Per Dogtor’s treatment orders, I had to flush the cracker’s willie with Chlorhexidine to treat a small infection. He didn’t love it, but he didn’t try to bitey me. The cracker is getting soft in his older years.
I could never get Loki to perform the roll over trick that Juno does. He’s done it once or twice. The best I can get him to do is the “Bang! You’re dead,” trick, which is quite hilarious because he complains about being shot every single time I shoot him but he eventually goes down for me. Since we put our grass in, I actually caught him rolling and scratching his back in it. So now he knows that I knowhe can “roll over.” I cued him, he complained and actually rolled over in the grass. Smart dog, always knew the cue, but just didn’t want to do it and now he knows I know he can do it so he complains but does it. Someone in our house has to complain about something. It may as well be him.
On Monday, the cracker was given two thumbs up from his surgeon. Loki’s re-check x-rays showed the bone is healed from the #TPLO surgery and there’s no inflammation in the patella which meant he did not over-do himself during recovery. It’s a miracle! Actually, he exceeded my expectations in staying quiet during recovery. I even stopped sedating him after week 3 though they recommend sedation the entire 8 weeks so the dog doesn’t over use the leg. I think he intuitively knew he wasn’t supposed to move much so stayed on the infrared Biomat until about week 5. By week 7 we granted him off leash access to the garden and now he’s allowed to patrol 24/7. Good to go and none too soon. I actually need him to patrol the fruit trees for crows. There’s nothing he loves more than telling off a crow. Go get ’em Loki!
This weekend we celebrated Loki’s 8th year with us and his 9th (roughly) birthday. He’s been one of the best teachers I’ve had in my life as he taught me how to listen, really listen, without words. Sure, his recent TPLO surgery put a huge dent in the wallet, but in the end, it only cost about 3% of what what it would take to rebuild the 2-story garage that he literally saved from burning to the ground three years ago. I would say he is definitely worth every penny and more.
Technically still on “leashed-lock down” to recover from TPLO, I allowed Loki to hang out on the front lawn to sun himself. I heard the sprinklers go off from indoors, so I went to check on him, to make sure he didn’t bolt or hurt himself from the surprise noise. When I got to the door I observed him studying the sprinklers with concern. As soon as he spotted me he put on his tough, big-boy britches and started alert barking and growling at them as if to convince me that he hasn’t lost his intruder alert skills and he’ll be ready to go back to work patrolling the property as soon as he gets the green light. In the mean time, I’m counting myself lucky I have him to protect me from a sprinkler attack. The cracker never ceases to make me smile.
Loki’s our best friend, guardian and teacher. He’s our family.
Happy Anniversary Big Boy. We love you to the moon!
“Cracker’s Log 0022016. I made it through the harrowing night. It was touch and go as I didn’t have all of my cracker faculties, but I was able to whine and pace the bed room enough times to convince the human to leave the comfort of her bed and take me back to the office where the magical Amethyst mat with the far infrared rays and negative ions could recharge my cracker battery. I also convinced her she’d get better night’s sleep on the mat spooning me. Human seems happy. Something about the Biomat is finally paying for itself.”
No, that drugged out look is not from the narc’s, which barely work on him, but from the Biomat. Remember the Amethyst Biomat, Internet? It is not exactly an inexpensive item. And it’s paying for itself by being the only thing that can calm the cracker. It’s covered with a liquid resistant cover since he will now be using it regularly.
Apparently the bedroom is too stimulating with all the windows open for scent to come in. Loki would sleep for an hour then get up to go to the window, pace and cry. By 3 a.m. I tried another narc but at 4 a.m. he was pacing again. So downstairs we went to the office. He also made me spoon him the rest of night with his apple bottom planted firmly into my hips. And yes it sucked to sleep on a (literally) rock hard surface, but nothing would make me happier than to ease my best friend’s woes.
Loki and I had butterflies as we waited for him to be admitted on Thursday morning.
His surgery went well. By 3:00 the doctor called me and said he behaved very well before surgery for all the ladies and the doctor. It was a completely torn cruciate ligament. His meniscus is intact. He has no arthritis. He also had a few minor cosmetic procedures (nip/tuck, moles, skin tags and fatty lumps removed) to maintain his youthful appearance. Prognosis: he will return to full cracker status in 12 weeks provided we strictly keep him on lock down. He stayed the night for observation and had a lovely chicken and rice dinner. Mr. Wild Dingo returned home on Thursday night from his 10 day trip.
I need to be reminded that crackers aren’t bullet proof. Surgery was the last thing I’d expect to see on a dog as athletic and perfectly built as Loki. We fully expected Juno to be our surgical dog. But even the best athletes aren’t bulletproof and you never know what turns life is going to take.
