Monday, September 30, 2013

One more time

Dear Mom,
The end of last week had its share of emotional gut punches. After a 6 week recovery, Olive's limp had not improved significantly. On Friday morning she had a second surgery to release a tendon and hopefully alleviate some pressure on that joint. While he was in there, the surgeon discovered the cartilage on her humerus bone had been worn away. Olive may always have a limp. We will know more as she recovers over the next 6 weeks and after that we will have to monitor her activity to insure that she does not over-do it and inflame the joint. Her tetherball days may be over. Fortunately, she is not a dog prone to high energy levels, and she lives in a house with "mature" family members. She loves car rides and the rabbits and squirrels in the back yard will be enough entertainment. She just won't be a long walk dog. I've grieved. I accept. I am hoping for a miraculous recovery. And it may be the pain meds, but she is walking better already.

Facing a second surgery was not happy news, but the thought of 2 more weeks of That Blasted Cone of Shame was just about enough to make me come unglued. I decided to spend the extra bucks and try one of those inflatable collars. Assured that I could return the collar should it not work for Olive, I purchased size XL (Olive has a rather thick neck) and brought it home. I inflated the collar, slipped it onto Olive and smeared peanut butter to the inside of Olive's elbow near the site of the previous sutures. She couldn't lick it off. Next, I put Olive with the collar and the peanut buttered elbow into her crate. She and the collar fit. She could turn around. She could lie down. HOOORAY! I left her for about 30 minutes and returned to find the peanut butter still smeared on her elbow.  No more Cone. I can sleep in my own bed rather than on an air mattress in the dining room with the cone-headed dog and the back of our knees will go unscathed. Sutures will be removed on Oct 7.
If surgery weren't involved, I could almost add the Inflatable Collar to my list of Favorite Things Friday!
 Not only am I learning more than I ever thought I would about the anatomy of a canine elbow, I also learned that dogs can get suntanned. (And I suppose get a sunburn.) Olives leg, of course, was shaved again for surgery. This time they shaved a bit more of the upper arm/shoulder area. In the photo below, you can see shades of black to light gray to medium gray. The black, obviously, is Olive's fur. The lightest area is the freshly exposed skin, and the medium gray is the area that is also freshly shaved but had been shaved 6 weeks ago and has been exposed to the sunshine! A tan line!
I know it seems silly to ask, especially when there is so much more important stuff to worry about, but keep Olive's recovery in your prayers. God knows I need her.