Dear Heloise: I was delighted to hear that you share our love of minischnauzers. Ours, a female named Sammie, passed away recently; she was less than 8 years old. According to our vet, the breed has a genetic tendency toward pancreatitis (irritation and swelling of the pancreas — very painful). It is very likely that fatty table scraps (such as fried chicken nuggets) caused pancreatitis and contributed to her passing. We also did not control how much Sammie ate each day; we just kept her dry-food bowl filled. Based on our experience, I would suggest that readers who love their dogs:
Discuss their dog breed’s dietary weaknesses, if any, with the vet.
Avoid table scraps, especially those containing fat.
Feed their dog only the amount that it needs each day, bearing in mind that a dog’s appetite naturally increases in colder weather.
Get a set of blood tests done each year, even if the dog seems healthy, and especially as the dog gets older or seems to slow down.
Michael in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Michael, I know your pain of losing a beloved dog. We are on our third minischnauzer. Yes, they are prone to pancreatitis, as we know well. Cabbie has had three bouts! And our second one, Savvi, had it once. A “guest” had fed her table scraps, even though I had told him not to!
Dear Readers: Avalon Ingram in Grapeland, Texas, sent in a picture of her cat, Sandy, sneaking a sip of milk from her granddaughter Teresa’s bottle. Yep, pretty sneaky, Sandy! But Teresa doesn’t seem to mind. To see Sandy and our other Pet Pals, check out www.Heloise.com and click on “Pets.”
Hi, Heloise: Today you were giving hints on how to get the hair out of a hairbrush and how to clean it. My hint, after years of trying everything else, is: I have a wire brush for my Maltese dog, which does an excellent job of removing his loose hair. I tried using it on my hairbrush, and voil ! It took the hair out of every bristle quickly — an excellent job.
I removed all of the hair in the hairbrush and ran the brush through the dishwasher, and it came out clean as a whistle.
Janet Hiebert, Huntsville, Ala.
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com.
King Features Syndicate