This operation should be performed when the puppy is from 3 to 5 days old, if healthy and strong. Weaklings it is advisable not to dock before 10 days old. A pair of sharp scissors will be needed. Before severing the tail the skin should be well drawn back towards the body, so that after the tail is cut, the skin overlaps the severed bone. The bleeding as a rule stops very soon. In case it does not stop, some Frair's Balsam should be applied at once.
The following lengths are advisable. Spaniels, Irish Terriers and Airedales have rather more than half the tail removed. Fox Terriers, about two-fifths. Griffons, about a third of the tail is left. Schipperkes are docked quite close to the rump, or a joint nearer the back, but it is advisable that this operation should be done by a veterinarian.
One ounce pulverized alum to a quart of water.
Litter of bull pups 2 months old; one of them has a large lump,.about as big as a large walnut, under the underjaw.
The swelling is probably an enlarged gland; cut the hair off over the swelling to the extent of a quarter, and paint with tincture of iodine twice a week.
If administered in an intelligent spirit, bones are not only much appreciated, but extremely beneficial to dogs. On the other hand, the wrong sort of bones are liable to cause them much trouble. A large bone, with not too much meat upon it, if given to a dog to gnaw, will keep him amused for hours, and it will also assist in keeping his teeth in order and benefit his digestion, as the gnawing will increase the secretion of saliva. A small, hard bone, such as that of a rabbit, or chicken, or lamb chop, may, if swallowed, cause severe inflammation of the intestines, or a sharp point of the bone may wound the dog's inside and so cost him his life. Of course, the danger of either of these occurrences is more or less remote, but it exists all-the same, and therefore the wise dog owner will run no risk.
The feet of chicken bones are safe, so is the neck, and are a dainty bite for the dog.
The joint usually is swollen nad very painful and the victim is lame and unable to place the foot to the ground. During acute inflammation rest is necessary and applications of either cold or hot water will give relief, or the two may be alternated. The following lotion should be used: Laudanum two drams, Goulard's extract of lead one dram, water to make six ounces. Saturate a piece of lint large enough to go around the joint with this lotion and cover with a piece of silk and bandage in position. This dressing should be changed three times a day. Keep the bowels open.
This is a very dangerous disorder and fortunately not of common occurrence. The principal symptom that will likely first attract the owner's attention is the passage of blood with the urine. In severe cases this will be accompanied with pus. The dog, at times, seems very ill and the temperature will run up to 103 or 104 and then subside. There is a rapid loss of condition and a general decline; pressure over the loins is very painful. It should be remembered, however, before diagnosing a case on this latter symptom alone that all dogs will flinch if the hand is passed over the back and loins even lightly. Death from calculi is the result of uremic poisoning. The treatment consists in careful dieting, keeping the bowels open, so that they will do as much of the kidney's work as possible, and the application of poultices or hot applications to the loins to relieve the severe pain. The diet should consist largely of milk diluted with rain water, fresh boiled fish, tripe and well-cooked rice. As an aperient give bicarbonate of potash one dram, boro citrate of magnesia one ounce, hyposulphite of soda one ounce; mix and give from one-fourth of a teaspoonful to a teaspoonful three times a day, depending upon the size of the dog. The medicine can be mixed with water or milk.
When a well dog refuses to eat, it is simply an evidence that the system is not in condition to receive food, and that Nature, the most reliable of healers, has decreed a fast. It should be allowed to continue without drugging or attempting to stimulate or create an artificial appetite until such time as all is well again, and then the appetite will return naturally. The greatest fallacy that can be practiced is to resort to drugs and tonics directly a dog is capricious about his food or eats less heartily than usual. It is all very well to tempt the sick dog daily with milk or a little raw, scraped beef and gelatine, but go no farther. It is a mistake to force food upon a stomach that has no desire for it and surely retards return to health.
The dog has remarkable control over the muscles of the stomach. It can vomit at will or by eating a little grass. Emptying the stomach relieves the system of that which is inimical to it, preventing many attacks of sickness and greatly protecting the digestive organs. Vomiting with the dog, therefore, means but little, and is not a symptom of any particular disease, unless repeated violently at short intervals, when poisoning is suggested. It is always well, however, to examine the character of the vomit. If mixed with blood or yellowish slime, gastritis or inflammation of the stomach is indicated. If mixed with bilious, yellowish matter, it is probable that the liver is out of order.
Foxterrier, suffers at times from some affection of the bladder, trying to pass water with much straining. Appetite and coat good, and does not seem indisposed otherwise.
Give 5 grains of nitrate of potash occasionally; allow a limited quantity of boiled water, with 10 drops of dilute hydrochloric acid once a day.