Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: A year in review

2012 started out with Kenz on restricted activity to see if we could resolve her what was starting to look like a chronic case of biceps tendonitis. I had gone ahead with the series of PRP injections and then commenced gradually resuming normal activities.

In early February 7 weeks into the shoulder rehab I was dealt what turned out to be a devastating piece of news - Kenz was diagnosed with a grade 2 medial luxating patella and to get the best outcome for her it was likely that surgery was going to be the only option and it was more a case of when not if.

Given at that point the verdict over what may be needed with the shoulder wasn't clear it was agreed to monitor the patella and continue on with rehabbing.

Kenz was able to attend the Double K mini herding clinic in April and get a little bit of freedom. By early May though her left hind issue had continue to worsen and the decision was made to go ahead with surgery.

She coped ok with the confinement and post-surgery rehab but it wasn't the success it should have been.

Despite all the hiccups she did managed to finish off her Rally-O Novice title in early October after passing her 3 attempts. Not the scores she might have got if she was at full capacity but she did enough to get through.

If her lameness issues weren't enough before Christmas she had a seriously bad EIC episode.

Normally at this time of year I would be thinking about future goals for 2013 and making training plans. Things are not so good and I am still hoping that she can see the inside of the ring in some capacity but I am just not sure.

Emma has said to give it a few months as the situation may still yet continue to improve before considering any further diagnostics. She has suggested Kenz may resume obedience training again in the new year. In the meantime we are to keep with the swimming, running and balance disc work and if things get aggravated I am to back off what I am doing with her and reassess. 

Its all about taking it a day at a time and hoping that one day I will wake up and the the world will look a whole lot brighter for my little girl, who means the world to me.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas 2012

So Christmas has come and gone for another year. This year I took the girls up to stay at my parents place on the river. The hope was to forget about lame dog for just a little while.

Kenz had a pretty bad week of things. First few days she was back to having random 3 legged RH episodes. These were followed up by some very bad looking LH episodes. It seems to be something that we just can't put behind us.

She struggled a little less with the stair case up there but still wasn't 100% and there were still times when she couldn't manage it.

Home again yesterday and she hasn't managed to get up the stairs at home since.

Any way I am not sure what 2013 will hold for us but I am not hopeful of good news just yet. In the meantime I have put together a video of Kenz having a bit of fun while away over Christmas. She did enjoy her daily or twice daily trips down the river and then home via the oval to have a run around until she was dry.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Not all bad........

This week started off a little tough. On Monday we caught up with "my aussies" and Karron to do some Rally-O training. After we had trained I got Kenz out to see if we could get video of this intermittent problem to forward to Ian. Well what transpired in the next 5 minutes was positively frightening.

Poor girl suffered a serious exercise induced collapse episode :(. It was very very scary. Its the first such episode I have managed to capture on video.

 We dropped everything and carried her into Karron's place and put her in the bath until she settled.

Tuesday evening she had a lab attack her and that pulled her up acutely lame :(. It wasn't especially lasting but enough that I was worried. 

Any way today she was already scheduled for another appointment with Emma. I guess the good news is Emma doesn't at this stage thing I should write off obedience. Kenz is doing better then she was at her appointment a few weeks ago. She certainly wasn't as sore through her back. She was a little sore through her right front which may again be compensation for the fact she has been having a few issues with that left hind again.

Kenz got quite a hammering today so Emma said she wouldn't be surprised if she was fairly sore and sorry for herself so to just take it easy. I will continue to see how she gets on and hopefully she will continue to improve and we might just get back in the ring come 2013.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Two Year Anniversary

Today marks two years since Kenz pulled up badly lame in her right shoulder for whatever reason. I never would have guessed that two years later she would still be unsound and struggling with lameness issues on an almost daily basis.

Frustration plus. Its hard to walk away from what was suppose to be a fun filled life of performance activities when my little girl as it stands now needs carrying to bed each evening because for the most part she can't get up the stairs. She also struggles to manage anything more then a 20-30 min walk and even then still has days when she can barely get around the block without a problem with her back end.

I finally got around to dropping in the girls Rally-Novice Titles today and I suspect it will be Kenz's last title. Oh so sad and my heart is broken and my world is just about come to an end.

Love you to bits Kenz but not sure how much longer either of us can hold it together - who am I kidding I am not holding it together at all :(. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Another phone call

Well I had a somewhat constructive phone call with Ian this morning.  He wasn't about pushing unnecessary diagnostics at this stage. X-rays are pretty much a waste of time apparently so it would likely need an MRI.

He asked how she was doing generally and still said it would be a lot easier if I could get some half decent video of the problem unless she is noticeably in pain and then its worth making an appointment to bring her in. We spoke about the complicating factor that the spinal pain may just be referred from other things going on in her hind end.

The plan for the moment is to keep doing as I am for another month and not add back in anything that may cause the situation to worsen. He wants me to call again in a month and let him know regardless how she is getting on. 

At least I get the sense of them wanting to help but not just subjecting her to expensive diagnostics for the sake of it.

So while no closer to moving on entirely I feel like I know where things are at and what I should be doing with her.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Where we are at.....

Well I guess the good news is since Emma's visit we did get a small amount of improvement. Kenz got a few good days but then the problems started back again :(. Her gait is better then it was but she is still having random 3 legged RH episodes and still having issues some nights with the stairs.

Emma and John had a long chat on Thursday to discuss the situation and I had an email from John last night which suggested the best course of action was an appointment with Ian for spinal x-rays given the back pain Emma found.

Sometimes I wonder if we are making a mountain out of something which isn't then I came home to walk them after spending a few hours out with "my aussies" and she was a mess again.

It sucks - its just not fair to see my little baby girl so miserable :(.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Appointment with Emma

Kenz finished up her course of anti-inflams last night and interestingly enough we have had 5 nights where at bedtime she has seemed quite happy to come racing up the stairs.

Her appointment with Emma this morning was useful. She was seriously tight and showed a distinct pain reaction in through her spine and had lots of trigger points in her LH. Emma was able to pick she was having problems as she watched her walk out to the back room. The LH patella - hmmm its not bad. The complicating thing is trying to work out if its the spine that is causing the problem or whether its the LH that is still the root of the problem.

Emma is inclined to think its the spine and has suggested it may be worth getting x-rays. It may still well be nerve related.

Just as Emma was leaving Kenz picked up her RH and also kept trying to sit. 

I have been told not to be to concerned about things for the next few days as she may have stirred up a lot. Other than specifically no swimming and no stairs she is otherwise free to do what she wants. Emma said there is no point in suggesting anything else at this stage as we have otherwise done most of it.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Just what we didn't need....

A dog attack Sunday night by that frigging weim - the consequence hmmm Kenz by Monday night was struggling so badly on a walk around the block she required carrying home. She was still having issues with her hind end on Tuesday morning.

I came home and contacted Matthew and had a chat to him. He felt she needed to see John. Well rang to speak with John and he is away till the 14th of November.

Tuesday lunchtime we were training in the back yard and just messing around and she came up badly lame on her RH. So off to the local vet on Tuesday afternoon.

Nick checked her patella, her cruciate and her hip extension and thought it all seemed fine. That is interesting in itself because he didn't think the LH patella was a problem anymore. None the less she was given a 7 day course of anti-inflams. 

