Happy 7th Birthday Boo!

Today has been Kasper and my partner’s birthdays.

I’ve had a really shit day. My worst day for seizures in this seizure-heavy week. Loads of guilt about being ill and ruining the day (for my partner especially) and to top it off we did a walk with my partner’s parents, our first time seeing them in a year, and one of the first things they said was “I thought she was supposed to be well trained?” about Sasha.

This was because she was running about off lead having fun. Like, seriously? Way to make me feel like utter shit, I definitely haven’t been working my arse off for the past 6 months trying to give her any semblance of confidence and show her training is fun. I really wish I hadn’t been so out of it with seizures, I would’ve loved to have ‘responded’ πŸ˜›

I was really fucking proud of her on this walk too! She was confident around new people, did THREE seizure alerts on the walk, and held focus and did good whilst we stood about, my partner opened presents etc. For a teenage gobshite and a dog who is nervous with strangers, she rocked!

So, his comment crushed me. Really upset, and really ill at the time too. Bleh. Oh look, so badly trained -_-

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That’s his parents stood right behind Sasha here – look at her happy face!

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Opening presents

Anyway. Kasper had a good day at least.

The day started with his gifts arriving!! They weren’t due until the end of this week, so that was cool.

We got some treats going in the food dehydrator asap, but as we weren’t expecting it we hadn’t bought meat in, so apple slices, sweet potato chews, and potato ‘crisps’ will have to do!

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Alongside a food dehydrator, he got a new Sumo puzzle feeder (topped with a frozen treat to act as a ‘plug’!)

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And his final birthday gift, a new collar πŸ™‚

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I wrote out a message to him πŸ˜‰

Happy birthday, Boo!

And his final birthday good-ness was an off lead walk. Lots of tearing about like a crazy thing, chasing smells, some training, and even a paddle in his favourite pond. He LOVED it! Yeah, Boo had a good birthday alright πŸ™‚

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Very quick Tolly update!

For her walk today she went to the football field. She was sprinting about like a loon, and the cutest thing? SHE AUTO SAT WHEN SHE CAME TO ME!!

One of the earliest things I teach puppies is an auto sit – get called to me, sit. Come to me unasked, sit. Unsure of something, sit. Toller hasn’t done any training or had chance to do an auto sit in 11 long weeks, so the fact she offered this was just so darn sweet. This dog guys, this dog ❀

4 days after amputation: first walk!

Oh guys.

Toller had her first walk today, and it was amazing.

Every action, you could just see the joy. She sniffed EVERYTHING!! She was so intrigued and happy to be out in the world again and walking, it was amazing. She was sniffing, springing, playing, pulling up flowers…it was so darn cute.

She was SO HAPPY. It was truly wonderful to see πŸ™‚

Can you imagine if the first vets had agreed to amputation immediately? She would have been walking less than a week after the accident, as oppose toΒ eleven weeks after 😦 Still, at least it got done, and she’s LOVING IT!!

We were saying today, we’ve not seen her trip once since tripawd life haha!

She got to see our friend today who was over visiting Mojo, and he was *amazed* at how skilled she is walking. Next time he’s over, in about a week, we’ll do a 5 minute walk with her πŸ™‚

Anyway, this is what you’ve all been waiting for – a video of her entire walk!

2 days after amputation

Toller is still doing great πŸ™‚

Her pain meds make her very sleepy, so we have to adjust how long she is out her crate. Usually it’s 20-40 minutes. Our vets seem to be really strict about crate rest after amputation (some places are much more lenient) so for now at least we’re following their advice.

This means Tolly’s still on crate rest at least until her check up on Monday. Eventually she’ll be spending time in the 42 inch crate we’ve set up as her play pen, and the next step is spending more time free in the house. At some point we’ll begin special exercises to strengthen her core muscles, and building her up to walks πŸ™‚

Spud’s gonna be meeting my parents tomorrow. That will be nice for her πŸ™‚

It’s Boo’s birthday in a few days, he’s going to be seven! Unfortunately his main birthday gift won’t arrive until a few days after (we forgot to order it with all the Tolly stuff, ooops!). He’s getting a food dehydrator so we can make all sorts of treats and chews for him, he’ll LOVE that!

We did order some new puzzle feeders which will arrive on his birthday though, so at least he has something.

