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Meet my four not-so-good friends

Meet my four not-so-good friends

It feels like this week has been longer than normal despite the holiday Monday! The reason I am saying this is that I have missed you. I know it is weird to miss someone I don’t see in person, but the sense of connection with you through the keyboard, and my weekly “rants”, is real. Plus, some of you respond to my writing, which gives me a good idea of your likes, and dislikes.

Today is not the first time that I have written on the topic of regret. Vets witness regret on a daily basis when working with pet owners/guardians who wish they didn’t wait so long to deal with a health problem. Regret is the “best friend” of a whole bunch of characters - Mr. Procrastinator, Ms. Temptation, Mr. Risk-taker, and Ms. Ignorance.  

Please note that the gender assigned to these characters is purely fictional, and that they blend effortlessly within all of us to teach us through making our lives difficult.

This morning, I woke up to Pax chewing his groin, which was not much of a surprise, considering he performed a few kamikaze moves jumping up and down the steep banks of a river, clearing 6 feet up and down several times. He did all of this quite effortlessly, but this morning his muscles sent him a little message: “G’morning little crazy pup, you worked us way too hard!”

Last week, I wrote about how to detect injury in your dog and what to do, and as it often happens, when we focus on something, it usually happens very soon thereafter. We usually get what we live.

Luckily, Pax is built like a tank, and all I could find was a little bit of tightness around his groin muscle, no lameness, and no other signs of injury. I finished the examination with a sigh of relief, and gave him his triple dose of FeelGood Omega to reduce inflammation. I then caught myself wondering about whether or not I should continue with my plan to do a major three-hour uphill hike.  

I should know better than that, but still, there was part of me that whispered: “Just go on the hike, Pax will be fine!”  Could that be Ms. Temptation talking?   

“C’mon, Peter, just take a chance. Pax will be okay, he is young, healthy, and he is not even limping! Nothing will happen!” Mr. Risk-taker added to the choir.

“Just pretend that you haven’t noticed anything and go on the hike!” Ms. Ignorance chimed in.

“You guys are so annoying! Leave me alone,” I thought. “Why are you trying to convince me to put Pax’s health at risk?!”

"Because we are here to help you learn!" Temptation, Ignorance, and Risk-taker replied in unison.

“I don’t need any more lessons in that department!” I barked back, “I have seen regret, and all of you, in action at my clinic on a daily basis! Thank you very much for your input, but I will pass!”

Of course, a conversation like this has never happened, but it could if the procrastinating, risk-taking, temptation, and ignorant parts within all of us could speak.

I took my camera, put Pax in the car, and went for a nice gentle walk on a nearby cow pasture instead. I hung out while Pax was quite happy to sniff and dawdle around. I was rewarded by the beautiful sunlight, and a few photos that I am sharing with you below.

Dr. Dobias and his border collie Pax

When we were done with the walk I called my nephew, my late brother’s son, who is like my own kid. He is a young avid cyclist, who goes for 100-mile bike rides as if they were little 10 mile trips. For years, I have been trying to nudge him towards doing some core strengthening and yoga, but he wouldn’t hear any of it.

He shared with me that he has had bad hip pain for several months, and the doctor has found a bone spur and arthritis in one of his hips and suggested surgery🥴. We talked a little, and I felt sorry for him, wondering why life is so merciless.

Why does the quartet of annoying buggers, Ignorance, Procrastination, Risk-taker and Temptation, make our lives so difficult?

I hope my nephew will be okay, and that his lesson will not cost him too much.  As for Pax, he is just fine, and after a few triple doses of FeelGood Omega and homeopathic Arnica 1M (3 doses every 8 hours) he is back in action. (Oh boy do I wish I were 20 again, knowing that no matter what stupid things I do and injuries I suffer, they would heal this quick!)

To conclude today's rant, when it comes to your health, or that of your beloved dog, do not take any chances, listen to your gut, and tell the four not-so-good friends: “Ignorance, Procrastination, Risk-taker and Temptation” to go and “take a hike.”

Take care, and give your dog a hug for me!

About the author

Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM is an Integrative veterinarian, nutritionist and creator of natural supplements for dogs and people. Helping you and your dog prevent disease, treat nutritional deficiencies, and enjoy happier, healthier, and longer lives together.

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