Monday, September 15, 2014

Our Dog Franklin's Surgery for Herniated Disc - Video/ What to Expect

Franklin ready to come home
On Sunday, Sept. 7 at 7:30 p.m. we came home from a dinner out (gone 90 minutes) to find our older Dachshund, Franklin (10 years old) on the kitchen floor with his back legs paralyzed and sitting in a pool of drool. We thought it was either a spinal injury or a stroke so we rushed him to Dogs & Cats Emergency Vet in Bowie. (See below for video a couple of days after surgery) 
    As we were waiting a couple of minutes, I felt his back and noticed one area that was raised. The doctor confirmed that that was the area where the disc herniated.

Daddy Tom and Franklin coming home
SURGERY RECOMMENDED IMMEDIATELY -  The doctor recommended surgery immediately for the best chance of regaining mobility, so of course we agreed. The hospital called in a neurosurgeon and the doctor called me at 10:30pm and told me the surgery would begin at 11:30 p.m. He called me at 1:30 a.m. after the surgery and said it went very well. Franklin had decompressive surgery of a herniated disc T13-L1.

COMING HOME - CAN'T WALK -  Franklin was in the hospital for 6 days and came home this past Friday, September 12 at 5:30 p.m. EDT. He cannot walk on his back legs, so we "tail walk" him by holding his tail (at its base) so he can do his business. His back legs cross, so it's going to take weeks / months of therapy, corrections, and movements to get him walking again - if we can. His right leg is stronger, but his left leg is very weak and crosses over his right leg. He's on 4 weeks crated bed rest except for being carried outside. His appetite never wavered, though. :)

Franklin held by Tom post-surgery
GOOD SIGNS- On Thursday, the day before Franklin came home, our friend and huge dog lover, Elvina, met us at the hospital. Franklin wagged is tail for Elvina and that's a great sign- it means he has feeling there again! After working the weekend with his legs, he is now trying to walk on his back right leg, but it's going to be a long road of recovery.

OUR NOTE TO THE STAFF OF DOGS AND CATS ANIMAL HOSPITAL: Thank you for all you have done for our 10 year old Dachshund Franklin who had a herniated disc. Dr. Neravanda is amazing. The vet tech who worked with us is also amazing. The staff was always helpful, patient and attentive. We were so amazed by the daily phone calls from the doctor with updates, and the amazing care. - This staff and facility wonderful and the care is great. Everyone was patient and kind with explanations, too. We would love to share this review for all. Thank you Dogs & Cats! Rob and Tom 
Confined to a crate w/pee pad for 4 weeks
1) Get the surgery done immediately
2) Your dog is in pain- get them to an emergency room ASAP
3) Understand that the cost will be between five and six thousand dollars
4) Get VPI Pet Insurance NOW (especially if you have a Dachshund) - they'll pay some portion
5) After surgery the dog requires bed rest for 3-4 weeks and will be on pain meds for a week (which may constipate them).
6) After surgery dogs bladders need to be expressed (pushing gently on sides of bladder to help them pee until they can pee on their own.
7) During the first week, put pee pads in their crates until the regain bladder control.
8) Carry the dog outside to pee and poop. Do NOT let the dog try to walk outside by themselves. You can always put a sheet under the tummy of bigger dogs.
8) Pooping is no issue, btw. - Hold the dog by the tail to do so (close to the butt, NOT tip of tail)

Gift/Memorial Suggestions

Several of our friends have lost loved ones (human and pets) and we found that one of the best ways to honor their memory is to give to an animal charity.
What better way to recognize a life of love, than by giving another life a chance for love?
We donate to many animal rescues, but because we volunteer with
DC Weimaraner Rescue and Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, those are our 2 favorites.
Consider giving the chance of life to a dog or cat.

About us

We're two married guys who enjoy the simple things in life, especially our dogs. We volunteer for dog rescues, enjoy splitting dinners, exercising, blogging, helping friends and neighbors, ghost investigations, coffee and tea, Tudor history, weather, superheroes, comic books, mystery novels, traveling, 70s and 80s music, classic country, piano, gardening, writing books on ghosts and spirits, architecture, keeping a clean house, cooking simply, and keeping in shape. You'll find tidbits of all of these things on this blog and more.

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!
Wondering what home project to do next