Sweet Patti, thank you so much for your kind words! Karin, I agree that if I can't find the root of his troubles I may need to look into Cholodin.
Night before last, he was up to no good getting into the garbage, which is something he has just started doing around Thanksgiving time when he stole the ham bone from the trash. He got into it again night before last, and I caught him red pawed
so threatened to beat his butt as I opened the door, providing his escape. I had been moments from deep sleep, yet found myself out playing at 10pm o run off some energy.
So last night I tried a new approach, and it seemed to work best... late evening romp in the snow! Exercise! One of the reasons we don't play a lot this time of year is that he gets those dang ice balls in his feet, so I found a way to control that. I picked up a little personal trimmer for guys. The kind that is meant to trim nose and ear hairs. Using that, I can trim the hair on his feet without a major fight from him and it helps to keep the ice balls from forming with less hair.
I also picked up an ear scope so I can see for myself how his ear is doing for wax and dirt and save myself money going to the vet. I have the ear cleaner and steroids, so now can treat as needed without paying $60 for the vet to tell me his ears are dirty
Overall, those 2 tools cost me about $15 and will pay for themselves in no time and we will both benefit greatly.
Z loves to play in the morning and I tend to get busy in the evening with dinner, dishes, floors to mop up after long days of us all tracking in snow and mud so afternoon/early evening play was omitted. I think now by controlling the ear problem and hairy feet problem, we can get out more, play longer, get more exercise and rest better. Last night it was Zisso who headed for the door first!
I want to thank you all for your kind and caring hearts and advice, suggestions and love. Wishing you all a Happy New Year!