Category Archives: Animals

Update on Diet and Other Stuff

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Okay, I don't think I mentioned it here, but about the time I realized that my blood pressure was high, I also got a bad case of diarrhea. I'd eat and about ten minutes later, I'd have a bad stomach cramp and have to run to the bathroom.

I called my doctor about it, and she was more concerned with my intestines than my blood pressure, so she put me on some antibiotics, thinking maybe I'd picked up a bacterial infection somewhere. She also switched my diet to clear liquids/bland food, with no dairy products.

Within a day of switching my diet, I was having to go to the bathroom fewer times in the day [down from 8-10 to 3-5]. It was still loose, though, so we tried a medicine used to lower cholesterol that causes constipation. It worked, but I started having horrible fibromyalgia-type pain, and I wondered if the new med could have caused it [I don't know how it's possible, but that was the theory].

After my antibiotic was done, and I had improved quite a bit, I stopped taking the cholesterol medicine and resumed my regular diet. The stupid diarrhea came back, although not as severe as before, it's still very annoying.

Plus, it's been four weeks since I went off the pill, and my blood pressure is still high. I'd rather try to fix this crap without medicine if I can, and the other day, I dropped by Holly Lisle's place and found this entry.

Which is how I found out all the stuff about how animals are treated in the big farms, and how a lot of cows are injected with Bovine Growth Hormone in the US and how that causes an increase in Insulin-like Growth Factor 1 [IGF1] which is linked to cancer.

So I've mentioned this stuff to Steve, and he's okay with not buying meat from the store since we rarely buy it anyway [and have wild game available to eat] but he's not willing to give up dairy products, too.

So today, I'm in the throes of trying to find information about the real dangers of milk and milk products without having to use articles that use emotionally manipulative language [the PETA site is a perfect example of this kind of language, also stuff written by people who oppose abortion is another good example. In my view, simply stating the facts is enough. Don't insult my intelligence and capacity for compassion by trying to manipulate me with overly emotional descriptions. That kind of crap annoys the hell out of me.]

Steve's not likely to believe anything that uses overly emotional language so it's up to me to find articles that don't flaunt a certain bias.

Also, his perception of animals is different from mine. He doesn't think of them as beings with feelings and emotions, whereas I do.

He sees them as more ruled by instinct, and I think some [maybe earthworms and such are ruled by instinct] animals definitely interact with their surroundings and have an awareness of whether they are treated well and even loved, also that they are capable of loving others. I could be wrong on that, but that's how I feel.

As I've been writing this, I've been searching for stuff I can show him. I think he just doesn't want to believe that we can have a healthy diet without dairy, and more that it's even possible that we could become healthier without it.

In my search, I found one such article here. Woo hoo, there's one. Now to see if I can find more.

I'll keep you updated.

Things That Drive Me Nuts!

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You know what drives me nuts?

People who don't return their carts to the little cart parking things in parking lots.

Yesterday, I put two carts in the holder that were pushed up against the outside of the thing.  WTF?  You got it that far, why not go the extra two feet to get it inside?

We have a store here called Aldi, which is cheap food [which is why we shop there] and they have coin operated carts.  You put a quarter in the slot and the thing that connects your cart to all the others pops out and you can take your cart in.

When you're done shopping, you take the cart back, put the connector thing into the slot, and your quarter pops back out.

I have never seen a loose cart in Aldi parking lot.

I read some stuff online that made me sad today.  It was about how the meat we buy is treated before it becomes meat [you know, when it's still an animal?]  Ugh.

I knew it was bad.  Steve used to work in a pork processing plant and he told me how they stunned the pigs and 'stuck' them to make them bleed out.  He assured me that they were unconscious when they got stuck, and dead by the time they reached the hot water bath to help remove their hair, but he didn't work in that part of the plant.

Okay, I know I'm a bleeding heart, but I have issues with inhumane treatment of animals, and the thought that pigs, chickens, and cows [I love cows, by the way, they are my favorite cloven hoofed animals] are even sometimes conscious when their necks are slit, or they go into the hot water bath, makes me physically ill.

