PDA

View Full Version : CCAC Issues


Gooch
04-13-2009, 01:25 PM
I feel the same way - partly, too, that having multiple sources is ALWAYS a good idea. However, the CCAC list, I imagine, would be VERY tough for a human whose dog has just been diagnosed with Cushings - being so very overwhelmed, the CCAC list is not going to help a lot with that. To put it MILDLY! They load you up with a ton of links. All good (as far as I've investigated), but they are ABSOLUTELY NOT a first line of Help-The-Human aid. Whereas, your forum DOES do that - really helps the human, and it also has a lot of more detailed stuff when need be.

So as I see it, the CCAC list and your online forum have two quite different functions. No question, the CCAC forum has really excellent information, and a large variety of it, and they are ultra-careful, too.

But I'd generally recommend to a newcomer to Cushings going first to your online forum, and staying there, also, even if they later also join CCAC.


Mon, 13 Apr 2009 06:16:48 (PDT)

Hi Carol,

Small world!
I'm confused though because you had unbridled enthusiasm about CCAC the other day judging by your tone there, you even asked permission to cross post one of my posts, which was in fact, a welcome post to a new member. So if I am to understand correctly, I and four other welcome hosts are not doing such a good job afterall....?
I hope you don't mind my responding to your post, but I feel that I must since, as a welcome host at CCAC, I can't help but take what you write a little personally since it is my job to initially welcome people, make them feel comfortable, allay their fears and point them in the right direction. I can't imagine I said anything to offend you when I also welcomed you the other day...?

I have joined many groups and forums in my time, and they have all been wonderful, immensely helpful and very supportive. And while each one is unique and the formats are different etc, I am not sure I could recommend one over another. In my experience, the new comers come in two forms- those who want to cut to the chase and learn as much as possible about this disease (or whatever other ailment has brought them to us as CCAC is not just for HAC dogs) and then there are those who are more in need of emotional support and for whatever reason, unwilling or unable to sort through the information available to them, not unlike the way I was at diagnosis as a few here from the old forum might recall :-)
I have helped both kinds of people at CCAC but sometimes it is a precarious position to be in as I am not an expert and while I am familiar with the material, the tests, the treatments etc cannot in good faith tell someone what to do and this is why I refer them to the files so they can get it from the horse's mouth as it were, and then ask questions. People joining CCAC are 'loaded up with a ton of links' and files to inform/equip them as much as possible in the belief that knowledge is power and since we are our dogs only advocates it is our responsibility to learn as much as possible. It is no coincidence that veterinarians like Drs Oliver, Feldman, Goldstein have been 'guest speakers' at CCAC and contributed articles.
And while friendships are forged there, and the occasional off-topic thread pops up, it is, in the end, mainly a group focused on treating the dog, not the person, or as you put it, "ABSOLUTELY NOT a first line of Help-The-Human aid" .
When Olive was first diagnosed with PDH and diabetes, I was so overwhelmed I couldn't make heads or tails of anything- even poor Natalie in exasperation had to actually physically scan a syringe and label it for me so I could grasp the idea of converting the U40/U100 thing... I'll never forget that. It was the sweetest thing.
Both groups were integral in getting Olive under control and it is thanks to both that she is still with me today, albeit with one less eye...
We all do our best but it doesn't help anyone to put another down because their style is different.

My apologies,everyone, for the lengthiness of my post and moreover, I am sorry to take issue with Carol's post. I am not an upstart and rarely get involved in controversy of this nature but I felt obliged to speak up in this case.

I hope you are all well and I miss you guys. I have had my hands overflowing with the brood of cats and dogs, a two year toddler and now a 4 month old, and yes, CCAC.

CarolW
04-13-2009, 02:04 PM
Hi Eliza,

I'm SO GLAD you replied to my concerns. I've been so swamped myself I haven't yet thanked you for cross-posting permission for the Muffin list (and I still have a question-fragment that should probably go private, so will ask you that one by private email).

| can explain briefly why I think CCAC will overload some, maybe even most, people new to Cushings. That initial overloading is really my ONLY hesitation about the CCAC Yahoo group.

It starts with files sent to new members - a lot of them, with a lot of links, but I don't think that is particularly discouraging; hard to tell, as the new member isn't yet directly in touch with the email list (or message archives, if they read on the web).

I am old, and long-experienced as a permanent student; even so, I, new to studying Cushings, find the extensive links are, at first, more than I can handle. What I do, then, is set the messages aside, though I save them all. But I remember, too easily, what overload does to ability and wilingness to BELIEVE you can begin to understand something. Simply, it's too much to comprehend, all at once, and even for a very eager and devoted new-student, I believe it boggles the mind.

