Thank you all so much for your kind words of support and advice. I am happy to report that Shiva and her nail are just fine. She doesn’t appear to have experienced any trauma, other than the embarrassment of my over-protective hovering. Even though I am still worried about her re-injuring herself, I think her poor little nail is on the mend. There just won’t be any more off-leash forays into the woods until I can be positive it is fully recovered. In the meantime, Shiva will just have to take out her excess energy on her poor elephant.
It’s odd how she only has dew claws on her two front paws. The ones on her rear legs must have been removed at some point. The area there is smooth so it wasn’t a hack job. Just interesting. There is so much from the first year of her life we will just never know.
This whole episode, as minor as it probably was, has got me thinking a lot about our current level of medical care for our animals. Many of you helpfully suggested we call our veterinarian for advice, instead of rushing her in for a costly visit. A very smart idea, no doubt. Unfortunately, we don’t really have this kind of relationship with our current clinic. In fact, we don’t really have any kind of relationship with them. We have seen a different doctor every time we have gone in for annual check-ups. Every time I call to make an appointment I have to explain to the receptionist that we only have one dog, not two like they seem to believe. It’s all very impersonal. The level of care is acceptable but I certainly don’t feel comfortable just ringing them up.
This is something we are now going to look into changing. Since the cat is due for his yearly round of shots and Shiva will be due in April, it is a great time to shop around for a new vet. Perhaps this time we will have a name and a real person, not just a clinic. We selected our current place based solely on its proximity to our house. I can walk there if I have to, which is nice. Now I am thinking there are more important things in a good vet than location. I am going to ask some of our dog-owning friends where they go; I am sure they will have some great advice for whom to avoid and whom to court.
If you have any suggestions on what to look for in a vet, please let me know. Unfortunately, I am not nearly as knowledgeable as I should be. The health of our animals is vital to us and I can’t take it so lightly. We may not always be so lucky. It will be good to have someone we trust on our side should the worst ever happen.
If Shiva is going to be a world-class agility star one day, I have a feeling we are going to need a vet we can put on speed-dial.