Matthew suggested now was a good time to get more video for John so I held off the anti-inflams today and have been busy stalking her with a video camera.

I did manage to capture one RH episode of the three that she had today and given she has had problems now on each walk I felt enough was enough and started her on the anti-inflams tonight.

I guess we will see how she gets on over the next 7 days of pain killer and taking it relatively easy.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Into week 25......

Hmmmm its been one of those very mixed fortnights.

After her jump grid experiment she seems to start having issues again with her front right shoulder. Fairly marked lameness almost as bad as it had ever been BUT it was the following evening when it started bothering her. I took it easy with her for a few days and it seemed to settle again.

Last Friday I thought it was about time she could have a swim at the pool again. She had a good time as usual and swam plenty. Later that evening she started having a huge number of problems with her LH. The patella appeared to keep slipping and it was really bothering her and she was shutting down totally.

Saturday we went out for a walk and the RH random lameness which seemed to have disappeared had returned. One walk she completely picked up the back leg and the second incident was just non-weight bearing when she was stationary.

Nothing overly significant just non-weight bearing when she was stationary on a couple of occasions.

A little confused and unsure about things at the moment.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

24 weeks post-op

Kenz is almost at the start of 24 weeks post-op.  I have decided to hold off on the xrays/EMG for the moment and we are continuing to monitor the situation. Unfortunately this past week has not been good.

Towards the end of last week she started having very regular episodes of 3 legging behavior with the patella locking up. This continued over the weekend and into the early part of this week. I am not sure what to make of things at the moment.

Her training round at club on Tuesday night was a disaster. She was going through the motions and even her usual DB and retrieve over the jump which she is normally mega enthusiastic for was just going through the motions.

In the perfect world with unlimited resources I would go ahead with the joint taps/EMG/x-rays but we don't live in the perfect world and with limited resources to put towards diagnostics which are purely a "fishing trip" we are playing the wait and see game.

Any way tonight I decided I would conduct an experiment and set up a jump grid and see how she did.  Well I think to me its proving that its the patella bothering her more then anything as she seems to have very little trouble with jumping. She lacks a little power in her hind end still but on the all I don't have to much to complain about as far as jumping is concerned.

Not sure where to go with things at the moment but I guess we take it a day at a time and see how things continue to pan out.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

The long awaited (and dreaded email)

This afternoon I got the long awaited and dreaded email from John - with much trepidation I opened it to see what the verdict was.

Its not great news. What Ian didn't mention at her appointment last Wednesday was questionable pain from her hocks with manipulation. The suggestion being if she does have discomfort in her lower joints (hocks, carpi, toes) then there are a range of autoimmune diseases of the joints that can occur in these regions.

Some suggestions included: rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and autoimmune polyarthropathy.

This is apparently consistent with the shifting lameness and breed. Although apparently according to John polyarthropathies typically cause more lameness and discomfort than what Kenz is showing and that normally its possible to feel effusion in the affected joints which he couldn't with Kenz.

The suggested plan of attack would be radiographs of Kenz's hocks to toes and carpi to toes as well as joint taps to look for white blood cells.

Ian is somewhat keen to do an EMG on Kenz.

Not sure what I am thinking at present - its a lot to take in and my immediate concern is the cost involved and the benefit of subjecting her to further testing.

Lots of thinking ahead of me.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Kenz Rally-Novice title

Wahoo Kenz managed to finish off the two passes needed for her Rally Novice title at the Dover Gardens double Rally-O trial today.

Well done Kenz better known as Winpara Dream Chaser CD DWDF.S JD RN.

Onwards and upwards to advance where we can finally get rid of that bloody lead again. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

21 weeks post-op - still having issues

Sigh after nearly 21 weeks post-op you would ideally like to think Kenz's life was pretty much back to normal with no more lameness episodes. This last week has unfortunately seen an increase in LH lameness.

A trip to the beach this morning and after 30 minutes she was holding her surgery leg off the ground non-weight bearing while stationary. When on the move she had a seriously noticeable choppy hind end gait.

Poor girl seems to have everybody a little stumped.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Appointment with Ian

Just back from Kenz's appointment with Ian the neurospecialist. It was an interesting appointment but I guess it seemed to be more of a ruling out exercise. It was also as I expected in that the mention of exercise induced collapse was what sparked a little more interest in her case.

Poor Kenz was subjected to a full neurological exam. Apparently there wasn't to much out of the ordinary other than a slightly weakened patella reflex on her surgery leg. Ian also commented about her heightened sensitivity to her feet and toes. He said to be more certain it wasn't neurological he would ideally like to have admitted her and performed the neuro exam a few times over the course of the day because these things can change (especially in cases where there is intermittent issues) but given he didn't find anything of much significance the first time I didn't think it was worth leaving Kenz there at the current time.

He did comment that she had fairly even muscle across her hind end and was a little surprised given John's notes re muscle wastage at her last appointment. I guess that is helpful to me in saying she is doing somewhat ok if not for the random lameness episodes.

At the moment she weighs 13.9 kg and poor girl seemed to have a slightly raised temperature apparently (39 degrees).

So where we have got to as a result of the appointment - well not much has changed. Keep being relatively careful and seeing how she gets on. Ian said he would have a chat to John and if I haven't heard anything by Friday to maybe call and have a chat to John.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Back in the ring for the moment.....

Kenz made her Rally-O debut at the SAODC trial today and walked away with her very first qualification with a score of 89/100. Way to go my little obedience superstar. It was a very emotional day for me with what we have been through so far in her short trialling career. She started off a little shakey (lost 6 points on one of the early stations - although that included a 3 point deduction because I asked for a retry) she then held the rest of it together nicely and managed a good pass.

The video of the round is posted here.

Its not been a particularly easy week. I had an email from John late Friday afternoon which suggested he had been corresponding with Ian and Ian felt he may have found a disease in Border Collie's which can present like Kenz's condition and would I mind scheduling an appointment to have her evaluated. So Friday afternoon I called the specialist centre and she is booked in for an appointment with Ian on Wednesday morning.

Its hard - she has been having subtle lameness issues with these occasional random other more substantial episodes. Sometimes I wonder what I am worrying about but I guess we may have more answers after Wednesday.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Life goes on

More stalking with the video camera and no more lameness episodes recorded however here is some video from her (almost) weekly trip to the dog pool. This week at the pool she was super keen from the minute we got there and more then happy to swim laps. She put herself in the pool the minute I opened the gate and then just started swimming.

She has seemed ok today. However we are just back from a brief trip to the oval and while I wasn't able to capture it on video she had what appeared to be other hind end lameness episode on the way home. The problem I am finding is she just stops dead on me rather than trying to walk and by the time she starts walking again whatever that is going on seems to have resolved itself. None of the incidents (aside from whatever happened last Tuesday at training) seem to produce lasting lameness but we are certainly getting an interesting assorted collection of varying episodes.

Confused and frustrated.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Another day, another random RH episode......


I really wasn't expecting it to happen in the situation that it did so while I did have the video camera I wasn't prepared enough to have been able to capture it.

This morning I took the kids up the bush track for a decent run and swim with a little fetching for good measure. No signs of any issues and Kenz had a blast. We came home and ran a training session in the yard at lunchtime. Again no issues and had the video running the entire time.

