Well that’s new.

Let me give a quick recap of the health issues I have faced with the dogs. An asterisk indicates multiple dogs and/or flare ups:

  • Giardia ******
  • Mange
  • Severe allergies **************
  • Moderate allergies *****
  • Maybe allergies ***
  • Infected anal glands ***
  • Skin infections **********************
  • MRSP
  • Diaper rash **********
  • Severe diaper rash **********
  • Split nail
  • Cracked tooth
  • Missing teeth
  • Colitis ****
  • Happy tail
  • Infected happy tail ****
  • Tail amputation
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Eye growth that needed removal
  • Eye ulcers ***
  • Hole in eye from eye ulcer
  • Emergency surgery to fix hole in eye
  • Blood clot that formed after eye fix (in eyeball)
  • Severe spinal malformations ********
  • Spinal fluid blockage ***
  • Unidentified tick disease ***
  • Ehrlichiosis
  • Wonky gait *****
  • Hind limb paralysis *********
  • Sores from dragging paralyzed legs *********
  • Bleeding of any kind ********************
  • Ear infections *******************
  • Liver disease
  • Nares surgery
  • ER visits to remove feathers from throat **
  • ER visits (non feather related) *********************
  • X-rays *********
  • CT scans **********
  • MRI and Spinal taps (3 and counting)
  • Bladder and bowels that needed manual emptying (my life is so damn glamorous)
  • Severe constipation
  • Extreme diarrhea
  • Prolonged diarrhea
  • De-worming
  • Dog attack injuries (Jake from attacking every dog I brought home and other dogs attacking Doug)
  • Aspiration to lung and almost lung lobectomy
  • Liver cysts
  • Liver tumors
  • Lung tumors
  • Hemangiosarcoma
  • Grief honk crying requiring behaviorist and prozac
  • Nerve sheath tumor
  • Spinal Cancer
  • Radiation

I’m sure I’m leaving out issues that have long ago left my memory. But you get the point.

The surgeon took one look at Doug’s X-rays and said, I know the issue. He then did an extensive inspection of Doug’s leg (Doug did not love this part and I could tell by the movements the doctor was doing that he had for sure narrowed in on the area of pain for Doug). We did a CT to confirm.

I would like to add my recap to the (male) doctor was as follows: every day, it seems more and more that Doug’s leg was put on wrong.  I’m going to guess you didn’t play with Barbie as a child (I wish you could have seen his face at this point), but if you had, you would know that there is a right and wrong way to put Barbie’s leg back on when it falls off. Doug’s Barbie leg is on wrong. 

He nodded (and somehow managed not to laugh since I was coming across as very serious) and told me that in his entire career as a veterinary surgeon, no one had ever used a Barbie analogy.

But then he said, (in a way) I was right.

Doug has a grade 4 luxated patella. While 90% of turned kneecaps go to the inside, Doug’s is of the rarer variety and goes to the outside. Grade 4 is the worst, it means that the kneecap can no longer move back into place without surgical intervention.  It seems as Doug’s leg grew, his bones pushed his kneecap out of the way and continued to grow without it. So the doctors have to go in and shave his bones to make room for the stray kneecap.  (I almost passed out when he said that).  They are building a 3D of Doug’s leg to figure out the best way to repair it.

Doug’s onset of symptoms were right on track. For a few months he would hop at the end of long walks or bursts of intense zoomies. He was limping more over the past few months. Then last week, he went lame on that hind leg.

Doug was supposed to be the dog that showed me what this illusive ‘annual vet visit’ is all about. Doug had other plans and clearly wants to be more like his brothers. So we will rebuild that wonky leg (hence the extra asterisks above) and we will figure out how to keep him still now and after the surgery (I bought more vodka to help strategize on that one). The one thing that Doug has going for him (in addition to me), is extreme body strength.  Doug currently runs on three legs, just as fast as he does on all four.

I saved Jake’s giant stroller and everyone kept asking why are you saving that? Their thinking was that I would likely never have the need for it again.


Here is Doug.  High and drunk from the anesthesia and sedatives and pain meds.  We will keep you posted as the surgery gets scheduled.

So high he does not notice treats. IMG_3847

He 100% thinks I bought these for him. IMG_3882


18 thoughts on “Well that’s new.

  1. and this is how you know Jakey is up there – partially directing Melvin! Oh Doug, your still a ham (with eyeliner). Sending positive energy and strength your way!

  2. Oh poor Doug and you 🙁 Teddy’s diagnosed torn ACL last September ended up quite a surprise when they opened his leg…ACL was only partially torn but like Doug he had a severely luxated patella and a ‘massive’ amount of arthritis. Recovery is long…what we had going for us is that even at 3 years old Ted is a dog who would easily sleep 23 hours a day. Major downside is Ted is a dog who does not like to take pills regardless of what they are wrapped or hidden in 🙄

    I always thought the wonky walk was just a Ted thing, didn’t realize bullies are known for these knee & leg issues. Keep us posted on the surgery date!

  3. So sorry about the news. Strangely enough, similar injury with my pitty Noel, she was limping after walks and trouble getting up, at 3 years old this should not be happening, 3 months and 3 vets later nothing. Then running full speed after a tennis ball, she went down, complete lameness, grade 4 rupture CCL and tear in patella, and arthritis as a chaser!!! Surgery went well, very difficult to keep her quiet, she is completely healed now, but quite the ordeal. Just a note….my dog came home the same day as surgery, I would not do this again and I am a nurse, she needed to be on a narcotic drip or IVP or IM for the first 12 hours after surgery, the pain medication given was not strong enough for the first 24 hours and I am afraid my girl suffered unnecessarily!!! Happy to report she is once again running like a LUNATIC!!! PS I made bone broth and mixed with her food to promote healing and I swear by it.

    • With Ted’s first surgery (like your girl: ACL, luxated patella, arthritis) the vet kept him for 3 night. His recent ACL repair (last Friday) was less invasive, the actual joint wasn’t touched, so he was home less than 24 hours later. Depending on the dog I think 2 nights would be a nice middle ground.

    • Poor girl! Yeah, i am a big fan of them staying overnight the first night for something like this. Melvin came home after his tail amputation (which in the grand scheme of things is considered fairly ‘minor’) and he was in so much pain that first night that I cried with him as he howled.

  4. Oh Doug! Sorry to hear he has to have surgery. Sending lots of good thoughts for a speedy recovery and that the booze fairies will send you more alcohol…for strategizing purposes!

  5. Oh my goodness!! Bless Doug’s heart and yours too! What a blessing that Doug ended up with you, he will get all the care and live he needs!

    Sending thoughts and prayers for Doug to have and easy surgery and speedy recovery.

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