Kasper’s had less walk as we prepped for Toller’s surgery. Once her amputation was done we got back into the swing of it, and he was SO HAPPY to have his walks!!

He might be seven, but he can still go as far as Sasha, and he SPRINTS everywhere vs her leisurely pace. He has crazy stamina and walking him is always such a joy.

Smiles all round πŸ™‚

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And I’m going to do a training post/update for Sasha at some point. For now here are some photos from a very wet walk today!

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And whilst we’re talking about wet dogs…check out Miss Sashie splashing through the sea on a hike the other day!!

Tolly the tripawd!

Hey guys we’re absolutely exhausted here so I’m gonna keep it as quick as possible.

Long time no post!

So I don’t remember where we were with Tolly when I last posted, but here’s a recap.

She hurt her paw about 10 weeks ago, when an off lead Labrador sprinted all the way across a field and ran into her, bowling her over (she was a tiny 3.2kg at the time – 3.5kg now, little fatty πŸ˜‰ ).

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We got her to the vet who said she suspected a broken toe at worst and wasn’t even going to x-ray, but we said we might as well to be on the safe side. After the x-ray it turned out Tolly had broken FOUR bones in her front left paw, all the bones connecting her toes to her foot.

We were immediately pushed towards an option of an invasive surgery to rewire her bones. When I researched this (reading articles, others’ experience, and posting on a forum for amputated pets as I immediately wanted to amputate) I found there were HUGE flaws with this option, including an extremely high likelihood of further procedures (I’m talking 98%+!), complications to do with recovery, and the fact it was a very invasive procedure.

A few days after her accident we saw a second vet, who was much more positive. Amputation, which we still wanted to consider, was poo-poo’ed as a full recovery was so certain, even though a full recovery from amputation is only 4 weeks. This vet advised us not to put Toller through the surgery, and said her foot would recover perfectly fine on it’s own, and we most likely wouldn’t even be able to tell she had been injured. So we signed ourselves up for 6-8 weeks crate rest.

Toller had two splints put on in the first week or so; one fell off after four hours, one fell off after a few days, and after that the vets advised we leave her as is.

For eight weeks Toller was confined to her crate or held in our arms, the only activity she got was from there or trips to the garden strictly to go to the toilet. With each vet visit the vet complimented her recovery, saying she was doing so much better than they expected.

Toller was ABSOLUTELY MISERABLE, and nothing held her attention (not even knuckle bones), and whilst we were very concerned about the after-effects of such extended crate rest on a very young puppy, we pushed ahead because it wasn’t long to the finish line.

Around the 6 week mark we began to notice that that front left foot was very bent out of place and odd looking, but pushed it aside as the vet was so certain she was making a miraculous recovery. At 7 weeks we were advised it was ligament damage and posed no concern.

At around 8 weeks we were told Toller was fully recovered, and we were horrified.

The story had now changed to she would have hugely restricted exercise for the rest of her life, she couldn’t run, go on walks, and her foot was scarily deformed. It stuck out at a literal right angle.

KIND OF GRAPHIC PHOTOS OF DEFORMED FOOT Β below

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Over the next week we followed the vet’s instructions, letting her walk in the house for 30 seconds at a time, just a time or two a day. We were horrified to see that foot getting worse.

At this point we thought we were going to get a wheelchair; that way Toller could go on walks in the chair, with the injured leg strapped out the way, and walk chair-free in the house as per the vet’s instructions. We bought a cheap Β£70 front wheeled cart whilst we saved the Β£580 for a custom one.

It soon became clear that wasn’t an option; Toller’s foot was so badly injured (and not at all recovered!!) that even small amounts of exercise were making it much worse.

We began looking for a second opinion and madly scrabbling for money for an amputation, which we had wanted to do right at the bloody start.

Unfortunately a lot of vets were less than helpful, with one surgery refusing to see her and telling us to use the first surgery (that had been totally wrong about her prognosis!), and another saying they would have to “ask permission” from the previous vet.

We finally found a branch that would happily give us a second opinion; they sent off for her info and we took Tolly to an appt with them. They agreed in an instant that an amputation was the way to go.

Today was her operation day. Photos from this morning just before she headed out.

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Eeesh, that poor foot!!