A natural response is for the person to get up from the chair and walk away.

Perhaps, for new members, a solution would be to delay the extensive posting of links, especially adding them to the person's first posts. I think if you (anybody on CCAC) were to give them a week - or at least a few days - of membership, limiting the number of links to the very most crucial - say, no more than about three links per post, people would find it easier to begin their studies. If it were me, I might even limit it to one link to begin with.

In short, you'd be applying a form of First-Aid to the human, first, holding the human's hand!

Actually, Eliza, I think you do a great job of that. It's ONLY the extenstive links and the rapidity of their onset, so to speak, that I think many people could find so boggling that they might not stick around very much - yet - the massiveness and accuracy of the information you provide on CCAC is the very stuff of good life for Cushings dogs; of that, I am thoroughly convinced.

The greatest thing about your Yahoo forum is the combined accuracy and complete-as-possible collection of information, along with the careful attentiveness to every Cush-Human-Parent who posts.

The cc.net people have special hand-holding skills, seems to me. I believe they get past the initial terror and disorientation of a newcomer very quickly. It's odd, because I believe you, or somebody at CCAC, just told a newcomer to breathe. That identifies the first prerequisite to learning more- with top-notch accuracy. But a person who feels buried under links will have a hard time, at first, breathing, and might run away long before s/he should!

Incidentally, even though my own site is concerned with diabetes and NOT specifically Cushings, I've decided that since Cushings so often goes along with diabetes, to put links both to the online forum (cc.net) and to the CCAC Yahoo group on my links page. I just need to get around to adding the CCAC link.

Maybe if I tell you a little story, it will help. When I first got a Windows computer, I tried to understand what I was seeng on the screen. My SO and DogDaddy George tried to help me learn how to use the computer. I didn't know what to do; I felt paralyzed. George said to me, "Read the screen!"

And with utmost truth, I said to him, "I can't read the screen. I don't understand it!" And, feeling pressured, I got up and walked away from the computer. That happened several times. Everything was so unfamiliar to me that, literally, I could NOT read the screen. For instance, I didn't know what the icons meant.

It took me five years to learn enough about DOS to handle a DOS computer well. It took me another five years to learn how to manage a Windows computer reasonably well.

But a Cushings dog? I don't think the Human-parent wants a five-year learning curve; haha! All I'm suggesting, then, is, try starting a bit more slowly; give new people a week or two, and then start the links, especially, add them in response to questions.

Incidentally, I believe the human-dog team we've been talking to on CCAC is one of those disoriented people - revealed, for instance, by the action of taking her dog off Vetsulin because she thought somebody said "Vetsulin is bad." And she was right; some people HAD made some remarks like that. (And your post on the topic was magnificent!)

That person will have trouble learning from a vet who isn't all that great a communicator; needs a particularly good communicating- vet. (And I'll write to you privately with a bit of background there).

So glad to catch on that you're here, too, Eliza. You covered so many of my concerns, so well, that's why I requested the cross-posting permission (haven't taken advantage of that yet - too busy with patella surgery on a Cavalier - as a hand - or, knee- holder! (Lost a lot of sleep, but what else is new!)

Mon, 13 Apr 2009 14:04:36 (PDT)
edited Mon, 13 Apr 2009 14:15:04 (PDT)

gpgscott
04-13-2009, 02:10 PM
Hi Carol, and Gooch,

I know this is a new set up, but lets please respect others threads.:)

You all did kind of crash Littleberry's party here:o

Here is a place for your discussion.

Scott

CarolW
04-13-2009, 02:18 PM
Oops - my apologies! Thanks for moving us!

Mon, 13 Apr 2009 14:18:32 (PDT)

Gooch
04-13-2009, 03:46 PM
Hi Carol,

Its 1:30am in these parts of the world so I am going to get back to you tomorrow. Thanks for writing back and thanks Scott for moving us, I wasn't aware I was gate crashing :o since I was under the impression that the original thread was a general one.

PS Carol, have you heard anything from Rambo's human?

Take care

CarolW
04-13-2009, 04:56 PM
Yes; many thanks to Scott. Part of the great success of these online forums is the excellent organization, which greatly aids in preventing overload, too! You can't QUITE do it this way on Yahoo Groups.

And no; I WISH somebody would hear SOMETHING from Rambo's human, but I haven't seen hide nor hair of her. I believe she is ultra-disoriented. I'm aching for Rambo, and for her.

Hope you're sleeping sweetly as I write this.

Mon, 13 Apr 2009 16:55:46 (PDT)