Blatant plea for sympathy

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Mollycat
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by Mollycat »

The best laid schemes of dogs and owners gang aft agley it seems.

Dog was doing really well for the first 5 weeks, to the point the vet said maybe we can fix this without surgery. Then he thought he could keep up with the year-old pups and set himself back, but he hasn't improved from there. It was coming to the point where maybe the inactivity and weight gain might have been doing as much harm as good, so we booked him in to start hydrotherapy in the new year and relaxed a little.

This morning, off the lead, he was following me across the field to the poo bin when I heard a yelp ... looked round, tripod dog. Carried him home and rang the vets, she had him straight in for new x-rays and checks, and the cruciate is now fully ruptured. I knew as soon as I heard him yelp, I've only heard him yelp once in 3 years when - don't judge me - I forgot I had the ball thrower in my hand, told him off (for stepping out into the road) wagging what should have been my finger, and whacked him on the head - yes feel free to laugh.

So after Christmas he will be going under the knife and in the meantime vet says relax he can't do it any more harm now :cry: OH tells me not to feel bad but I know it's my fault, not for today when it actually went, but for not stopping him playing with the yearlings a month ago. He's well dosed up and comfortable, no walks at all now because we don't need any extra strain on his less painful but clinically worse other knee with the loose kneecap. Seems the competition is still on and he's trying to beat Molly's £4k from last year.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by booktigger »

Aww, poor thing. Good luck with the recovery
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by fjm »

Sounds like the culmination of a bloody difficult year... Commiserations, it is a really difficult condition to manage.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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We made a valliant effort, but now it's happened, I've read that dogs over 15kg rarely get away without surgery, and if they do it's not usually a full recovery. That makes me feel a bit better, though frustrated that we wasted 3 months. Can't win when you play against guilt!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by fjm »

Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Out of interest, do you know how old he was when he was neutered, if he was? There is some evidence that neutering before the growth plates have closed can predispose to cruciate ligament problems, as you probably already know.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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fjm wrote: Thu Dec 24, 2020 8:28 am Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Out of interest, do you know how old he was when he was neutered, if he was? There is some evidence that neutering before the growth plates have closed can predispose to cruciate ligament problems, as you probably already know.
Oh I didn't know but he was done at 3 years old so that's not him.

He is a terrier type and always had clicky knees. 3 years ago his exercise level increased quite dramatically (down to me) so maybe I could have managed the increase better, he was 7 then and had not been exercised for 11 weeks, and his pads were soft so he got nasty cut pads twice in the first couple of months. His two favourite activities were enthusiastic digging and 0-60 in half a second after the ball, so the initial slight tear isn't a surprise, with hindsight.

Are cats also prone to issues from early neutering? I'm fascinated, the link between vitamin D (and therefore calcium) and sex hormones seems to be much more important than we realised even a short time ago.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by fjm »

I've not seen as much research into neutering in cats. The work on dogs is extremely interesting - the balance of pros and cons is far less clear than we used to be led to believe. And, of course, it is far easier to manage dogs in season than cats - only twice a year, to start with! - so there are probably more cared-for intact dogs than cats to provide a basis for comparison. Given the links that are emerging to certain cancers and auto-immune conditions in dogs one does wonder about cats. Just wish I still had sufficient hormones sloshing about to act as WD40 on my increasingly achey joints, although I certainly don't miss the PMT etc!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by booktigger »

I only know that being neutered before the first season practically reduces cats chances of mammary cancer later in life, plus quicker healing time, I once had two fosters neutered at the same time, a 6mo and a 10yo and there was a massive difference, plus when we started neutering at 9 weeks old, when people came to collect a few days later, some were convinced they hadn't been done as there was that much fur regrowth, I've known some adults take months
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Such a shame about your Dog Mollycat, but sometimes it is better when fate finally forces our hand, you know you did everything you could without putting him under the knife, but to no avail.

I have to admit I am surprised to have another Christmas with Tiggy still here. Back in 2018 I wasn't sure she would see that Christmas and was convinced it would be her last when she did make it through, then last year was up and down with her, so i considered last Christmas a bonus, this year, again she has given us a few frights, earlier in the year when she had her check up and vaccination the vet thought she could feel a mass in the abdomen, but a couple of months later it seemed to have vanished. I think she is going to be one of those that stumbles from condition to condition but still keeps plodding on.

