Town & Country Vet Clinic - July 2019

PAWS for News TOWNANDCOUNTRYVETCLINIC.NET 682.730.8260 JULY 2019

Where It All Began How I Met My Wife … Twice

I always look forward to the summer. The sun may be scorching, but the kids are out of school and I get to take some time off to spend with my family. When we’re spending quality time together, I often take a moment and think about how it all began. I don’t remember the first time I saw my wife. Usually, this would be a source of conflict, but fortunately, Tiffany doesn’t remember meeting me, either! In 2003, my best friend from vet school got married and asked me to be in his wedding party. Tiffany was good friends with the bride and attended that same wedding. Years later, after Tiffany and I got together, our friends insisted we met at their wedding, but we were sure we’d just missed each other. It wasn’t until a decade after the wedding when we went down to visit my friend that he dug out his wedding video. He paused it about halfway through, and sure enough, Tiffany and I were there, dancing together at the reception. Since neither of us remember dancing at that wedding, our story really starts when we met again in June of 2008. We were introduced the old-fashioned way — online through Match.com. Our first date was great, but the second one didn’t quite live up to expectations. When I called to schedule a third date, I got her voicemail. A day or two later, I called again and got her voicemail a second time. I have a rule when dating: Only leave two voicemails. Any more and you’re entering stalker territory. It’s easy to miss one voicemail or get busy and forget to call back, but if you don’t hear back after two, it’s time to get the message. I’d gotten the message and was ready to move on when Tiffany called me back. Later on, she admitted that she was hoping I wouldn’t answer so she could leave a “Thanks, but no thanks” message. To her dismay, I actually answered the phone. But something changed during that call. Even now, Tiffany doesn’t know what changed her mind, but soon after that conversation, we were on our third date.

This wasn’t love at first sight, but when we met up for that third

try, from the second I saw Tiffany, I knew something was different. We clicked. Within weeks, we knew we were going to get married,

though we didn’t say it out loud. When I was ready to propose, my future in-laws let me use their lake house in east Texas. I proposed on a boat on the lake in a beautiful setting that I almost ruined by having nothing prepared to say. I was so nervous! I can’t remember what kind of mangled mess came out of my mouth. At one point I even quoted “Jerry Maguire.” It was so cheesy, and Tiffany has never let me live it down. But despite the less-than-poetic speech, she said yes anyway. Turns out, Tiffany could have saved me all that stress! Two years ago, she cracked and revealed that her dad had accidentally spilled the beans about my proposal beforehand. But she sold it well and acted like she was truly surprised anyway. We got married in November 2009. Almost 10 years later, I’m still crazy about her. She’s amazing, funny, and warm. It doesn’t matter if we’re at a Cowboy’s game or just hanging out at home, we have a blast together. Tiffany is my best friend. Thanks to her, I have two beautiful daughters. They all make my life so much better.

Thank you for everything, Tiffany. You complete me.

—Dr. Derrick Nelson

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There’s nothing like taking a dip in a nearby pond, lake, or even the ocean. For many, it’s a summertime tradition. However, swimming in open bodies of water brings certain safety risks, as these environments are not nearly as controlled as public, club, or backyard pools. Everyone should follow these tips to have a fun and safe time cooling off under the summer sun. Never swim alone. When you swim in virtually any body of water, having someone there to keep an eye on you can be a lifesaver: the more people, the better. Stick to bodies of water with a professional lifeguard on duty when possible, though that’s not always an option. When swimming in open bodies of water, have a “designated spotter” to keep an eye on the swimmers. This way, you’re prepared if anything bad happens. It’s also a great idea to keep flotation devices nearby, such as life jackets, life rings, foam boards, etc. Know what you’re getting into. Sometimes, it’s next to impossible to see what’s under the surface of the water. If you are unfamiliar with a body of water, don’t jump or dive in without knowing how deep it is. If you cannot confirm what is under the surface (and the spot is not a known diving location), don’t risk it. It may be okay to swim or wade, but jumping is out of the question. Along these same lines, be VERY careful around bodies of slow-moving or standing water. These can house dangerous microbes and other contaminants that can make you ill and potentially be deadly. Watch for rip currents. These can occur at any beach without warning. They pull swimmers away from shore and are strong enough that even excellent swimmers struggle to get through them. In fact, rip currents are behind nearly 80% of beach rescues. Keep an eye on the foam at the surface of the water. If it seems to suddenly pull away from the beach, there’s a good chance a rip current is lurking beneath. If you find yourself in a rip current, it’s crucial to remain calm and avoid expending energy swimming directly back to shore. Instead, try swimming parallel to the shore until you’re out of the current. Summer Swimming Safety 3 Tips for Swimming in Open Water

Unique, Old-Timey Summer Destinations

Break the Mold With These Exciting Outings

There are only so many times you can go to Disney World over the summer until both kids and parents start snoring from boredom. Why not take a break from your modern ways? Silence your cell phones, pop in a road trip CD, roll the windows down, and get a new perspective on this great nation of ours. You’d be surprised by the hidden historical gems our country is home to. The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame Whether you have a car full of restless young’uns to entertain, or you just want to gain some new insight into your country roots, this outing is fascinating for the whole family. As a truly unsung and unique aspect of the American West, this blast from the past gives new meaning to “girl power.” Through exciting displays and informative tours, the National Cowgirl Museum brings you back to a daring world where no day was guaranteed. Starting as nothing more than a modest room in the building’s basement, the museum has grown to more than 33,000 square feet and boasts over 4,000 artifacts. Located in Fort Worth, Texas, this destination may be a bit of a drive, but the unique opportunity to take in the bravery and achievements of some of history’s greatest cow girls makes the trip worth it. Tombstone, Arizona, and All Its Wild Wonders Few towns have played a more important role in our common knowledge of the Wild West than Tombstone, Arizona. From the popular movie of the same name to the famed “Gunfight at the O.K. Corral,” this stunning city is unparalleled in historical value. Through countless restoration efforts and local museums, this Wild West behemoth has no shortage of adventures to set out on. From old-timey saloons and spooky graveyards to the infamous Birdcage Theatre, you can go on a week’s worth of expeditions accompanied by friendly guides who are there to fill you in on all the tales of old.

