9225 reads so my stats say so hopefully someone somewhere has an answer to a problem I have right now.
Sophie our normally adoreable 'no longer' puppy has just started her first season... I knew life was going to be noisy and difficult.
I am writing at 0730, having finally got to bed and sleep at about 0400 after Sophie's first night as a 'hot to trot', 'no holds barred' bitch in heat. From midnight on when its not been her whining and crying for attention, its been two of our horny males, the blackies, Scruffy in particular who is suffering from the 'Call of the Wild'
I finally got Sophie into her crate and settled around 4a.m. only to be woken an hour later by her cries of discomfort, different from her 'I'm feeling horny ' cries; an indication that in fact she had soiled her crate... big time. Not to put too fine a point on it there was sh*t everywhere, all over the crate, all over her, feet encrusted in the disgusting smelly mess she had made; she is still on puppy food so its a pretty disgusting sloppy mess at the best of times and this was one of her better efforts.
So... at 5.10a.m. I was shampooing her in the bathroom, trying to get her looking something akin to a dog instead of the result of a mobile sh*tstorm. Not impressed...
Then there was the question of the crate... fortunately its a large plastic travel crate and relatively easy to clean but the smell lingers on...despite copious rinsing with disinfectant. I use TENA mattress protectors as a liner for the crate floor and this took the brunt of the mess, but being a dog in a confined space she had shifted the soiled liner out of the way and in so doing spread the contents around... Again not inmpressed... It took the best part of two hours to get her and her crate sorted out.
This I suspect is just a foretaste (or should that be a foresmell?) of things to come. The vet reckoned on two to three weeks in full season; there is no way that I can go for that length of time with only an hours sleep each night.
Sophie is confined to the house for the duration; she protests long and loud when she is in her crate anyway so I try to limit her time in there to nightimes and when I have to go out for any reason. During these times the two blackies are confined to their much larger crate, the rest of the pack are free to roam around the house.
My main problem is going to be marauding village dogs queueing up outside... this was a substantial problem when Suzy and Mum were in season but they weren't fully integrated into the pack at the time and were still living outside in the street, but already the word has been circulated around the village by the doggy version of the bush telegraph; last night I had to repeatedly chase off two baying, barking and howling visitors and given the high number of true street dogs and others in the village who are free to roam 24/7 I suspect I am going to have a real problem on my hands.
I once posted Barking Dogs... Its What They Do; if ever a phrase could turn round and bite you on the ass this has to be the one! (The noise from marauding dogs every night when Suzy and Mum were in season was nothing compared to that of the neighbours complaining about sleepless nights... I really cannot risk having to have to go through all that again.
Marie at the Little Pod Foundation first flagged up the potential problem when she emailed me to tell me that her vet would not carry out a spay op until after a first season was complete. When I spoke to my Spanish vet he concurred. This is a totally different view to those expressed by UK and American vets who advocate spaying of non-breeding bitches at 6 months. The UK Vet that we used for 25 years has remained a contact point for doggy advice and he is one of the leading advocates of early spaying. When I told him about Sophie's imminent coming into season he recommended get it done now before she starts... Not possible here it seems.
If we had just the one dog it wouldn't be such a problem but we have nine; four entire and therefore horny males and five females all of whom are spayed except Sophie. I am not generally in favour of spaying or castration but all the girls except Izzy (who was spayed by the RSPCA in the UK before we took her on) are former street dogs and something needs to be done to rein in the high number of abandonado females who are just adding to the problem on an almost weekly basis here in the village... I know of at least two new mums and their puppies that are now roaming and scavenging.
Neutering or castrating the pack males is not an option at this time; Scruffy may need it for health reasons at some point and Fred too to curb some aggression. The whole pack is generally in harmony most of the time, the pecking order was sorted out some time ago. Neutering the pack males wouldnt solve the problem of the marauding visitors.
Ideally, the solution would be to isolate Sophie in a soundproof room and just let her get on with it with one of the other girls for company, but we cant do this, we havent got an empty room. I cannot isolate her outside because her mating scent would be spread to the four winds and just attract even more visitors.
What I need is for our vet to be a little less intransigent in his views on spaying. It's something that should have been done before the situation arose and I have read that spaying during a season can lead to complications during and post -surgery.
So there you have it... not a pretty story, so if anyone can come up with an idea please let me know.