vet doesn’t want to seek out other things that might be wrong, then I will have to pick a new doctor because being on canned food for life that costs as much as this stuff does is not going to work. Any advise or suggestions would be appreciated so feel free to leave your comments below.

Our other furbaby, Oscar, has had no issues with the switching of food and has adjusted to each change as if nothing has happened. I guess dogs are like humans, no two of us are alike.

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6 Important Aspects of RVing with Dogs

Oscar, (pic from breeder)

Our life would not be the same without our two dachshunds (a.k.a wiener dogs)! When we first moved into our RV we didn’t have any pets, but once we took to the road we decided we wanted to add a fury companion, so we started with a puppy. I know your thinking a puppy, in an RV, are you crazy? Yes we were! We picked up our first, what was supposed to be a miniature dachshund, in March 2015 that we named Oscar. He was 8 weeks old and had the bluest eyes I’ve ever seen. He was only 4 lbs and we thought we had hit the lottery.  He is now 17 lbs and not so mini. He was the hardest puppy to potty train and never did learn to use pee pee pads indoors, so rainy days are crazy days, but that’s a story for another day.

Harley, the day we brought her home!

Oscar did not like to be left alone, which I attributed to him being a puppy, but my husband said it was because he was lonely and needed a playmate, so puppy number two came into the picture in July 2015 at 6 weeks of age. This time we got a girl and she became known as Harley and was the darkest chocolate-colored weenie I had ever seen. At 7 weeks she was only 2.10 pounds and also suppose to be a miniature; however, there is nothing miniature about her as she is a plumb 20 lbs. now.  

Over the last two years we have learned a few things about living with these two magnificent animals and can’t imagine what our life would be like without them. Although they spend the majority of their day sleeping and being lazy, they still provide much-needed entertainment for us. They are more than just pets, they are our babies and life would not be the same without them.

They became fast friends!

Disclosure:  Some of the links on this page may be affiliate links, so if you click on the link and make a purchase, I receive a commission.  While clicking these links won’t cost you any extra money, they do help us keep this site up and running.  For more details, please check out our full disclosure policy. AnnaFWhite.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

LEAVING DOGS IN THE RV

On days that we want to venture out to sightsee, go fishing or just need a break, we leave them in the RV. When they were still puppies, we left them in a crate, which they hated. They did not like being confined to a small space and living in an RV, which is a small space in itself, didn’t really provide much space for a gigantic crate. The solution for us was to use what we had bought to use for an outdoor playpen inside the house. It provided a bigger area for them to move around in. We added their pet bed, a blanket and some toys and they were now good to go. We also leave the television on with their favorite DIY channel playing, which helps to block outside noises. We also leave either the A/C or heat on, depending on the weather, to regulate the temperature. The way we look at it is if we were still in a sticks and bricks house we would leave our dogs at home so what is the difference? This is our home and they have never known anything else, so they do well.

DOGGY DAYCARE

Although most days we leave the dogs at the house when we venture out, there are some days that require us to be gone for more than a few short hours, so we find a local doggy daycare to leave them at. In addition, this gives them time to spend with other dogs, just like children need to interact with other kids, dogs need to interact with other dogs. In the event we ever have to leave them in a kennel overnight, I would rather them be use to the idea of that atmosphere than be put into a situation where they feel alone and scared in an unfamiliar setting. They both love being at daycare and are excited when we drop them off and just as excited when we pick them up.  

EXERCISE AND OUTDOOR SAFETY

We take the dogs out many times a day and spend quality time exercising and playing with them. The most important thing to remember is that most, if not all, campgrounds require dogs to be on a leash at all times. I cannot express how important it is for everyone to keep their dogs on a leash. The last thing you want is to witness a dog fight because someone let their dog run free. I see it in every park we have ever stayed at and it drives me crazy. When your outside, set up a playpen area, if allowed, and let your dog get some fresh air. Do not tether your dog outside and go back into your RV. Tethered dogs can get loose and/or tangled up and most parks require you to be present if your dog is outside.

TRAVEL DAYS

We have a truck and fifth wheel. We have never once thought to let our dogs ride in the fifth wheel on travel days for several reasons. One, it is too hot. Two, the roads are too bumpy and the poor babies would be thrown all over the place.  The safest place is to have them in the vehicle with you. Ours ride in the back seat. I have two small puppy pads, one on each side, that provide a softer area to rest on plus a blanket and toys. Harley is the best traveler I have ever seen. She never makes a sound. Instead she sleeps most of the time and only gets up when we stop, which we do every couple of hours to give them both a chance to walk, stretch their little legs and relieve themselves.  Oscar is the whiner of the bunch and hates to be in the backseat. He would rather ride up front with the passenger so he can see what’s going on, which we do allow for a few minutes every hour or so. Once he gets his special time, then he will lay right back down and sleep as well.  

Enjoying the backseat on travel day!