I am just back from our second walk up in Brownhill creek for the day and that is when the episode occurred. I drove the kids up to the carpark halfway along so we could do the second part of the trail and they could have a swim. I unloaded the dogs out of the car and they both jumped out without any thing untoward happening. 

Kenz walked away fine and was sniffing a couple of meters away from the car and I was getting their leads/the bumbag and the video camera out of the front passenger door. I bent over to do up my shoe lace and turned around to see Kenz standing with no weight on her RH. It wasn't tucked up there was just no weight on it. I had to first do a double take to make sure it was the RH and not her LH. I yelled out stay and turned around to grab the video from the roof of the car. In the few moments it took me to do that Kenz was back putting weight on the foot again but not moving. I went over to have a feel of her back/leg and couldn't find anything sore.

I videoed her as she went to head off on our walk and the video appears normal as far as I can tell. She had no more apparent issues with the leg in the following 45 minutes of running/swimming and retrieving play.

I just don't know anymore. Its presenting very randomly but a couple of times a week suggests its a little more frequent to not be something going on. Especially frustrating as John and Ian would prefer more video to go on and I can't seem to get it despite the episodes happening fairly regularly. There doesn't appear to be any real definite trigger which I am finding frustrating. If I could recreate the problem we may get further in diagnosing and resolving it.

Friday, September 21, 2012

A phone call from John

This where we are at with the Kenz saga - she is one complicated little dog with no immediately easily solution to things.

It may be a nerve related problem but a bit more video evidence or a problem that is more reproduceable in a consult situation would be preferable. John did also suggest it may be similar to sciatica in a human.

If we end up going down that path she will have an appointment with Ian and a full neurological exam then possibly need an MRI under GA.

John again reiterated that he was extra careful with checking her RH patella and he is 100% sure that is not the problem. It was checked while she was under for her LH surgery and these things don't change.

It is possible that its still the LH bothering her and if the RH is all ok the option is still there for John to go back in and fix it (at his cost).

So where we have got to is I will continue to try and video any episodes that may happen and send it through to both John and Ian (and Matthew) and we will take it from there.

I guess the good news as far is Kenz is concerned is no more poking and prodding for the time being. I will continue to play it a little safe until we have got through the next fortnight or so (because I want her fine for the Rally-O trials) and then we may look at doing a little bit of agility and increased jumping work with her and see where that takes us.

Here is a video I put together this evening of some of the footage I took of her training (in the hope of catching another episode of lameness) - unfortunately or fortunately all I managed was 100% sound Kenz.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Interesting times.......

Yesterday afternoon I received a phone call from the neurospecialist, Dr Ian Douglas who works at Vetsair to discuss Kenz. Apparently John had forwarded the video to him for comment. The view is its not particularly conclusive either way and the agreement made was to go ahead and try and collect further video. Matthew (and John) are both fairly adamant that there is no luxating patella in her right hind and Matthew could find no physical reason for the severity of the lameness.

I then decided screw it and took her out training last night to do a full open round including as much tug as she wanted. Well I jinxed it totally by not getting it on video. Her heelwork was not exceedingly great by her standards however she managed her SFE and was back to anticipating her recall and retrieve. The bad news is she went off at a million miles an hour after her dumbbell and pulled up badly lame.

It wasn't immediately obvious which leg it was so I put her back on lead and walked her up and back and the thought was possibly her RH.

I took her back to the car bought her home and she seemed ok. Carried her up to bed and she went to jump up on the bed and her back end really wasn't cooperating and she struggled. I couldn't find any apparent sore spots and she settled to sleep.

This morning before breakfast I took her out the front, armed with the video camera and her tug to try and recreate what happened last night. All I managed was picture perfect prancy heelwork and textbook retrieves.

We have spent the rest of the morning throwing i-squeaks and no hind end issues have come up.

Matthew still feels its worth going ahead with an appointment with Ian the neuro guy (and John) to see if there isn't anything we can diagnose.

This afternoon she had a 4km off-leash walk up in Brownhill creek and I again throwed millions of toys at the end of the track and no sign of any issue.

Its really starting to mess seriously with my head. 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Fun in the Sun

Stalking Kenz with the video camera in an attempt to capture more lameness episodes also enables me to capture something else - her living life to the fullest and despite all of the issues she has had she has still retained her sense of cheeky feral. Love her to bits.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Kenz back to Matthew

I finished up work a little early yesterday and decided to make the most of the nice weather and take the girls for a long walk up Brownhill creek. Well we did our normal bit of playing around at the end of the track before coming home and that was where the nightmare started. Kenz took half a dozen paces and pulled up on three legs - putting no weight on her right hind. Here I was thinking what on earth has she done after all we have been through - my fears were either a cruciate or another luxating patella.

She has been having a few right hind episodes this last week so to say my stress levels skyrocketed was an understatement.

We walked home and I jumped on the phone and rang Matthew. Matthew suggested I had two options - one was to take her to my local vet or to make an appointment for her with him while it was somewhat "fresh".  I made the decision to take her back to see him today.

He had a chance to look at some video I sent through of an earlier episode from last weekend and his view is that it looked like a muscular cramping type problem.

Well things have not really changed after he has looked her over. He found some soreness and tenderness in that leg but nothing structurally wrong which would explain the 3 legged behavior. We both agreed she wasn't making things up. John's view on the video was that he wasn't sure what was going on either. Matthew has suggested it may be worth including a muscle type storage disease in her differential diagnoses. In which case there is suggestion that bloods may be taken, muscle testing and muscle biopsy aren't off the considerations.

The other devastating bit of information was that Matthew felt when Kenz was totally relaxed that her patella was luxating much more easily then he had ever found it to previously. Thats not a particularly hopeful or promising sign considering she was put through surgery and so far 18 weeks of rehab to help fix a relatively minor problem not end up just as bad or even worse then when we started. Matthew did feel that when Kenz was standing that it wasn't "as bad".  The only interesting news is at this stage Matthew didn't think he would be in any rush to put her back through surgery because we may not resolve her lameness issues (I guess thats because we don't have an explanation for her right hind lameness at this point).

At any rate Matthew was going to send an email to John this afternoon regarding what he had found so suggested I get back in touch with John early next week after giving him a few days to digest what Matthew has written.

As far as Kenz is concerned nothing really changes. Matthew didn't think I needed to cut back on her activity in anyway so other than not ramping things back up to full activity she is still allowed her free running, dog pool swimming and anything else that she wants to be doing.

Both girls enjoyed their run at the conservation park tonight and because I have been told to try and capture as many 3 legged episodes as I can I happened to luck in and capture an even rarer event - Ness deciding to have a zoomie game with her little baby sister.

Not bad for my old girl but its a bit sad when shortly after Ness continued to happily trot along ahead and Kenz was lagging behind not particularly happy about things. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Its more then just a game of tug.....

So we are nearly at the end of 18 weeks post-op and for all intensive purposes Kenz's life should have been back to normal. She should be back training at full capacity and be sound and living the life we have dreamed of.

Well we aren't there unfortunately. Despite the hiccups over the past week I know John said she could be back doing normal things within a fortnight so I have decided despite all the episodes this last week or so we will still start to get on with life.

Yesterday I ran a 30 second tug session and she came up on three legs.

Today I thought I'd at least get the video camera out and if it happened again I could see exactly what the problem was. Well the end result was 5 minutes of tug with no hint of any lameness.

