Terii’s Cycling Babble


Dreary, Freakish Winter
January 7, 2014, 8:47 pm
Filed under: Misc

So far, 2014 is off to a slow start cycle wise. Actually, it still hasn’t started.

Since December 30th, the sun remains unseen. We’ve had RAIN daily. Rain! In January! Even the year where snows didn’t arrive until February, it we were mostly below freezing, a number of sunny days and beautiful hoarfrosts! The States are getting hammered by record breaking low temps and mounds and mounds of snow. Here in Sweden, the winter has been more like those I grew up with on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Snow free and all days and most nights above freezing with quite a lot of rain.

The snow free streets would mean being able to rack up the miles more quickly than winter of 2012-2013, except for the the rain coupled with temps in the low 40’s. Rain and in the 60’s or warmer, I could manage, but wool can only do so much against that kind of chill and rain. So, the days pass with no miles. I’ll not be breaking through the mileage cap of January 2013 if this continues. It either needs to warm up, or dry out (preferably both!) or on the other end of the scale, get cold enough for snow and have it stick around. Snows in cold as low as 26 F, I’ll wrap up in snuggly, dry wool and ride on. Rain with 42 F, I’ll stay snug, dry and non-hypothermic.

So, the days pass as I wait for the weather to break.

We did get some things moving with the new year though. January 2nd, Jens worked the morning from home. Noon, we took off for Stockholm. Jens drove as we rushed to the appointment with the vet in Stockholm who is beginning her studies to specialize in animal dermatology. He did the drive as the clinic sits in a rather tangled section of the city which is a difficult place to drive in the best of conditions.

As we zipped along the highway south, my cell phone rang. I wriggled it out of the pocket from beneath the seat belt, muttering that it had better not be the clinic. It was, but this time with happy news. Someone had canceled their 2 pm appointment with one of the fully trained specialists.  Would I like to change my appointment to that slot? “Yes! That would be lovely!” I exclaimed cheerfully.

Jens dropped me off and went in search of his favorite hotdog place. Since we were there so early, I walked Loke around the block. We were still waiting room by 1:30. By 1:40, one of the vet techs already showed us into the exam room.

The vet was a lovely Finnish woman. She looked Loke over, took the time to add whatever info I had to the records from the vet. She confirmed what Niclas had said all those years ago and the other vets had been saying since. It turns out that Loke has likely been in a constant state of allergic reaction for years. His belly is pink and the vet assured me that the skin should be white. Yet, it’s always been pink as far as I can remember. I figured it was because the skin is thin and the capillaries turned it pink.

Not so. It’s always been pink because the skin has been in a perpetual state of inflammation. Poor Loke. I never knew and none of the other vets caught it.

The woman listed 4 possibilities for allergic causes. Two she crossed off because the triggers for those aren’t present. I can’t remember the 3rd, but she was certain it was food related because of how I described it. Her recommendation was putting Loke on a very strict diet for 8 weeks, just specialized dog food. That made me cringe. Not for myself or for Loke. Jens has been difficult at times when it comes to ‘depriving Loke of goodies’.

When I mentioned how difficult it might be for my husband, he said Loke could have small treats of things not found in dog food. So, no pork, beef, lamb or fish as well as the carbs. She did say he could have things like reindeer, moose and rabbit. She even knew a place that sold reindeer scraps sold in frozen kilo blocks as dog food. So, it’s not all as bad as that. When he would normally get a lovely bit of steak from our dinners, he now gets a nice chunk of reindeer. Of course, Lord Fuzzy still thinks he should get reindeer AND the steak.

She also gave a long list of things to treat the current fungal infection. Prescription shampoo, a disinfectant spray, and a cream.

So, that’s how things stand now. Loke’s been suffering with itchies and inflamed skin for years as well as the flare-ups of various bacterial and fungal infections. He’s been eating naught but his special dog food with bits of reindeer of goodies. Hopefully, we can improve things for Loke. Get his feet cleared up so he can continue to limp along on the short outings with the trike at the very least.

I would like to have his company for a while longer on those at the very least.

 

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