VET RECORDS

It is very important to keep your dogs shots up to date. The only place that has asked for proof of rabies was at a park in New Hampshire, but I’m sure there are other places that will ask as we continue to travel to other states that we haven’t been to yet. You should keep your pets records with all your other important documents, so they are easy to locate when needed. When we are going to be in a place for more than a couple of days, I also look for the closest veterinarian office just in case we have an emergency. We learned this the hard way after Oscar was stung by a bee, had a swollen face and had to be treated. In our experience, in order to leave our dogs at doggy daycare or for an overnight stay, the kennel cough vaccine has been required. Some locations might not be prone to fleas, ticks or heartworms, but as a precaution we pre-treat our pets for all three. Either a google search or a call to a local veterinarian can provide information as to whether the area you are visiting should be of concern for these pests and if so precautions can be taken.  

CAMPGROUND ETIQUETTE

I saved the most important thing about RVing with dogs for last….etiquette. More and more people are becoming less concerned about what they do affects others. However, when you stay in an RV park or campground we need to remember that we are not the only ones there and not everyone likes dogs. We need to show consideration for those people as well. All dog owners need to pick up after their dogs. I think we all should have stock in the poop bag industry to recoup all the money we spend on those bags. The last thing anybody wants to do when having a nice leisurely stroll, especially at night, is to step in dog poop. Pleeeaaaassssseee pick up after your dog! In addition, do not cut through another campsite especially with your dog, and don’t let them pee on the neighbors flowers or anything else in their yard. Another thing that irritates your neighbors is a dog who constantly barks, especially when your gone. If you’re not sure if your dogs a barker or don’t want to believe it when your neighbor tells you your dog barked all day long, then set up a video camera and record your dog when your gone. We wondered how our dogs behaved while out, so we did just that when we were on our trip in New York. We bought a wireless camera that we could view from our phone, which allows us to watch the dogs, to see what they are doing all day. Not only do we see them, but we can hear them and we can talk to them as well. It provided peace of mind knowing that they were fine and slept more than anything.

RVing with dogs is possible and can be a great experience for all involved. Our life wouldn’t be complete without our furbabies and the enjoyment and companionship they provide is undeniable.

Christmas 2016

Back on the Road

FB_IMG_1425251122736As of June 2016 we will be back on the road full-time. Although our time here in Tallahassee has been great, having my daughter and grandkids nearby, I’m too much of a rambler and my need to move is getting the best of me. Our first trip out will be for three weeks from Tallahassee to Louisiana and back to Pensacola to celebrate my dad’s 80th birthday. Once we get through that, we’ll be headed up through Georgia, the Carolinas and more all the way to Niagara Falls and then over to the east coast and back down to Tallahassee. I’m excited for this trip as we will be seeing so many new things that neither of us have ever seen before. I will post pics and information along the way, so check back often for updates.

 See you on the road…..

 

 

Memorable Moments from 2015

March 2nd marked a year ago that we started our RV journey that would take us from Tennessee to Florida and back several times before setting down in Tallahassee back in October and to where we still are today. During those first few months we had some very memorable moments. Some of which we have been reminiscing about these past few days, so I decided I would share those moments with all of you.

1. March 15th. We drove all the way to Mississippi to pick up our eight week old fur baby, Oscar. He was born with beautiful blue eyes (they changed as he got older) and milk chocolate fur. I don’t know what we were thinking at the time in getting a dog, a puppy none the less when we were just starting our adventure. Looking back now, I’m glad we did, because he has been a big blessing for Greg. Pets are just like children in the fact that you make whatever sacrifices you need to make them happy and healthy.

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On the way home!

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2. March 27th – April 10th. We were staying in Moore Haven which was about a 15- 20 minute drive from Lake Okeechobee, which meant fishing. There’s just something about being on the water, the calmness and serenity of it makes life so much easier to deal with.

We spent several days on the lake in our kayaks. I only caught one or two a day, but always caught the biggest. On what would be our last day on the water, Greg spotted an alligator about 5-6 feet from his kayak. I was probably about 15-20 feet away. He was not having any of that and we were out of that water real quick. Had we been in a boat, it wouldn’t have been as scary, but in a kayak, the last thing you want to encounter is an alligator. Plus he was not a little one, he was a BIG one. 

Anna's bass

Anna’s bass

3. June 3rd- 6th.  A few days on Lake Guntersville in Alabama will help take all your worries away. This was absolutely the best place we have stayed at. Our site was right at the water’s edge and the sunsets and sunrises were beyond amazing. We were able to fish every morning and afternoon. Our Hobie kayaks were the paddle type so you just sit back paddle with your feet and use the steering handle to maneuver all around. It was amazing. Oscar loved sunning himself, looking over the edge or enjoying time in my lap. He loves the water. The amount of fish we caught were not enough to get excited about, but the fact that we were on the water enjoying the beauty of nature was what made our time here memorable.

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4. June 24-28th. We wanted to take our oldest grandson on a summer trip. We had originally wanted to go to Louisiana, but our plans had to be rearranged so TN it was. Our drive there included a flat tire which was a memory in itself that I don’t want to relive. The memorable moment was our trip to Ripley’s Aquarium in Gatlinburg. Our grandson loves animals, especially sea life so we thought this place would be a great destination.

