Good vet news (quickly followed by bad vet news)

Arliss wasn’t eating right one day about a year ago, and when I took a look in her mouth, there was pus coming out around the bottom teeth.  No root canals for bunnies, so she had the abscessed incisor removed.

Most of my fellow rabbit folks recommended having all four incisors removed, their experience being that the repeated tooth trims over the rest of bunny’s life are too stressful (rabbit teeth never stop growing and without an opposing tooth, one will keep growing and soon obstruct the mouth).  Rabbits without incisors do well–they can still chew with molars, and the only accommodations are typically tearing up greens into small pieces or maybe cutting hay into shorter strands.  My vet talked me into just doing the one tooth, though, believing the top teeth would accommodate the single bottom one and she’d need very few trims.

Arliss had one trim a couple of months after the surgery, and now at almost a year out, the vet says she’s well aligned and shouldn’t need any more trims!  What’s more, all her molars are good, and for a lop to have good teeth is a blessing indeed.  I’m thrilled at how this has healed.  I tried to capture the new incisor arrangement:


Arliss is about seven now.  She’s my cranky bunny–and I love her for it!

Poor Cappy the guinea pig, though, appears to have cysts or cancer after I examined her on Sunday night.  She’s going to the vet today but I’m not expecting very good news.

Found in the camera

David went through some old pictures from the dog park.  Spot and Casper were fortunately not involved in the fight we witnessed that day!

spot.jpg  casper.jpg

Head of the Eagle results (Oct 21): First place in both events!  Our quad finished under 17 minutes on the 2.75 mile course, well ahead of the other three teams.  Our eight finished just over 16 minutes, WAY ahead of the other boat in the race, though it’s not that satisfying since it’s the breast cancer survivors’ boat (it’s even a pink boat!) and you can’t exactly trash talk them.  We really prefer to have more competition!

I am preparing to paint one of the bedrooms in my house and spent a fun evening last night on a stepladder with a putty knife, trying to remove the wallpaper border near the ceiling.  Several hours later, I only accomplished two-thirds of it and the wall needs repair, too.

Local food’s long reach



Article online (may need to log in)

The NY Times printed this piece a few days ago. I find it fascinating to think how our food supply, as it has grown more efficient, has also put us in danger. The most interesting line:

This has always been the genius of industrial capitalism — to take its failings and turn them into exciting new business opportunities.

The nature of our food production threatens us–cattle standing in feedlots, manure washing away to poison other foods, a few huge processing plants, the inability to find the source of the problem when there is one, the opportunity for terrorism–all the “bad side” of efficiency. What is the average westerner to do?

I guess I just marvel at the complexity and wait for spinach to come back to the stores.

Teeth #4,5, 18-21, 28-31

More dental surgery!  A few weeks ago I had crown lengthening performed on the lower left quadrant.  This sucked and I freaked out during the procedure, needed oxygen, etc.  So for yesterday’s procedure on the other side (and involving more teeth in a more invasive way), the periodontist was kind enough to prescribe some Halcion.  This made all the difference!  I still had some discomfort/freaking at the very end, but that whole first hour is barely memorable.

I think I’m done with these crown lengthening procedures, other than post-op checkup, so I feel brave enough to write about them here.  It’s a fun process with local anesthetic (shots into the roof of your mouth suck too, btw), cutting away your gums (front and backsides of affected teeth) with a scalpel, burring the now-exposed bone underneath as needed, and then suturing the gum flaps back in place minus some of the tissue.  The part where I “felt” the scalpel going into my gums is where the anxiety took off in the first surgery.  It wasn’t fun.  I cried, hyperventilated, etc.  I’m normally a good patient (I think)!

So I tried to get a post-op picture this morning.  Instead of what I was expecting to zoom into a close-up, I got this hilarious picture!  You can still see a bit of the black sutures on top and the pink dressing covering the site on the bottom, but I’m really providing this because it’s so funny:


On the plus side, I had to refuel my car after both procedures and nearly tied my old record for best mileage with 43.5 and 44.5 mpg.  I love good days at the fuel pump! 

Joey also has issues with his mouth.  On Monday, foster rabbit Raquel jumped a fence in the playroom and went visiting.  She got along with Vegas but bit Joey when he stuck his nose through his fence.  I came home to find him bloody on his little white nose, paws, and chin.  I tried to get his post-vet picture but it doesn’t show his injuries other than a bit on the nose.  He’s still cute enough to get his picture here!  Fortunately he just needed antibiotics and no sutures.


Joey is a very good patient.  I give him his strawberry and liver flavored (they make this stuff for dogs!) antibiotics by oral syringe on my bed.  Casper is very interested in this procedure and “helps” by whining, nudging his bottom, or just parking her nose over the edge to supervise.


Columbus Crew Classic

Last week we had a very close race and came in second, but it was easier to digest than this weekend’s loss where we were actually passed by another boat.  Rumor had it their bow four are part of some nationals-attending boat, and they were registered under a high school (as opposed to the more “mature” category we’re actually in), but still…  Looking at the results, we still beat some college teams, so I guess we don’t stink as much as we felt while being passed!

One more race for the season, which should be a fun one since it’s at home and we can enter many events.

This morning Casper woke me up howling.  She hasn’t done that in a long time, and it’s always been when she’s alone in the backyard and there are a lot of sirens wailing, not in the house.  I found out on the news this morning that there were four separate accidents on the interstate by my house so I imagine she was singing along as usual with the emergency vehicles!


The trouble with organic

It’s frustrating to know that choosing “organic” foods at the grocery store doesn’t always (or maybe even usually) mean all the things I’d want in my organic food: friendly to any animals who contributed, locally sourced, grown w/o pesticides/antibiotics, sustainably farmed, worker-friendly, etc. This article points to milk shipped from New Zealand and other places afar to feed Americans’ organic appetite, mostly because we lack more local options, and industrially-kept cows who still fit the no-abx definition for the USDA. I think without a national shift away from our acceptance of factory farming, we’re not going to see any meaningful changes.

David and I stopped at a farmers’ market yesterday. It’s too bad the season is over for that.

Ecological Footprint

I took a quiz to see what my ecological footprint is: basically, my impact on Earth’s resources.

Ecological Footprints document a given population’s consumption and waste production expressed in biologically productive land and ocean areas necessary to maintain these services. By aggregating data on the consumption of various resources and on the ability of the earth to provide them, the Ecological Footprint accounts provide a means to compare various components of consumption and ultimately serve as an indicator of sustainability – or, in the case of deficits, of unsustainability.

My results weren’t so good!


I recycle, drive a car with great mileage, and don’t eat meat, and I still have twice the footprint of the average American. Apparently living in a big house is not helpful to sustainability. Worse, if everyone lived like me, we’d need 10.7 planets!

Take the short quiz and comment back here on what you scored and what you think!

Ecological Footprint Quiz

Five Rivers Fall Regatta

Sunday we raced at Dayton, OH.  Our quad took first place, and our eight was only out of first by a tenth of a second!  We actually beat them but they were older so their handicap put them ahead.  It was a great day to row (and get a sunburn) and we’re looking forward to next weekend’s race in Columbus!


I’m the second rower from the right in each of these pictures.

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