Sunday, September 30, 2007

This and That

On Monday, after my visit to the Vet, Mommy and I stopped by her office to pick up some files and see my friend M, who had left her jacket at our apartment.

I got to sit in her chair and was going to help her write a press release but then the chair moved and I became to terrified to move!
After I safely made it off the chair, I noticed there were people on the other side of the door in Mommy's office so I barked at them. By that time, Mom had everything she needed and we were pretty much already walking out the door when her "boss" came by and told her that my barking was a problem. Dogs aren't allowed in Mommy's office but, there are animals in the building all the time, occasionally dogs and we know of a dog being hidden in an office that day. It wouldn't normally be problem except for the barking. Ooops!

Well, after doing a lot of research and speaking with the Veterinarian again, Mom has decided that I should have surgery on my leg. Now, it's not a matter of If I get arthritis, degenerative joint disease, lameness, etc., it's a matter of When. By doing the surgery now, we can minimize the progress of the arthritis and its affects later on in my life. There is a chance, I may have arthritis now and there is still a good probability that I will get it after the surgery too. Also, because there is a marked difference in my leg now than there was three months ago and the fact that my leg gets worse with a lot activity, there is a high chance my leg will get Grade III luxation which pretty much requires surgery. If we wait till I get Grade III luxation, the prognosis of surgery won't be as good, more arthritis will develop, and there is a higher chance of reluxation. The goal is to prevent my leg from getting worse, go on with our normal lives and treat arthritis that occurs later on in life. We think the benefits of having the surgery outweigh the consequences.

Mommy's friends have also recommended a veterinarian who is about 2 hours away from where we live, who is not only a great vet but is affordable. Normally, we would not feel the need to switch vets or try out a new one (especially given the TERRIBLE experience we had/still having with the witch doctor-the new vet we went too over the summer). Mother values the opinions and animal knowledge of her friends who recommended the new vet to her. In fact, one of her friends dog just recently had his carnassial tooth removed and all told, the vet bill was 1/4 of the price we paid to have my carnassial tooth removed by the witch doctor.

So, we'll see what will happen. This vet. does live about two hours away, so it might not even be feasible for us right now.

I also will not have the surgery done until January at the earliest because of the post-operative requirements. It's not going to be fun, because I will not be allowed to do the things I love. I will be crate rested for most of the time, then physical therapy is required after a week, then I'm to be crate rested combined with light activity. No running, no jumping, no brisk walking, no playing outside, no playing tug-nothing. It's going to be rough couple of weeks!!

But, at least I don't have to worry about this until January! I hope the next few months go by slowly.

Also, my friend Momo recently awarded me this:

Thanks, Momo! We love your blog too and we really appreciate this gift. In effort to share the kindness you have sent us we would like to pass this badge to Winston, Goodboy Norman Featherstone, The Corgi girls. There are many others out there that we read on a regular basis who deserve this too, however, we've noticed that they've already received the award (or we're too lazy at the moment).

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Dezoginating Pegonia...errr...Liguilating Portobella...Wait, what's it called again?

Monday, as my faithful readers know, I went to the veterinarian where Mommy works (not the witch doctor). It turns out that I have a medial patellar luxation. What this basically means is that my kneecap keeps moving out of place. This is bad.

You see, at the end of my femur, my patella sits in a groove called the trochlear groove. Along side that groove are ridges called trochlear ridges that sort-of serve to keep my patella in place. In well-conformed dogs, the patella would ride up and down the trochlear groove.

Picture taken from Veterinary Surgical Services, "Patellar Luxation"

Sometimes the trochlear groove grows to be shallow allowing the patella to move outside of the ridges. It can also be because the extensor muscles are also misaligned medially or laterally causing bowleggedness. Basically, the femur, tibia and patella and the surrounding muscles are all not aligned properly. A patella can luxate medially or laterally. For me, it luxates medially and is thus a hereditary issue. A lateral patellar luxation is caused by an injury.

Picture taken from Veterinary Surgical Services, "Patellar Luxation"

Mommy has always thought my right leg looked a little bowlegged, however the Dr.s never thought this was an issue. Because, this commonly occurs in small breed dogs, it is a standard test during routine exams.

Patellar luxation is graded on a four point scale. I have Grade II luxation which means that my patella can easily be pushed out of place, but at the same time will go back into place easily. Grade I means that it can't be pushed out-of-place and Grade IV means that it can't be put into place at all.

Grade III and Grade IV luxation always requires surgery. Surgery is recommended for Grade II but may or may not be necessary. The Orthopedic Surgeons at OSU are recommending that I undergo a sulcoplasty +/- tibial tuberoscity surgery as soon as possible.

Not undergoing surgery increases the risks of of getting degenerative joint disease, arthritis and lameness. The more wear-and-tear on the femoral joint, the more the likelihood of complications occuring and the chances of reluxation occuring after surgery is high (although, chances of reluxation are always possible in Grades II-IV, it is less severe in lower stages and may possibly go away).

