Been a while so thought before I turn in and start counting squirrels I would give a little “nightcap” on what I have been up to like today for instance….slept very well last nite and on the floor for a change….this is good for my owner, as she has more room to move around  on the bed. And, this was good for me, since my breathing seems to be improving.

Took my owner for our morning walk to pick up my messages in the park and found out I was very popular; picked up quite a few messages for me! Of course, I replied back too! The other morning though I was whisked away in the car after our walk and knew we were on our way to my other vet in Los Altos. The Adobe Animal Hospital staff is very nice to me and tell me how sweet I am, um, got them fooled; if they only saw me holding down the fort against the raccoons! Anyway, my mistress was concerned over the quantity of water I have been drinking and of course this meant some tests. My Guardian held me while the vet person inserted a needle into my chest for blood; not my favorite thing, though my owner said how brave I was and how I would make her pay for this later in extra treats…now that part I liked!

Skipping around a little, today my mistress received the test results and sounds like my liver and kidneys need some TLC; evidently I am leaking protein; good thing Tiffany takes such good care of me and checks me out right away.  I know next Tuesday we are seeing Dr. Fong again with the San Francisco Veterinary Specialists, and he always helps me to feel much better.  It takes me awhile to get used to having tiny needles inserted into my body and I tremble for a little bit; afterwards I breathe so much better; my Guardian says it is the Chi moving around; not too sure what that is so I just say I perk up quite a bit!

Well, time for me to curl up and have a good nite’s snooze so woof back for more later!

I’m back to update you on my latest visit to the San Francisco Veterinary clinic. Yesterday, after my fabulous morning walk and it was fabulous, because I jumped up and down in the house happily barking at my owner to hurry up and let’s go play; then I pulled her out the door and off we went with me leading the way. Actually, this kind of behavior pleases my master for it shows her I am up to being my old self. And, this is important for I am feeling pretty good.

After the walk, I knew it, no food which meant a trip to somewhere, and most likely the vet! As we were driving; I was riding co-pilot, I could tell we were on our way to the city. My owner likes the fact we can park in the garage compliments of the San Francisco Veterinary folks; me, I am not so sure, as every time the garage door lifts up it is a little scary though being brave I run right under it; sorta of, as I am well-trained!

Our Friday visit with Dr. Fong showed I was doing good; still not to happy with the tiny needles going into my body and having to stand still for a few minutes. It must be worth it for I do breathe better and my appetite perks up, not that it has too for I am a chow hound; Tiffany says I could find a piece of bread on Mt. Everest! I gave everyone a real treat by allowing myself to be photographer with Dr. Fong ( and here we are).

My owner really cares about me and the home cooked meals are the best. Tiffany takes good care of herself too; and that is a good thing for I want her to be able to play with me for a long time. She goes to see Dr. Gerald Cohen and we can even walk there as his holistic practice, The Center for Healing is in our neighborhood; this is great for I can come in and get the royal treatment; by the way here is our “mug shot!” Dr. Cohen is also very knowledgeable with healing remedies and gave my master some tiny pellets to put in my mouth 8 times a day;  a lot, though they are small .and restrict the growth of cancer cells; Yippee!
Switching gears to the San Francisco Veterinary folks, a very nice lady by the name of Charlotte calls Tiffany my Guardian. I really like that for I am Tiffany’s  Guardian too.  Dr. Fong wrote an article called “A Different Way To Look At Animals,” a view of wholistic veterinary medicine.

Dr. Fong & Me!

Mistress & Me at Doc Cohen's Office

I like this for I am “tapped in” to my owner and what makes Tiffany special is she is very tapped into me. Whew, all this woofing is making me hungry, wonder if I can persuade my mistress to give me a little treat…..until next time woof for now!


As I was lying here on the floor of our living room I heard my owner laugh when she saw me. ” I was spread out in my usual regal position on one of “our” large white fur rugs,” and she said “everywhere in this house in an Elli place!” She is most right! The white fur rugs are very soft and feel good against my body.

