Monday, August 11, 2014

Ein: Increased Rear End Strengthening and Plans for the Future

Ein loves, and I mean loves, to play on his physical therapy equipment.   We have two peanuts, two balance discs and some paw pods.  Ein is wild about his peanut and just tonight I introduced wanting him to stand on the peanut with his front legs, and the balance disc with his rear legs.  This puts his weight on the rear legs, but also works the muscles there even more, because he has to maintain balance on the rear legs as well as having more weight shifted on to them.  

Ein tried to cheat!  He put his right rear leg onto the disc (his bad leg), but kept his strong rear leg off of it, so that he could off load his weight onto the "good" leg and still get his treats.  Nope, not fooling me.  We worked on this a little bit tonight, but it was really hard for him so we did not do a lot of duration.

We are doing a really cool class on the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy called K9 Conditioning taught by Debbie Gross and there are at least two Gold Level students whose dogs have hip dysplasia.  I am looking forwards to learning a lot from them!  The class is only two weeks in and I am really enjoying it.

I also made Ein an appointment for next Tuesday with our local vet to consult for cold laser therapy treatments.  I am very excited about this.  I have heard a lot of wonderful things about the cold laser for arthritic dogs and I am hoping that Ein can enjoy those benefits as well.  I will also have a blood test done to check on his liver, since for a while he was getting a daily rimadyl pill.  Since putting him on Dasuquin and taking him swimming more regularly and committing to these PT exercises, Ein has been able to go without the rimadyl many days.  I would still like to make sure that he is not experiencing any of Rimadyl's famous ill effects.  I would also like to possibly find a gentler alternative for when Ein does need pain medication.

I mean this with all of my heart: if somebody told me that Ein could live only six more months pain free on Rimadyl, or two years in pain without it, I would rather have less time with him.  Rimadyl terrifies me.  The thought of losing Ein terrifies me.  I am so bonded to him, so in love with him, I cannot imagine life without him.  But part of that love is giving him everything he needs to be comfortable and happy, even if that gives me less time with him.  It is not even a question.  What sense is it to let a dog live a half life, suffering and not enjoying what he loves, just so that I can have him still with me?  Selfishness.  If we can find a better medication that manages his pain as well as Rimadyl, I am game.  If not...I just want my dog to not hurt.  And if that means that I don't get to hold onto him for as long as possible then that is how it will be.   That is not what this relationship is about.

This got a little morbid and emotional!  I get this way about Ein.  Please enjoy a photo of him laying on his balance disc while I work on focus exercises with Perri.  Y'know.  Just hangin' out in case I want to play some more with him!  He is Simply the Best.

Real Dogs Exercise on Pink?

1 comment:

  1. I give my older dog CanineActiv instead of Rimadyl. Works at least as well without the scary side effects. And you don't need a prescription!