Mr. Wild Dingo and I picked him up this morning and naturally, regardless of the 20 tons of narcotics and sedatives running through his veins, he went full on cracker-knock-down when he saw us. Completely uncontrollable, Internet. It’s embarrassing. I don’t care what kind of drugs he’s on, you can’t hold a cracker down if he’s off his rocker. Especially, when he hasn’t seen Mr. Wild Dingo in 10 days. This is going to be the longest 12 weeks of my life Internet. And I’ve had to deal with laying in bed myself for 2 years!
Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO) surgeries for dogs have been around for about 25 years. It’s a fascinating surgery because it doesn’t involve repairing the ligament because a large dog will just damage any newly repaired ligament. Small dogs can handle a nylon repair but not large dogs. The cruciate ligament holds the femur and tibia in place. When it breaks, it causes the femur and tibia to hit, causing pain and arthritis. This surgery involves cutting the tibia head and moving it back, holding it in place with a plate and screws so that when the knee is mobile and in use, the femur and tibia no longer hit at the front of the knee. In fact the entire 8% of the force that the cruciate ligament takes from mobility impact is now redistributed into the quadriceps. There is no need for a ligament at all. The bone grows back in 8 weeks, if he rests completely.
Now he’s resting comfortably in my office where he will stay 24/7 for the next 8 weeks.
Juno wasn’t too thrilled with this set up. She had to prove to me that she was calm before she could come in and act like the caring sisfur she is and not a banana head like the cracker taught her to be. Once she tried to lick his wound but that was a strict no-no and after telling her once, she hasn’t tried again and is laying quietly next to her man while he snoozes away on his Fentanyl Patch.
“Cracker’s Log 0012016: I keep having recurring nightmares of jumping through the Agility ring at school. I have no idea why.”
Well, it’s official. The cracker has actually torn his cruciate ligament and not just strained it. I think early on it was hard to tell because he’d get better at times. But I had a feeling it would go this way. Continue reading “TPLO for the Cracker”
“Hey Big Boy, Mom says after our walkies she’s gonna give you a bath. But not me. Because I’m a husky. And huskies are awesome and don’t need baths because our furs reject dirt and so we’re never dirty.” “Princepessa, don’t mess with my mentals. That’s not even remotely funny.”
It’s true. Huskies never get dirty. Let me rephrase that. They don’t stay dirty. Dirt never sticks to their fur or skin. But that doesn’t mean they don’t get dirty. They just leave their dirt around the house or where ever they feel like shaking off.
But what’s also true is that the husky did get a bath along with the cracker because baths are the quickest way to loosen up all that undercoat. She still has about a week of comb-by’s to look forward to. What’s a comb-by? It’s a husky owner’s way of sneak attacking a husky with a shedding comb as they walk by or plop down for a nap. Because my husky won’t sit for more than 5 minutes of brushing at a time. It takes about a week to brush the undercoat out of the husky this way. One way or another, it gets done. Until then, the house is under siege with an exploding fur bomb constantly going off every hour. It’s a good thing Mr. Wild Dingo left for a 10 day business trip!
Big Sigh of Relief! X-rays and vet exam show the cracker (who’s been nursing a back leg owie for weeks) does NOT have a torn cruciate ligament, nor does he have arthritis, bone cancer or any bone fragmentation. Whatever Loki’s doing to his back leg via his banana-head zoomies, is muscular. Rehab at Sage Veterinary Physical Therapy is already scheduled. Jill is ready to give him lots of physical torture, err, I mean therapy. Boo-wa-ha-ha-ha. The Whole Pet Vets claim he was a very polite and gentle boy the entire time. I guess I’m the only one who brings out the cracker in him.
Crossfit ain’t got nothin’ on a cracker’s core power! The other day, he took care of his business (#2) while balancing on only one front paw. Sorry Internet, I had no camera to catch the action. You’ll just have to take my word for it. He happened to choose a spot with a bunch of tall redwood root shooters, and since he doesn’t like to put his pawsies on anything but soft ground, he simply swung his bottom over the root shooters, tucked and let it all go, all while balancing on his right front paw. If he were human, he’d be one of those guys that has 6 pack abs without even working out.
After 23 years with the same company, Mr. Wild Dingo is ditching the rat race morning commute to begin a new opportunity where two of his office mates will be furrier and the other, although a whiny Lymie, will keep him healthy with home cooked lunches and green smoothies. He’ll still be traveling 50-60% but at least his new office views will kick ass.
When opportunity knocks, you jump in with both feet.
Is it crazy that I love cold, foggy rainy days? Mr. Wild Dingo would be very happy if we never had rain, but ever since Lyme hit me, I’ve longed for long dark cold winters. Although some days are still too warm for me (in the 50’s or 60’s), there have been plenty of days of downpour and from what I can tell, the Sierra’s are getting plenty of snow which hopefully translates to a no drought year. The pups love this weather too.
“Sigh. The holidays wipe me out. All that extra barking at the FedEx and UPS intruders. Plus the added patrolling at night for Santa Paws is more than one guard dog can manage. I either need a raise or a retirement package.” 311/365