A Review of “Purr Prints of the Heart” by Author Deborah Barnes

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PurrPrints-ePubDear Readers,

Alana here today. I’ve been meaning to discuss this book for awhile, and in this week that I’ve been writing about the loss of my friend Cotton, I thought it was an apt fit.

Sometimes people need help with the loss of their pets. It is a devastating thing to lose one’s best friend. I suspect that many of my readers already know this or, at least, have deep connections with a pet that they fear losing. Humans know that at some point, in most cases, they will lose their companion because of the huge difference in life spans between species. Fair? No. I don’t know anyone that thinks it’s fair, but alas, it’s true.

And so, most of us who have loved an animal will grieve.  We can look to our friends for support, or maybe to our families.  It’s hard to find support in someone who has never loved and lost because, despite their best intentions, they may never really understand what it feels like. Sometimes, it’s helpful to have an outside source to aid us in our understanding of the process. This book, Purr Prints of the Heart by author Deborah Barnes, is a creative and sensitive take on how to deal with the loss of your loved pet by looking at it from your pet’s perspective.

Purr Prints introduces us to the story of Mr. Jazz, a cat who came to live with Ms. Barnes an entire lifetime ago. It follows his story from kitten-hood, where he learns about death from his elder cats, all the way through to the end of his life and even a bit beyond, where Barnes gently gives us Mr. Jazz’s take on what he sees after his passing. Some adoption-sensitive readers may have pause at the start about Barnes’ purchasing of her pets, but she addresses this and details some of her own changes in attitude toward adoption and its importance in her present life. It’s a quick read and offers a lighter view of a very heavy topic and, I think, will offer people who are grieving, have grieved, or who expect to do so soon some ideas to consider during their own process of mourning.

The best part of the book, in my opinion, is the guide for coping with pet loss found at the end and written in Barnes’ own voice. Her smooth prose and wonderful writing really convey to the reader not only her empathy for what you are feeling but some very deeply considered ideas for how to handle those feelings. Reading it myself just the day after helping Cotton on his journey brought tears to my eyes and some understanding to my loss, and even to my loss of Rocky, which has already been over a year in the past. In all honesty, I don’t have the book in front of me presently because I passed it on to Cotton’s caretaker knowing that, when he’s ready to read it, it will help him, too.

Though I don’t look forward to having to recommend this book to anyone simply because I know what it means has happened, I would and do suggest it for the time when the inevitable losses occur.

You can read more of Barnes’ work at her blog The Chronicals of Zee & Zoey and, should you be so inclined, get a copy of Purr Prints of the Heart here.

With Love,

Alana and Crepes.

 

About the Author: 

Deborah Barnes resides in the tropical paradise of South Florida with her fiancé and feline family of seven. She is the author of the 5-star rated books, The Chronicles of Zee & Zoey – A Journey of the Extraordinarily Ordinary andPurr Prints of the Heart – A Cat’s Tale of Life, Death, and Beyond as well as the award winning blog, Zee & Zoey’s Cat Chronicles that continues to cover the everyday journey she shares with her cats along with topics from the humorous behaviors of cats to very serious subjects on pet responsibility.  Deborah was awarded 2013 “Writer of the Year” by Friskies Purina on behalf of the Cat Writers’ Association and she is also the Secretary of the nonprofit, Pawsitively Humane, Inc. of Miami, Florida, whose mission is to create public awareness and reduce the numbers of animals on the streets and in shelters through an extensive educational campaign.

FTC Disclosure: A copy of this book was provided to us for free for review. No further compensation was exchanged and CatInTheFridge.com does not receive any financial compensation for sales of the aforementioned book. 

Tripawds Amputation for Dogs and Cats Hotline

You guys.

This is a bit of a heavy one for you today. I wanted to let you know about a resource that my friends at Tripawds have come up with to help pet parents who are struggling with the possibility of having to amputate one of their pet’s limbs.

It’s a sad fact that, sometimes, pets get cancer. Sometimes they are born with physical defects. Occasionally, they injure themselves beyond repair. In all cases, amputation is one way to relieve your pet’s discomfort. I also personally like to think I look like a badass because of my stump.  When faced with these decisions, pet parents feel stress, fear, worry, and often have very few resources or people to turn to for comfort. That’s where Tripawds steps in, no pun intended.

IMG_2497

There it is in all it’s glory.

 

Already well known for their excellent website where pet parents can gather together for online support, Tripawds has now started a toll-free Tripawds Pals Helpline where those of you who are struggling with the decision to amputate can talk to someone who knows, cares, and understands. And maybe also has an accent. I love talking to people with British accents. Anyway, while these people are not veterinarians and cannot give you specific medical advice, they can talk you through your decision and give you a perspective you may not otherwise have had.

 

If you’d like to give them a call, dial 844-TRIPAWD  (844-874-7293).

That’s

844-TRIPAWD  (844-874-7293)

Tell them Crepes sent you.

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Love,

Crepes.

 

My Vet Visit and What Is Traumeel?

You guys!

First, I’m ok. Nothing serious, but you know I’d rather bathe the dog than visit one of those offices. And yet, I remained stalwart and brave during my visit, and I did not flinch. No, I did not let them see me flinch.

Editor’s note: She sure didn’t, because she hid in her carrier and wouldn’t let anyone see her face.

Me, traveling in style

Me, traveling in style (Editor’s Note: strike “traveling,” insert “hiding”

Let me recap my visit for you in a scientific way:

Reason: MomFOD decided to take me to the doctor because I’ve been exhibiting symptoms of frustration lately. I have chewed, nay “barbered,” the fur on my stump and existing hind leg. I have been cranky with the other cats, and I, um, watered my mom’s outwear.

Editor’s Note: She peed on my jacket.

Method: I got into my pod and went to the doctor for a thorough physical exam.

Note the doctor's keen interest in my stump.

Note the doctor’s keen interest in my stump. Fascinating, I know.

Conclusion: The doctor says I am likely suffering from some pain in my stump and also overuse of my hind leg. She has put me on anti-inflammation pills for the next week to see if this alleviates my symptoms. I don’t know why she didn’t just ask me how I was feeling. I could have told her.

Here’s the scoop on what we’re using:

Name: Traumeel (it was named in Germany)

What is it: A homeopathic mixture of plant and mineral extracts that are used to treat acute musculoskeletal injuries. It’s been available in other countries for more than sixty years and includes Atropa belladonna, Echinacea, Arnica montana, Matricaria recutita, Calendula officinalisAchillea millefolium, Mercurius solubilis, and Hepar sulfuris

Why use it? It’s getting an excellent reputation as an alternative to NSAIDS and cortisone and seems to have useful anti-inflammatory properties without the side effects. It helps alleviate joint pain, muscle pain, and other pain from injuries related to sprains, strains, and injuries.

How to use it: It can be given in pill form (whole or crushed), injection, gels and creams.

Considerations: Make sure you or your pet aren’t allergic to anything in the Traumeel. If using this with your pet, please get your veterinarian’s advice prior to administering it. It is also useful for people, but you’d need to consult your own people doctor for that.

The doctor gave it to me because she thought perhaps I banged my stump and have an acute inflammation. I will be on it for five days.

Have you ever used Traumeel? What do you think?

Love,

Crepes.

PS  Is the vet gone yet?

crepes sleepypodeye

Sources and further reading:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3085232/

http://www.drugs.com/cdi/traumeel-ointment.html

 

**Disclaimer: Please do not treat your pets with anything without consulting your veterinarian. This is not advice to treat your pet; We are merely sharing our experience with you and introducing you to what we’ve learned.**