Saturday, December 30, 2006

Bad Puppy! (and we saw the orthopedic specialist)

I have been told a theory that we get good dogs for our first dogs, and thereafter are sent more challenging ones. By and large, this has been true of Chandler, and perhaps it has made me a bit too complacent.

He's never snuck anything off of counters, but today he apparently decided a new six month supply of heartworm meds would make a great snack. Fortunately, after two frantic calls to emergency clinics, and another two to different animal poison control hotlines, I found out that he should be ok. Thankfully, he does not have the MDR1 mutation that would make him more vulnerable to such a dosage. Thankfully, I had got him tested for it, and was able to tell the vet on the poison control line that it was not a factor.

So I'm keeping an eye on him for 24 hours, and he's been acting like his usual active self. Now, if I could just get my jangling nerves to settle down...


Chandler had his visit with the specialist Thursday. It's mixed news.

From the xrays taken in August, his right hip is dysplastic although the left is pretty good.
His left has about 75% of the ball in the socket, but the right only has about 55%.
(At his guess that would probably get a good OFA on the left and a fair to poor on the right.)
There may have been some degenerative joint disease starting on the right.

He said it is possible that he had some loose joints that might have tightened up as he aged, but the right got injured when that other dog slammed into him in July.

He suggested that doing and OFA or PENNhip would mostly be a waste of money for me, and instead suggested that I should just consider getting some more diagnostic x-rays and palpitations of his hips done if he gets worse or if we already have him knocked out for a dental or something.

In the meantime, as he's mostly fine 99% of the time, I've been told I can give him some aspirin if he overdoes it. His gait is a little "off" and he puts more weight on the left side, but we can live with that as long as he's not in great amounts of pain. I just have to try to make sure he doesn't get slammed around too much-which will take a bit of planning with his Akita friend.

Technically the vet said he should have more on leash exercise, but that sort of thing actually made him worse over the summer, so I think I'm going to stick to letting him run on the hiking trails. Swimming was also recommended, which should not be a problem. (Keeping him out of water would be much more difficult.)

So, it's sort of a "wait and see" situation. I'm happy I at least got some straight answers from SOMEBODY.

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