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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Hollywood: Batcave/Dog Park West LA: Dr. Schulman/Star dog vet

Honey and I had been working out of dog paradise: a client-now-friend's house in LA where there are three other playful dogs, bones and treats for all and lots of squirrels hanging from the trees. And, to top it off, every morning we would take a quick drive up Bronson canyon (above Franklin) ending up at the park and some off-leash running around the former Batcave (used during the old TV series. ) It was all dog entertainment galore.

Bronson Canyon park, itself, is a great place to take a dog no matter what their activity level. For older, slower pups who like to take a stroll, there's a steady but not too intense uphill fire trail hike; it's a short walk up to the flat grassy area where the ball-aholic mutt hangs out (where you can watch him carefully put down one ball to have thrown to him while keeping another one in his mouth at all time); a little higher up is a variously-sized (depending on time of year and rainfall) waterfall to drink from or walk in; and, my friend's dog disappears for up to an hour at a time answering the off-road, slightly urban call of the wild. The dogs seem most dog-like running up and down the hills and paths chasing the unstoppable cotton-tailed rabbits who flirt with disaster. The rabbits are fast and the cause of quite a desperate and eventually frustrating animal chase. I have the feeling they return to their underground homes laughing at the incompetence of the city dogs.

Unfortunately, Honey tried to do the most squirrel/rabbit chasing AND exploring AND dog play and I watched a slight limp become more serious. I had her calm down for a couple of evenings and everything seemed okay so I wasn't too concerned.
I did have to bring her to the vet, Dr. Schulman, for an update on her bordatella so I asked him to take a look at the limp at the same time. He had already saved Honey's life once when there were complications after her pregnancy, (I found her that way - I would NEVER let a dog have a litter with so many great pups out there that will never get a home), so I trusted him. When I told him about the limp, he was concerned and asked to do an x-ray. The news was not good. More to follow.....

Recommendation: Park in the top lot and go for the uphill hike first. If feeling ambitious, you can hike up and walk all along the upper crest with the Hollywood sign in sight. If you want an easier time, come back down, put your dog back on leash as you pass the lot, walk the short piece of road down, then back up to your left to the Batcave. Come early if you want to see the rabbit show.


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