My Mother is very torn up on what to do. As the Vet told her that some dogs with Grade II continue to have a normal life without surgery, although in most cases they may develop arthritis and it may not affect the quality of their life. In other cases, it will cause arthritis or lameness. Other dogs, will develop Grade III in which surgery is pretty much required. After speaking with an orthopedic surgeon, she said they strongly recommend surgery at this point.

This surgery is very expensive and I will require a lot of post-operative care afterwards. I would be required to be on crate rest for several weeks, then I'd go through physical therapy and then I will only be allowed light leash walking for the next several weeks after.

There is also a very, very high chance that I will have bilateral luxation, meaning that patellar luxation would occur in my left leg as well. Research shows a high percentage of dogs with medial patellar luxation will most likely get luxation in their other hind leg.

Picture taken from Veterinary Surgical Specialists, "Surgical Solutions for Canine Patellar Luxation"

At this point, I can't even have surgery until January because of everything going on over the next couple of months. Mommy and Daddy will be traveling and I will go with them some of the time and then it's the Holidays! Crate rest won't be an option then.

Plus, because of how expensive this surgery is, my parents have to have a couple of months to save up for it. I guess the timing of everything is good. Post-op care isn't feasible until January leaving my parents time to save up money and then it'll be too cold and snowy to really do anything anyways.

Here's what I think of surgery: I don't like the idea one bit! I won't even be able to walk! Anyway, I will have to tell you about what we did on Monday that almost got Mommy in trouble!

She didn't really almost get in trouble!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Vet Visit

Tomorrow, Mommy and I are going to the veterinarian to get my legged checked out. You see, I have a bad leg. It's weird though because I don't really limp on it, it is just wobbly and somewhat turned out when I walk or run. When I run, I don't usually put any pressure on it either. I have trouble jumping onto furniture such that I usually have to try a few times or think twice about what I'm about to do.

Mommy tried wrapping it a few weeks ago. I didn't like that. It stiffened my leg such that whenever I took a step my leg would swing out horizontally with my body. The vet wrap would also keep falling down over my paw and that really bugged me!

I guess it helped some. The wrap helped give my leg the support that it is apparently lacking.

My leg isn't as bad as it was a few weekends ago. But, still, we haven't gone on many walks or been to the dog park very often. I did, however, get to go to the dog park today. But anyway, my point is that, I don't go out very often because when we do my leg acts up again and then I start to "limp."
I'm nervous about my trip tomorrow. I hope I don't get poked and prodded and stuck with needles. It's a love-hate relationship. I love going to vet to see all the people and other dogs, but I hate to get my temperature taken and my shots! Oh well...I'll keep you updated on what is wrong with my leg, until then, I shall go sleep or play with my new toy.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Making New Friends

Boy, oh, Boy, oh, Boy! Last night was so much fun. First, Mommy came home from work with a friend of hers and she and I played for about 30-45 minutes before they left me. Then a couple hours later, Mommy came home with another friend! I like her second friend, A. I kept trying to give her kisses. But, all night the three of us played tug, fetch and wrestled with me. It was so much fun. I got tired, but I wasn't going to tell them that. I was afraid they might not play with me anymore.

So I showed off and they laughed at me telling me how handsome and charming and funny I am.

Although they tried to torture me. They tied my blanket around my waste, around my legs and hooked it in my collar!

But then, M made up for it by tying my tennis ball in my blanket and throwing it across the room. It was a lot fun trying to rip apart my blanket to get the ball.

I hope Mommy brings her friends over again, especially A. since I have a crush on her. They were a lot of fun and I had their full attention for two hours! They were going to watch a movie, but they played me instead!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Preparing for the Fall

The weather is getting cooler and the leaves are just barely beginning to turn (probably because there is a drought) and although it's not officially Fall yet, my Mother is gearing up for the Fall baking season, fall decorating, football and the holidays that will be upon us quickly. I am helping her get ready although, I really don't care about baskets, pumpkins and pumpkin scented candles, well, actually, do they have peanut butter scented candles? Last weekend I helped her make ginger crisp cookies. She made a few just for me. They were so good that now when she bakes them I go into the kitchen and try to scale the cabinets to get on the counter. But alas, I'm too short and my nails are too long.

Anyway, what I am most looking forward to is halloween. Yes, I know it's early, but I need to get a costume this year as I believe we will actually be haunted by trick-or-treaters this year. Maybe, I can go trick-or-treating too. I think I need to be schmoozing up to my little neighborhood buddy so he'll invite me along. Now that I am two-years-old, maybe Mommy will let me go trick-or-treating. I can see it now-one crisp evening, dressed up in a fancy disguise, my buddy and I go door-to-door barking at all the humans. Some of these humans are dressed up and I of course will be afraid of some of them, but they still dump handfuls of candy into my little bucket. I can't carry my bucket so I make my neighborhood buddy carry mine when I am not delving into it. We get all the peanut butter, marshmallows, milk bones, cookies, rawhides, peanut butter and sweet candies any dog can ever enjoy. There is also a costume contest and I win the contest because I outsmart all the kids and am dressed as a.....well, hmm...I don't know. This brings me back to the point of my post, I need to be thinking about this now so that I have plenty of time to make the right decision and order my costume if necessary.

