Wednesday, June 25, 2008

When to Worry

Travis hasn't been himself the last few days. Is it just a coincidence or is there something wrong? Yesterday, he had an explosion in his crate..... diarrhea. Happens to all of them now and again, but Travis has only had it happen once before and that was years ago. At 3 AM this morning, Travis asked to go outside to pee. Travis never asks to go outside. Not at night, not during the day. Not ever. He goes outside when we tell him too. Today, Travis peed in his crate. Travis has never peed in his crate. So I am starting to keep a little journal. Other than the above issues, he seems to be himself, but then I wonder if he has been himself over the last month. I have noted that he has had little interest in swimming this summer. Normally, Travis returns the bumper to me immediately for another throw, but this year he has been wandering around with his bumper once he hits land. Eventually, he does bring it to me, but I don't have the impression that he really wants to swim. Travis also loves to fetch on land, but lately he has been trotting back to me when normally he runs. Of course, it is hot and he hasn't had time to acclimate to summer temperatures yet. Maybe that's all it is. He also looks a little skinny. Granted I didn't feed him much yesterday due to the diarrhea. I like to keep Travis as light as possible to minimize the effort needed to clear agility obstacles and to reduce unnecessary stress on joints. So anytime Travis skips a meal, he is going to look a lot skinnier sooner than a chubbier greyhound would, but he did weigh in at only 62 lbs a few weeks ago on our vet's scales. That's down several pounds from what used to be considered normal. The one thing that hasn't change is Agility. He still runs as well as he ever as. Knowing that he has reached the age when other agility greyhounds have retired, I have poised myself for his retirement. But thus far he hasn't turned in his resignation. This weekend we are are entered in a 3-day agility trial in Murfreesboro, TN. I am working from home tomorrow and leaving for TN at 4 PM. We are traveling with my Ridgeback friend, Anne. These 4 days will give me an excellent opportunity to watch him carefully since we will be together 24/7. He will potty on leash, so I will see every poop and pee. His performance in the trial will be a good way to judge how he is doing and how he is feeling overall. The trial is indoors with icy cold air conditioning, so the heat will not be a factor. Starting today, he will be eating an extra chicken back until he weight is back to normal. Alone, each problem is not alarming, but all together....I'm slightly alarmed. Hopefully its all just a coincidence that this has all happened at the same time.
*** This evening he seems fine. He played fetch happily.... even galloped back to me a few times. He ate as eager as always.