What Life Revolves Around.

No, it isn’t love. Dollas ladies and gents, and lots of ’em! When it comes to owning a puppy, the expense can be exorbitant, let alone two! Now with Luna Eric and I luckily got somewhat of a deal with a local vet offices puppy package and no cost spaying, so all of the distemper combos and medications were at a relatively low cost. Riku however is not as fortunate to acquire such a deal in the Palmetto State. This is primarily due to the belief in South Carolina that a $200 puppy package, for one round of distemper and a regular vet checkup with that,is discounted! As Eric says, “we already have the puppy, we don’t need to buy a new one, just the shots!” So, I did some research and found that a local non profit animal adoption agency called PETS INC. offered affordable vaccinations. We didn’t half expect it to be as cheap as it was though, $8 for the little guy’s round of distemper. Subtract that from $200 and you have yourself the best savings a girl could ask for! We couldn’t believe the affordable pricing, shots that cheap you’d think there was a black market we got them off of.

The Pets Inc. adoption site had over three litters of puppies up for adoption when we went.  None as cute as Riku, of course. Not only were the shots wicked cheap, but it was done in lightening speed. Now, the guy administering the shots was a Seminole, FSU student. And he can successfully administer shots? Yah, likely story. 😉 But all kidding aside, he was lickity split quick! There was no line, no waiting outside a Petco in the wee hours of the AM for a shot clinic van to come driving up and eventually set up so you can form an even longer line inside the shop to wait for your pet to receive their shots. Oh no, went, received, and drove home. wasn’t even a long enough trip for Riku to use the loo during! (And if you don’t know, puppies at his age pee about every 1 to 2 hours..) This may all sound sketchy to you, after all, if you’re not waiting, are you actually receiving quality care? We thought so, as there were vets on staff at the facility and everything, and all of the staff or volunteers were friendly and welcoming to any questions you had.

An added bonus was that each pet when given vaccinations is given an identification number. That number is on an ID tag that you put on his collar, so that if found it states that the pet must be returned to Pets Inc., where they then look you up as the owner. Better than an ID chip if you ask me in that the Humane Society isn’t needed as the middle-man (for the scanning of the chip.) It’s fail safe, no Lost Dog posting around town needed! (I always think that if Luna ever gets out, and she CAN jump 10.5 feet when she’s old enough, that i’ll have to put up signs saying: “Lost Wolf, PLEASE DON’T SHOOT! Return to the lovely couple in the red door house.” Oh, the South..

On topic, the couple times a year shots aren’t the big spender as most people may believe. Think less small picture and more big picture, every day needs.  Know what it is? Puppy owners may eagerly say it’s the paper towel expense, as cleaning up puppy messes all day may seem like it might be, but it’s the grub! If only they were at their maxed weight so the amount needed wouldn’t keep increasing! Do they EVER stop growing it seems? You will begin to think about looking up stocks in Purina for how much you buy!

Since Eric and I are on a gluten-free diet, can you guess what the pups are on? And they always say the dogs resemble the owners, why not follow a similiar diet? We have them on the Large Breed Puppy Wellness food. It’s gluten-free, no added junk ingredients, and even has whole foods such as spinach, blueberries, and carrot even added to it. It’s like the Superman dog food. Now, I know the big question, how much is it? Do I have to take out a second mortgage, forfeit my child’s educational savings? No, it’s a supreme food at a moderate price for the quality food it is. Not only did we get it for the quality wholesome ingredients, but due to Luna’s “special” nutritional needs, as a Canis Lupus.

Too much to drink 😉

Red wolves, and all wolves in general, have an adverse reaction to soy (plainly stated as IBS…the elephant in the room will be readily smelled.) Eating a diet that includes soy product, even minimal amounts, will lead to blindness in later years. That said, almost ALL dog foods, treats, and products, are made with Lecithin, which is soy based. Picking out items for Luna? Harder than it seems!  Especially since wolves are not only unable to process and digest soy, but also corn and wheat. It’s the doggie Celiac and allergy sufferer extraordinaire! Makes sense when you think that wild wolves have no means of accessing such products, just the vegetation and fresh, lean meat. They’re on the new Caveman Diet fad already. A dog that molds to our diet, who would have known!  Wellness puppy food is ideal since it is wheat, corn, and soy free. Which is beneficial to every puppy’s digestive system and not just for dogs with wolf heredity.

As stated, most dog treats contain lecithin, and more fearsome, rawhide. Rawhide has been used for ages but can be deathly for larger dogs. Larger dogs, with sharper teeth (such as Luna) can break the rawhide into tiny slivers, that when swallowed, puncture the intestine and is fatal. To avoid such, we get Luna actual real bones coated in flavor. When it comes to snacks, both of the pups LOVE peanut butter. It’s like crack to them, slap some on some celery and she’ll rob a bank for you if you’ll give her some! Same goes for boiled chicken, cantaloupe, and papaya. Papaya I highly recommend since papaya enzymes are highly beneficial to digesting..and we did just talk about her back-end smokehouse…

Speaking of feeding, ever eat your dogs food before they do? Sounds kinky right?  In simple terms, it all boils down to the dominance theory and portraying yourself as Alpha in the pack. If you own a dog, or are interested in learning more about dominance theory I highly recommend reading this page, it has detailed information with corresponding visuals, HERE.

Many people use this approach with all dogs, but as it can be kind of too-too in my eyes, I do believe it is necessary when owning a wolf hybrid as the social hierarchy is instinct and will always be with them. To show that Eric and I are alpha to Luna, we pretend to eat her food before giving the bowl to her, after she sits before of course. Luna is more wolf than dog we have found, and responds to our dominant behavior quite accordingly! Where as Riku just looks at us like were nuts. Another move we do is the ‘say please’, which we use on both. It’s having them sit before granting them anything, be it setting the food down, giving them a treat, presenting them a toy (Luna LOVES anything that squeeks, though with her teeth, a soft toy such as the pink elephant below will only last a good week..), going outside, etc.

Luna showing her dominance over Riku by putting a paw over him.

You can tell Luna sees Eric and I as alpha in many ways. One of the main cues is how she comes up to us. As she approaches, her whole body cowers down (not in fear, but in submission, sort of like in a mid-bow), her ears go back, yet all the while excitedly wagging her tail level to her body.  If she’s entirely excited to see me, say I just came home, she’ll try to jump up by my face, right by my mouth. If you’ve ever seen a wolf’s teeth, it can seem quite frightening!  She’s simply trying to lick your teeth, a kind of “wolf kiss.” There is the cutest VIDEO on youtube showing this. When watching the video, first thought is “wow, the lady is going dowwwnnn” to “awww.”

Wolves go through phases. Luna is just a Pre-Teen in her time, and we won’t know her level of dominance and need to be high in the hierarchy (and her possible aggression towards us to become such) until she is around two to three years old. Might as well play it safe we say and get on pretending to eat that puppy food!

I am not a wolf in sheep’s clothing, I am a wolf in wolf’s clothing.


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If you are a weightlifter, strongman, exercise enthusiast, or just looking for a good read, do head over to Eric's blog RIGHT HERE..
He is my inspiration in more ways than one, especailly when it comes to pursuing my writing.

Oh, you know you want to be stronger, doesn't everyone? ;)

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