Category Archives: Random

What is the Practice of Veterinary Medicine?

There are laws against practicing veterinary medicine without a license that may be enforced on occasion*. What is the Practice of Veterinary Medicine?

In this document I discuss the different pitfalls of helping people with their sick fish. Sometimes people will ask you to help them with their Koi and pond fish and you need to know where it gets “sticky”.

If you render a diagnosis or prescribe a treatment for someone’s animal (not your own) without a Veterinary License, you can get in trouble.


*Fascinatingly: Not if you’re running  a shot clinic. Those people are practically above the law. (I’m not kidding) 
Authorities at the University of Georgia in Athens responded to an inquiry about the legality of petshop card-table vaccinators: ShotVet ( / clinicians practicing without a business or veterinary license in Georgia and they assessed: “It’s like speeding. It’s not all the time and it’s hard to enforce because they move around.” 
And I’m thinking: “What an idiot. They put up signs weeks in advance. Most of these traveling vaccine carnivals are in the same feed store, NASCAR-collectible shop, and Autozone parking lot every week. It’s not enforcement difficulty, it’s enforcement laziness. 

Two Large Vicious Black Dogs Chased Me.

On NextDoor recently:  Two large vicious dogs chased me today. I was running at around 5:30pm near the corner of Wingard Drive and Branch View Drive and two large vicious dogs chased me down. I ran onto someones porch and tried my best to protect myself with furniture. The dogs finally left after a few minutes. After 5 minutes, I tried to slowly walk home and they chased me down again. Luckily, my neighbor from Holcomb Lake was driving by and rescued me.

Warning: Please keep your large dogs locked up in your yard. If this happens again your dogs will be picked up by animal control or severely hurt. I’m a dog lover, but I felt like my life was in danger. Thank You

Me: This is an excellent place to make a suggestion on how to defend yourself against dogs like that. But first, if they meant to kill you, they would have. When they intend to kill, they’re four times faster than you (20mph), and they go for the ankles, and you’re down. Then they ‘dog pile’ and that’s it. Protect your face and neck.
Wasp Spray. No kidding. Pepper Spray is *usually* short-range, may blow back into your face and then you’re worse off than before. Wasp Spray (for eaves) goes about 20-30 feet and can be pre-emptive. [Don’t wait til they’re on you]. It will stop a dog with serious intent (besides attack trained) and send it howling. If it gets in YOUR eyes you’re jacked for a while, but *no* permanent damage to you, OR the dogs. Unless they turn and bolt in front of a car. Then, sadly, instant Karma.
Testimonial from a fellow on the interwebs: “I suggested that he buy a can of long-range wasp and hornet killer and give the dogs a blast of that next time they approach him on his own property. To make a long story short, a 3-second blast had the dog yelping on the ground and unable to continue to be a threat.”

A word on wasp spray on dogs: If the owner wants to, they can try and punish you for defending yourself with charges of ‘cruelty to animals’ and ‘extra-label use of wasp spray, even ‘terroristic-acts’. I would be interested to hear the judges’ verdict on that, however, if you’ve got a bandaged leg or missing fingers and they just have a video of a contrite dog with watery eyes for an hour or two.

I think shooting dogs is a bad idea, it’s going to be on the fly, and your backstop is not certain.

And what if it’s a Chihuahua? Do you think most people are good enough of a shot to tag a Chihuahua at a flat footed run from about 10 to 20 feet? What about a dachshund that has been taught to zig-zag as it runs toward you? I mean, maybe with a 12 gauge, loaded with number four buckshot, but who’s really going to jog with that? That’s kind of a lot of shotgun to run with unless you strap it on your back. And then to go to that much trouble on the outside chance that you meet a murderous Chihuahua?

None of these are issues for me because I don’t jog. People say running is ^so^ good for you, I’ve seen too many people hit by cars, run over by speeding teenagers, getting eaten by dogs, having heart attacks. Now I have to worry about stray bullets. Forget that. Have you ever heard of anyone being eaten by dogs while watching Game of Thrones?

I have a buddy who is retired from the Nevada State Patrol, he is the one who told me that’s how he defused dogs, he kept a can of wasp spray in the patrol car, says that unless they’re trained to persist (like police dogs), they just curl up and shut down, or run, with a face full of wasp spray. He said the only time they’d shoot a dog with a bullet is if they couldn’t afford for the thing to run off, say, in a human bite situation where they needed to rabies test it, or it was known to be a human threat and had to be ‘permanently neutralized’. He just said he used the wasp spray because he couldn’t afford to be blasting dogs in peoples front yard when he’s serving a warrant or bringing someone in. LOL. It works very well, and zero people or creatures get injured.

Dog Pee Killing Grass Yellow Stains in Yard From Dog Urine

Dog Pee Killing Grass

While home remedies are worth a try, as long as they don’t endanger the dog or the lawn, what is burning the grass is not ‘acidity’ or ‘ammonia’ (as such) but excess nitrogen. This is more concentrated for female dogs because they don’t spread their urine by marking, like males do, but do a single dump in the middle of the lawn.

