Saturday, November 24, 2007

Another Pixie Update

We took Pixie to the vet hospital again yesterday as it had been 2 weeks since her last visit and I have sinned, Father.

Opps, sorry. Force of habit. Once a Catholic....................

Anyway it was a 3 hr round trip and we were in with the vet for all of 5 minutes so after that, we're not sure if that may have been the last visit. Yes Dr. Todd did give us an appointment for 2 weeks time again but we may just cancel it if Pixie is still doing well. You may deduce from this that Pixie IS progressing very well and can walk (up on her back legs) short distances all by herself.

And then tends to fall over !!

It's quite funny when she goes to vacuum up after us in the kitchen as the flooring there is lino. She's like a cross between a new born lamb and Bambi on ice. Her head and front legs are going forwards taking her towards any crumbs she may have spotted but the back legs are doing their own thing and going where the urge takes them. It reminds me of setting up a deckchair on Brighton Beach in gale force winds or trying to adjust a tripod on an uneven surface.

I must get it on video before this phase passes.

The rest of the time she can get up on her back legs and wander around for a few paces and when she does tip over sideways, she can haul herself upright again. She could do none of this 2 weeks ago and so the improvement has been huge.

Sadly, as we were warned, her bodily excretions aren't as under control as her legs but most of the time, bless her, she does alert us to her need to 'go'. Unfortunately these alerts are the same as the ones for 'feed me, 'pet and pamper me' 'there is someone exciting at the door' and 'for God sake change the channel, this show is crap'.

So all in all, we're very happy with her progress and more to the point, so was Dr. Todd. He pulled her back legs to and fro like they were a couple of Thanksgiving turkey drumsticks and drew us a little diagram to explain the 'lump' on her back that concerned me.

And that was it. Pixie had been howling in the exam room and I'm sure it was because she felt the dreaded pliars were going to be used on her again - to check for deep pain. Thankfully for all concerned, mainly Pixie, the very fact that she was able to walk so well meant there was no need to test for pain. Instead Dr. Todd gave her some treats while we talked and she was a happy pooch for sure. Much wagging of tail ensued.

In a previous update I'd told how I'd devised a technique for helping her walk outside when peeing and pooping. It involved a rolled up towel under her rear end and we'd walk beside her all hunkered over because the towel length was so short.

Debby decided to improve on my initial design and with the use of a strip of material and some stitching expertise, she created the device you see below. We're in preliminary discussions with James Dyson.

We present....drum roll please.....the (patent pending) doggie walking aid. As always, click on the photo to see a bigger version.

We don't need to keep the material taut most of the time as she can walk well enough now without it's support.

We really use it to give her a bit of help when she gets tired or sways and just plops down.

As both rear legs tend to splay out and to the front when she does her business, it helps to hold her up a bit so that bits of her don't come into contact with the rapidly departing bits of her.

For those of a squeamish disposition, I think that was stated as tactfully as I could.

She's on a very small dose of steroids (a quarter of a pill twice a day) and we've begun to lower even that dose to get her off them completely. She should be drug free in just over a week and can then start training for Iditarod XXXVI next March.

I doubt she'll be among the favourites.


Daphne said...

Do you get bewildered strangers suggesting that the usual arrangement for dogs is that the dog's collar goes round the neck and then the lead is attached to that?
Great to see the Pixter looking much better, though.

HiRize said...

Whoo hoo! That's great! She's looks grand (if slightly naked!)

Sled Dog Action Coalition said...

Pixie is lucky that she'll never be forced to run in the Iditarod. The race is terribly cruel to dogs. For the facts, visit the Sled Dog Action Coalition website,

Silverback said...

............which is, bizarrely, based in Miami, Florida.


Daphne, we do get such comments from passers by. Having tried it, I can see why having leads connected to the rear end never really caught on.

HiRize, her back is still at the fuzzy stage as her 'hair' is growing back VERY slowly. Once we wean her off the steroids, we'll start on the Rogaine.


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