So here we go this is today's small amount of tug/training. I guess I can only see how she is when she pulls up later and whether there is any increased lameness as a result.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

18 weeks post-op

So we have reached  18 weeks post-op and I won't say its plain sailing all of the time. Kenz started having an increased number of hind end issues (although its not consistent and I can't put my finger on which leg it is) this past week so we cut back on her swimming and exercise and went back to leash walks and things really didn't improve greatly.

I am not sure what to make of it but Matthew and John aren't especially worried. I have been told to really only worry if the situation gets worse or its consistent and on-going.

Its becoming increasingly hard to read Kenz. Sometimes I just want to turn a blind eye to it all but with her history its just hard to do so. Nothing has ever just gone away or got better of its own accord so when I start to see things not right I do go into panic mode a bit.

Given the issues have increased with sticking to leash-walks I decided we would just go back to normal with her exercise and monitor things and hope it doesn't get any worse. She will be back to her regular swimming and walks this week. 

Having said that I have taken the plunge and sent off her first trial entry in nearly 12 months. Just a Rally-O Novice round at our club trial but she should enjoy herself. She is back to doing Open training rounds minus the ROH and loving every minute of her time doing things.

The blog photo this week is of Kenz pictured in her new DT Harness.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

16.5 weeks - Smiles all round

Last night Kenz had a bit of a disaster of an evening - we trained and the consequence was right hind end lameness at bedtime and refusing to come up the stairs.

Today she had otherwise been fine - we had our normal morning walk at the park and she was bouncing like a lunatic.

This afternoon she had her regular dog pool session. She was a little indifferent to swimming laps and I couldn't put my finger on it.

Tonight come 6pm she was absolutely FERAL. Into everything and I went enough is enough - Emma had already said to me we didn't need to be that conservative anymore so with that we headed out to club for an obedience session.

I did play it safe in that we opted to leave out the ROH because the grounds were slippery and she hasn't done any jumping yet. I did however allow her to complete two retrieves on the flat. Her work was something very very special. Her heelwork was beautiful - there was none of the crabbing or crowding and the only small amount of forging was on the outside post of the figure 8. Her SFE was done to the usual standard. Her DOR and ROF were nice. Her biggest issue tonight was anticipation and doing things on the "judges" command rather than waiting for me. I had some really lovely fronts and finishes and I would bottle her enthusiasm if I could.

Even when I took her out and we worked on some short sits and drops she was full of confidence - not stressed by classes of dogs working and seemed very relaxed. She has certainly come a VERY long way from the dog who could barely perform without shutting down.

It was certainly a night to remember and one I have been waiting for in what seems like an eternity.

Now I hope she pulls up fine and we have plenty more such nights not to far around the corner. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

15 weeks down .....things might be looking up

So we are at the start of week 16 post-op and Kenz has now had an entire week minimum of nothing which looks like her patella slipping and certainly no 3 legging episodes - yee har - certainly cause for celebration.

Today was also her third trip to the dog pool. She loves going and happily swims laps for her entire 30 min session with relatively few breaks. I was impressed today as there was a person cleaning out the hydro tank and coming and going and she wasn't rattled and continued to swim happily.

The good news is that since she has started swimming she has also been much happier to come up and down the stair case at home. She is still having a few issues with coming up stairs later in the day and will stand with her front feet on the bottom stair carrying on. We are still making time for regular daily Peanut sessions and she is now fitting in twice weekly swimming and heading out for lots of variable terrain off-lead time.

Emma has said there is no reason why Kenz can't now go back to full training (although she agrees thats not a particularly conservative suggestion). Considering its only a few weeks before Kenz's return trip to John and the fact the weather isn't super conducive to training sessions I am still holding off at this stage.

I may reassess that in a week or so but I would like a decent run of non 3-legging before I consider training her again. I don't want to have to explain to John any circumstances which may surround a possible 3 legging event which is anything out of the ordinary. Baring in mind that this time last year, her patella issue wasn't noticeably apparent and yet when I tried to jump her she came up on three legs.

So we might just be looking at a much more positive scenario with no repeat surgery on the horizon - fingers firmly crossed. Its certainly looking slightly less gloomy then it was in the last fortnight. 

Friday, August 17, 2012

Kenz's first trip back to the dog pool

Having decided we may need to go a different tact with rebuilding the remainder of her muscle wastage I was tossing up the thought of taking her for a return trip to the dog pool. We haven't been there in years however I decided swimming would probably give her the best chance at getting back to competing and with the weather making the alternative swimming options (beach or creek) a little counter productive to much swimming I figured I'd take her and see how she got on.

I wasn't sure how she would cope as there was no way I could afford to take both dogs so Kenz would have to go without Ness. Kenz started off a little unsure but once she got over that she had a blast.

I was hoping to get more lap swimming and less retrieving but all she seemed to want to do was swim in circles in the middle which I felt was counter productive to the goal. I ended up mixing up swimming laps with having her swim straight retrieves.

She was starting to show a bit of fatigue towards the end but still managed to swim for most of the 30 min session.

So now its fingers crossed and hoping she pulls up 100% sound later this evening. She seemed sound enough when we left the pool and on the way back to the car so hoping everything is ok.

The only disappointment for me was I thought I might have a BC with flat batteries at least for a little while. No such luck though we returned home and she was raring to go and could have gone another round.

Back again next week. Will try and take her a couple of times a week for the next month and see if it helps.

ETA. Well its now 9:30pm and bed time and while she is looking slightly sore and stiff she is doing so much better then I might have expected. She waited for me to put her back on track coat on and then promptly jumped up on my bed. A first since she had surgery. Normally she waits to be lifted up.  Small steps forward :).

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Monthly Follow Up with John

After a few days of 3 legged episodes I decided to contact John who said he was happy to reassess Kenz this week so we could make decisions sooner rather than wait till next week.

Kenz got a pretty thorough going over this morning. She is moving well and using the leg well. Nothing out of the ordinary to be found anywhere. She has regained most of the wasted muscle in her LH but there is still a slight difference between her LH and her RH so still room for improvement. Her patella stability has improved from her last appointment. John could still get it to pop out but it goes back in almost spontaneously. He isn't entirely sure what is causing the problem at this stage and has suggested videoing a 3 legged episode if I can. He couldn't find anything the matter with her spine.

He went over with what he found in surgery again and said he still felt her groove was sufficient and that her tibial tuberosity was in good alignment. He explained that if he went in to do further surgery he would probably over correct her tibial tuberosity and tighten things up still further and would reassess the groove.

She currently weighs around 13.7kg which John felt was a good weight for her.

He wants me to keep doing as I am with her in relation to her rehab and he will see her back in another month when she should be back to 100% unless the leg still keeps bothering her.

Friday, August 10, 2012

13 Weeks Down

So we are at the start of week 14 and this last week hasn't been totally "good" news. A couple more 3 legging incidents earlier in the week and a quite bad one on Monday evening means that the discussion is very much as to whether Kenz will need a second operation. At this stage while John (and I) are both keen to avoid a second operation if her knee is what is causing the 3 legging episodes then there is more that can be done and the verdict seems to be we should do it.

Another 10 days until her next appointment with John.

