Today we went to see the vet with sir Oliver to get his annual vaccine. A combination shot that contains: Parvo inactivated, Parvo live, liver disease and leptospirosis, that should prevent him from getting really sick. I Googled vaccines for dogs, to reassure myself that most dogs will not get really bad reactions from the vaccine. As with human vaccines there are large groups for and large groups against it. The information available is most often not enough to really make a well balanced choice, a choice not based in fear nor ignorance, which leaves me still a bit indecisive. And to fill that void of knowing, we did get sir Oliver his shot today.
Sir Oliver has been having his vaccinations throughout his entire life, in the laboratory and outside. He never has become dangerously sick of it, so that made me decide to vaccinate. Last week we postponed it, since sir Oliver had diarrhea. His stool has been solid for over 5 days now and another examination of the vet told us that his health is fine.
We had some questions about other things for the vet as well, so she asked us if we wanted to do the shot first or the questions. We choose the questions first, since we had no idea how sir Oliver would react to getting a shot.
Since we are going to travel by car for over an hour this weekend, we wanted to buy some anti-nausea tablets and ask if that is a good idea. We do not know if sir Oliver has car sickness, but when finding that out during our travel, it will be too late to medicate him. The vet agreed that it is best to prevent the nausea and give him a tablet an hour for departure. It also gives me some peace of mind, knowing that he at least will not become nauseous. Whether he will enjoy the ride, that is still questionable.
Another question we had was about sir Oliver, is rubbing himself against fences and walls when walking outside. He isn’t doing it always, but on some walks it seems he has to rub every fence, and we mostly walk by gardens with fences. Lucky enough for us he did it as well inside the vet’s practice, so she could observe how he rubs his shoulder first and then his first part of his back. Doing this very slowly and pressing himself very firm against the fence, wall or sometimes hedges.
My idea was that it is a way to release stress. Outside there are many city noises and new things that can be overwhelming from time to time. Sir Oliver seems to be immune for those noises, although his hearing is perfectly fine. So who knows, maybe it is his own reward after blocking out the noises to get himself a positive reward. The vet says that sir Oliver enjoys the rubbing, due to his facial expression. So stress might be one of the dimensions together with rubbing his scent on the fences, or taking other scents with him, or not being comfortable with the harness to simply enjoying the rub.
When she saw sir Oliver rubbing himself, she said he is one of a kind, a funny dog how he rubs himself. Well we do call him the clown, and there are reasons for that… At least it is not something to really worry about, unless he becomes obsessive with it.
So after our question time, I lifted sir Oliver onto the table, to get his shot. He had been more nervous than the 2 other times we went to the vet’s practice. I was almost certain that he felt our energy of: today is the day, and our not yet clear stance with vaccinations. It was not that I was noticeable nervous, though in the background I could feel there was a bit of energy going on. I tried to stabilize myself for the sake of sir Oliver.
He reacted to the shot just as we and the vet had expected, he simply stood there and let the vet do whatever needed to be done. She took a small needle which would cause less pain, just in case he would not visibly react to it.
In a year we have to go back for sir Oliver’s next shot. Lets see who I am within the whole vaccination point next year. A whole year to prepare and investigate, to figure out what is best for sir Oliver and his surroundings.