Archive for December 2007
Well our house sale fell through, so I’ll have to wait a while longer before I can get my Yasko genetic panel done. The first couple who were going to buy Fern Cottage pulled out after delaying their survey for about six weeks, for unknown ‘health reasons’. The next couple who were interested just pulled out the other week because they were worried about teenagers drinking in the park, which isn’t actually a problem now the park has been renovated and opened up. We hope the cottage sells soon, as we are pretty stretched paying for two mortgages at once. But if it doesn’t we’re thinking of setting it up as a holiday home, something that we should break even on. It would be nice to be able to keep the cottage as I love it so much, but also nice to have the cash to spend on our new house!
Jasper (also known as “The Beastly Beast”) is doing very well. He has been on a raw meaty bones diet since about a week and a half after we got him. We had to introduce raw food slowly as he seemed suspicious of it and rejected it in favour of cooked. Then one day I plucked up the courage to feed him a chicken neck and from that day forward he refused to eat anything except raw chicken, with which he became totally obsessed. It turns out he was suspicious of raw food because he doesn’t like beef, which is what we’d tried feeding him! I am still anxious about him not crunching up bones properly so I feed him by hand, keeping hold of one end of whatever neck, wing or thigh he’s eating to make sure it isn’t gobbled.
During the first couple of weeks his digestion wasn’t very good and he kept having bouts of constipation and diarrhoea, but after we got him on raw food that started to clear up. Apparently a lot of raw feeders give pumpkin to settle the stomach, and just a tablespoon a day did the trick, though we didn’t keep it up as the pumpkin gave him runny eyes. Dog biscuits also seem to have this effect so we don’t feed them. The only time he gets doggy junk food is when he’s visiting relatives! The only other bout of upset stomach he’s had was recently, when he started eating tinned (cooked) tuna, which he loves to bits but apparently it doesn’t love him. One plant food he does get on with that he loves is sweet chestnuts, and he has been sharing a few chestnuts with me for lunch. He learned to ‘sit’ and ‘beg’ for chestnuts.
He has a lovely sleek, silky, shiny coat. He didn’t when we first got him. He had a dull coat and dandruff, and he was being fed some dry junk food puppy chow. He was shaped like a barrel instead of a dog, with a big pot belly. I was worried when we first got him that he might have a bowel obstruction or bloat as his belly was so big. We fed him some dry mix during the transition to raw food. He started looking dog-shaped after four or five days, once they had been withdrawn. He also had a horribly strong ‘puppy’ odour. Sometimes his ears had that horrible sweet fungus-spaniel-ear smell. Once he was on raw food all smell disappeared altogether. His ears and teeth are totally clean, and now the only time he smells is if he is fed smelly food – like pork (pre-frozen to kill the worms) – in which case he smells of bacon the next day!
He has a slightly undershot jaw so I’ve tried feeding him cod liver oil and very expensive ‘activator X’ butter oil to try to correct it with vitamins A, D and K. To be honest it hasn’t made any difference so far. Withdrawing it hasn’t made any difference to the shine in his coat, so I think he’s getting plenty of omega 3’s from his raw diet. We’ll keep going and see what happens.
He’s had a few ups and downs. There was a while when he was really hyperactive and bitey and was driving us crazy. We couldn’t figure out what it was, but sometimes it was after food – especially tripe which is very very high in amines. Dogs have a high tolerance for rotten stuff (amines), unlike cats who must eat fresh meat, but there is still a tolerance level that can be exceeded. Eventually we figured out that he was eating ivy. Jasper has had a strange habit of eating garden plants ever since we got him. Not grass, but actual plants. Every time he went outside the back door, he was stripping ivy leaves from the plant overhanging the wall. Ivy is the only plant listed as causing hyperactivity in dogs! When I found out I went outside with a pair of scissors and manually cut down every single stem. The next day he was calm. Totally calm and perfectly lovely. He changed from being a baby crocodile for 8 hours of every day into being a baby crocodile for only one hour of every day! I think the little devil was addicted, because for several weeks afterwards he would make a charge for ivy tendrils whenever he saw them during his walk. He is still taking up a lot of my time – he needs plenty of supervision and a decent walk once a day.