The rest of the week she hasn't been to bad. I have let her go a bit and we are trying to just increase her overall fitness and hopefully the muscle support. I have taken advantage of some decent weather and she has had a couple of trips to the beach where I have just let her go and she has been back to her old mad midget ways. We have tried to fit in at least two decent sized hikes with some off-lead time over variable terrain as well as a bit of FitPaws Peanut work.

Fingers firmly crossed that the situation may still improve enough to avoid another surgery. Although its not looking that way as no sooner then I posted this we headed out for a 20 min leash walk around the local streets and yep it slipped again. Grrrrrrrrrrr.

ETA. A video of her afternoon FitPaws Peanut session

Friday, August 3, 2012

Nearly 3 months post-op

And the news just sucks - things had been going ok but now I am not so sure. The weather was glorious today so I packed the girls in the car and we drove for a walk at the beach. Kenz had come up really sore yesterday after her day at home but seemed ok on this mornings 30 min leash walk. We did another 30 minutes at the beach and she seemed ok.

I decided to take them both out for another spin around the block tonight just a 20 min walk and within 15 min she was back 3 legged lame and without a doubt the patella slipping was what was bothering her.

Sigh somehow further surgery is looking somewhat inevitable and I am not sure how to explain that to my parents nor how I am going to find the money for it to happen :(.

Very very frustrating.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Another day, maybe some more forward progress

After the "news" Matthew presented to me yesterday I was a little shattered still I sat down took stock of things and decided to make no rush decisions until she has been back to John. We need to rebuild muscle so we have an accurate assessment of where things are at so today we pushed boundaries.

Kenz managed 3 solid walks all of greater then 25 min :). She seemed ok and even managed some off-leash time on one of those walks. While she lagged a little on the middle walk I decided we would just push through it.

I also made the decision to give her a little go on the FitBall Peanut and see how she did. She was so excited to be getting a turn of something and seemed ok on it and doesn't appear sore as a result.

Any way here is the video of Kenz on the Peanut.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Appointment with Matthew

After a small amount of agonizing I decided to book an appointment for Kenz with Matthew just to see where he felt things were at. I'll start with the good news - he to thought her shoulder problem had improved substantially and had good range of motion - a small victory after all we have been through.

Her right hind - he could feel a substantial build up of scar tissue where she tore her gracilus muscle. However, he again said that would not be to much of a problem or concern.

Her left hind - not to bad he said she still had a fair bit of muscle wastage but the knee felt reasonably stable. He told me to make sure I stretch her hip out 2-3 times (holding for 20-30 seconds) before I walk her.

The bad news is there is quite a lot going on in her spine to the extent she is developing a number of substantial changes. She is developing quite a roached back and Matthew isn't so keen on her going back to agility but feels obedience may be ok. He told me to make sure I massage it to keep things as loose as I can.

At this stage his recommendation is to try and avoid to much free activity (or fence running) and stick with 20-30 min leash walks until she has been back to see John in another 3 weeks. So we keep with more of the same and keep waiting and seeing.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Conversation with Emma and other bits and pieces....

So we are now at the end of 11 weeks post surgery and still not really sure where things will be. John again reiterated in an email yesterday that things weren't as stable as he hoped and we may still be faced with the prospect of needing a revision surgery in a months time if the situation wasn't improving.

As was agreed earlier in the week I rang Emma this afternoon and had a fairly lengthy chat on the situation. She gave me a few ideas if it was her dog and I feel entirely comfortable with what we discussed. She agreed I had probably been super conservative to this point and that I really need to try and push through where things are at. Either the situation will get worse in which case surgery is likely to be pretty inevitable else the situation will be much improved with the increased muscle and no further issues will result.

So with that her view was to increase off-lead time away from home but don't encourage her to go quite all out (if I can help it), not stress about what she gets up to at home, to work to building her leash walks if I can and to try and get her to the point in a couple of weeks time before going back to John where we try a couple of 30 min leash walks and see how she does.

As to other happenings over the last few days - 

I have had a few emails with Matthew and he mentioned the possibility of acupuncture and at this stage I am not sure but do think an appointment with him is on the cards before going back to see John as well.

I guess the picture isn't super clear at this point but think at this stage its a case of pushing her a bit, seeing how she does and it will hopefully make the picture a little clearer one way or the other.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kenz Monthly Specialist Follow Up

So Kenz had her 10 week/monthly follow up with John this morning. Poor little girl I must be starving her as she has dropped to 12.5kg. Might be time to start feeding her up again.

Any way the good news - John felt the patella was more stable then it was a month ago however the bad news it is still slipping out the groove a little bit. She has regained some muscle mass but still has more to rebuild and the hope is that when she has rebuilt the remainder it will be more stable and nothing further will need doing.

At this stage I am to keep increasing her walks and pushing her and doing more sit to stand type exercises.

John also checked her RH and shoulder and said everything felt fine there.

No training for at least the next month and she is back to see him in 4 weeks time.

Worst case scenario is still further more aggressive surgery involving a TTT (Tibial tuberosity transposition). Effectively putting us back to square one with more rest and further rehab. So hoping we can avoid that.

As for how the remainder of the day panned out - hmmm I half expected it but by mid afternoon I observed some weird (possibly patella slipping but not entirely sure since I was side on and it just looked different) going on with her surgery leg. Grrrrrrrrrrr so much for John not intending on breaking her any further.

So sent a message to Emma and as things stand she is back to 15 min max walks for the next couple of days and I'll ring Emma on Friday and have a chat about what to do with her at that stage. This saga just keeps continuing :(. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

10 Weeks Down

So today is the end of 10 weeks post surgery for miss Kenz. Life is starting to get back to normal. The increased freedom over the last few days seems to have touch wood not resulted in any set backs and she seems to be doing well. She is back to racing along the fence in small doses and other than avoiding the stair case by choice she is doing fine around the house.

We have been a little rebellious in that she has had a couple of off-lead walks to the extent of her being happy to just trot along up in Brownhill creek along the track.

As to the where to from here - John wants to see her back in the next week or so to assess her muscle rebuilding so she is back to see him next Tuesday.

Emma has said we can try one 25 min walk over the next week (instead of the usual 15-20 min) and also add in 5 minutes of training every third day for the next 2 weeks and so long as there is no increase in 3 leggedness after the 2 weeks we can move to 10 minutes every second day.

I also have to start finding more hills for her to leash walk up/down and across.

So we have progress :).

I thought I'd also post a video of her walking out the front tonight - so far so good she seems to be moving without to many issues.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Kenz Physio Appointment

So Kenz had her appointment with Emma this afternoon. The good news is that the patella stability was apparently slightly improved but she also didn't push it to much. Apparently the crepitus Emma felt three weeks ago she didn't feel this time. She did however feel that there is still some lateral movement of the patella though. Emma thinks Kenz has about a 20-30% improvement in muscle since her appointment 3 weeks ago. Like last time Kenz had some soreness higher up in the surgery leg but also had some significant soreness in the joints leading out from the spine on both sides.

At this stage we are to continue on as we are with gradually building leash walks. She is allowed to start being loose around the house more often and it was suggested I gradually build up to leaving her loose when I am not around.

She did make the comment that if the surgery had been completely hassle free at this point Kenz should be free to do as she pleases but can understand my hesitation in leaving her unsupervised for a full day.

