Roo is really not enjoying her recovery


Roo’s surgery was on Tuesday. She did well, but that night more thunderstorms came through, and so, instead of the rest she needed, she spent the night petrified. Early in the morning, when she came out from hiding behind her thunderstorm spot, jammed in behind my pillow, I saw that she had torn the pressure bandage off. Most of the incision is between her toes, so she didn’t hurt anything by pulling the bandage off and she didn’t bother the wound. I got Dr. Stokes on the line first thing in the morning, and he said it didn’t need to be covered. He was going to remove it anyway at her followup appointment that afternoon.

Her paw was too sore for her to want to walk much, but she also didn’t limp when she walked for the few minutes it would take for her to go outside. She spent the day sleeping until I loaded her in the truck to go see Dr. Stokes.

It was raining when we got there, and refused to go inside. She was so upset that she lay down in the parking lot and began to tremble violently. I was close enough to the door to be able to open it and tell one of the techs and Dr. Stokes came right outside to examine her, in the rain. He was satisfied with the incision, and I took Bearface back to the camper.

She’s on amoxicillin, which always seems to make her feel bad. For pain she gets a rimadyl, but that’s also rough on her. But it seems better to give it to her because she starts panting when the paw hurts too much. All of that’s contributing to how miserable she feels. That, and the heat here. Today it’s only about 80 degrees, but when it hasn’t been thundering it’s been up around 90 already. Still, the first day, she seemed to have been feeling a little better than she is now. She even had the bright idea of wanting to chase a squirrel, which she had to be prevented from doing. But today she’s just lying around. I know from my lifetime of surgeries that that’s often how it goes, and we’re only three days out from the surgery.

Until the incision heals, Roo can only be allowed to walk fora minute or two, just long enough to empty the tanks, and that’s fine with her. She doesn’t want to go longer than that. But this morning, as soon as she took a few steps a little blood appeared between her toes. I texted Dr. Stokes a close-up photo of the wound and he recommended pouring a little hydrogen peroxide on it followed by a tiny rinse of water. Roo didn’t like that, but her trust in me is high, and she always lets me do anything that needs to be done without complaint. She looks away and doesn’t resist at all. That seemed to take care of the trouble. The wound is clean and dry now. She’s going to have to go out again later, though.

Being as skittish and hypervigilant as Roo is a big problem. In this godforsaken camper, any time I move, even when Roo is feeling fine, she is startled and now that makes it all the more difficult for her to rest. I try to sit still for as long as I can, but just so much as moving in my seat makes something creak. The bed also creaks. There’s no space in here, so she’s always underfoot, and though I have never once stepped on her, she’s understandably more wary than usual now. Overnight she’s taken to hiding, preferring to stuff herself to sleep in the spot she goes to whenever she’s worried, even though the full-size bed area I built for her beside the bed is just as safe and more comfortable. When she wants to hide out, she prefers the other, more confined space.

No thunderstorms are predicted for a few more days, but starting on Tuesday it’s going to be all thunderstorms all the time for days on end and we can not be here for that. It will be murder. Dr. Stokes said she should be healed enough to travel by then — even though the stitches don’t come out for another ten days — but there’s still the question of what the growth was. The lab probably won’t report until Monday, though there’s a slight chance Dr. Stokes will hear tomorrow. If he hears from them he’ll call, but he says it usually takes them five days and they won’t report on Sunday, so Monday is more likely.

Poor Chigi. There’s nothing worse than seeing a good dog suffer.