Thursday, January 15, 2015

Pet Medications & Xylitol - What You Don't Know Could Kill Your Dog

Blog the Change Today is a "Blog the Change for Animals" event in which pet bloggers from all over write about important animal related causes or topics that are important to them. We do it 4 times a year, and it's hosted by the Be The Change for Animals website. We all share a passion for blogging and making our voices heard about issues and topics we feel are important for the rights and needs of animals all over the world.

My topic hits very close to home, and it's a hidden danger that many family pets have fallen victim to in one form or another. I was almost one of those victims about 6 months ago. Mommy has never talked about it publicly until today, but we wanted to let everyone know about how important it is to be vigilant when it comes to Xylitol and your pets medications.

Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs. It can kill your dog. I might sound overly dramatic, but I am just being brutally honest. It is a sugar substitute found in all kinds of things from chewing gum to candy to liquid medicine. It is estimated to be 100 times as toxic as chocolate to dogs! So it is something to take very seriously. There are a lot of good sites with information about it including the Pet Poison Hotline and the FDA. VCA Animal Hospitals has a "Xylitol toxicity in dogs" page on their website as well.

All veterinarians and all pet compounding pharmacies are supposed to be well versed in this dangerous toxin. Every time I have to have a liquid medicine of ANY kind, my vet is always asking repeatedly about Xylitol and she calls everyone involved to make sure they know it's not to be in it.
Well, more and more regular human pharmacies are filling dog and pet prescriptions, but they don't know all the ins and outs of what might make a dog (or cat or ferret) sick. Be especially careful about places that state they can do a pet compounding prescription. They might not know about something like Xylitol. It does not matter how well meaning or innocent they are...if they give you a bottle of poison to give your dog, it won't matter "how nice they were".

The event that happened 6 months ago that makes this such an incredibly personal subject is that a local pharmacy filled my prescription for liquid Gabapentin (nerve pain for my tail, which they had filled before, with a different version of the medicine Mommy had been giving me. It looked and smelled completely different from the previous bottle she'd had them make for me. Mommy asked them about it and they reassured her it was the same medicine, same dose, but Mommy did NOT feel right about it. It was a Friday and no one was going to be available to ask about it until the following Monday. Mommy was sick with worry, she just had a horrible feeling that something was wrong with it.

This happened right after my precious older sister Peanut had been in the hospital for over a week with complete liver failure and almost died from a mysterious "toxin" that the doctors couldn't identify. We were so scared and had daily vigils at home and at the hospitals praying she'd make it. She was supposed to start taking the liquid Gabapentin for her knee issues. She'd also been taking a different compounded liquid medicine from the same pharmacy...
Mommy was upset and worried all weekend, but managed to stretch the little bit of Gabapentin I had left from the old bottle to last me through the weekend. Monday morning, Mommy talked to the pharmacy and made them read every single ingredient of this different Gabapentin liquid. That is when it was officially discovered that the large bottle of clear, icky sweet smelling Gabapentin they sent home with Mommy, that they insisted was okay and safe for her dog to take, had Xylitol in it. If I had taken it 3 times a day for that weekend? Well, I would have gotten desperately ill and not have made it to the second dose. If Peanut had taken it? Neither she nor I would be here today. 

This is what Xylitol does to a dog's system:
1. Xylitol is immediately absorbed in the bloodstream of the dog.  
2. Dog's body responds by releasing huge amounts of insulin. 
3. Rapid insulin release causes severe hypoglycemia attack for dog. 
All of this in as little as 10 minutes!
4. Xylitol in even small doses can and will cause liver failure.

Please be vigilant and know what you are giving your dog. It can be the difference between life and death. If you get medicine that at all makes you wonder, doubt or looks different than what you normally give them...when in doubt, don't give it to them!!

This is a Be the Change for Animals blog hop. Visit some of the other animal related topics below to see how other pet bloggers are "blogging the change" for animals!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Pixel Blue Eyes Celebrates the Joy of Rubber Duckie Day...ALL WEEK LONG!

Okay, officially it was January 13th, but to me, it's not just a day, it's a state of mind, so I'm celebrating National Rubber Duckie Day for an entire week!
I celebrate rubber duckies unlike many others you might know. Rubber duckies are my friends. I have many rubber duckies. I celebrate each of them for their uniqueness. I started out with one, and then the family grew. The one pictured with me here is Pinkie Tuskadero Duckie. She and I play together a lot, but I also play with her brothers Little Duck Blue and Green Day Duckie.