I do have my own special place, with my very own large pillow bed; sometimes I curl up there and sometimes I spread out or hunker down to chew on one of my large bones. This special place even has one of my owner’s paintings;” Eternity” is hanging right over my pillow bed; kinda like the sound of that; means I may be around longer that I think! And, actually I am improving. Today my master and I trotted down by the railroad tracks under a canopy of reddish and yellow leaves. This is one of my favorite walks with many opportunities to pick up and receive

Getting A Hug In My Special Place!

Major Relax!

my messages. My owner mentioned a couple of times that she had her own personal trainer; me! She was walking fast to keep up with me! So, now that I have shared about my comfy Elli places I am going back to snoozing; before I go I am leaving you with some more pictures of course; of me! Woof back for more on my scene soon!

Here I am talking about Chinese herbs and who would have thought this subject would come up in my dog time.  Perhaps,  I have already shed some light (better than shedding more fur you could say!) how I came to be involved with Dr. David Fong of the San Francisco Veterinary Specialists Group. When my owner decided not to take option one which was surgery; thank goodness by the way for the recovering time would have been brutal, and the pain don’t want to go there.

Anyway, Tiffany has been for as long as I have known here a believer in holistic medicine. My master believes in you might say a “universal support system.” She thinks it is a good idea to find the cause and treat it, and that the body is made up of pathways that carry information so everything in the body is connected. Don’t know too much about that except how I feel after visiting with Dr. Fong.

When Dr. Fong first approached me with some acupuncture needles of course I had to show him who was boss and did my growl thing; he jumped and then  Tiffany suggested by lowering her voice and in a very soothing tone I would be ok; good to be in command don’t you think? Dr. Fong inserted very thin small needles in various parts of my body and I had to stand up for a couple of moments; not so bad as Tiffany stroked my head and then Dr. Fong gave me little treats. Today, was our second visit. I am very pleased to report I am doing real good! The other nite I gave a few raccoons a run for their money; not coming over my stone wall into my back patio area! The herbs that are mixed in with my food and the pills I take twice a day are helping and this makes me feel good and makes my owner smile. Her smile is important to me as I love her much. And, besides when she is unhappy so am I.

Bring On the Treats!I am loved! Watch the “choke hold” please!

Duplicating Me!Can we go now?

Here are some pictures of me and my owner in the upstairs spacious area for dogs; yes we are separate from the cats….good idea for me so I don’t just happen to get frisky with a kitty cause it’s my nature. The San Francisco Veterinary staff are very friendly and pet me and give me treats; yes I deserve it, though they treat all of the other dogs with kindness too. I am glad my owner made this decision to bring me here. Gotta run I hear something outside that needs my attention….enjoy our pictures and woof back for more

Another Elli Furry Tale!

October 18, 2009

A Visit!Sitting Pretty!

I have been fed and walked and now ready to woof up some more info for you. Today, on my morning walk down our Sunday path; a wooded path along the railroad tracks; my human and I are doing our thing when a jogger and a Coon dog pass us. Now, I didn’t see this until they went by, as my owner pulled me over and I thought this is a great opportunity for more new smells. The point of this story is when Tiffany gave me my command to walk again on the path and I saw the other dog, I gave him a run for his money; so much so my owner had to hold on to the lead with both hands! Hey, I’ve got energy when I need it; with my personal owner chef preparing meals of pork loin, Lima beans, squash, sweet potatoe and such, how could I not feel pretty good most of the time. Nites are a little rough though and I seem to pant a lot more during  the early am; this makes it hard for my owner to sleep as I am nestled right next to her. When I can’t breathe it frightens me. Tiffany stokes my head and tells me everything is ok…she calls me Ms. Pant a Pant. And some of my other names are Premium Pet (which I am indeed and this is my very own chosen name never given to anyone else!), Little Moose (I am very strong), Pet a Pet, Rin Tin Tina and Lovey Pet…last one is a little mushy.

Since I am always talking about our Oak Grove tree lined walk, here are some pictures…notice the one of me in front of the gate, and then the other two with my human. So here is how the pictures came to be.   Tiffany and I were trotting; she has to trot to keep up with me most of the time; her camera in hand shooting away with most of the shots of me; she placed me in front of our favorite house and as I am being photographer a man walks by toward the other entrance. Tiffany asks him if he is the owner and he says yes. She says “your home is beautiful and a favorite of mine. I hope you don’t mind me taking a picture of Elli in front of  your home;  Elli is writing about her life now to share with others  on her blog.

