Caye's Nurse Dogs.

Dogs are wonderful companions. They bring us laughter, joy, love, comfort and compassion. Sometimes they even step into the role of nurse!

Caye sent me this story about her two dogs who helped comfort and take care of her while she suffered with the flu. 

"I have the flu. I got too sore and tired to get up from the toilet and go to bed. I was stuck there. Two of the dogs came to get me. First they snuggled me to warm me up, part of the exhaustion was from shivering, and coughing. Once I stopped shaking, strength returned slowly. I still had the joint pain with which to contend, and I almost gave up again. They barked and whined until I stood. I went straight to bed half dressed, without brushing my teeth, or washing my face. Once I was under the covers, the older of the two stood guard at my feet, while the younger kissed my face and snuggled me until I got warm enough again. They are always loving, but this is extra. Every time I cough the older one comes to check on me then goes to stand guard for a while, before laying back down. The younger one shoves her nose into my mouth, gives me a kiss, and snuggles me closer. They haven't  let out a single fart all night either, maybe this is the fever typing, but I love my doggums."

Isn't that sweet how Caye's dogs took such great care of her? How have your dogs taken care of you in a time of illness or sadness? Comment below to share your story!

How Pets Bring Comfort to our Lives

If you are sick in bed, head throbbing, sinuses swollen, feeling icky, then a loving snuggly dog to lay with you and let you run your hand on their smooth fur or rub the soft part of their ear can make you feel calm, loving, and less stressful. Some think that stress is the root cause of all illness and disease so the fact that pets can lower the stress hormone, cortisol, means that pets can actually help you recover faster. 

Here are some key ways animals improve our health:

  • They force us to be more active simply by taking care of them. Even more if we take them for walks and to the park!
  • They are funny. And laughter is the best medicine!
  • They offer companionship. They are there to talk to and we can tell them anything, judgment free!
  • They can help us meet other humans if we take them to dog parks and pet events! And meeting other humans can help improve your feeling of belonging. 

There are many other ways pets improve our mood and health! Can you think of a time when your pet helped you feel better? Comment below to share you experience. 

Why Don't Dogs Get the Flu?

If you're anything like me you are curious all the time. So, why don't dogs catch the flu? Or maybe they do? Let's find out. 

Photo Credit Shutterstock/Javier Brosch

Photo Credit Shutterstock/Javier Brosch

It turns out that these nasty viruses are "Species-Specific".

The virus cells actually mimic nutrients in order to gain access to the insides of our cells so they can use the inside parts (nutrients etc) as energy to replicate. The ingredients needed to mimic a nutrient in a way that can gain entry to a cell are very unique and the issue is that these viruses just can't be mimicking all kinds of things, apparently only one. Just like I don't try to do all kinds of different photography, I am really good at one: Pet Photography. The little virus cells are really good at one thing: messing with humans. They don't try to mess with everything, just us. 

The Dog Flu

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), "The first strain reported in the United States, beginning in 2004, was an H3N8 influenza A virus ... In 2015, an outbreak that started in Chicago was caused by a separate canine influenza virus, H3N2." Symptoms of the dog flu are similar to the human flu. Your dog may experience a lingering cough that lasts anywhere from ten to thirty days. He may begin sneezing, become feverish, or discharge may appear from your dog's eyes or nose. Your pet will likely be prescribed an antibiotic or other medicine to treat the canine influenza. Be aware: There are necessary steps to take to ensure other animals in your home do not become ill as well. AVMA says, "Dogs with canine influenza should be isolated to prevent transmission of the virus to other dogs or, in the case of H3N2, cats."

Photo credit: Shutterstock

Photo credit: Shutterstock

So don't worry. Snuggle up with you pup if you're feeling icky. They (pets) do make us feel better. If anything they can really make us laugh some times. And laugher is the best medicine right?

 

 

Those nasty virus cells are one-hit wonders, just us humans. Your dog is practically like Will Smith in I Am Legend, immune to this virus. Kinda cool huh?

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