I grew up on a dairy farm.  My grandma had chickens, so we had all the eggs, milk, chicken, and beef we could eat.  It was a very small family farm, and the animals were never mistreated or injected with hormones.  I guess they were 'organic.'  

Grandma was always big on humane treatment of the animals, and she was also always leery of anything purchased at a store.  She always had a garden, and wouldn't let my dad and uncle spray the plants with chemicals, and she always griped at them for spraying bug killer on their fields.

I used to laugh at Grandma, but she was a pretty wise old bird.  Today, I read that in the U.S. we inject milk cows with Bovine Growth Hormone [BGH] to make them produce more milk.  The problem is, it causes pretty serious health problems in the cow, and it causes an increase of a different hormone in their milk that is linked to cancer in humans.

I also found that chickens are given growth hormones that make them get bigger and fatter faster, which lowers their vital organs' abilities to function.  Sometimes they get so big so fast that their legs become crippled and they can't walk.

My mom and dad found a baby chick on the side of the road and took it home to raise a while back.  It had probably fallen out of a transport truck [more than likely Tyson since that's the main company around here]. 

Within a week, the chick was half the size of a full grown chicken.  That's way faster than Grandma's chicks grew.  

The whole thing sucks, because cruelty to animals, even animals that are destined to be dinner, is just wrong.  I still eat meat, but mostly it's wild game because store-bought meat is too expensive.  Now I have another reason not to buy meat.

I'm not trying to convert anyone to vegetarianism.  I doubt I'll become one any time soon, but I just know that I can't live with knowing how the animals are treated and still eat them.

If I still lived on a farm, I'd probably eat all of it because I'd know that the animal had a good life before it became dinner.  I admit that's weird logic, [or maybe no logic] but that's how I feel.

So, I'm not buying any more meat from the supermarket.  Maybe I'll hit the Powerball so I can grow my own. 

Sydney, The Great Huntress

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Actually, her nickname [by me] is 'Damn Stupid Dog.' She's actually not the least bit dumb, but she irritates me, and since I can't call people stupid [at least not where they can hear it] she gets to be the stupid dog.

One of Sydney's great delights is tormenting snakes. I've only seen garter snakes around here, but we have lots of poisonous snakes here in Missouri, too. So, when she finds one, I have to go make sure she hasn't found something that can hurt her.

She likes to bark and snap at the snakes, wagging her tail like mad the whole time, so I'm pretty sure she's only playing with them. The thing is, the other day, Steve and I went out to watch her. As I watched, I realized that if she snapped right when the snake struck, she'd probably end up biting its head off.

No more had I thought it, she did it. The snake struck, Sydney snapped, and the snake was lobotomized. I don't think it was completely dead when Steve took it and threw it over the fence [the last thing we needed was for Sydney or one of the kids to decide a dead snake would make a good toy, pet, or snack].

Steve said it was, of course, because I have a tendency to make him [quickly] kill animals that are suffering. I woke him out of a dead sleep one night to make him kill a mouse that had been caught in a trap and wasn't dead yet. I also made him kill a fish that had one of his eyes protruding and blood pooled in it. It could only swim in circles and wasn't eating. I can't take that shit, so I made him kill it.

Yes, I'm a big dork about this stuff, especially since I won't kill it myself, but that's me. So now we have this snake issue.

Snakes give me the willies. I don't like them [at least not when they can get me, blech, I get the shivers just thinking about one of 'em touching me]. And if it came down to killing a [poisonous] snake or letting it bite me or one of my kids, the snake dies every time [and I would kill it without blinking an eye, afterward, I'd freak out, but in the heat of the moment, to protect my loved ones, I could kill just about anything].

However, I am not going to let the dog kill the harmless garter snakes in the yard, even if it is unintentional. So today, I heard Sydney barking in the back yard. I looked, and sure enough, she was doing her bark, pounce, wag, snap, repeat thing that she does when she has a snake 'treed.'

So, I went out, found a stick, and chased the dog away while encouraging [aka poking at] the snake to go into the neighbor's yard where the dog doesn't care about snakes.

It gave me the willies, but I did it anyway. And that's why I had to come in and write about it, because writing is a form of therapy, and I'm certain I need some.

Whether it's because got close to an animal I'm scared of, or that I did it to save its life is still undecided.