I’ve started to try to claw back my time from my projects and obsessions. I recently realised I now have so many nutrition blogs in my RSS feed that it takes me most of a morning to work my way through them all, so I’m going to start jettisoning. I’d much rather read Perez Hilton, but he’ll have to go too.
I started writing a post today but I honestly couldn’t be bothered to finish it. This blog has been my aspie perseveration for almost two years now, but I’m getting bored. I’ve had a great number of wildly different obsessions over the course of my lifetime, none of which have lasted more than about four or five years. I kind of admire people who can stick with one thing for their whole life. I tend to run out of steam when I feel I’ve reached the limits of knowledge on a subject, and I’ve felt like that about this subject for several months now. I feel like I need some new challenges and I want to move on.
Also I’m just tired of the battle. I need to grow a thicker skin. I read several autie/aspie blogs and sometimes comment on them, but it’s very difficult to get across to people how crucial it is that they should try this diet for their physical symptoms or their children’s symptoms. Failsafe doesn’t ‘cure’ autism, but it makes a lot of the unpleasant physical pain/symptoms go away and makes you less likely to melt down, stim, or get upset about things. Failsafe hasn’t changed who I am, it’s just made me much calmer and more focused. And unless your genetics are totally up the wall, it does work.
I’m tired of caring about this but being ignored. I haven’t made the headway I wanted to with the Weston A. Price Foundation. I spent a lot of time last autumn feeling distressed about being invalidated and dismissed by people on the WAPF forums. I suffered from a lot of insomnia and stress purely because of horrible things people had said. This happened to me again recently when I dared to open my mouth again there, only to be shouted down by someone who regurgitates WAPF brainwashing and who has busily been undoing all the hours of hard work I put in to trying to get some acceptance for failsafe principles.
Also, after all the effort I’d put in to getting the message across to WAPF about the failsafe diet, I had hoped by now that they would have published something in Wise Traditions, but instead every time I open the latest WT I see something erroneous about the causes of colic, or how to manage ‘fussy eaters’ who won’t eat vegetables. I know full well that some of the most influential members still believe failsafers have ‘vitamin deficiencies’, not based on evidence but purely because it validates their world view. I have been thinking of leaving WAPF altogether since last spring because I’m so sick of the preconceptions and prejudices members have. I don’t think I will be renewing my magazine subscription, because I don’t think they will change, some of their members make me feel decidedly unwelcome, and I’ll be damned if I’m the one who’s going to compromise.
There’s a similar story going on in the low carb community. People just aren’t open minded. Low-carbers fixate on carbohydrate as the source of all the world’s health problems, and it just isn’t so. For ages I was fed the message that ADHD was caused by sugar, which pretty much put me off the scent of the failsafe diet.
I imagine I’ll still blog now and then, but I want to start tying things up with a bow. I have about twenty posts or so that I haven’t got around to finishing, along with commitments on the FailsafeNT forum. I also feel like I need to make several posts about Yasko’s genetic panel. Taty has suggested I write some posts clearing up my stance on a few things, like the validity of low carbohydrate diets, and I think that’s a good idea.
I want to focus on getting the Plant Poisons and Rotten Stuff information website up to date. I have been putting off doing this for months as I get huge writer’s block as soon as I have to write anything important or ‘official’ and I feel like banging my head against a wall. Writer’s block has been stopping me from writing a novel for the last decade! I was supposed to start writing that novel two years ago, but instead I started doing this, and thank goodness I have a partner who is understanding and has supported me while I try to get to the root of my problems. I hope that instead of blogging here, I can plough what remaining energy I have on this subject into the information website instead.
What I really want to do is write that fantasy novel I keep threatening about. Apart from the day-to-day looking after of a small furry brown puppy, the novel is all I think about at the moment. So I have to go away and try and work out this writer’s block and not have blogs in the way as displacement activities.
I’ll be posting again with a progress update in the new year!