Monday, May 30, 2011

4 Hours of Vizsla Wanderlust

Memorial Day, 2011 - Chloe, Bailey joined me for a hike in the Las Trampas Wilderness Area.  Four hours and twelve miles later, we had covered some of the San Francisco Bay Areas most beautiful hills and valleys.


If Bailey thought the Great Dane was big, this bull was huge!

Hidden Treasure - Pillar Point Bluffs

On a sunny morning, a group of Vizsla owners joined us for a walk along the Pillar Point Bluffs and then down to Pillar Point Beach.  Here are pictures and stories and a location link about the Bluffs.

Great views of the Pacific and Pillar Point Harbor.

A story was told during yesterday's walk about a young Vizsla who went over the cliff and had to be rescued by firefighters.  Very much like the above story.  The cliffs are very high and steep.

Pillar Point Bluffs, a 140-acre preserve north of Half Moon Bay overlooking Mavericks surf break, will soon belong to San Mateo County.

The County of San Mateo has purchased these bluffs.  The days of "off-leash" walks may be ending soon.
Enjoy them while you can.  The dogs loved it.
I pointed my camera where four Vizslas were running in the cover.  See them?

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Vizslas meet a Great Dane at the beach

Chloe couldn't believe how big this dog was!

We came across "Nemo" on the beach during our Vizsla Walk this bright Sunday morning.  Nemo is an 11-month-old Great Dane that was almost 4 feet tall and about 150 pounds.

He wanted to play with the pack of seven Vizslas once we had arrived on the beach.  
Bailey now can imagine how a dachshund feels when Bailey comes upon him / her to play.

The pack of Vizslas gave Nemo plenty of room
Goose, the Vizsla, trying to figure out how to play with this huge puppy.

This all took place at the newest "hidden treasure" - Moss Landing Beach ( Just north of Half Moon Bay.)

Six Vizslas enjoying the beach
More on this "hidden treasure" on the next post.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Five Plants That Can Seriously Injure Your Dog

Came across this article about plants doing research on foxtails.  Foxtails are covering almost every hill now here in Northern California.  I know the danger of this pesky weed, but there were a couple common landscaping plants that I was not aware were damaging to my dogs.  Thought I'd share this.

"Plants that you are used to seeing in public parks, your neighborhood and perhaps even in your own backyard can lead to devastating effects. In what follows, I will review five of these dangerous plants so that you will be able to identify and avoid them when you’re with your dog. First up are four plants commonly used in landscaping that are actually toxic to canines …

Azalea – Rhododendron Species

A typical choice for landscapers due to its hardiness and lovely flowers, these unassuming ornamentals contain a toxin which can be lethal, even in small amounts. Both the plant’s leaves and nectar are known to be harmful if eaten or chewed by your dog, and can cause drooling (often a symptom of nausea), vomiting, weakness and collapse. If greater amounts of its toxins are ingested, it can lead to severe poisoning, possible coma and even death.


Widely recognized as one of the most poisonous plants in the world, even minute quantities of Oleander can trigger a fatal response. Unlike the Azalea, every part of the Oleander is toxic, from flowers to roots. If dogs should chew on any part of this plant, they could suffer varying degrees of illness, including upset stomach, abnormal heart functioning and possibly even death. Beware of the sap, which can irritate the skin and eyes, as well as the leaves, which retain their toxicity even when dried out.

Sago Palm

Most commonly used in planned landscapes where climates tend to be hot and dry, Sago Palms are nevertheless popular all over the U.S. While the whole plant contains harmful chemicals, it’s the seeds that contain the highest levels of toxins. Estimates currently put the percentage of animals that die after eating the seeds of the plant as high as three out of four. The incidence of Sago Palm poisoning in dogs and cats has risen 200% in the past few years, although dogs seem to enjoy the flavor of the plant and the seeds more than cats. Ingestion of Sago Palm can cause vomiting, diarrhea, liver failure and seizures.


Chrysanthemums are popular ornamentals blooming late in the summer and early in the fall. While beautiful, their flowers contain a natural insecticide. If a canine chews on the Chrysanthemum blooms, the insecticide can cause excessive drooling, vomiting and diarrhea. If your furry one is exposed to any of these toxic plants, please contact your veterinarian immediately. As is often the case in toxins and poisons, the sooner your pet receives treatment, the less likely they are to experience dramatic, and sometimes fatal, reactions.

And now, I will review a common weed that can cause a great deal of grief for your pet canine …


Weeds that resemble the tail of a fox, Foxtails are considered a widespread nuisance in most states, especially west of the Mississippi. Prevalent from late spring to early fall, they become more dangerous in late summer when their seeds dry. When the seeds are released from their pods, they are covered in barbs like little fish hooks, making them potentially very dangerous to your dog. If she merely brushes up against the Foxtail plant, the seeds can become snagged in her coat. Worse, the seeds can pierce the skin, or even be inhaled!

As a result, Foxtail seeds can become lodged between a dog’s toes, in their ears or armpits; they can be inhaled or swallowed and latch onto the interior walls of the nose or throat; or, they can stick to the eyes. Obviously, all of these circumstances can be very painful. Perhaps most frightening, the seeds are so small that they can be difficult to locate, and, if embedded in the skin, have been known to migrate to other areas of the body, resulting in severe infections.