Lots of sounding a little more hopeful that things may one day be back to normal and we may yet get back to doing what we love to do.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Kenz Another Rocky Evening

So the walks have been continuing and she is lapping up every moment of it. Things had been going mostly ok until yesterday afternoon. For whatever reason every time Kenz got up there was an unquestionably, sore and very sorry border collie who was on 3 legs and really battling.

Today was an improvement. She spent the day mostly in the car tagging along to her older sisters tracking trial and having cuddles on Karron's lap. Such a sooky little girl.

Fingers crossed the latest is just general muscular soreness and nothing much to worry about rather than being related to the patella as such.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Week 9

Tomorrow marks the end of 9 weeks since Kenz's surgery. This week has been slightly improved over last week in that we have had less 3-legged lameness episodes and a run of a few consecutive days where she hasn't been to bad at all. She has been happy with her 2 or sometimes 3 x 20 min walks, feral at home and otherwise not looking to bad.

She is due to see Emma again next week and things seemed to be ok. Tonight the picture is looking a little less rosie. For some reason she is mega sore and carrying the leg again.

Hoping she is better again tomorrow. At least she won't be spending the day in her crate as she would normally be on a Thursday and will instead be spending it laying in front of the heater, underneath my computer desk supervising my never ending thesis revisions. What a hard life she lives!!

This weeks photo is of her posing with her new Ruffwear Lunker toy which arrived this week courtesy of a Waggle FB competition which we won.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Kenz - Yet another 3 legged incident

Grrrrrr this time she was playing i-squeak in my bedroom. Nothing overly energetic. I turned around to see what Ness wanted and turned back to find the squeaking had stopped and Kenz was standing there looking pitiful and placing bugger all weight on her leg. This is insane!!!! She wouldn't walk, just stood there silently. I rolled her onto her side, gave her a massage and she was still reluctant to move.

After about 5 minutes or so she decided to get up and went underneath the bed to snooze.

I am so over lame dog. Well and truely frustrated with the entire situation.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Week 8

So we are through 8 weeks post surgery and while its still not smooth sailing it seems to be ok. She is still having random 3 legged episodes more frequently then she did pre-surgery. She is using the leg well most of the time though when she is walking.

After Sunday's interesting episode I contacted Emma to find out if I should still increase her walks and she said no just leave it at 5-10 min till Friday.

Monday night she was obviously uncomfortable in that she wouldn't sit or if she did would sit really slowly and started biting her leg. I ended up giving her a pain killer and that seemed to settle things back down.

She is now tolerating her 2-3 x 10 min walks a day (although they are more like 15 min walks) and is wanting more so thats a promising sign.

So long as things remain as they are we are able to start with 15 min walks tomorrow and hopefully there are no more set backs.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 52

Yesterday saw us head up to Monarto for a club tracking training session. We headed off with Karron and Kenz got to have cuddles and a few short off-lead sniffs around the area while we were waiting for tracks to be ready to run. She was using the leg ok and seems better off-lead then on.

John got back to me about what I noticed on Thursday and has said to hang in there for the next 3-4 weeks and see if things improve. If not he will reassess the situation when she has rebuilt some muscle and we will see what we need to do at that stage.

 After tracking had finished we headed up to the river to visit my parents. Kenz had plenty of time roaming around and enjoyed the relative freedom I gave her. No more leash restrictions so long as she wasn't racing around like a lunatic. She was moving nicely and without to many issues - in fact my parents thought I was having them on when said she had been really bad only a few days earlier.

Well that was until lunchtime today and she had been resting in the kitchen on the floor and got up and had a stretch and obviously slipped the patella and ended up back on three legs and an all to familiar picture. In no great hurry to put the leg back down until I came over and massaged it - sigh so much for surgery having fixed the problem.

She is worse now then she was pre-surgery and I am heart broken. We did however manage a 10 min leash walk around the block on a short lead and harness tonight when we got home. I am so unsure as to what the future holds for her its not funny and I am very teary over the current situation.

Any way I thought I'd take advantage of nice break in the weather and take a few photos of her getting some fresh air and having a potter round the garden up at the property.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Week 7

So today marks the end of 7 weeks post surgery and I would really rather the situation was a  little rosier.

The good was last night was the first night in 7 weeks I have had my black and white fury hot water bottle back. Emma said she could see no problem if Kenz decided to jump off the bed overnight so long as it was only the once or twice :). Kenz loved being given a little more freedom overnight without having to spend the night in a crate.

Today we started out with a 5-10 min walk before work. Hmmm not good. Kenz came up 3 legged lame on the way home :(.

She was left crated for roughly 7.5 hours while I was at work. Let her out for a toilet break and she was barely toe touching and not a happy camper.

I left her for a little while and we headed out for another 5 min walk about half an hour after I got home from work and she seemed ok although was showing evidence of fatigue in that leg when we returned home.

I just wish the situation would improve. She shouldn't be looking anywhere near as bad this far along and I am a little concerned :(.

Here are a few photos of Kenz happy to be back on the bed after 7 weeks of sleeping in a crate.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 48 (A Plan)

Its a gorgeous day, the sun is shining, clear blue skies and Kenz is lapping up being allowed out and about and having more freedom around home. There have been no more 3 legged episodes since Monday and I am quietly thinking life may soon be back to normal and lame Kenz will hopefully be a thing of the past.

John has said there is nothing she can do at this point to upset the surgery so that is a relief. Emma is hoping by the time she sees her again in 3-4 weeks we have built up to 20 min of walking twice a day and no more crating :).

Seems there is finally light at the end of the tunnel and no its not a freight train.

ETA. Spoke to soon on the leg has seemed fine while not on 3 legged she wasn't happy on it when we walked back into the house after our second 10 minute walk for the day (we had only gone about ~600m) and just before when I had her loose in the back room she went to sit and it was obviously uncomfortable and bothering her badly.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 46

Emma has just been and we now have a plan :). There was some twitching and muscle spasm through her surgery leg which she released and she has stressed the most important thing to do over the next 6 weeks is to build muscle. Some general overall soreness but the shoulder seems ok and no issues with the biceps tendon. The problems she are having a highly likely to be the result of not very much muscle support for the patella so fingers crossed it all works out in the end.

Kenz can start with 2 x 5-10 minute walks each day for the next week and can add 5 minutes the following week. Building up to 30 min duration. She is also allowed a little more freedom at home so long as all she is doing is walking around and not being stupid.

I won't say the last 3 days have been totally trouble free with half a dozen incidents of Kenz picking up her surgery leg for varying lengths of time. It is enough to worry me but as Emma said the patella needs muscle support to remain in the groove so she isn't to surprised by the current issues.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 44

We managed 2 walks today and Kenz thought they were the best things ever. She was bouncy, happy and enjoyed a small amount of freedom and being allowed out of the car to walk around the oval rather than left in the car while Ness was off exploring.

Kenz's version of a walk consisted of 1-2 minutes of sniffing and then she spent the rest of the time bouncing in heel position, asking to work. Bless her little white socks she is a workaholic that is for sure. She is happiest doing stuff.

I am still concerned about the verdict from John. I guess we can only see what Emma has to say on Monday. 24 hours later I am still a tad unsure of where things are at and what to expect in the future.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery 6 Week Follow Up

Back from her 6 week appointment and a some what mixed verdict from John. She has some moderate muscle wastage (to be expected) and the disappointing news is the patella is still luxating slightly :(. On a grading scale he probably only grades it at a half but not really the news I was hoping for. He is hoping with physio and building up the muscle that it holds it in fine.

