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has never been allowed to jump off beds or furniture. Up till now
Joey was a perfectly healthy dog.
Joey's first symptoms were very vague on the morning
of January 5, 2008. It was very subtle, little things, such as he
was walking a little slower, he didn't want to get up on the 2 inch
living room cushion. He didn't want to walk up the small outdoor ramp.
And he didn't want to be outside in our 60 degree day! While practicing
some obedience heeling, I saw he wasn't interested in going over the
4" jump, but walked around it. That was enough for me! I kept
him quiet for the rest of the weekend, and we saw our regular vet
Dr. Junkas from Wright Animal Hospital.
After a neurological exam and x-rays, it was agreed
that we see a surgeon as soon as possible. We had an appointment with
Dr. Mitch Robbins from Veterinary Specialty Center, in Buffalo Grove,
one of the best facilities with the best surgeons in our area.
When the surgery was over, the Doctor called me, Joey
had come through the surgery OK, and said to call back in the evening
for another report. At 9PM that night, I talked to Dr. Robbins and
he said Joey had stood up and took some wobbly steps, he was very
pleased. I was able to visit Joey that next day and was surprised
as to the big lump on his back, I was informed that it was only surgical
swelling and would soon go away. The next day, the lump was gone.
I was also shocked to see Joey walking wobbly, it scared me but I
was assured it was normal. The next day, Joey would go home, about
48 hours after surgery!
Our first night home was hectic. Joey was a little wild
and didn't want to rest. He slept in a crate at the foot of my bed
and cried most of the night. The next day, he was more subdued, more
relaxed and that night I brought him in my bed and held him close.
We both slept better since then! Joey came home with no medications,
only 1/4 tablet of Tramadol every 8 hours for about 8 days. We have
a 'recovery suite' in the living room, away from the other dogs. He
has his bed, and is surrounded by potty pads and an ex-pen. He has
his water bowl and only a foot or two to be able to stand or potty.
He can see us and seems content.
Since that first night, things have been calm. Joey
has bowel and bladder control and we take him potty often. Those first
few days, he eliminated on the potty pads we had outside his crate.
He seemed to need to go often, due to the prednisone he received in
the hospital. He had a good appetite and seemed to be in fair spirits.
He likes to keep busy in his recovery suite with bully bones or a
favorite toy or kong. Those first five days post-op, Joey was not
always steady on his hind legs, it is called 'ataxia'. Even though
his 'wobbly legs' caused ME great stress, I was told it was normal
and it would pass. By the 11th day, Joey's walk was much improved.
At 12 Weeks Post-Op, Joey is completely healed and his
Physical Therapy continues, but now Joey uses Leg Weights on his tiny
legs to help muscle strength! What a good boy!
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