It is, it really is. Greyhound owners are known for it. You think it won’t happen to you, but … yep. We end up talking about poop. Shh! It happens.
You see, greyhounds are a breed which can have delicate digestive systems. To be fair, there are many greyhounds out there who’ve got a cast iron gut (like Sid), but for the rest, we worry over what might loosely be called ‘output’ – or as OH calls it, ‘product’ – and sadly, the word ‘loosely’ is all too apt at times. For example, when you first adopt a greyhound, you may notice that all is not well in the product department because the stress of leaving the kennels and adapting to home life can cause what is known in some circles as ‘pudding poop’. Pudding poop is somewhat less than pick-up-able. But not to worry, because it settles down fairly quickly once your dog has settled in and you’ve found the diet that works for him1 and stopped trying to feed him too many treats.
There are times, however, during any dog’s life, when he finds himself under the weather and the digestive system can give you clues as to what is going on. So the dedicated owner will Pay Attention to the Output of their Sick Pooch. Because when you get to the vet, Questions will be Asked, and you’d better have an answer or there will be the tiniest hint of an un-heaved sigh in the air while the vet silently wonders why nobody pays attention to these things.
So anyway, on this occasion, it was Jeffie whose product was being noted, because Jeffie wasn’t doing too well. He was not eating properly, he wasn’t drinking much, and he seemed more tired than he should, even for a twelve-year old greyhound with degenerative myelopathy and Dogzheimer’s2.
We often get separated a little bit on our walks because one dog will hang back, or want to go on ahead. You know how they are, and I had stopped to pick up after Sid, and when I caught up, OH was just tying his little green bag having done the same for Jeffie.
OH (discreetly jiggling the bag in my direction): ‘This is very odd!’
Me: ‘Is it orange?’
OH: ‘Yes! Well, part of it is … How did you know?’
Me: ‘Because Sid’s is the same. It’s the food they had for breakfast’.
OH: ‘What did they have?’
Me: ‘Wainwrights tray food. It has a lot of veggies in it’.
OH: ‘Wainwrights .. oh, yes. That’s the one in the orange box. Well, there you go, then.’
There was a pause. And then:
OH: ‘We should get the one in the blue box next time, and see what happens!’
It took me a while before I got it and then the old mind kind of boggled a bit.
Although I have heard stories3….
1 Which usually isn’t the one the kennel told you he was being fed with absolutely no problems.
2 Since writing this (I’ve been busy, OK?) Jeffie has been to the vet and had a thorough examination. He is now on a short course of antibiotics and is looking a lot better. He has his mojo back! Yay!
3 They mostly involve stolen sweets swallowed complete with their wrappers, or Christmas tinsel, but sometime other, more unsuitable things. The funniest of which is always pieces of brightly-coloured, chewed up greyhound basket muzzle, placed on the dog to (yes, you guessed it) stop them chewing things.