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My dog is doing better. It's been nearly three months since his surgery and he's fully reintegrated with the house. He plays with the other dogs, we roll (no more throwing) the ball for him, and he's generally back to normal.

He has not, unfortunately, regained the full use of his left back leg. If he is moving slowly he will walk on it and seems capable of doing that, but if he tries to go fast (or gets excited) he only uses his back right leg and ends up going around on three legs. He's getting pretty good at it though, but it's obvious he's a lot more clumsy now.

He can't jump up on things anymore (which is actually a bit of a nice thing, since it means he doesn't jump off of things anymore since he can't get up there). He also can't scratch himself on the left side -- it's actually really sad to see him lift his back left leg and try to scratch, but it doesn't work. We try to help him whenever we see him do this.

All in all, he's not in pain and his quality of life is back to normal. He runs, he plays, he eats, he sleeps. He just looks a little funny doing it and sometimes can't scratch every itch, but hey, that's alright. When the other options were for him to end up paralyzed from the mid-back down and need a doggie-wheelchair, I'm OK with this result.
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zorkian: Icon full of binary ones and zeros in no pattern. (Default)
Update on my puppy!

He's doing very well, far better than we expected him to be doing at this point. He's been voluntarily urinating nearly every time, we've only had to express him once or twice. No bowel movements yet though. His appetite has returned to normal now that the fentanyl patch is off. We've only felt the need to give him pain meds once. When he's really excited he wags his tail -- it's a bit jerky and uncoordinated, but it's definitely wagging in excitement.

We've been doing his physical therapy and care several times a day, of course. That's going well, although I'm not sure what it really does except make sure his muscles get stretched and moved. I suppose it might start getting a lot of data for his brain/spine/whatever to start reconnecting the pairs and hopefully start putting things together.

He's still not walking, although he's definitely pulling himself around. We limit that mostly, but he does still scoot some when given the chance. Especially if there's a ball involved. He doesn't seem to mind too much that his back legs aren't working -- well, sometimes he seems really pissed off about it, but mostly he's just chill. I think he's mostly annoyed that he has to live in a small cage for now, heh.

Not much else to report. Trigger continues to be an awesome little puppy and I'm so glad he's in my life. I knew that back problems were an issue for dogs like him, and given his previous incidents I was gently introduced to the idea that he might need some extreme help one day. But hey, here we are.

Now if you don't mind, I'm going to sneak out for a shower.
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Jun. 30th, 2010 01:40 am

trigger

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He had the MRI today, and they found two herniated discs. One was acute, one was old and chronic. They went in to operate on both.

The acute one went very well. Good news there.

The chronic one -- apparently the sheath or something around the spinal cord had semi-fused with the disc, and in trying to get that to separate and clean it up, it ended up getting slightly torn and bruised.

So, we'll see how recovery goes. It's supposedly not a big deal and happens fairly often, but still. I'm worried sick.

Bed now.
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zorkian: Icon full of binary ones and zeros in no pattern. (Default)
We figured it was coming, but we didn't really expect it to be now. Short story: Trigger needs surgery for his back, and he's going in tomorrow.

But let me start at the beginning.

This morning on my way out the door I noticed that Trigger was not walking right. He was dragging his feet a bit, but he's done that before somewhat, so I ignored it and figured he'd get over it if he rested. Janine messaged me sometime around lunch letting me know that she was talking to Nicole and he had gotten worse. And worse.

By the time I got home, he couldn't stand up on his back legs. No sensation that we could tell. He would step in them, couldn't 'reset' them to the proper position, wouldn't wag his tail, and whenever he tried to move he just ended up confused when his rear end didn't work.

I went home as soon as I could and we headed out to Adobe Animal Hospital. They saw us pretty quick and Dr. Ellis did tests. Turns out, Trigger still has pain sensation, although he wasn't showing it. She had to get a pair of clamps and really bite down on the skin on his feet in order to elicit any sort of response from him. Stoic little bastard.

She said surgery was the best option, and there was some other conversation. I sort of lost it in the room there, but I pulled myself back together eventually. "Surgery" "85% chance of being normal again" "glad we caught it early" was about all I heard.

We headed up to the Veterinary Surgical Associates place up in San Mateo to meet with a Dr. Banz. We got there and the staff stayed an hour late to talk to us and get everything sorted out. He examined Trigger and concurred with the diagnosis. We talked for a while about treatment, surgery, and stuff.

In the end, we decided to go with an MRI in the morning (~$2000) and then, based on what it showed, a hemilaminectomy surgery (~$4500) seemed the best option. Bringing the total (including today's visits) to around $7,000 in order to give him an 85% chance of being normal again and not ending up in a doggy wheelchair.

I admit I was doing the math in my head...

But then I held my puppy, and there was no question. There was no hesitation. We are getting up early and going to get a call about when the MRI appointment is. He'll have surgery tomorrow, assuming that's the right diagnosis when they scan him, and then he'll be in recovery (kept) for a day or two.

Then he comes home and we leave on our trip. Then we're back a week and we leave again for OSCON. We're gone for half of July.

I was going to cancel both trips, but Nicole says she's willing to help him out and care for him while we're gone. You have no idea how much that means to me, that we have a friend who is willing to drop everything and do something like that for us.

My thoughts are scrambled. Trigger is drugged right now on hydromorphone and fentanyl to help him deal with the pain and keep him calm before he goes in for things tomorrow. He'll have to be put under general anesthesia twice tomorrow, too. Poor little guy...

Okay. Posting now.

Edit: I didn't mention the weirdest part. The surgeon who talked to us is Dr. Banz. At the end, I jokingly asked if he had a brother who worked at Google... Way too small of a world. I used to work with Dr. Banz's brother when I was at the Googleplex. We were on the same team, even. Neat.
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May. 16th, 2010 11:01 pm

Waugh

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Trigger is hurting again. Going to have go take him to the vet tomorrow, I think. Very sad.
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Apr. 17th, 2009 10:32 am

Testing!

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Okay, so I think I got the user mover working. Turns out I really didn't have to do anything, Brad designed it to work with new tables as they get added, so it just auto-detected all of the WTF tables and such and seems to work okay.

Going to poke around and see if I notice any problems, though. And probably take a stab at moving the rest of the people still on cluster #1 so I can drop the data in it. Yay!

In other news, today is Friday. How did that happen? Oh, I know, work keeps me busy and then my evenings have exploded with all sorts of random things happening. Like a new dog. Yeah, we got a new addition to the family. His name is Trigger right now and he's a little brown/black Dachshund. Seems to be remarkably healthy given his origin. (And I should probably write up about that, but I don't have the time/energy this second.)

Janine will be gone this weekend. I think that means I am going to be buried so far into Dreamwidth code land that you won't see me until Monday morning when I roll out of bed from three hours of sleep and drag myself to work. That is the kind of weekend it's going to be, I bet. A whirlwind! Of coding. Yes.

Ta for now.
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Mark Smith

January 2017

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