We can now start adding leash walks back into her schedule and swimming and building things back up again. Her current weight is 12.7kg.

I am a little disappointed in the "news". I just hope she doesn't have to go through this again in the future.

In other news Kenz happily coped with going out to the DWD trial venue for a little look around and to try on a balance harness. The only disappointment was when we finished in there I walked her out to the car and she again ended up on three legs :(.

I have touched base with Emma and she has a physio appointment on Monday morning. Apparently it might not be all such a downer - Emma seemed to suggest some degree of subluxation is to be expected with that much muscle loss so I will reserve my judgement on whether its a problem until after Monday.

Kenz also got her first leash walk since surgery tonight. Just a short walk to the local post box and around the block and home again. She was using the leg well but I won't do to much with her before Emma has seen her. She enjoyed being out and was a lot better behaved then I anticipated.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Week 6

Today marks the end of 6 weeks post surgery and she is back to John tomorrow for a follow up. Things seem to be doing ok. I felt horrible for her this morning as before work she had a really upset tummy and I came home and suffice to say I now need to wash crate bedding and probably bath Kenz a little later. She is one miserable little girl :(.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 38

Today we headed out to SACA to meet up with Karron so that we could borrow a puzzle toy to keep Kenz amused during her rest. Here are a few photos I took of Kenz while she was sitting in the back of the car watching the herding. She was a bit frustrated at not getting in on the action but enjoyed her outing and is now sleeping quietly in her crate.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Week 5

So we have managed to reach the 5 week mark. Hard to believe as the time has flown. Back to see John next Friday and hopefully get released to at least start with some leash walking again.

Kenz is being super well behaved. Happy to chill out, get cuddles, stay quietly in her crate or lay on her bed in front of the heater.

All seems to be going ok apart from these random sporadic 3 legged lameness episodes in the evening. Another one tonight when I bought her upstairs after having taken Ness out for a walk to the post box.

Certainly counting down the days till we can start walks again.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 32

There were a few ups and downs towards the end of last week. After her dog bed episode on Tuesday night we had a similar episode on Thursday night and another similar episode on Friday night. John is not worried from what I have told him and has suggested using pain killers if necessary but not to get to hung up over the three legged episodes at this stage (well if I read between the lines of the email which suggests he isn't worried at all).

We have just got back from spending the long weekend up at my parents place in the country. I was a little hesitant taking Kenz along given mum is very anti-crating and just doesn't seem to get it. After we got off to a rocky start and being told I was babying her for carrying out the instructions the specialist has detailed after 24 hours I managed to win mum over to some extent.

Kenz enjoyed the change of scenery. She helped supervise collection of fire wood on Saturday, spent lots of time in her crate in front of the fire keeping warm and got to spend some time today and yesterday outside on the balcony in the sun chilling and watching the world pass by. We also had plenty of morning snuggles on the bed :). 

Here is a photo of her in her daytime crate on day 31 which was situated about 5 m from the wood fire. She seemed pretty happy to spend her time in there and was mostly well behaved without any major dramas. She did get a little more walking then I probably would have liked (the partial compromise for mum was that I didn't carry her around quite as much). She seemed none the worse for it thankfully and we managed to avoid any stupid behavior so thinking it should all be ok.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 27 (Week 4)

This blog post contains photos of Kenz chilling out on the cuddler next to my computer on day 27. The usual daily post surgery routine on days when I am working at home. She seems to be using the leg without any problems today so hoping what I saw last night is nothing to worry about. She was a lucky girl and got a car ride this morning to pick up the freebies from the Woofery competition :). I couldn't help but stock up on extra supplies while we were there. 

An email to John this afternoon confirmed that he didn't think my observations from last night were much to be worried about but did tell me to keep in touch if it got worse or any lameness seemed to persist. I am still pretty happy that she seemed ok this afternoon and this evening and was happy to settle to bed in her crate. 

Tomorrow marks 4 weeks since her surgery - who would have thought the time would have flown so quickly. Another 2 weeks to go until her next follow up appointment. 


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Kenz Post Surgery Day 26

Things had been going really well. No real evidence of lameness, bored out of her brain, we had a car trip out to watch the herding training day over the weekend and she was a good girl laying quietly in the boot of my car with me enjoying the sun. Totally relaxed.

She had cuddles with her favorite human Karron. She has started showing interest in her squeakie toys and just wants to be doing things again.

All was fine with the world until about an hour ago.

Now I am not so sure. We have had a few outings in the car today and are just back from taking Ness out to obedience. Kenz came along for the ride and we did as we normally do and I carried her inside, took her out for a quick toilet break and she seemed fine. I carried her upstairs and she went to get on the cuddler next to the computer and her back surgery leg seemed to give way.

I have iced it and given her half a tramadol and she is curled up fast asleep.

I don't know what she is done and I am trying not to stress out. Fingers crossed its nothing major and she hasn't damaged herself.

She wasn't a happy little girl by any stretch of the imagination. I ended up moving her bedtime crate into my room after sitting in front of the heater with her for nearly an hour.

Poor Kenz :(. I took her outside for another toilet break a few hours later and she was still very much on three legs. 

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 21 (Week 3)

So we have both managed to survive for a full three weeks of "strict rest". Kenz is getting use to her new life and is mostly good about putting herself back in a crate after she has had a toilet break.

Its becoming increasingly difficult at some moments though because she has decided she needs to go back to removing the yard of birdies/possums/cats ANYTHING. She has a few mad and heart stopping moments such as jumping up on the bed once or twice before I have been able to stop her but seems to be otherwise doing ok.

She isn't looking especially lame at this stage. She is using the leg really well. We enjoy our cuddles on the bed in the morning and she is even being well behaved in her crate while I take Ness out for the occasional walk.

Today was a "work" day so she had her usual long stint in the solid crate. She comes out mega stiff as a result but once she has warmed out of it she seems otherwise ok. Since it was a nice mild afternoon as a special treat we drove to Hungry Jacks and then shared a meal at the local park sitting in the sun.

I figured she could use a bit of fresh air and a change of scenery.

So pending John's view on her progress in three weeks time we are hopefully on the downhill stretch as far as "strict rest" goes.

ETA. A couple of photos taken on Day 22

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 14 (Week 2)

Poor little girl. I had to work today so she had 6.5 hours in a crate during the day and I came home to find she had been sick.

She is currently sound asleep on a dog bed next to the heater alongside my desk.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 12 (Suture Removal)

Back to John to have her sutures out and a quick checkup. The good news - he couldn't budge the patella at all. Its 100% stable. He was happy with the way she was using the leg as we walked in. The incision looked great. I am quietly breathing a sigh of relief we have got through 12 days without her messing things up despite a few little minor oops moments along the way.

She currently weighs 13.4kg so hasn't gained any weight in the time she has been resting which is another positive.

As for where to now - I have to keep doing as I am doing and allow the scar tissue to build up and stabilize the knee.