Now, the main reason this info is very important  my furry paws are being called to my final resting place soon. I am dying and my owner wants me to help others who may have a pet that is older and starts to pant a lot or coughs and it may not be allergies, or like with the urinary infection when I shook myself I almost fell over because my bladder couldn’t support me; very glad it does now and I feel great on that note.

Ok, you with me why I am writing my tale? This very nice man says “why don’t you come in or would you like to come in and I will take some pictures of you?” And, in we go through the gate with my owner and me being “shot by the garden.” Then my human of course starts complimenting the owner of the home about his house and a Tuscany commissioned painting comes up that Tiffany did; guess the house reminded her of that painting; at this point he suggests  she come inside as he and his wife are thinking of original art for  some bare walls.

This is the part I don’t like as I am tied to a huge tree and have to wait for them to come out. They are inside for  awhile and then they come out all smiles. I am smiling as I can be untied and go about my business of “voice tale;” this is like the human voice mail only done with my tale so to speak. I hope

I haven’t upset you talking about death as I can feel how much my owner loves me and is doing everything she can to help me have the very best quality of life….and this is the good part….meals are menued for me, my pet walker Carol comes to see me more often and now I am an author….major woof! Enjoy our pictures and come back for more woof tale

What a Pair!

And, yes last time when we “chatted” I was embarking on my favorite tree lined walk, now I remember! I would like to talk about my pet walker who is very special to me. Her name is Carol. We met seven years ago. My owner was back in Virginia at the time and selected the service to walk me long distance.

She has pretty good instincts and I am well taken care of by Carol when my owner cannot walk me. We are very fortunate that Carol lives close by and comes over  without much notice to walk me. My owner sometimes has unplanned art site visits and always makes sure I am taken care of when she is going to be late in walking me.

Carol called this morning to ask Tiffany how I am doing. Guess it is time now to bring my health into the conversation. A couple of weeks ago I was taken to Adobe Animal Hospital (most excellent care facility for pets by the way) to check out my recent bladder problems. I was unable to hold it and started peeing on the kitchen floor; not the oriental rug; just the floor so give me some credit.

Anyway, we found out I had a common urinary infection and we came home with pills for me to take daily. Then, my owner noticed I was panting more than usual. Actually, in older dogs it is not uncommon to pant more, however in my case this was not the case. Also, I have pretty much always coughed due to allergies and being a tracker is no fun when your nose is exploring stuff that makes you cough all the time. Tiffany was giving me allergy medication and that had worked in the past, only this time not so much. I was also finding myself very needy and wanting to be as close to my owner on the bed as possible. My heavy panting right next to Tiffany was not so good though for her sleeping, as we would wake up a couple of time throughout the nite. My owner noticed though I was not moving from her side on the bed. Usually, I tend to sleep at the foot of the bed all comfy.

So back to Adobe Animal Hospital we went. Tiffany asked to check my liver level so the techie took my blood and my owner asked for x-rays. I am not so keen on the x-rays as I am picked up (my owner does this and I appreciate that) and placed upsiide down in a heavy soft trough thing. Anyway, when the x-ray came back it showed a mass in my right lung. The blood work showed slight elevations in my liver. Tiffany did her best not to be upset though I could tell she was acting very much on “remote control.” When they suggested a CAT scan to gather more information Tiffany made an appointment at a specialist. Boy, I did not like that appointment. They shaved my belly and to tell the truth I wasn’t sure what my outcome was going to be. Tiffany had to leave me for several hours and when she came to pick me up I was groggy from sedation. No worries I was in good hands with Tiffany and she got me in the car easily. Our results were good news! My tumor did not have any company! I feel most lucky to have Tiffany as my owner and loving care giver.

She listed to the vet and the vet specialist talk about operating on me. The operation is extensive. I am cut open under my rib cage and the pain afterward is awful. I could bleed out during the operation as well. My aftercare would mean three to four days at the hospital on pain medication and then home with no squirrel or raccoon chasing for about a month. Then on top of this how much more time would I have to chase squirrels, raccoons, geese or anything else of my choosing….not much…perhaps a year. So, the decision was made to treat me naturally or holistically.