Saturn, being the good lad he is, must have heard me talking about not having a bird for Christmas day a t the start of this week. Tuesday night I get woken up about 2.00 in the morning to find him happily plucking a dead small brown bird on the landing, goodness only knows where he got it from at that time of night. I must be one of the few people who keep a pack of Dreamies in the bathroom cupboard, but fair exchange, he gets a few Dreamies and doesn't get upset if I take whatever he has caught off him.

As far as neutering/spaying cats young, i know in the States and Canada they will neuter/spay at 8 weeks as long as the kitten is 2lb in weight, and I've seen them on the livestreams racing around within 24 hours of the operation as if nothing had happened. As far as I know they have been doing it for quite some time at that age and I've never heard of it being linked to any problems. To be honest, I wish more vets over here would be willing to consider early neuter/spays, I follow enough charities and there are always kittens coming in that are already pregnant even when they are only 4 or 5 months old themselves. One of the main ones I support actually has a vet that will neuter/spay at 13 weeks, so at least they can get most kittens done before they are homed, rather than relying on the new owners to organise it.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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When I first got involved in rescue 15 years ago, a local rescue had been neutering at 8 weeks for about a decade. I was glad my new vet did, in over 100 (poss closer to 200 seeing as we had 3 kitten fosterers at one point) kittens we only had one with an issue, an undescended testicle. The main downside was keeping them calm after!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Oh goodness good old Saturn! Reminds me of my Misha bringing in a mouse for me the day I got home from hospital with my arm in a pot.

Can I just say, OH & I are wearing our Boo t-shirts for the day, thanks to Ruth, we wearing him once again more than a year after the old Fluffypants left us, but this time by choice not just by the pervasive nature of Raggy fur. Absolutely love them and pleased that a donation from them went to help cats less fortunate than our daft old Wusstat.

Just took Doggo out for his constitutional and to check on the downstairs neighbour, ahem sorry I mean for Doggo to visit his special treat dispensing window, and while we were chatting the dog's friend a little black spaniel trotted round the corner ... play bow, sideways bounce, NO DOG NO!!!!! When he runs around you can't see anything wrong as he tends to bunny-hop on the back anyway so you can't see he is only on one leg and the other is just along for the ride. It's a walk or a trot where you see there's no stability in the joint at all. He even jumps up on the sofa. Thankfully the Gabapentin is kicking in now and he can barely raise his head to accept his carrot treat. They are an education, expense and worry.

Happy Christmas everyone and to all your furries!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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So glad you like the T-Shirts.

The charity donation didn't quite go as planned, I had thought to split it between two charities I follow, but then the women who runs the ARC (the charity Saturn and Freyja came from) put up a plea for help. She had been contacted by a women asking if they could offer her any help with vets bills. Sally gets these calls every so often, and her standard response is that the charity will only pay vets bill if the cat is signed over to them. Normally this puts people off, the ARC can't afford to pay everyone's vets bill. This time however the woman agreed. So Sally goes around to pick up the cat and finds out the full story. Honey had been missing for 2 weeks and had returned the previous day with a massive injury to her tail, the couple who owned her had been hit hard by Covid and couldn't afford the vets bill, they had tried the PDSA and been quoted £300 for the tail to be amputated, but they couldn't afford that. So Sally left the owner sobbing thinking she would never see her cat again. The ARC's vet amputated the tail, and as the cat was dehydrated and malnourished, presumably due to having virtually nothing to eat of drink in the last two weeks, treated her for that as well. There was a fear that the cat was too far gone to recover or that as the injury to the tail had killed the tail necrosis might have extended up the spine as well, even after surgery there was no guarantee that she would survive. Sally announced in the plea for help that she had already decided to return Honey to her owners if she survived, and everyone rallied around, within 24 hours enough money had been raised to pay the vets bill, and while I don't know just how much, I do know it was far more than the £300 quoted by the PDSA partly due to all the additional treatment she received. The next day the cat was well enough to go back to the ARC, and the following day Sally took her back home knowing she would recover faster in the place she knew with people she trused. Sally also knew that she would have to go and collect her in a couple of weeks to have the stitches out, that was earlier this week. It sounds like she has done wonderfully since the operation, and it was obvious that she was glad to be back home. No one mentioned about the cats owner not having insurance, or whether it was right for them to have a cat if they couldn't afford treatment, they just saw someone who was prepared to give up their cat in hope of saving her life, everyone just gave what they could, and together raised enough to give that women the best early Christmas present possible, her cat safely home.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by Mollycat »

Oh Ruth how utterly beautiful, sometimes rules just have to be broken and at no time more so than right now.

