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boskie

Another Amazing Tripawds Three Legged Dog Blog

boskie

New beginnings

July 6th, 2012 · 3 Comments · Uncategorized

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so I just got the call from the vet saying that the operation was a success. Oscar’s right leg has been amputated and he’s now in recovery. I have to collect him at 6.30pm this evening. I don’t know what to expect.

This is what’s happened so far: On 17 June I discovered that Oscar had dislocated his hip. He’s a very active 11 yr old border collie X and his best bud Freddie is big clumsy lab. Age unknown. They are always jumping around and “horsing”. I assume that Oscar fell off the couch or something and Freddie, oaf that he is, landed on him.

I took Oscar to the emergency vet on call and he x-rayed him and confirmed that the right hip was disclocated. He kept him in an sedated him so he could “pop” the hip back in. He did this but it popped back out again so he had to do it another time. He then put an Ehmer Sling on Oscar’s leg to immobilise it as the joint was very unstable. I was told he would need to be crated or kept in a small room as confinement was necessary in order for the ligaments to heal and tighten up, holding the hip in place.

Oscar did NOT like the crate, so we kept him in a small room, just off the kitchen. We put up a baby stair-gate so he could see us and was not isolated.

He was put on pain-killer and anti-inflamatories twice a day. He was coping well and seemed happy.

Then on 27 June my mum phoned me to say the the dog had managed to remove part of the sling and that his foot was touching the ground.

I called to the vet and he removed the sling as he said that the top of the sling up under his thigh was beginning to rub. He also removed the lower padded part of the bandage from his lower paw and there was a wound there also. I didn’t examine it closely but it didn’t seem like much.

The vet said that he would leave the sling off but that the dog would need to be crated to keep him confined.

We did this and I noticed him licking his lower right hind paw but I didn’t place much importance on this. If I could turn back time here I would.

Overnight we had a shocking thunderstorm and there was severe flooding http://www.rte.ie/news/2012/0628/heavy-rain-causes-flooding.html

When I got to Oscar in the morning of 28th June I discovered that he had managed to get out of the crate. The bottom latch wasn’t properly fastened and he managed to bend the door and squeeze out. I was immediately concerned as I couldn’t imagine the damage this would do to his hip. However this was the least of our problems.

He had also been gnawing at his lower right hind paw so that part of the bone was exposed.

I went straight down to the vet and he said that the wound was very severe.

He told me that all the dead tissue would need to slough before it would heal.

I couldn’t believe that my dog was so distressed that he actually mutilated himself to this degree.

I had a lot of questions: was the Ehmer sling a factor? did it have a “tourniquet effect” on the limb and cut off the blood supply to the lower limb and was my dog simply nibbling away the dead tissue now that the sling had been removed? Or was it all down to sheer fear and anxiety? Oscar is a very “licky” dog and will find a wound if you have it and lick it! We used to nickname him Doctor Bosk! He has a history of obsessive licking when traumatised as he did this when his housemate “Max the Ferocious Beast” a gorgeous GSD died a few years ago.

The vet reckoned it was the anxiety as he said that the sling wouldn’t effect that part of the paw as it was heavily padded – he said the danger with the Ehmer sling was to the upper part of the limb.

The vet took a conservative approach to the wound and I brought Oscar for dressing every second day and then every day. The smell from the wound was horrific after a day or two. Truly horrific. I coudn’t get it out of my nose, my mind. I could smell it all the time, even when away at work. I kept imagining the smell. I couldn’t sleep as the smell permeated my dreams. I am a human so I imagine the smell bothered Oscar even more.

Initially the vet seemed optimistic as there was a good blood supply to the wound however 50% of the surface of the paw was gone, he advised me that granulation and healing (if it worked) would take months.

Yesterday the vet said that it appeared that the wound was actually spreading  – that good flesh was dying off. He advised me to call again today.

Today is the 6th July. I called to the vet again this morning and he said that the leg would have to be amputated. I had researched it and it seemed that amputation was not such a big deal for a dog. I kissed my beautiful dog and went off to work. The waiting game is awful

The deed is done now. I have to collect him in 1 1/2 hours…

Here begins a whole new chapter

 

 


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3 Comments so far ↓

  • etgayle

    welcome!! poor oscar, having to go through all of that pain and such, when that leg was obviously wanting to be gone. he will do fine on three legs – although we’d recommend you keep him a little confined/controlled for the next two weeks until the incision is healed and sutures are out.

    the pain meds can make our pups loopy, and it takes a few days to gain the ‘new normal’ gait and such, but sounds like oscar’s been through so much (as have you), bet he recovers well.

    when you can gather yourself after getting him home and situated, it would be great to see some pictures of oscar, and of his monkeydog brother freddie too.

    charon & spirit gayle

  • admin

    Welcome and thank you for sharing Oscar’s story. Best wishes for his complete speedy recovery!

  • labsrus

    Thank you for sharing.
    Please post some pictures when you have time.
    You are definitely in the right place for support and you will have a very active tripawd before you know it!

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