Next appointment is in roughly 4-6 weeks. Its at least another 4 weeks of strict rest as we have been doing at which point John will recheck the patella and hopefully all things being equal we can get the go ahead to gradually return to full activity,

Monday, May 21, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 11

Wow what a difference 24 hours makes. This time last night I was somewhat concerned about how flat and lethargic Kenz had been. It culminated with her putting herself into her crate and curling up in a little tight ball looking totally miserable. To say I was more than a little worried about her is a bit of an understatement. I knocked off a quick email to the specialist late last night and within a couple of minutes I was fortunate enough to have a reply.

The advice was to totally cut out all the meds and see how she got on. This morning she was still super lethargic. Basically got up had her breakfast and then crashed again. It wasn't until around 1pm that she started to look somewhat perkier. We had a drive to the park and she lay down with her i-squeak.

Come 4pm and she was well and truely back to normal. We headed out for another drive when she decided that barking in her crate was fair game and she wanted to help Ness chase things. The time at the park required hand in collar because she spotted the birds and as far as she was concerned they are fair game.

So I think I have my feral midget back :). Fingers crossed John is happy with her progress and tomorrow we see what the next few weeks might have in store. Hoping we can start doing a little more in the way of walking. I am still mostly carrying her around although she is wandering a little bit on her toilet breaks or on our outings to the park.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 10

Another day marked off the calendar - mostly forward progress and another step closer to getting back to the activities she loves. Today was spent out in the car with a trip to a local obedience trial. Kenz is doing remarkably well with "resting".

Not sure what John had to say to her but so far it seems to be working. Maybe he pinched her "drive chip".

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 7 (Week 1)

So today marks exactly one week since Kenz's surgery.

Since I was working today it also marked the first time she had been left home for any significant time unsupervised since her surgery. I was a little apprehensive about leaving her, especially since she was sick in the early hours of this morning.

I came home after 4.5 hours at the office and was relieved to find she was fine - sound asleep in her crate, quiet as a mouse and not in any real hurry to greet me. She was a little stiffer then she has been - her shoulder seemed to be bothering her a little bit as was her hind end. She happily spent the rest of the day snoozing on the bed alongside my computer desk.

We had another outing to the park and she is definitely more with things but still not 100%. She is moving ok but is certainly still a little sore on it. Hoping that settles down eventually.

One week done and dusted :).

Snoozing in front of the heater at the end of day 7 - such a hard life:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 6

So far so good - Kenz is still resting a lot of the time and keeping her restrained hasn't been half the battle I was fearing. She has spent the majority of the day snoozing alongside my computer desk without bothering to get up.

Last night was the first night she has managed to sleep through and not wake me up at 4am needing a toilet stop.

Today I have cut out the tramadol and she is still seemingly fine. She is walking fairly well on the leg when I have taken her out for toilet breaks. She was even putting 100% weight on the leg while toileting.

So everything seems to be going ok. She is due to have the sutures out next Tuesday morning so fingers crossed its all healing as it should.

Her afternoon toilet break resulted in her grabbing the nearest twig and barking at me - I think the fun and games are about to begin. She is obviously feeling a lot better.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Kenz Post MPL Surgery Day 4

Since Kenz's surgery on Thursday she has done very little other than snooze her time away. She had a trip out in the car to the shops with me yesterday but other than that we have switched between cuddling on my bed, laying on a rug on the floor in front of the TV, crated or laying in a dog bed alongside my computer desk.

She is still on fairly hefty doses of pain killers (3 x 100mg tramadol a day and 3 x 20mg carprofen a day) and so far the whole process is relatively stress free. She isn't trying to move around a lot and I am happy enough with her progress. She is putting much more weight on her leg and seems to be walking fairly well at this point. She is still showing signs of being fairly sore though - no real inclination to chase anything as such and not making any attempt to follow me or move when I get up.

The last 3 night she has also got me up at 4am each day for a toilet break which coincides with 6 hours since her evening pain med dose.

She is being very good with leaving the incision alone and only has to wear her cone overnight or when I am not able to supervise her. 

This morning it was time to remove the dressing and so I decided I'd take a photo of her stitches and post it below.

Friday, May 11, 2012

And shes home again (Post MPL Surgery Day 1)

I have my little girl back home safe and sound. Apparently she was spoiled rotten with cuddles at the specialist. She is still not putting much weight on the leg but she is otherwise doing ok. John said everything feels 100% stable which is the good news.

So we have to keep her from walking to much for the little while, she has pain medication to have as necessary and is due for a follow up visit in a fortnight to get stitches out.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

MPL Surgery Day

Kenz was dropped off at the specialist bright and early this morning for her MPL surgery. She weighs in at 13.8kg.

Its so quiet without my little baby girl home tonight. She has to spend the night as she will be on IV pain relief.

A rather anxious day of waiting for the phone call from John to say she was awake and to hear the verdict.

The surgery went well and was relatively straight forward. John tightened up the ligaments and reinforced the lateral side of the knee and post surgery the patella was 100% stable. There wasn't any need to cut bone and her groove was of sufficient depth so the post surgery rehab time shouldn't be the end of the world.

Now the fun and games begin - she should do well so long as I can keep the little devil quiet for a few weeks while she recovers :).

Be good Kenz and I promise we can get back to training as soon as your back on your feet.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A dilemma of a different sort.....

So tonight Kenz had her final Open training round in what will feel like an absolute eternity to me (and her). She did as she always does and put together a very special round. Her work was nice and accurate and it felt so good. The dilemma from tonight was a dog who was not interested in her tug, would not take a treat but who only wanted to work through the exercises to get to play with her dumbbell. I can see this will be a new and somewhat interesting challenge to face when we get back into training.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

So we have a decision

Kenz is booked to have surgery on her patella this coming Thursday. I am mega scared and really worried that I have made the right decision. I know what is ahead of us and it seems like climbing Everest. In the meantime Kenz is blissfully unaware and we are trying to make the most of it. 2 huge long walks today and a lovely UD training session at the oval. Considering she hasn't seen a UD exercise for an absolute eternity she happily completed them one after another as though she had been doing it her entire life. The hardest part of me is she has not had one single hint of a problem today - hard to know the decision I have made is the correct one when she is so asymptomatic to it all. Any way thought I'd share a video of todays training session - we have climbed mountains to get to where we have today we will climb them again and hopefully another 4 months and we will be through the worst of what life has to throw at us. We are due a run of some good luck so fingers and toes crossed for my little girl.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Back to see John

Given Matthew's verdict over the patella I felt a trip back to John was warranted just to assess where things are at. Its been two months since her last trip to see him and in that time she has now fully regained all her lost muscle tone and support for the patella. Well the news wasn't so great in that yes the patella has deteriorated to the extent its now classed as a high grade 2. However John is reluctant to operate on something which is causing her seemingly less problems despite everything else. Not sure what we are doing about it yet, I am tempted to have the surgery done and just move on once and for all but she is otherwise bouncing around at a million miles an hour and full of life so it makes the decision somewhat more difficult. As far as her shoulder is concerned we did talk about Sunday's incident after the mock trial when she was a total mess come Sunday evening. John has suggested further diagnostics and possible surgery for that as well but did suggest maybe just having a supply of anti-inflams for when it gets bad and treating it as it comes. I am leaning towards that at the moment because the shoulder has otherwise been not to bad. So while we still don't have a resolution I do feel I know where the situation is at with it all its just a matter of agreeing to a course of action with John and how best to continue to manage the little brat.