At the outset of the first lockdown I decided that as I wasn't furloughed and my firm topped up the wages of those who were up to full pay anyway, in solidarity with all the people who were losing 20% of their income who couldn't afford to, I would donate 20% of mine to a good cause each month. As it turned out I ended up donating a lot more, because of match funding schemes I wanted to make max use of, and then I had my own bills to focus on and said that was it. But ... it's Christmas and this story has melted my heart. So if it's ok I'd like to send a little something either through you as I still have your details or direct to them if you can point me in the right direction please?
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Aww, what a lovely gesture
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Mollycat, this is the ARC's Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/The-ARC-the-as ... wzoAQO6u_k
If you scroll through the about section various ways of donating to them are mentioned, the only thing i will say is that PayPal have been giving them and some other charities warnings about using the friends and family option, so she now asks people to avoid Paypal if possible or to just send it normally and she accepts she will lose a little to fees. If you want to message her about anything, be warned, she runs the organisation virtually by herself and works long hours everyday looking after all the cats in her care, it can take her a while to check her messages.

If you would rather send it to me I am more than happy to pass it on to her.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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The friends and family option has been abused by idiots thinking they can make a quick buck on these illegal lotteries for their own profit - gambling is licenced and these people don't realise they are breaking the law but the huge growth of this practice has meant PayPal has got involved spotting dodgy activity and the banks aren't far behind. Donations should not be subject to fees whether it's to a charity or an informal rescue, if I can be any help I will happily do so. Anyway - that's done by bank transfer.

You'd be surprised Booktigger, just how cynical people can be, even the ones who think they are so saintly themselves. When I put the idea out there on Facebook, I got nothing but abuse - how dare I suggest that our heroic put-upon key workers should give up a fifth of their pay on top of all they are facing on the frontline ... wow! All I said was, I'm doing this on the basis that I'm luckier than many not to be losing 20% of my pay when so many are who barely manage as it is, and if anyone likes the idea feel free to do the same! You'd think I was in court asking for a deduction of earnings order!!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Thank you so much Mollycat, I know that anything is appreciated.

A lot of the charities are being hit hard by Paypal. While donations should be fine, many of them do raffle off some of the items donated to try and get the most out of what they have been given, unfortunately Paypal is just using a very wide brush and if they see anyone sending money for 'raffle' or similar they will freeze the account. Even if the charity can explain to them what is happening it can take a month or two to get it sorted and that is a long time to have the funds tied up and not accessible. I also have heard of others charities having their accounts frozen due to donations being made and put thorugh friends and family. In the end Paypal is a business and the accountants probably run the show, so demand as much income as possible regardless of charity status. I much prefer to deal with bank transfers, but that might be due to being an accounts manager for 10 years, but as other people seem to like and trust Paypal, I decided to get an account when I became self employed so I could take payments through it, I've even got their card reader for when I do Craft fairs, again it is just a case of making the most of their brand and using it to my benefit. I lose a bit in fees, but better a sale with fees deducted than no sale at all.

Personally Mollycat, I think what you did was extremely kind, it has been a strange year for a lot of people, and it does make you appreciate what you have.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Update on the dog - going in for his HOPeration on 11th January. Not sure exactly which op they are doing of the selection available yet as OH took the call and just wrote down dates while I took said dog out for a wee, isn't that Sod's law?

So he overtakes Molly in who can spend the most and puts us into 5 figures in 3 years. Still no regrets on not having insurance though, because over 30 years of having animals we still wouldn't be winning. Sobering thought.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Sobering thought indeed. I did a tot up, and even with Pip's radio-iodine treatment and Poppy's days in intensive care and considerable blood tests and drugs total, the last few years have not yet reached what the insurance would have cost me. Still worth insuring in the early years while it is cheap, I think, but best to be building a good cushion against the more elderly years when premiums go through the roof.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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I couldn't agree more, and we haven't even factored in the extra cost of exclusions for existing conditions.

We are so fortunate though, that we've never had to refuse treatment on the grounds of financial cost, no matter how tough it's been sometimes. The thought of that is just so unthinkable. Anyway, we've now done a bit of jiggling to make it easier and as things stand we're agreed when these are gone we will take a break from pets ... yeah we'll see, pets have their own plans and hopefully it's a long way off yet.

