Story archive

Predatory Aggression – Lucky to be alive

woman grey poodle

Early in my career my veterinary clinic had a feed store as a next-door neighbor. Being a backyard poultry farmer, I visited often for chicks (baby chickens, that is) and lay pellets. I lived the life of North valley chic. The only thing missing was the chic.

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Airborne Monstrosities – High Anxiety

man and dog

Gas Abuse; Paw Pain Frustrations come with every job. I’ve been lucky. The problems I have faced that have risked baldness, you know – tearing out my hair – have…

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Horse Play – Fun Until it Isn’t


We were just wrapping up a routine day of limping, itching, and diarrhea (ah, my patients, not me) when Jamie arrived. She’d been frolicking in the pasture with the neighbor…

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Biting – Can You Ever Trust Again?

Scared dog

Folks like you and I are tethered to our pets by an emotional commitment to their well-being. If they have a problem with any body part, including their brains, we want them to get well fast. The Internet offers prodigious quantities of quack remedies, especially for behavior disorders. Think twice about quick and dirty corrections.

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Ankle Biter Redemption

play ball

Challenge Your Knowledge of Canine Behavior
Multiple choice: Dogs adopted as adults, who are aggressive toward the man in the home: (a) Were previously mistreated by a male (b) Are jealous, wanting the woman all to themselves (c) Are frightened by the macho, but gentle dude who guzzles battery acid instead of coffee in the morning (d) Are trying to be dominant (e) Have an Oedipus complex.

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Ears & Rears – Would it Ever End?


Poking my head into the reception room, my gaze fell on a nicely groomed Old English Sheepdog – my next patient. As I invited her and her person into the exam room I noticed a slight left head tilt.

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A Ferret & a Paint Can


My general veterinary practice was busy. That might sound like a good problem but despite meticulous preparation I was seldom caught up. There seemed to be more going on with every pet I saw than what it came in for.

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Dog Bites Child – Can it Ever be Trusted?

girl and dog

Visiting the Grahams was always exciting although, in retrospect, it was pretty ordinary. Kenny Graham was a funny kid, the same age as my big sister Martha. Their family was like June, Ward, and Beaver Cleaver. Life was simple. I was 4 years old; Martha was 6 – average baby boomer kids.

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Urine was Never the Solution

Bichon Frise

The anxiety and blood pressure spikes of white coat syndrome aren’t fun for us. Most pets have the same problem. That long walk to the exam room, running a gauntlet through other jumpy dogs, is especially harrowing for those already losing their grip.

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