Yesterday Deb and Den took Pixie for another progress checkup at the vet hospital.
It might be the last one.
It's a 3 hour round trip and they had to wait 30 minutes to see Dr. Max and the checkup lasted about 5 minutes including the questions they asked him. It's hard to see a reason for going any more.
For the past couple of weeks, Pixie has been walking reasonably well but still falling over sideways from time to time when her back legs give way - usually when she needs to turn. But she gets right back up again. When she is walking up on all fours, her back legs have a comical high stepping action as if she's walking over hot coals or some nasty wet grass. There isn't much rotation or bending of the back legs going on.
The vet did the pinching test again (I hate it and I'm not the one being pinched) and there were still places where there was no pain, and therefore no nerve signals, getting through. He said this explained the high stepping action as basically Pixie wasn't able to sense the ground and so was using her spine alone to move her legs and just doing a simple 'leg up, leg down' straight leg motion - planting her back legs in the hope that they'd touch the ground as opposed to knowing they'd reached the ground via nerve signals going to and from her brain.
But WE know she can bend her back legs properly as she loves to roll over onto her back and be petted and often if you tickle her tummy, she'll move her back legs in a bicycle motion as she's so happy. I don't care how this motion can be explained away but the fact that it DOES take place, seems to me to show there have to be signals going right to the tips of her paws......as the pads move too.
Anyway the vet just said to continue with the twice daily therapy, don't over walk her and come back in 2 weeks.
We don't think so ! For a start it'll be Christmas but we can always alter the appointment. We just think it's a journey too far, time and fuel wise. We don't think anything more can be done for her at the hospital anyway and we just hope she'll slowly get a little better week by week with us. The last two visits have added up to 6 hours of driving and $60 in gas for a total of 15 minutes with the vet - to be told nothing new.
And even if this is as good as she'll ever be, that's fine too. Personality wise she's 100% Pixie again. She can get around the house well enough - although once she goes onto the kitchen lino she does still tend to do the splits a lot - and when on our laps, she still looks so damn cute that you want to hug her to death. She still has silly periods when she rolls over on the carpet and plays with imaginary objects; she's still a great alarm dog (could never be described as a GUARD dog) and barks when anyone comes to the door; she still causes people she meets to go awwwwwww; she still does things that make us laugh and generally talk about her (and to her); she's still Pixie.
But most of all, she's happy, not in any pain and as much as we love her, she loves us right back.
What more can any of us wish for ?