Incidentally the ramp I ordered and paid for back in early october still hasn't arrived. Good job we've got by without isn't it!!!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Not wanting to tempt fate, but I think we have been lucky, we have never had to refuse treatment due to the costs. There was a time very early on in having cats, that one of the cats was unwell, and my then partner (now husband) had recently been made unemployed and was claiming Income Support, so cash was tight. He contacted the local PDSA branch to see if he could take her there, but was told that Income Support wasn't one of the benefits on their list of eligibility, even though it was the most basic form of benefit available at the time. So we took her to the normal vets and she was treated there and lets just say that meals weren't quite reduced to rice and potatoes for a month, but it was fairly close. I am sure that someone on the reception just made a mistake, but we have never supported the PDSA since then.

I was also more recently put off Insurance when the vet told us that a lot of insurers don't cover dental work, it apparently isn't classed as essential treatment or something like that. Personally speaking (and I am sure Mollycat will agree with me on this one) if dental work needs doing, it is essential. I know it probably depends a lot on the insurer and the level of cover, but the idea that any policy would not include dental work just seems wrong.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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I most certainly do agree with you, specially having realised over the last few months that a long-missed infection in my own tooth has led to years of seemingly unrelated symptoms and low-level misery. Rotten teeth can cause so many problems all through the digestive and endocrine systems as well as painful misery, that's disgraceful to class that as non-essential.

I'm slightly concerned about Molly at the moment as I think I see a little swelling behind her right lower canine and after losing Henry that makes me paranoid. But oddly enough not paranoid enough to see the vet, because, apart from her only going if it's life and death while I can't go in with her, if it was a tumour, I know the drill and I know that knowing would make no difference to the outcome. She is fine in herself.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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I had a tiny gumboil above a crowned tooth - no pain, pretty obvious the root canal had fractured where a metal post was put in years before, only obvious symptoms a tiny lump and an increasingly wobbly tooth. It took me a long time to summon up the courage to have an implant, the first stage of which was to remove everything and wait for the infection to clear. A few weeks later I realised that lots of small but niggly aches and pains had gone with it - knuckles didn't hurt when I knocked on a door, knees were less creaky, etc, etc. It made me realise how even a very small infection somewhere in the body can have widespread effects. The implant has been very successful, and worth the money and the massive self control needed to go through with it, although I do hope I never have to again!
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by Mollycat »

Dog's carry sling came today. It has the added bonus that once downstairs he won't run with it on, presumably because it's too restrictive, fingers crossed it stays that way later when he is first let off the lead.

Tomorrow is the final checks appointment before surgery Monday. We'll find out which operation we're having, trim his claws, and generally finalise details. And go buy a cage.

It's all starting to feel horribly real.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by Ruth B »

All paws and fingers crossed here that it all goes as well as can be expected. I'm sure the waiting bit is the worst, particularly the waiting for the vet to call when you know they are in theatre, I remember what I was like when Saturn was just have a dental done, sat with the phone by my side, waiting for it to ring, scared that it would and scared when it didn't.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Thank you Ruth, I'm not concerned about the surgery, no more than a passing thought anyway. But I am very worried at 6 weeks of full 4 feet off the ground lifting 5-6 times daily up and down 2 flights of stairs, prevention of any jumping on furniture, nights not on the bed, and perhaps worst of all having to take him to the neighbour's door avoiding the jumping at the sausage window. This has become such a lovely habit ever since the first lockdown and they both love it, it's their moment together, dog asks every time and we restrict him to twice a day but it does give us the chance to check on our vulnerable neighbour regularly. The 20kg lump is already having an impact on my 50 year old shoulder. But he is already getting used to it and wiggling less. Everything is going to work out.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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I am absolutely gutted, Snoop's operation today is cancelled.

The surgeon has to go for a Covid test.

We don't know yet if someone else or another organisation will be able to pick it up but it's unlikely anyone would be able to step in now any quicker than his own surgeon can be fit, unless he is one of the unlucky severe or long cases.

We got as far as the car park, our vet was talking to another patient and waved out to me, she went back in and as she did another vet came rushing out to give me the news. She then came back out to tell me as well. In my panic and disappointment I asked about getting him in anywhere else but calming down now I think it's not only unlikely but maybe pointless.

