Hi friends! I hope you had a good week. We sure did! The dogs got a visit from our friend Lauren, who is home on Spring Break, and she brought the pups some cute flower strands to wear to get them in the mood for Hawaii. Check it out:
This week we also determined the size of travel crates we will need for each dog and will be ordering them within the next few weeks. I want to make sure the dogs are super comfortable with them, so we will keep them around the house and allow the dogs to acclimate to them before the big trip.
Today, the dogs had their vet appointment to have the rabies antibody titer test done. Lexi also got her rabies and distemper boosters, which will save us another visit in a month or so, and a physical exam since this was her first visit to our vet. Lexi was very anxious and got herself pretty worked up, which included leaving a lovely “present” in the office lobby. Once we were let into an exam room she began to calm down. Zev was braver than usual and I think he helped her to relax a bit. Eventually she stopped crying and laid on the floor with Lovey and John while we waited for Dr. Green to see us.
Both dogs were very good for the vet and she worked quickly. Lexi made fast friends with Dr. Green. I was pleased to learn that she has worked with customers importing dogs into Hawaii, so she knows the process and requirements well. I am certainly prepared, but it is nice to work with someone else who also knows the process well and can reassure me that I am on the right track. There is a lot of stress involved with this process! The antibody titers will be sent out to the Kansas State University lab today, and once the lab receives the samples the 120-day wait period begins before we can arrive on Oahu. It will probably take 2-3 weeks for the blood to be tested, and we can check the results online through the Hawaii Department of Agriculture by submitting the dogs’ microchip numbers into the system. Fingers crossed that all goes well with the samples. We still have a lot to do, but we are definitely on the right track and glad to have a big, expensive, time-sensitive requirement checked off our list.
The dogs are really all set with the vet requirements until 2 weeks before our trip, when they will have their health certificates issued and a bunch of paperwork sent out to the Hawaii Quarantine Office. It is all starting to feel so real! Until then, we are impatiently awaiting warm spring weather!
So, I have a question for our followers and fellow dog people. I am looking into calming solutions for Lexi for situations like vet visits and the flight to Hawaii. I feel awful that she gets stressed out in some situations and would like to do what I can to help relieve some of her anxiety naturally. I don’t want these experiences to be so tough for her. I know over time she may very well overcome some of this anxiety, and I would like to give her some support while she is still acclimating to life as a family dog with us. She is a good girl, just an “emo teapot” at times (crying, whining, working herself up to a heavy pant, pacing nervously, etc.). Does anyone have any suggestions? Laurelin used a Thunder Shirt with Lexi while she was in foster care, but she wasn’t sure if it had much of an effect on her. I think I might try using one again to test out in some of the situations that make Lexi anxious. I know many people who swear by the Thunder Shirt for situational anxiety and nervousness, so it is definitely worth a try. I have also heard good things about Rescue Remedy, a flower essence liquid that is supposed to aid in stress relief. Also an option, provided that it does not contain any ingredients that could trigger Lexi’s allergies. Does anyone have any other suggestions or ideas? They would be much appreciated. Only the best for this special girl!
Have a great weekend everyone!! Hugs and kisses from Lexi and Zev, future Hawaii dogs!