PETIZONE

Thursday, April 2, 2009

BEWARE of SALT

This article was first published in Animal Scene, January 2009
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By Ninong Alex

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Life is not a bed of roses for a pekingese like me. Born from a family of dog show champions, I was expected to be another winner. My father is Green Jade’s Dream Maker and my mother is Beijing Of Classic Touch. But as fate would have it, I had a congenital sickness characterized by shortness of breath so Raffy Yap, my breeder, gave me away as a gift.

I was named Epoy by my adopted family who showered me with love and attention. Even their askal (a mixed native breed) who, at first, seemed a bit jealous was later on very protective of me. In a few weeks time, I had developed great bonding with my Ate Jedi (featured in Animal Scene, June 2008).
Epoy and Ate Jedi

The first thing I noticed in my new home was the food. I was used to eating so fast because, you see, my two siblings and I eat in a single plate. In my new home, I have the food all for myself. My adopted mom, however, taught me the art of eating leisurely.

And speaking of food, Ate Jedi was being served table food which looked and smelled so delicious. And I was proved correct on this theory when my mom started giving me table food when I was months old.

Not to brag, I think my home is the best I could get. I sleep in the master’s bedroom to savor the cool air of the airconditioner. I get a car ride regularly. Aside from everyday grooming, I go to the salon every weekend. And the best thing is this - I eat what my masters eat.
With a new shirt

Actually, my mom is choosy when it comes to feeding us. We get the best part of the chicken, fish or meat. You see, no bones of any kind, no scales and no fatty part for us dogs. And in times when I’m not in the mood to eat, my mom would hand-feed me. We were also pampered with sweets like ice cream and chocolates. But the vet called my mom’s attention because chocolates make dogs hyper and edgy. Sweets can cause diabetes.

I understand that God made vets to spoil the good life of dogs like me. That’s why I bark at him whenever he comes around. But in fairness to me, I don’t really bite. But Ate Jedi would be fitted with a muzzle so she wouldn’t harm our mortal enemy.

In May of 2007, when I was to turn 4 years old, Ate Jedi got sick. Her tummy was getting bigger and she was getting weaker. Our mortal enemy, who was in our house almost everyday, said that Ate Jedi was already 10 years old so surgery is not an option.

In a week’s time, our mortal enemy put Ate Jedi to sleep. Ironically, I couldn’t sleep for two nights because I couldn’t come to terms why Ate Jedi was not around anymore.

After a few months, another boarder came along. They named the puppy Tisoy for its white coat. Unlike in my case, there was no jealousy because I had learned how to share. However, this Tisoy is kind of abusive when it comes to toys. But that’s another story.

After Tisoy’s first Christmas with us, my Ninang noticed something in my urine. My entire family was very alarmed when our mortal enemy came by and confirmed that it was indeed blood. After getting a blood analysis, the prognosis was not good – my creatinine is so high above normal. You know, that creatinine thing was also the culprit to Ate Jedi’s sufferings.

Immediately, I was weaned from table food and as per the inhuman decree of our mortal enemy, I should be fed only prescription diet. I was dismayed at first but, come to think of it, the taste of dog food is not bad at all. Besides, prescription diet will save my life.
5th birthday June 2008

With Tisoy and birthday guests

With the antibiotic to stop the UTI (urinary tract infection as a by-product of stone build-up) plus the daily dosage of sambong tea to hasten the cleaning of my kidney, I passed the latest exam with flying colors. But table food is now taboo because, as Dr. Ignacio put it, people’s food has too much salt. In fact, my Ninang had kidney stones, not just once but she had undergone lithotripsy twice already!

So you see, we should beware of salt because it’s really a sin.