A horticulturist did testing. The results were (given no other changes):
– Commercial ‘pet’ tablets do nothing
– Commercial ‘pet’ liquids do nothing
– Dilution of the dog’s urine sometimes works, which is why ‘liquid remedies’ sometimes seem to work. More liquid in the dogs diet dilute the urine and encourage multiple eliminations, spreading the nitrogen (the true ‘burning agent.’) You can try adding water to dry food or using some canned food to encourage liquid intake. That worked too.
– Over watering works, but only within a few hours following the spotting, after which watering can actually hurt. Watering-can aficionados are correct.
– Things like tomato juice merely add water and salt to the diet of the dog. The acidity does nothing, as it isn’t the acidity burning the lawn, but nitrogen.
– Grass varies in its sensitivity: Bluegrass and Bermuda grass are easily killed by this (as they are by over fertilizing), Fescue is better
– Switching to a lower-protein diet can help, as the protein is what is eventually converted to nitrogen, but talk to your VET before changing the dogs diet and don’t do it for pups, gestating females or special diet dogs or hard-working dogs. These dogs need that extra protein. And lawn isn’t worth it!
– Best solution; pick a spot, set it up with a durable substrate and train the dog to go there.

Excess nitrogen can burn grass that’s not ready for that much nitrogen all at the same time. By adding LIME to the soil, it makes the grass better able to use more nitrogen in a concentrated way.

Some data suggests that lightly liming the grass twice a season can confer some resistance to acid / nitrogen burns. A “grass guy” or lawn professional could advise on liming rates.

Nitrites Are a Potent Toxin to Aquatic Fish Life

Nitrites – by Doc Johnson

Ammonia is converted into Nitrite by Nitrosomonas
So, when you set up a new pond, and the fish produce Ammonia; that ammonia is reduced to Nitrite, the subject of this article.
Nitrite is converted into NitrAte (plant food) by Nitrobacter.
Nitrites cause reddening of the fins and irritation of the gills, gasping + excess mucus. A simple test kit can detect Nitrite.
Nitrites also bind the fish Red Blood Cells resulting in suffocation and “Brown Blood Disease”.
-> Nitrite toxicity is temporarily reduced by the addition of salt at one teaspoon per gallon of water.
Nitrites can be created from Nitrate under anaerobic conditions. (Deep sand, glutted filters, stalled sand filters etc.)
Nitrites can be controlled with wet-dry filtration, constant replacement of a little water all the time to the tune of ten percent per week, and traditional water changes as needed.
Nitrite toxicity is weakly reversed by addition of Methylene Blue.
+ “The reversal of Nitrite poisoning by salt is not permanent. Work at Auburn University showed the protection varied among fish specis and could last up to eight weeks.” ~ Doc Johnson

+ Note From Doc Johnson
“When I have Ammonia or Nitrite problems, one of the first things I do is raise the Total Alkalinity of the pool with baking Soda or AquaClarus. Then I wll suspend feeding and increase aeration until the numbers come down.” ~ Doc Johnson

+ Nitrite accumulations with certain kinds of filters can be due to common undersizing mistakes. It may also be that you’re not giving sufficient oxygen or Calcium to the beneficial bacteria living in your filter. Before you get too frustrated with your filter, make sure you get some caclium carbonate for it.

Koi Carp Taxidermy

Koi can be taxidermied if you really want. It takes considerable skill because of the type of scales and fins they have, as well as reproduction of the color and pattern.

Koi can be taxidermied if you really want. I had this Koi, a big butterfly Koi from Blueridge Fish Hatchery for years. She was a big favorite of  mine because her orange was metallic and the lines between her scales made a fishnet of gold. And of course the long fins. And then too, she had a personality.

When she died, I put her in the freezer for a long time and eventually found Lynn Ward who could do taxidermy.

He said that the fins would be challenging because they don’t dry very well, tending to curl. Also, the “skin” (epidermis) on the scales tends to curl up, too when the fish is dried. But he dried Oro very slowly and spent the time to keep the tail flat and the scales from curling. He gave her glass eyes. They use putty to hold the eyes into the orbits, then air brush that to blend it in. He came from a picture and painted her amazingly.

She held up VERY VERY well in a climate controlled room with average humidity control. For years. Then I lost my place in the market correction of 2008 and she went with all my belongings…somewhere. I guess she’s on someone’s wall somewhere?

Side note: When a Koi or Carp is taxidermied it is a blonde, dried out color. Nothing like the color it was. 100% of the color gets painted on with an airbrush. The skill of the taxidermist will determine the fidelity to the fishes’ original color.



Free Images

Free images aren’t hard to find and I provide a lot of images of my own. Think I stole an image from you? Let me know and we’ll fix that. It’s never my intention, and I can replace any image with one of my own or from the following sources.

What follows is a listing of where my images are from.   Click “Tools” and then “Usage Rights” and “Labelled for Reuse” and you’re good to go.  Add “_google_images_labeled_for_reuse_sept_2019” to the end of the file name.



Life of Pix


The Jopwell Collection


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