The good thing about Jake’s gradual decline over the past two years has been that as new issues pop up, I have time to assess them and come up with a solution. Like the diapers, and the cloth diaper inserts we moved to (so as not to fill up all the landfills). Or how to keep him safe(r) in the car or solutions for nighttime meatball production. While he has gradually declined, I have been able to gradually solve our problems.
Him going fully paralyzed overnight has not been easy. Mostly to watch. Gradual decline is not something you measure or really see, you coast along with it. But with him losing his leg use overnight, I have had avoid ‘poor Jake’ and instead step up my game to make his life as easy as possible.
- I have to carry him a lot more. Which means I need to come up with solutions for how he can do some things (like go down steps, especially to the outside) on his own. I’m looking into having some ramps made for him so he can remain independent.
- Wonky-but-still-upright Jake needs rugs and lily pads and yoga mats. Dragging Jake needs hardwood floors. While I can pull up all the rugs, Jake is used to targeting them so he is not getting that he needs to drag on non-carpeted areas. Why can’t he understand the words I’m speaking?! I’m flailing my arms around like air traffic control and he just stares at me, laughing in his soul.
- Dragging Jake’s diapers come off. Really easily. Like within a minute. I ordered a drag bag to hopefully help with this.
- He has been reluctant to eat while sitting down. I have a raised feeder for him so that is not the issue. So far, I have to hold him up while he eats. I am trying to, once he is heavily invested in eating dinner, lower him down so he realizes he can eat while sitting. I may also look for something to support his underside (a pillow of some sort) while he eats.
- When meatball production starts, I need to be there to hold him upright. Seriously, I need to be there or clean-up will rob me of my sanity. I ordered a couple harnesses so I can remain standing while assisting him to stand. This morning the factory opened at 2am and it took him 25 min to go. We bonded.
But to be honest, if I was going to go into sudden-hind-leg-paralysis with someone, I’m glad it’s Jake. He is so brave and he tries and works on his new mobility with such intensity. I just love his perseverance. I’m proud to be his mom!
We go to the neurologist tomorrow. We will keep you posted!
“I think if you feed me bacon, my legs will come off strike”.
Maybe you could use a bed sheet to hold his hindend up while he produces meatballs so you won’t have to bend and same with his eating that might help so your back doesn’t go on strike. And I agree with Jake maybe you should try bacon ….his legs would be happy!…lol …I love you guys and look forward everyday to reading about my buddy Jake and all his wonkieness,
That is a great idea! Thank you. And I can confirm, there is bacon in his future!
Hope the idea works for him and you! Have a great weekend guys!
Does Jake have a wheelchair that he could maybe use to move around in? One that supports his tummy and backlegs (so no dragging necessary?)
He does! We got him measured last year and ordered it from Eddie’s wheels. The thing is, he really only uses it outdoors. Jake is a pretty big, little dog and when you add a wheelchair to him indoors, he zigs and zags and only has one speed (too fast). The problem is that when inside, even when he can walk, Jake likes to lay down or sit every few minutes. You know, to keep his options open. He can’t do that in the wheelchair.
Oh gotcha. 🙂
Poor brave Jake and Jake’s mom too. My little pug Phoebe has lost the use of her back legs and I wanted a wheelchair for her, but they were too expensive. I used a scarf of my own to drape under her belly and support her while she ate or drank water (she would not do it sitting down). One day I was looking on craigslist and found a wheelchair for a 17 pound pug. Phoebe is a 17 pound pug. They wanted only $75 for it and I could afford that!! It was from K9 Carts and had a bag that hung on the back for catching meatballs. I put her in it right away and she took off as if she had always used it. NEW FREEDOM!! She chased the other pugs in the back yard, she ran through the pot holes and around shrubs and smelled every place the others peed. LOL We don’t go for walks on pavement as I’ve never found booties for her hind feet that will stay on. I contacted K9 Carts and they asked me for pictures or video of her in the cart and then sent me instructions for adjustments to make sure it was right for her. They sent me new straps, velcro attachments and didn’t charge me for anything, even though I’d gotten the wheelchair second hand. Phoebe loves her little cart, but does get tired out and I have to make sure never to leave her in it alone or for long periods of time. I hope you find the perfect solution for Jake and that his new problems are only temporary. You are both such troopers.
Oh no! You have the best attitude, so sorry that you need it so often. Jake is so lucky to have you! <3
What about stretchy suspenders that go from diaper to collar? Like with alligator clips so you can take ’em off outside or to wash them? Let me know if I could try sewing you a set!
You’re an amazing dog mom…
❤️ just ❤️. That’s all.