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We dropped her off, and phoned at lunch time for an update – oh, before I carry on, the vets wrote down THE WRONG LEG TO AMPUTATE!! Can you believe it?!?! Luckily the nurse checked with my partner first, although she did say they’d have questioned it anyway given how deformed her left leg was hahaha!

Lunchtime update ~ we were told she’d been a star up until time for her op, and enjoyed lots of cuddles! She’d been in theatre for 60 minutes and was just coming around now and doing really well. They wanted to keep her overnight, and would call before they closed that evening to update us again.

We were SO relieved πŸ™‚

We didn’t hear from them when they closed, so we called them on the dot, and unfortunately the first person who spoke with us was useless – she said “Yes, Toller’s fine, she’s just staying overnight with us” and then hung up the phone!!!!

But we called straight back and managed to speak with somebody else and they were brilliant πŸ™‚ They said Toller has had cuddles off every nurse that works at the surgery, and when they go into her room she gets excited and wags at them!

She’s eaten a meal and even had some test walks to start getting her used to life on three legs – she’s doing great, the only thing she struggles with is doorways and they have to carry her through those haha!

They’ve carried out a pain score on her (where they tally up how much pain a dog is in based on behaviour, body language etc to judge if they need more pain meds) and they basically couldn’t tell she was in any pain at all as she was just trying to love on them so hard!! This so typically Toller hahaha, completely loving and adorable, and such a tough little cookie πŸ™‚ ❀

So she’s staying overnight, will be checked on every 3 hours, have further test walks and pain scores, and we go pick her up in the morning. We can phone as soon as they open and see what time they’d like for her to go home at.

To say I was relieved with how the day has gone is obviously a huge understatement, and the last nurse we spoke with described my little spitfire so perfectly I was crying listening to what my Spud had been up to!!

Obviously I’m really nervous about bringing her home (Will I be okay at the sight of her stump, because it won’t be bandaged at all? Will I feel suddenly sad about it? Will she be in pain? Will she try do too much now that broken leg has gone? Will she be especially vocal or miserable? What if it gets infected? etc etc etc) but mostly I just really can’t wait to see her and want to cuddle her forever.

It’s been absolute hell since she got injured…from being terrified she was badly injured, to struggling to keep a 5-8 month old puppy in anyway happy with strict crate rest, to freaking about amputation (risk, lack of knowledge, price, finding a willing vet etc), to getting it done and now the road to actual recovery…

I’m hugely excited for her, because she’s FINALLY gonna have her life back, but I’m understandably scared too. For the physical side and the mental side – she’s missed so much socialisation and was miserable for so long there’s no saying what kind of adult dog she will be, and this is a major concern and NOT something to be brushed off lightly.

I’m concerned about fears (from other dogs and animals to cars going past, loud noises etc) and anxious behaviours, and of course the physical side too – being a tripawd obvious puts more strain on the other limbs, although thankfully her small size should mean this isn’t as big an issue.

But the main thing is her life will be so much better. We just have to take the journey one literal step at a time!

And that’s my update. Now, bed awaits…

Picking ourselves back up!

Admittedly we’ve had an AWFUL week (two weeks?) so yes, I broke when we found out Toller’s leg wasn’t as healed as we had hoped for.

BUT, I’m picking myself back up, my partner has been wodnerfully supportive, we have a plan and I think we can make it work πŸ™‚

Things are improving. I’m tired and in physical pain, and mentally still a little fragile, but I haven’t cried today…which is a huge frickin’ achievement hahaha!!

So yes. We’re waiting on the basic Β£70 wheelchair to arrive (2-5th May) and I’m honestly so excited! Some of the reviews said the chest straps dug into their dog, so we will be padding those, and that it’s very cheaply made and won’t last long…but we’re aware of that. It’s hopefully just a temporary measure whilst we save and raise money for a custom chair, which we could get months down the line πŸ™‚

Her fund jar!!

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Please check out her go fund me here!

We spoke with the head nurse of another surgery today, who agreed a wheelchair was a good way to go and that amputation should have been offered from the start. She was really lovely and reassuring, and we chatted to her for a good 20 minutes ^_^

Anywho. Pics of everyone πŸ™‚

Kasper played PROPERLY with Sasha for the first time yesterday. As in fluid movements, play bows and chase. It was lovely!

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Puppy dog eyes!

