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Luckily the UTI’s could be managed, but that was just the beginning of


Whisper’s many health issues. About five years ago, she began having seizures. Diagnosed with idiopathic epilepsy, Jennifer decided to treat Whisper’s seizures homeopathically. Whisper receives acupuncture every three weeks at Animal Hospital of Dunedin. She also regularly receives CBD chews, CBD oil, and Di Tan Tang, a Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM) herbal blend that treats seizures and epilepsy in dogs, cats and horses. After beginning treatments,


Whisper has two veterinary teams. Her family veterinarian is Dr. Nannette Parra, ParkView Animal Hospital 3720 54th Ave. N., St. Petersburg


For her acupuncture treatments and TCVM Chinese herbs, she sees Dr. Michael D. Bartholomew, who has a Masters Degree in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine from the Chi Institute of Chinese medicine. Animal Hospital of Dunedin 1355 Pinehurst Rd. Dunedin


727.733.9351 AHofD.com


Whisper had only two seizures in 2019. Prior to treating her with herbs and acupuncture, she was averaging a seizure every two to six weeks. So far in 2020, Whisper has had six seizures and has started on phenobarbital with no side effects.


None of Whisper’s health issues


stopped her from training for and accomplishing obedience titles, trick titles, scent work titles, stunt dog titles, and more. She has completed the AKC Rally, AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC), started AKC Fast Cat, and passed the American Temperament Test Society. For three years she provided therapy work for Royal Palms, an assisted living facility in Largo, Florida. Whisper has even done some


modeling work for several companies


and magazines including EcoBark Pet Supplies and The New Barker dog magazine. Whisper is also Jennifer’s service dog. Just when Jennifer thought she had her dog’s health under control, Whisper


developed a herniated disk in her neck (C3-C7). She now takes Gabapentin, an anticonvulsant, prescribed to treat the chronic pain in her neck. The drug is also used as a seizure-control agent. Even though Jennifer had to stop doing competitive agility with Whisper,


she has continued attending the annual Summer Games at the Upper Suncoast Dog Training Club. They may also do an occasional lure course run. “She just loves it,” said Jennifer. “Since the pandemic, though, we haven’t


been able to do anything, so we’ve been doing trick and stunt work dog classes via Zoom. We have a lot of fun with it.” Before Whisper’s neck injury, she liked jumping up onto Jennifer’s bed.


Things have changed around the home since Whisper is no longer allowed to jump.


“My old bed was too high and the floors were slippery,” said Jennifer.


“Once Whisper hurt her neck, I couldn’t let her in my bedroom. Well, that was just awful and wasn’t going to work. So, I bought a new bedroom set with a bed that sits much lower to the floor and put a rug down so she wouldn’t slip.” Jennifer also replaced her car with one that sits lower to the ground. It still


has enough cargo room for going to dog shows. The two of them go every- where together. “Whisper is the first thing people ask me about when they see me,” said Jennifer, who owns and operates the popular Pet Styles By Jennifer grooming salon and spa in Dunedin, Florida. What may seem like a story of health issues, is really a love story for


Jennifer, and how she is committed to Whisper’s health and well-being, no matter the lengths. “We were supposed to meet, and I was meant to take care of her,”


said Jennifer.U 74 THE NEW BARKER www.TheNewBarker.com


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