Dog trains man

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Rock

The last photo I made, before the "steak"
When I would have a nose that was sore and looked like a raw steak, I would feel pretty sorry for myself.

Not Viva.

She invented some new tactics, on how to play with Kenzo, crash through low bushes, and greet her favorite people, without her nose being touched. I learned you can actually greet people with your side - or your butt - first.

And when the nose gets too painful or itchy, she shows me with some grins, or rubbing the side of her face, it is time for her pain relief.

She has always been bossy.

When we train, and I missed a perfect behavior, she reminded me so far with two quick nose bumps on the pocket where I keep the treats. Tap-tap. That has been exchanged by two snorts. She really wants to remain in charge of my training.

And she is as excited as always to go for walks. Sniff out the local dog newspaper - meet friends, play and act crazy. Learn the youngsters how to be polite to a lady.

Viva The Rock.

Me? Not so much. I second-guess myself and my vet. I go on wild-goose chases for treatments that don't seem to exist. I lost my control over the situation.

Fact is, DLE is illusive, and I have to face I might not be able to help Viva with this. This is her battle.

Thank god she is The Rock. And I am her biggest supporter.


Update November 7:

Viva's nose is deteriorating rapidly now.
The vet, bless her honesty, suggested it might be time to say our goodbyes. We still have a little time left to let her go without suffering.

I have to do what's best for her, and will use the next couple of days to spoil her rotten.

I write this to all of you beautiful people that have been so supportive for Viva and me during the last years, through all her ups and downs. You all helped me help Viva having a good life and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that. I will give her a kiss from each of you.



  1. It definitely seems like a strange, strange condition. I'm so sorry that it's so hard. I'm finding more and more veterinary medical conditions that are NOT linear. It's maddening.

    1. It is so maddening. I never heard so many maybes. I sort of got hope from the fact the sun is a huge factor, but even that doesn't hold in Viva's case. There are tons of medication out there, and for each they don't know why it actually works, other than anecdotal evidence. And it probably doesn't at all, it is just DLE going into remission.

  2. How frustrating this must be. I hope you find some answers.

    1. Thanks Sage, there is always hope. DLE is so illusive, I am not sure it will work out, but we keep the faith.

  3. What a smart girl. We could all learn about how to face adversity from Viva.

    I hope you're able to get her the help she needs soon.

    1. Thanks Pamela, I hope Kenzo pays attention too, he is such a cry-baby compared to Viva.

  4. Hi popped over from PBU to say Hi and ask if you wanna come to my pad for tea..Bacon BOL xxooxxx

    Mollie and Alfie

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  6. Just read your most recent FB post, and wanted to stop by to send a GIANT hug your way. I'm so sorry to hear the news... you and Viva are in my thoughts.

  7. I also read the FB-post. I am so sorry to hear about poor Viva's condition getting worse. It might well be a side effect of the Cushings meds (is she eating the so-called "new version"?), since they work much like cancer meds. Although to my knowledge side effect this drastic are more uncommon?

    My family's dog is also a Hovvy suffering from Cushings. So far, she has responded very well to the meds (more energy, fur grew back, etc), but ofcourse one never knows, she is in the end already 11 years old.

    It was heartbreaking reading your post on FB, dogs give us soso incredibly much and we as owners and their best friends want them to have the best and most painfree life as possible. It is the hardest decision in the world (I had to say goodbye to my family' old dog last fall who had been in my life since childhood for 14 years). Operation Spoil Viva sounds wonderful, lots of hugs and love to all of you!

    Katja and Africa

    1. Thank you Katja, for your kind words. It is such a hard decision indeed, I think I will never get used to it.

      And I wouldn't worry too much about the Cushing meds. DLE to be a side-effect was a speculation on my part. I guess with the new version you mean Trilostan, and although it is like a chemo-drug it really adds quality of life - and a longer life - for a Cushings patient. Viva also thrived on it in the two years she used them. Viva's problem was her Cushing medication was not compatible with the meds we should have used to battle DLE. So we were not able to treat her for both at the same time. Unless she would have had a milder form of DLE, then some of the alternative meds for DLE could have worked together with her Cushing meds, but she has a very severe form of DLE.

  8. We are thinking of all of you right now. Sending love and hugs.

    Monty and Harlow

    1. I am sure you are still grieving yourself over your recent loss of beautiful Sam. Thank you so much Christine, it means a lot to me.


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