I can't decide what I should be this year. I have a feeling that we will dig out my old costume from last year and the cheapskate, I mean, my Mom, will make me wear that again this year.

Well, I did a little research and so here are my picks:

1. A Pirate

2. Mad Cow Disease
3. A Football Player
4. An Elephant...
...WHAT? Anyway, we found these costumes on-line at The Haute Hound or Trendy Puppy.

Anyway, I need to go convince Mommy to make me more ginger cookies and to add some peanut butter this time.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Important News!

Hello everydog and everybody! It has come to our attention that we were nominated for the "Awesome Blog Award" at Dogs With Blogs! If you think our blog is worthy of the award, please vote for me here!

I have seen some of the other contenders and I've gotta tell you-I've got some pretty tough competition!

Real Jobs Vs. "Real Jobs"

Wow! This week sure went by quickly! I know it was over a week since we last made a post. You can blame Mother for that. She said she is too busy with her job, but if that were the case she would have spent more time blogging about me. I think she is wasting time on the job. Whaddya think? This does not bode well for her year-end review.

But yes, during Mommy's free time she is very busy with what she calls her "real job"-whatever.

Last Thursday Mommy worked from home. We didn't get to play much, but she took a few minutes every every hour or so to give me a little attention.

I just mostly sat under the table to provide her creative inspiration. She was working really hard to get her newsletter launched.

But, then she started taking pictures of me for some reason. It really wore me out.

I don't think she understands that I can't provide her creative inspiration when I am tired.

I finally fell asleep and she stopped taking pictures of me.

I know that some dogs might have a problem with me sleeping when my parents are home from work, but thats what I like to do. It's better to sleep under the table with your human close by rather than in your crate. Plus, Mommy picked a nice spot to work where the sun was shining through.

Anyway, Daddy is gone tonight so it is just Mommy and me. We are getting ready to watch The Man From Snowy River. It was one of Mommy's favorite movies growing-up. I'm getting pretty tired of waiting for her to watch it with me though. I've been digging at her sides to let me cuddle with her, but she won't put down the computer. I've told her that she can take a break from her work, but she won't listen to me. I think I'm going to go have to go bark at some kids.

On a side-note, the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Panera Bread rivals the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks. This does not bode well for Mommy's PSL/espresso addiction or Daddy's wallet!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Friday Evenings

I love Friday evenings. Perhaps it's because my parents are in such a good mood, or because we all curl up on the couch to watch a movie, or because we go to the dog park, or long walks or because of the amount of time Mommy and Daddy play with me.

A few weeks ago, Daddy and I spent a lot of time playing together, like nearly the entire evening! First we started off by playing tug-of-war and keep-away with my favorite blanket.

Daddy is so good at hiding the blanket underneath him. I strategically and stealthily managed to get the blanket out from underneath him.

Oh no! He's coming! I am not going to let him get this blanket!

HA! Think you're going to get the blanket? Think again, wise guy!

Well, he got the blanket.

Then we danced a river dance.

Daddy also danced a jig with me too, but he wouldn't let Mommy post his picture. See, in the picture above, he is swirling the blanket and you can kind of see his fancy foot work. He's not as good as me though.

We got tired of river dancing, so we decided to play tug-of-war.

We were so tired of playing keep-away and river dancing that we didn't play tug very long. But in an effort to get me back for making him dance he decided to wrap me up in my blanket.

I am not very happy about this and I pleaded with him to untie me, but he only laughed.

I was not amused.

So, I gave him the evil eye and told him what was up.
That jerk, made me take it off myself. It required a lot of work and I think I might have ripped my blanket some. But Mommy doesn't have real evidence as we believe there might have been holes in it already. If I was going to get in trouble, I would have blamed Daddy.

Finally, when I got it off, Mommy gave me a marshmallow (actually, I stole it, see earlier post).

I wanted Daddy to see how much I enjoyed my marshmallow. So just to spite him, I ate it slowly and presented my marshmallow to Mommy so she could snap a picture.

Don't you wish you got a marshmallow, Daddy? MMMMM...yummy...

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Working From Home

Daddy decided to work from home one day last week. I was so excited and put together a list of all the fun things I was going to do that day.

1. Bark at the neighbors
2. Bark at some mystery sound in the house
3. Play tug-of-war with Daddy
4. Go to the dog park
5. Play tug-of-war again
6. Eat
7. Bark at the neighbors again
8. Run around the apartment
9. Eat a dryer sheet
10. Go back to the dog park
11. Eat
12. Watch Animal Planet
13. Chase Daddy around the apartment
14. Play with my new Kong
15. Bark at the neighbors
16. Eat
17. Go for a walk with Daddy
18. Play tug-of-war with Daddy again

However, my day did not go the way I expected it to. First of all, Daddy said he had to work, second of all, he was on the phone off and on throughout the day. This meant I couldn't bark at the neighbors. It also meant he didn't have the freedom to take me to the dog park. He also wouldn't let me watch TV. So, I curled up on my pillow on the couch. I realized how awfully tired I really was.

So this is what I did all day instead.

1. I slept.
2. I slept some more.
3. I tried to sleep, but was then interrupted by this photo shoot.