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Old 01-30-05, 04:05 PM   #1
Mars
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Horrible experience, looking for ideas

This is not bike related, but I was hoping that someone here might have some ideas of what happened or what we can do about it.

My wife and I were walking our dogs in Burlington, Vermont. We have an Airedale Terrier and a Pug. We had been walking about an hour and my wife was carrying her dog, the Pug. We were in front of an apartment building and suddenly the Airedale started screaming and writhing on the ground. I had no idea what was happening and tried to see. He was in so much pain that he bit me. I hollered at my wife to grab his head so I could try to see what was going on. She put the Pug down and she (the Pug) immediately started to scream too.

We think that there is something on the sidewalk that was burning their paws. Maybe a chemical to melt the snow and ice? We got a lift home and washed the dogs paws off in the tub. The Airedale is walking a little funny but seems ok. The Pug was only on the ground for a second and is fine.

Does anyone have any experience with this kind of reaction to a de-icer? Or a theory of what it might be?

Does anyone have any idea of who to report this to? We have called the police, but they haven't showed up yet and we suspect that they won't do anything about it anyways.

Any help will be very much appreciated.
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Old 01-30-05, 04:10 PM   #2
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How scary. First off I don't really know what to tell ya, but I have heard that de-icer is hard on you dogs paws. That is why they suggest having your dog wear them booties. Also, if its much below 32 degrees they don't suggest that you walk your dogs because its tough on their paws. I have a West Highland Terrier and we don't walk him if its below 30 degrees. Poor dogs I'm glad that you dogs seem to be ok. Sorry that I can't be much of help.
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Old 01-30-05, 06:29 PM   #3
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I'd suggest you contact the management/maintenence offic of the apartment building, perhaps they could offer some insight on any de-icing chemicals used on their sidewalks.

It would probably be a good time to make them aware of what happened as well.
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Old 01-30-05, 08:08 PM   #4
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Small bits of ice melt--sodium chloride, potassium chloride, or calcium chloride--maybe, lodged in their paws. If so, I'd bet it was plain old rock salt.
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Old 01-30-05, 09:58 PM   #5
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We talked with our Vet and she thinks that it may have been an electrical shock. She said that there are cases where small dogs have been electricuted on city sidewalks due to faulty underground cables.

To my surprise, the police have taken this issue quite seriously. Apparently, there was another dog today who reacted the same way in front of that building. The electrical company is going to come around and investigate. Also, dogs are way more suseptable to this than people are.

Whoa. Electrocution. I have never heard of such a thing.
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Old 01-31-05, 12:36 AM   #6
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Keep us posted that's messed up.
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