Do you know the history of Rubber Duckie Day? It is the birthday of Sesame Street's Ernie's famous Rubber Duckie. Isn't that cool? Learn more interesting Rubber Duckie Facts at

I started out with a beloved purple duckie named Purple Duckie. He was my very first one. We played and played all the time for a year, then one day he just...broke in half. It was sad and tragic. I moped for days...weeks. Mommy searched and searched for his family, and then one day they showed up! It was so wonderful, and that very day I made up my mind to never let another duckie fall like purple duckie again.

So, I used my nursing skills and Mommy's surgeon skills and we started a Duckie Hospital for injured duckies. That is how I still have Pinkie with me. That story I will be sharing later...but we did save her life. This photo is her right before her surgery last month.

Let me show you just how much I enjoy my rubber duckie friends. We have such fun together! I've created the BEST game, it's like a puzzle game, Mommy doesn't even know the rules, it's so advanced, but the duckies know. They love it! Here's a video of me and Little Duck Blue playing together:

I hope you leave today with a greater appreciation for the Joy of Rubber Duckies. Have fun celebrating the Joy of Rubber Duckies with me. Do you have a rubber duckie story to share? I'd love to hear about it!
This is a #WordlessWednesday Hop! Hosted by my friends at BlogPaws. Click on some links below to see what other pets are doing on this fine Wordless Wednesday.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

WINNERS ANNOUNCED in the 12 Days of Christmas "The Case of the Wayward Fae: A Chronicle of Mister Marmee" GIVEAWAY!!

Hello Friends! I am so very excited to reveal the winners in the 12 Days of Christmas "The Case of the Wayward Fae: A Chronicle of Mister Marmee" GIVEAWAY!! As promised, we have 7 winners.

First, I'll give a breakdown of the prizes, as first listed in the book review and giveaway post from December 24th, 2014.
1st Prize ~ Autographed 2 Book Set "The Chronicles of Mister Marmee" by H.L. Stephens (1 winner)
2nd Prize ~ Autographed copy of "The Case of the Wayward Fae" by H.L. Stephens (2 winners!)
3rd Prize ~ e-Book copy of "The Case of the Wayward Fae" by H.L. Stephens (4 Winners!!)


1. 1st Prize - Cheryl M.
2. 2nd Prize - Janet K.
3. 2nd Prize - Sharon E.
4. 3rd Prize - Coyote B.
5. 3rd Prize - Brenda H.
6. 3rd Prize - Laura B. S.
7. 3rd Prize - Becky

Congratulations Winners!!!

I will be emailing each of these winners so that I can get their print or e-books to them as soon as possible. I hope that each winner enjoys the books immensely! Please let me know what you think. I always love to hear about a good book, even when I've already read it! Thank you so much friends for all of you who took part in this fantastic giveaway. It was loads of fun and I can't wait to do it again. That's right, stay tuned for other giveaways I'll be having in 2015...I'm planning on many good things, so keep visiting!
If you have any questions or feedback, don't hesitate to email me. My email address spelled out (to avoid getting spammed by automated web bots) is: pixelblueeyes dot blog at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Pixel & Pinkie Duckie Try Avoiding Temptation in the New Year

We all have our weaknesses...mine is food that seems lonely. I just want to give it a nice home with me. I'm working hard at not giving in to that temptation in 2015. I've already faltered once when Mommy walked away from her yummy sandwich for a moment. I thought she left it for me. I thought wrong. It was a harrowing 5 minutes as I had to sit on the hassock and "think about what I had done" in a "time out" in which I was not allowed back on the bed with her. Separation from Mommy can be brutal. After the five minutes, I offered her my lunch to eat, but she declined. I apologized, she forgave me & we snuggled together for some time. I do hate those times of weakness.

So, after that now infamous "Mommy Sandwich Snatching Incident", I'm looking temptation in the eyes (or in the bag of treats) and saying, "No more!" Besides, I've found that looking cute while sitting close to my Auntie while SHE eats guarantees me a few bites of whatever she's eating that is dog safe... Mommy had NO idea this was going on til she saw it the other morning. I'd better make sure she doesn't see that again or my treat ticket right there will dry up! Now where was I? Oh yes, looking temptation in the eyes...

"...NO Pinkie Tuskadero Duckie, I will NOT "split the bag of Rice Chex treats with you 50/50". I can't believe you are asking me that. How can you even think that?"
"... You know you'd never be able to eat more than 20%." 

Happy late #WordlessWednesday friends!! This is a blog hop, hosted by my friends at BlogPaws. Check out some of my fellow pet bloggers by clicking the links below and see what they are doing in the early new year! Care to link up with the hop? Instructions are below....

Watch Videos of Pixel on the 'Pixel Blue Eyes' YouTube Channel!

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