If the Foxtail seed becomes infected under the skin, it may result in a visible, inflamed and painful lump. Commonly these lumps are between the toes, and are painful enough that your dog will repeatedly lick or chew the raised area. If a seed becomes lodged in your dog’s nose, she will likely sneeze, violently and over-and-over, and may even repeatedly paw at her face. If the seed latches to or in her ear, she will likely shake her head side-to-side and/or scratch incessantly at her ear. In the case where a Foxtail becomes stuck in or near the eye, you’ll likely see lots of repeated squinting, tears and redness; you may even see the foxtail poking out!

If you see any evidence of an encounter with a Foxtail, take your dog to the vet immediately. If you notice a red bump in between the toes, soak the paw in a mixture of lukewarm water and Epsom salts. This will help to ease the swelling until you can be seen by your veterinarian. Keep in mind that the longer you wait for treatment, the more difficult it is to treat an embedded Foxtail seed, so time is of the essence.

The best way to prevent Foxtail incidents is with an ounce of prevention. During hikes, keep your dog away from grassy weeds, and check her paws after walks. In addition, you should consider brushing her coat while using your hand to feel for any raised areas, checking inside the ears, in between toes, under armpits and throughout the belly and groin area. If you find a Foxtail in the coat, carefully pull or brush it out. If your dog has thick or long hair, consider getting a ‘Foxtail Clip’, a term applied to trimming away the hair between your dog’s toes. And, if you live in an area where Foxtails are common, remove them from your yard (be sure to exercise caution and carefully bag the weeds).

By using a little common sense and being aware of your surroundings, summer walks can be fun and free from environmental injuries. Then, you can get back to making some wonderful, new, summer memories together with your dog outdoors."

Dr. Jane Bicks, DVM

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Vizslas and Respiratory Disease

By Paul Effland for USA today
Diseases that kill dogs tend to affect specific breeds

A landmark examination of what caused the deaths of tens of thousands of dogs over two decades is providing important new information that should help owners and veterinarians pinpoint potentially fatal disease faster and administer treatments that could save or prolong lives.

University of Georgia researchers Kate Creevy, with her border collie Makazi, and Daniel Promislow, with his dogs Frisbee and Silver, studied the causes of death in about 75,000 dogs.

Researchers at the University of Georgia investigated data to establish breed-specific causes of death in the 74,556 dogs that died while being treated at 27 veterinary hospitals in North America from 1984 to 2004.

The study, published in The Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, uncovered some surprises:

•Bernese mountain dogs, golden retrievers and boxers, long known to have extremely high incidence of cancer, were confirmed to die of that disease at high rates.  However, the bouvier de Flandres, not previously generally regarded as a high-cancer breed, had the fourth-highest death rate from cancer; Scottish terriers had the third-highest.

•The five breeds with the highest relative proportion of death from gastrointestinal causes (including parvovirus and gastric dilation and volvulus syndrome — known as bloat) were Great Dane, Gordon setter, Akita, Shar-pei and Weimeraner.

•The breeds with the highest proportion of cardiovascular-related deaths were Newfoundland, Maltese, Chihuahua, Doberman pinscher and fox terrier.

Unexpectedly, Afghan hounds and Vizslas had a high relative proportion of death from respiratory disease.

"When we think of respiratory disease, we generally think of short, compressed noses," says veterinarian and project researcher Kate Creevy.

Respiratory disease was, in fact, the most frequent cause of death among flat-faced bulldogs.

But the rate of respiratory deaths in these two long-snout breeds was surprising (and as yet unexplained), and because most veterinarians don't see a sufficient number of either breed in their practices to detect a respiratory-disease pattern in them, exploring that as a possibility wouldn't be a natural first response to an ill dog, Creevy says.

Knowledge of breed-specific mortality patterns is often crucial to an accurate diagnosis and prompt, informed treatment, experts say. Though some ailments that often befall certain breeds are well known, such as disc disease in dachshunds, certain diseases are causing death in some breeds at rates far higher than has been widely known. Fox terriers, for example, are not usually associated with cardiovascular disease, but it was the leading cause of organ system death in that breed.

University of Georgia geneticist and project researcher Daniel Promislow says breeding for "certain characteristics" in some breeds has "inadvertently magnified" some of the predispositions for mortality patterns revealed in this research. And these findings can "help us think about the multiple effects" as well as serve as a step in unraveling more of the genetic secrets that will lead to healthier dogs that live longer.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Another week of Wanderlust

Yogi, a one-year-old Vizsla on the Rocky Ridge Trail.

These pictures were from just a couple walks during the week. 

 Yesterday morning, we went walking with a friend and her 3 Vizslas.  About 30 minutes into the walk, our 5 dogs came across a pack of 3 coyotes.   The chase first started with the pack of Vizslas chasing the coyotes.  This quickly turned around, as I believe, the dogs got close to the den.  At that point the coyotes chased the dogs off.  Luckily no injuries. 

A good whistle is important on these walks as the dogs came back at the sound of the whistle.

Trying to get group Vizsla Picture

Not always the easiest thing to get five Vizslas to stand still for a picture.

Ah, success!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Box of Vizlsa pups

No words required.

Two girls are still available from Bailey and Sophie's litter.