Now, this is little story is kinda of funny like connecting the dots. My owner spoke with our best friend Misty back in Virginia for a little consult. Misty suggested talking with the owner of Pet Sage in Virginia. Tiffany called and the Pet Sage owner suggested they go “on-line” together and see who would be a good accredited holistic vet. Dr. David Fong popped up with so many letters after his name he must be good. My owner called the San Francisco Veterinary Specialists and started to make an appointment with Dr. Fong. The receptionist asked if we had been there before and Tiffany said no. When the receptionist started entering our information she found out we had been to their old location in 2003….imagine that! We got an appointment.
When it became appointment time I knew it for Tiffany doesn’t feed me when we ride in the car. I have motion sickness. So, when my owner didn’t feed me I knew something was up. The drive into the city was new for me so I was not too happy about getting out of the car and going into a place that smelled of other animals. However, this place was bright and full of smiles.

Dr. Fong asked a lot of questions while looking at the x-ray and reading the previous Adobe vet info. Tiffany was answering and writing at the same time. I was on the floor kinda shaking. Dr. Fong examined me and said my coat is very healthy, though my tongue was on the purple side. He also asked how I slept, curled up or stretched out. He created a plan just for me with the primary goal to halt the tumor’s growth for as long as we can and shrinking it at the top of our list. My diet was to change and I was to take Chinese herbs mixed in with my food and tablets twice a day.

My new diet meant no chicken as chicken feeds cancer; we need to remove things that can heat up my body and feed the tumor. So we are giving me food that builds up my immune system and starves the tumor. Dr. Fong also noticed after the examination I was on the floor with the front part of my body against the wall….a very dark place he said. You see the lungs represent grief. I have been very sad with a lot of stuff that my owner as been and is going through. I love her very much and can’t help myself feeling some of her pain.

Now, Tiffany was delighted to hear I could eat “people food.” Like, lima beans,  wild rice,duck, pork, mung beans, broccoli, carrots, red chard, squash, etc. Next thing I knew we were at Whole Foods and out she came with a bag of Wellness dry fish meal base and duck jerky. My owner also got on the internet and ordered some special biscuts from Foster & Smith. That nite “my personal chef” cooked up broccoli, wild rice, carrots, squash and pork mixed in with the Wellness dry…heaven! Hey, the quality of my life has been jacked up about tenfold….not a bad way to go out! I feel much better and love eating twice a day. I am breathing a little better  though I still have my moments.

Of course I am loveable!

Of course I am loveable!

My energy is good as the six raccoons sitting on the roof of an old building behind our house were my prime targets. I let them know who was boss even though a stone wall separated us. They were not going to run across the top of the wall while I was outside. Then there is my owner with her camera standing on a chair taking a picture of them. They made have thought she was as much trouble as me. Speaking of food I smell a biscut coming my way so woof for now and look for me soon.

What You Say!

What You Say!

Don’t quite remember where I left off;  perhaps celebrating my birthday maybe? Anyway, I’d like to pick up after my history and tell you a little more…ready? I love my “best friend.” Now is the time to let you know I am going to call the human in my life quite a few names and here they are so you can keep up with me…Tiffany, owner, best friend and master.

I had not spent much time in one place before meeting Tiffany. I told you about my initial upbringing which was painful, being on the street and then in a foster home, so by the time I “found” Tiffany, I did not have much hope of this relationship working out either. However, I will have to say from the moment I glanced at her she “smelled” different. She was not too sure about getting close to me even though I could feel she wanted to and was doing her best.

Ok, more info now. Her previous companion of 13 years had passed away…a German Shepard named Kells a short time before me coming into her life. I think what slowed her down in getting close to me was the fact I would attack her….some humor here please! I didn’t mean to. I couldn’t turn my neck because of a previous injury and every time my owner would approach me from the right side I “jumped to it big time!” She was very smart and would tell me it was ok and I was safe. The next smart thing my owner did was to make an appointment with an animal communicator…now don’t make fun of this;  if Tiffany had not taken this step of faith there is no way I would have been able to get the right treatment. She set up an appointment with the animal communicator so I could let her know that I was beaten with a shoe on my right side and this is why my vertebrae was out of alignment and I was hurting.