Because we have to have a way to carry the kayaks we had a rack on top of the truck. The rack adds height and can be a problem when you park in a garage parking lot. I’m the guilty party doing the driving that day and not thinking I pulled into the parking garage. Luckily I found a spot on the top floor, which meant I didn’t have to drive down into the garage…for now. Thinking ahead we knew we would have to remove the rack in order to get out at the end of the day, but for now we planned to enjoy the Aquarium. Once we viewed all the animals and enjoyed our visit, we heard down the strip to find lunch. Unbeknown to us the place we were headed for had closed so we had to find something else. By this time we had walked the entire strip. Now mind you my grandson is not athletic, never exercises and we are taking him way out of his comfort zone. We chose a place to eat, which was the worse place I’ve ever eaten at and the most expensive for what we ordered. The grandson wouldn’t even eat. While looking for a place to eat, we were also looking for a place that might sell a tool we could use to remove the rack, but had not spotted one, so I used my phone to search for an auto parts store.. The only thing we could find was Ace Hardware, which per the GPS was on our way back to where the truck was. So we walked and walked, but never saw ACE Hardware. I called them to confirm address, clerk confirmed and told me we were close so we kept walking. Eventually we were past where the truck was, so I called ACE again, spoke to another clerk and again was told they were just down from where we were. I guess what they didn’t understand was we were walking, not driving. After several more blocks we give up, went back to the garage we parked at and asked security for help. If only we had done that in the fist place we would have saved ourselves a lot of walking, but this memory wouldn’t have been as funny. Our grandson was so mad knowing that we could have saved all that walking and just gone back to the garage in the beginning. We thought it was funny and still laugh about it today.

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5. July 9th. Having one furbaby wasn’t enough, as daddy Greg thought Oscar needed a playmate, so on this day we drove to Mississippi again, different breeder to pick up our baby girl, Harley. She is Hershey chocolate and a tubby tail now. Hard to believe considering how tiny she was the day we picked her up. It took a while for the two of them to get use to each other, but now they are inseparable.

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There were many moments that were special to us, but these 5 ring out on top. We long to add to these memories and in time we will. Feel free to share a memorable moment you have had on your adventures in the comments below.

Our Favorite Furbubies, Oscar & Harley

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We like snuggling in Mommy’s Florida State blanket!!!!

We have two adorable chocolate Dachshunds. Our oldest, Oscar, we’ve had since March. He was born in January and weighs 13 lbs. He is a big boy and spoiled big time. The baby, Harley, was born in May and we’ve had her since July.  She is a doll baby and as cute as can be at only 8 lbs. Oscar is very set in his ways already. He knows what he wants and does whatever he has to to get it. Harley on the other hand is very laid back. We got a seat cover to put in the back seat of the truck, so when we’re traveling they can just hang out and have all the room in the world to sleep and play.

Hanging in the backseat waiting to go potty!

Hanging in the backseat waiting to go potty!

Prior to getting this cover, Oscar would hang out mostly on the center console, so he could look out the front window. Harley on the other hand would be in mommy’s lap snoozing. Now that we have the seat cover, it has been an adjustment to get Oscar to stay in the back seat. I bought a piece of fabric that has holes, like the kind you would use to make a fruit bag or grocery bag out of and stretched it from seat to seat and hooked it in using the neck rest from the front seats. It was a good idea, but Oscar likes to jump over it, so he can get in the front seat, while Miss Harley just lays out in the back seat enjoying lazy time. I know it will take time to get Oscar use to doing something different as he doesn’t like change very well.

Oscar in his favorite spot looking out the window for daddy!

Oscar in his favorite spot looking out the window while waiting for daddy!

 

 

We messed up and put Oscar in our bed the first night we brought him home, which wasn’t bad when he was only 5 or 6 pounds, but now that he’s gotten so long and an instant heater, we were bound and determined Miss Harley would not make it in to our bed.  How has that worked for us, you ask? Not too bad. We started right from the beginning putting her in a small dog bed right next to our bed ON THE FLOOR and blocked it off so she couldn’t go anywhere. She was easy to train on the potty pads as the breeder had already been using those. So in her little spot she had her bed and potty pad.

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We love our big bed!

After a couple months of this I finally bought a bigger doggy bed and made Oscar start sleeping with Harley. The first night he wanted to fuss, but after about 15 minutes, he laid down and was fast asleep with her. Waiting for him to get use to her being around and for her to grow up some was worth the wait as now they really get along and pretty much stay right next to each other all day.

He doesn’t fuss about going to bed and now Mommy and Daddy have their bed back or at least until early morning.

The dogs usually get up between 5 and 6 am, which is too early to get up when you don’t have to go to work every day, so I take them out to potty and then they get spoiled having mommy and daddy time in our bed. They sleep for another couple hours and sometimes I have to make them get up as they are so snuggly they just want to stay there all day. Harley is getting a lot longer and even more adorable, if that’s possible. They both let us know when they want attention. Even though they sometimes drive me crazy, I wouldn’t want it any other way. They are my babies and I love them. Only a real pet lover can relate to how I feel about them.

Please share information about your furbabies in the comments below as I love seeing others pets and hearing about how their life revolves around the ones they love.

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Oscar enjoying his pool time!!!

Hope to see you on the road…