2013-12-26

Learn to Dance in the Rain

Buzz has an undiagnosed neurologic condition that affects the signals to his right rear leg. It's undiagnosed because we won't be doing an MRI, a CT, or a myelogram. At his age, it wouldn't change anything I'm currently doing. His gait is different back there and watching his leg, it looks like he's missing every other signal. He'll take one normal step then miss a beat, then take a normal step, repeat. That leg also fatigues quicker and  frequently gives out on him when standing or walking.
Cuddling

What does this mean? If he's having a good day, he drags those toes a little. If he's having a bad day, he can't walk. He was having a lot of bad days in a row last week, and then he fell on the ice. Suffice to say I think he hit all parts of his body while I grabbed for him and missed. So, I finally fitted him for a Help 'Em Up harness. I swear, that device is magical!

Before I got the help 'em up harness, I had to carry him outside and try to support him while he did his business--not the easiest task! He was also limited to being outside only for as long as his leg would support him (which wasn't very long).
And more cuddling (the slightly more crowded version)
Now, I use my euro lead with one end attached to his butt and the other to the top of the chest harness... and I feel like I'm driving some kind of horse! I can take Buzz and Gabby outside together again, I don't have to carry him, and Buzz's favorite--he can go for walks again! Once he gets going, he really does pretty well. It's the getting up and getting going part (with the occasional imbalance) that's troublesome. Now that it's cold, snowy, and icy we've been walking the hallways in our apartment building. Tonight we walked for 10 minutes before his right rear tired to the point of knuckling. When we started this with the help 'em up a week ago, I don't think he made it more than 3 minutes.

He's taking a ton of drugs, he eats a micromanaged diet, he needs help getting up most of the time, and often he asks to pee or get a drink in the middle of the night; but he appears to be happy.

So we walk up and down the hallway, I handle disgusting raw tripe daily, I buy the bully sticks he loves, and we cuddle on the couch. Life really is about the journey. Not a beginning and an end. But about what we learn along the way, the friends we make, and the love.
Canine Caviar bully stick and Help 'Em Up harness--essentials

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass... It's about learning to dance in the rain."
Vivian Greene

1 comment:

Samantha K said...

That's amazing.. What a gift for your boy. :)