The veterinarian we went to also worked closely with this animal communicator and was able to adjust me properly. Boy, was that a relief. The first relief I had had in a long tiime. Now speaking of time and getting back to the original subject of why I love my owner so much. From the beginning my master studied me to learn my habits; her commands were exact yet with understanding. Although she was not too understanding when I ate the brie wrapper and all right before her party right off the dish. She almost couldn’t believe she had the cheese out in the first place! Pretty good job of search and seizure if I say so my self! However, this movement tipped my owner off to how much I love food, and I think you heard previously about the blue berry pie I ate from the park!

In Virginia we lived by a big lake where my walks were very active. Active because in the beginning I had my “street dog” on. This meant when my owner walked me and I saw another dog no matter how large, like the Rottweiler, I would become as my owner like to say “a real beast.” I prepared myself for battle. This posture became a little tense for my owner as she was walking me with a St. Bernard retrackable lead and my 37 pounds seemed like 137 pounds to her when I got into my attack mode. Needles to say the other dogs usually backed down in wonder…”wonder who this crazy dog is to come after me!”

The reason I have never really been social with my kind is because of having to defend myself on the street, and nearly being killed by two dogs at different times; a big black dog and then a bigger brown dog. Even today I am not too keen on other dogs getting too close; puppies are the worst! Most of the time I strut myself and ignore the mutts.

Now back to walking around the lake. One time I went to investigate some sort of a water shelter made up of branches; my owner yelled the big command “leave it now” at the top of her voice and pulled on my lead hard. Good thing she did as the river house inhabitants were at home and coming out to greet me. This was not a good thing since beavers are known for getting a hold of dogs by the neck and holding them under water till they drown….glad I got away from that scene! One of our neighbors had jumped in the lake to pull his Golden Retreiver out of the water when a beaver submerged him. Now, our walk were not always like that…so again speaking of walks it is about that time for me to go fetch my master and take our long tree lined walk to collect my messages….come back for more again….woof

Now, I am going to jump around a little bit since we last left off with me telling you some about my history. Today is my birthday! Woof Woof and major Woof! It is also the birthday of my owner and the good stuff began with this morning. I am always petted and played with just about the minute my owner wakes up; sometimes I sleep on the bed (very comfy) and other times down stairs on my very comfy special doggie bed. My owner was in my very favorite place in the house; the kitchen! The aroma was teasing me…could it be….yes it was true…a birthday special cut from the butcher bone! Woof Woof Woof Woof! Unfortunately, I could not get it right away for our usual routine was about to take place my walk.

Our morning walk is usually to the park. The park is a great place for me to pick up my messages and make my comments. Most of the time mothers pushing babies in their carriages get in my way, although, I strutt my stuff right past and hear words of “what a good dog.” My owner likes this and agrees by introducing me “this is Elli and yes she is a wonderful pup.” I like hearing the word pup for today I am ten and no I don’t look it, just like my owner who will take away my bone if I tell you her age….woof! I get two to three walks a day and I have my own personal dog walker Carol. Tiffany (my owner and it is about time I introduce her, otherwise you may get tired of hearing owner over and over again.) found my dog walking service before we moved from Virginia to the Bay area. Carol really likes me a lot and when my owner, whoops, I mean Tiffany is not able to walk me, she calls Carol who comes over to take care of me.

I am a very lucky dog. And, did you know my breed, the Norwegian Elkhounds were originally bred to hunt large prey like Caribou or Elk?  We are trackers with such a keen sense of smell.  I over heard my owner telling a neighbor that I could find a piece of bread on Mount Everest. She said this after a very tasty walk for me. We were walking in the park when my nose got the better of me and into the bushes I jumped. I found my goal….a blueberry pie! Imagine someone making it so easy for me to have pie. Tiffany didn’t think so and she pulled on my lead and grabbed the pie in my mouth pulling it all over her. I don’t think she was too happy about having blueberry pie on her hands and arms…she said a few words I don’t think I ought to repeat!

Now, speaking of walks I hear my name being called and that means it’s time for our afternoon walk. The afternoon walk is much longer sometimes and a favorite route of ours is to walk down a very long tree lined lane. Tiffany likes this a lot as she likes looking at many of the “mansions” and I get to pick up more of messages from the day before. Like I said, time for my walk so woof for now!