Unfortunately in less than two minutes he’d gotten overly excited, which resulted in over-aggressive play and attempted humping. Immediate time out for Boo with a frozen apple puzzle feeder!

This apple was stuffed with peanut butter, wet dog food, and coconut oil πŸ™‚

Speaking of frozen treats, ice cube treats are SO EASY to do!! And our three go barmy for them, I actually don’t know who loves them more…and they’re a perfect crate treat for Toller too! They come highly recommended from our pups and are so easy to make.

There are three varieties here: coconut oil, salmon oil and peanut butter, & salmon oil and wet dog food.

Sasha walk

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Tired pupper πŸ™‚ You can see a little of my dog gear wall behind her too haha!

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Spudder playing with loo roll πŸ™‚

Happy-ish days!

Happy easter

and what not πŸ™‚

I don’t remember what I last posted, so I thought I’d share some beautiful photos from a walk with Kasper the other day.

This walk was actually a HUGE flop.

We had an hour-long hike planned, with Sasha being left at home, but from five minutes after we headed out I had awful ‘seizure rage’. With seizure rage I feel uncontrollably angry even though I have no reason to be, it’s just an emotion that proceeds certain types of seizures I have. But I will be extremely vicious and verbally abusive, and inside I’m hating myself for it and tearful because I don’t want to say these things and I don’t understand the anger.

So 40 minutes of the walk was wasted, 30 with me being angry, then 10 with me having seizures. Thankfully I recovered pretty fast so we were able to enjoy some time walking off lead and having fun πŸ™‚

I took my good camera (wrong walk to take that out on haha!) and managed to get some lovely photos.

This dude is SO MUCH FUN to train, and I love photo shoots with him because he really gets what I want him to do. Plus his impulse control is awesome so stays are no prob πŸ™‚

First thing he did was leap into the river haha, so then of course he had to do his special, incredibly vocal rolling πŸ˜„

AAAGH THIS PHOTO πŸ˜€

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Also adore this photo. And this dog ^_^

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I was supposed to be getting him a beautiful custom lead for his birthday next month, but I’m kinda leaning towards the idea of getting him a collar in the pattern instead. His EzyDog collar has always been huge and only worn for aesthetics, and I do love buying collars for him πŸ™‚

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Spring sure has sprung!

My Spudder puppy.

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I wish I could feel more comfortable interacting with her. Atm I’m just so scared she will flail too much in excitement and re-injure her leg, or that I’ll drop her if holding her etc. The fact that her foot is so obviously wonky doesn’t help, as it’s all I see when I look at her 😦

And finally, me and my partner discovered a hobby we had never heard of and wanted to try: needle felting!!

Here are our creations so far. My partner made the brilliant yelling face, and I made the other two πŸ™‚

The process:

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Happy Easter / Sunday everyone πŸ™‚

 

Kasper’s 6th Gotcha: phase 1

My neck was causing pain all night so I didn’t sleep well, I finally woke at 6am with an agonising neck and a migraine.

My partner looked after me so well and fed me pain pills and gave me a massage, and a few hours later the pain had gone but I was having seizures…ugh!!

As soon as I was able to get out of bed we headed out on Kasper’s Gotcha walk, as I didn’t want to be too ill to manage it later. I’m actually really glad we headed out early, because it’s really warm out already and it was 8.30am – it’s gonna be a scorcher!

We took Kasper on one of his favourite walks and he had a ball – he was SO HAPPY!!! He really did have a blast and it made me so grateful we pushed through some pain and got him out πŸ™‚

Photos!

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Start of the walk – serious face and closed mouth!

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“Mum, I have to do TRAINING on my GOTCHA DAY?!”

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We made it to the beach!

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Yay, HAPPY DOG! ^__^

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It’s fine, that’s definitely not salt water you lummox…

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I LOVE THIS PHOTO!!!!

Walk fun!

Sasha makes an appearance here too! She’s getting better at walking nicely even with her biggest bro πŸ™‚

And back home, chilling. He still has paint in his ear hair πŸ˜„

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Phase 2 will be lots of homemade treats and his one shop bought gift, which I was able to buy on Prime yesterday and it’s coming today!!

It’s a Busy Buddy Troog, and the medium cost just Β£8 with next day delivery. I trawled through lots of puzzle feeders and this one looks really cool! I think he’s gonna love it πŸ™‚