Saturday, March 27, 2010

Our Fancy Dog Purse

Last night was the first time in a week that Robin and I got more than 4 hours of sleep at one time and it was sooooo nice! We've been working shifts with Lucas. Since Robin works nights and I work days it has worked out pretty well and he has shown so much improvement.

A couple of days ago I was going to put him in the crib and I accidentally popped the catheter out... oops! We were worried that he was going to urinate all over the place without it, but he has actually held it and goes outside when we take him. Obviously he can't tell us when he has to go so we constantly have to observe his behavior and try to figure out when he needs to go.

Initially, Lucas has absolutely no use of his hind legs. The vet's office gave us a simple harness so we could support his backside while he walks with his front legs, but we ended up buying an Australian made rear harness called the Walkabout and had it overnighted. His rear legs go through two slits and then it wraps around his backside then fastens with velcro and fasteners. Each side has a handle that makes Lucas look like a fancy dog purse.

(not Lucas!)

It took a bit, but Lucas has gone back to his normal outside routine. The first thing he does when he heads steps onto the deck is smell under the chair where he recently caught and killed a squirrel. I keep telling Robin that I think the reason he became paralyzed was because of a "hit" that the underground squirrel mafia did for retaliation. I suppose we'll never know.

During our walks it's sometimes hard to keep up with him! He drinks from the large empty flower pot that holds rain water, he goes to sniff the tree where the squirrels hide, he makes a trip around the pool and constantly tries to run under the deck. I keep telling him that there's no way we can go under the deck because I don't fit under there and secondly, that's where the snakes hide! It's so good he remembers his environment!

He is slowly regaining strength in his hind legs but remains incredibly wobbly. If we were to let go of the harness he would surely fall over, but he has taken 2-3 steps on his own as we let the tension on the harness fall a bit just to see how he does. Because of his great progress, we are really hopeful for a full recovery!

His appetite has been good, but there may be a downfall from what we have been feeding him. For his medicine we hide it in hot dog bits and he now refuses to eat his dog kibble! He was already spoiled rotten so we might be creating a monster! As far as we are concerned if he has gone through this and fully recovers, especially after we came so close to putting him down, he can eat ice cream sundaes every day for all we care!!

The down side of all of this is that he has still not had a bowel movement. He acts as if he has to by hunching down, but nothing ever happens! We have been told that pure pumpkin will help with that so he had a little today. He really didn't care for it so we are hoping what little he ate will help. Hopefully the poop-fest doesn't happen on my shift!!


Clytie said...

Wow, what incredibly amazing people Lucas has! I'm glad he is doing better - and that you are doing so much to help him. Wow. Most people wouldn't want the trouble, and would have had him put down.

You guys are awesome.

Pamela said...

Thanks! It's definitely been a trying experience, but sooo worth it when we see that tail wag again.