Where do I start? I will start with the most important element me…I am a Norwegian Elkhound now in my 10th year, and yes I can share my age as I look very good. I found my owner around 1999 in Falls Church Virginia. Previously my life was pretty hectic and sometimes I wasn’t sure where my next meal was coming from.

I grew up in a home where my owners didn’t give me much to eat and that is why my paws are a little too long. Sometimes when my owners were high they would hit be with a tennis shoe and that hurt. One day I was able to make a break for it and left them for good. Then I found myself free to roam where ever I wanted; this was not so good sometimes as I had to hunt and find food on the street whenever I could. And, sometimes I was challenged by bigger meaner dogs. One time a large black dog came at me and I had to fight back hard; that really scared me and I learned to be pretty tough and very quick. Only, not so quick as a guy with a truck and a long pole with a noose got me and I found myself inside a building with lots of other dogs who were not happy. One day though I managed to escape back to the streets.

This part is a little cloudy for I am not sure how the Norwegian Rescue people found me and coaxed me to come with them; they did and I found myself  on Capital Hill in Washington D.C. living with a young woman who provided food immediately…the cockatiel was very tasty.

However, the young woman yelled, the cat split and things became a little frantic. My owner was a temporary situation until a permanent owner could be found. Sometimes when she went horseback riding she would take me with her and I would ran along side on a long lead….kinda fun. At some point when she became tired of me jumping up on her when she came home ,she put me outside in a shelter of some kind. Could you blame me though for being lonely? She would leave me alone whenever she could to spend time with her boyfriend, not much fun for me as I am a pack animal and need to be with others.

Then one day I was taken for a car ride by the Norwegian Rescue woman who had placed me in the Capital Hill home. And, I found myself going to a pet store….or boy food and I do like to eat! Another young woman comes over to me inside the pet store and starts talking to the rescue woman. As they are talking she is really looking at me and also talking to me “what a beautiful pup.” Now it gets interesting as I am handed over you could say to this young woman by the name of Tiffany and we walk to her car; nice car I think, although riding in cars is not so good as I have motion sickness; I obey and get in and off we go.

We arrived at her condo and she brings me inside and takes off my leash. She says to me “why don’t you go up those stairs,” the stairs are to the right of the door and take me to her art studio loft. Now here I need to fill in some details….I was not obeying anyone, wouldn’t eat and wouldn’t do much of anything for anyone, so Tiffany was told that. Looked like Tiffany wanted to get some information for herself so I thought what the heck maybe I could confuse her by obeying! I went right up the stairs, sat down and looked at her in my most Alpha position. She then said “Ok now that I know you understand me why don’t you come down.” I did. She was pretty cool in getting me to do stuff even after attacking her several times…yes I did for when Tiffany would come upon me from my right side I couldn’t see her and would really jump and growl. I had been beaten with a tennis shoe on that side and couldn’t turn my head like I was supposed too. I have a smart owner and she figured it out. She also let me stay on her bed on a towel.

Tiffany was pretty sneaky in getting me to eat. The next morning she poured dry food with some water into my dish and sat on the floor next to me. She fed me from hand. Finally on the third day I let her remove her hand from my dish and ate every bit all by myself. I like cheese a lot and ate the brie she put out for a party. Pretty good trick…ate it so fast wrapper and all she wasn’t sure she had even placed it on the plate!

Tiffany was patience, smart and kind with me. We would take walks around the lake two to three times daily…life was looking up! One very cold day, about a couple of weeks after moving in we walked around the lake that was frozen over and I saw geese. Tiffany let me off my leash to play in the snow which was a mistake for off I went on to the ice after the geese. Next thing I knew the ice broke and down I went. I came up and went down. Tiffany kept looking at me something like a mindlock and kept saying Elli come, Elli come. So I did breaking the ice with my body till I could pull myself on to the ice and come running to Tiffany. I looked at Tiffany who was taking off her jacket to wipe me down since it was very very cold and get me in the house. I noticed her boots were almost off. Lucky me for I have a feeling she was coming in to get me. I love my owner. Time to take a little break now that you have some history about me. So stay tuned we are just beginning!

Good Looking Lucky Dog I am!

Good Looking Lucky Dog I am!