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Stanley and I went to the vet on Friday afternoon.

I anticipated the appointment, knowing that Stanley was going to get a chance to sniff derriere and noses with various dogs, which he doesn’t do at home. I wasn’t disappointed.

A cute little cocker spaniel and Stanley hit it off. Much sniffing ensued. Stanley embarrassed me by also sniffing the derriere of the cocker spaniel’s owner when he was sitting in the row of chairs in front of us. Uh, Stanley, no. Stanley was not deterred.

He also made friends with a golden retriever, but two bigger dogs came in later. One had the strangest aspect. He had his head down and was looking at people sideways. I was immediately on red alert. The other looked like a Saint Bernard and was just fluffy and cute. The weird dog bothered me, though. His owner came up to Stanley, said, “Hi, Shorty,” to him and asked me, “Mind if I pet him?”

Stanley is predictable at home. I know he’s going to lunge at strangers and try to bite them. In public he’s unpredictable. When we go out I put him in his Hurtta Active Dog Harness that has a handle on the top. If I ever have to extricate him from a dangerous situation in a hurry I just pick him up. I was a little leery about the guy petting Stanley, but he sat down next to us, extended his hand and tried to pet Stanley on the head. Stanley immediately backed up. The guy said, “What’s wrong with your dog?”

Lots of things came to mind, y’all. “He’s just showing good taste.” “He’s shy.” “He doesn’t trust people easily.” Instead of saying anything I just smiled.

What’s wrong with people who insist on petting a strange dog?

Stanley’s gained a pound. I’ve changed his base food, plus halved his Fresh Pet topping. I no longer give him “cookies” or his Kong bone with cheese. I bought some freeze dried veggies thinking that he would be interested in those as a treat. Nope. However, I think the other changes will work to keep any additional weight off. We’ll go back in a month to see if the plan is working.

He had five shots, plus his heartworm test and fecal. He’s got a clean bill of health – but I did learn something fascinating. Stanley has a kind of musty/yeasty smell. He has it even after he’s had a shampoo. The vet said that terriers and similar breeds can get bacteria on their skin that results in that kind of odor. When he goes back to the groomers I’m supposed to ask for an anti-bacterial/anti-fungal shampoo. Who knew? In the meantime I have a spray that I’m using when I brush him. (It’s a lot better than the no-rinse shampoo I used last week. It made him smell like a hooker after a very long night. Poor Stanley.)

Off to spray and entice him with a freeze dried pea or two.