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Treating Your Pets Like Family

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Happy and Healthy 3 Secrets to Help Your Pet Live Longer

The sad truth every pet lover has to face is that one day we’ll have to say goodbye to our best four-legged friends. It’s not something anyone likes to think about, but that day doesn’t have to come so soon. There are proactive steps pet owners can take to help their pets stay healthy and live long, happy lives together. Brush Those Teeth The mouth is the gateway to the rest of the body. This is true for humans and pets alike. Poor dental health can lead to plaque, tartar, gingivitis, and gum disease. Bacteria that builds up in the mouth can easily reach the rest of the body. Gum disease has been linked to heart disease and organ damage in dogs. Since our pets can’t brush their own teeth, it’s up to us to lend a hand — literally. If your dog’s or cat’s teeth are in bad shape, it’s time to schedule a professional cleaning. And don’t forget to ask your vet about the best way to brush your pet’s teeth while you’re at it. Watch What’s on the Menu The internet adores fat cats and “chonker” dogs, but excess fat leads to a higher risk of diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, kidney

disease, and certain cancers. Any one of these conditions can dramatically shorten your pet’s lifespan. Pay attention to how much you’re feeding pets. A 2011 study published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association found that dogs who are on a calorie-restrictive diet tend to live almost two years longer than dogs who are fed more. However, before putting your pet in a diet, consult your vet. Suddenly reducing your dog’s or cat’s caloric intake without a solid plan can be dangerous. Stay Proactive A pinch of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Annual wellness exams are a key part of helping pets maintain optimal health. These exams give your vet a chance to spot any potential problems and come up with solutions before those problems can become life- threatening. It’s always easier to keep pets healthy than to try and help them after they’ve gotten sick. At Town & Country Veterinary Clinic, we know how much your pets count on us to take care of them. Give us a call at 682- 730-8260 and let us help give your pet a long, happy life.

Food Hounds !

PAWSitively Hilarious !

It’s not summer without a cold, sweet ice cream cone or popsicle. While dogs can’t partake in such sugary snacks, we have an icy treat your dog can enjoy to beat the summer heat. PUMPKIN PUPSICLES

Ingredients

2 tbsp honey

2 cups nonfat plain Greek yogurt

Milk-Bone sticks

1 cup canned pumpkin

Directions

1. In a bowl, whisk together yogurt and 1 tbsp honey. In a separate bowl, whisk pumpkin and remaining honey. 2. Fill 1/3 of a small Dixie cup with pumpkin mixture, then fill the rest of the cup with yogurt mixture to create two layers. Insert Milk-Bone stick upright, then freeze for at least 4 hours. Note: Wooden sticks can be dangerous if ingested, so Milk-Bones are a safer alternative for unsupervised snacking. 3. Once popsicles are frozen, carefully peel the Dixie cup off and serve your dog a refreshing frozen treat!

Inspired by TheCottageMarket.com

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Inside

Some Rules of Dating

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3 Things Everyone Needs to Know Before Swimming in Open Water

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Taking a Step Into the Past This Summer

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Help Your Pet Live Longer

A Cool Treat for Cool Pups

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A Tail of Bravery

The Guardian Who Would Not Leave His Watch Odin Lives up to His Legendary Name

Amid the devastation of the wildfires that tore through California in the fall of 2017, a few heroic tales rose up to give people hope. One such tale was of Odin, a loyal Great Pyrenees guard dog. Along with his sister, Tessa, and eight rescue goats, Odin is part of the Hendel family. It was mid-October when the Hendels were awoken by the smell of smoke, a fierce orange sky, and sounds of destruction — urgent warnings from Mother Nature. Gathering everyone as quickly as they could, the Hendels got their human family members and Tessa in the car, but Odin, seated proudly next to the eight goats, refused to get in. Try as they might, the Hendels could not get him to come with them, and there wasn’t enough room in the car for the eight goats. With the firestorm quickly approaching and the risk of losing even more family members increasing with each passing minute, the Hendels made the heart- wrenching decision to leave Odin and the goats behind.

days, it was finally safe enough for them to return home and survey the destruction.

What did the Hendels find? Ashes, rubble, their barn and home burned to the ground — and Odin. There he was, still guarding his eight goats and some small deer who had sought shelter with the brave canine. Weakened, burned, and limping, but nevertheless steadfast, Odin had never left his goats, even as the fire raged around them. Odin wagged his tail as he saw his family, happy to see they were also safe. The Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue and the Goatlandia Animal Sanctuary provided temporary shelter for the goats and pups while the Hendels rebuilt their barn. Odin received all the care he needed, along with a lot of love and treats. Today, Odin and his goats are back with their family, rebuilding their lives after this devastating wildfire. But the Hendels, and anyone who’s heard the story, won’t soon forget the bravery of Odin, the amazing pup.

The family made it to safety with Tessa in tow, relieved to be together but heartbroken that Odin and the goats weren’t with them. After several agonizing

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