Poor dog has been on lead rest since September, fully ruptured for 3 weeks, now this uncertainty and still 6 weeks complete rest ahead before gradual lead walks are allowed, we're looking at July/August before he can start to come off the lead again which is nearly a full year. And after all that a 70% chance of the other knee going in 12-18 months. There comes a time when you begin to question what you're putting them through. This morning is that time, for me. I know what people are thinking, but he is 10 years old, 10 months recovery in a 10 year life is like us spending 6 years in recovery at the age of 50. It's a big chunk of time, put in context.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

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Oh Mollycat, I am so sorry for you, I'll be keeping all paws and fingers crossed that the vet's test comes back negative and the surgery can be done later this week.

Should we go ahead with treatment is a very hard question to answer. Two and a half years ago Tiggy came down with a respiratory infection and quite bad breathing problems, we discussed with the vets possible causes and in the end decide we would treat the symptoms for as long as she had. We basically made the decision to put her on palliative care and when things got worse we would call it a day. That year I was happy she made it till Christmas, I made sure she got plenty of of bits off the bird as treats and was convinced it would be her last Christmas. The following year I felt exactly the same. This year I was left wondering just how long she is going to keep plodding on for. Each year seems to bring a new scare, but then she just keeps going regardless. We never know how long we will have them, we do our best to make sure their lives are happy and pain free and that is about as good as it can get. My Mother had major problems with her back in her last couple of years, I'm sure though if someone had offered her a treatment that could at least ave taken the pain away she would have accepted it, no matter how long recovery took, she even stated that she would have accepted being paralysed from the waist down if it would have rid of the pain. unfortunately you can't explain to Snoopy what is going on, but if he can have several more years without pain then maybe it is worth it.
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by fjm »

Damn - when you were all psyched up for it, too. How well is the dog coping with restricted exercise? When Poppy was so ill a year ago she really didn't want to do more than sniff around for 10 minutes, and then get back in the warm car. But she was happy - eating well, cuddling, not in pain, and I considered her quality of life good. Then one day she didn't want to get back in the car, and walked on for a hundred yards, and little by little built up to several miles a day - it took months, and she rarely gets above a gentle trot, but she very much enjoys the gentle pootling walks we do. I considered a buggy, but it has not been necessary - might be worth it for a bigger dog.

Is there anything you can do to mitigate all the stairs?
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Re: Blatant plea for sympathy

Post by Mollycat »

Thank you Ruth, that actually really helps. For my cats the choices have always been clear, any time we've had something close to a dilemma the simple question "what happens if we do nothing?" has been able to finalise things. When it's an illness, it's less difficult.

Every trip to the toilet, every trot to greet his daddy at the door, every time he follows me around the flat, I picture the bones of his thigh and lower leg rubbing a little more. Once the cruciate fully ruptured and the vet said he can't do any more damage, at first we did relax a little, and then I realised every day waiting for the operation brings forward the day when the arthritis will take over.

I remember that feeling about back pain. I remember discussing it with my dad and coming to the conclusion the possibilities were arthritis or bone cancer, and knowing that at 40 I could not live with this and so hoping it wasn't arthritis. It wasn't in the end, it was 2 busted discs.


Fjm - the hardest part is that he is used to between 1 and 2 hours off the lead daily in the morning, plus a shorter one in the evening. He is full of energy, wants a tug of war after dinner every day plus often when I take him out for toiletting, he gets the zoomies even now. He never needs his claws trimmed and in fact once we had to keep to grass because one was wearing too low and got sore! So with his food cut from about 700g a day to just 200g and having put on 4kg in 4 weeks on lead rest, he is not coping well at all. He is resigned, but confused and unhappy. I'm giving him stuff to rip up including all our cardboard recycling, we're playing toned down versions of our usual games. Having missed his drugs this morning he was a bit subdued but I think he was in a lot of pain, when we got home I fed him and dosed him up and he had his bounce back in half an hour. If only he was a lazy dog this would be simple. He does not walk well on the lead because he's never done it. Imagine a working spaniel or collie suddenly limited to half an hour lead rest, that's the best I can compare I think.


I'm feeling a little better now OH is home and I also had a lovely message from a friend who uses a mobility scooter and has had a knee replacement. It reminded me how lucky we are and to lift my gaze from my dog's navel.
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