Graceless

Pongo lives for the frisbee.  He loves chasing, leaping, flying, and retrieving that small green disc.  One of the activities we were hoping to do with our Cattle Dog was disc dog. We envisioned Pongo soaring through the air, jumping over our backs in pursuit of that frisbee.  We dreamed he would one day look like this…

5831198271_73f2936e48_bPongo’s able to catch some air and actually looks pretty good.

DSC_0159But, his landings leave something to be desired.  Pongo tends to land vertically, slamming down onto his back legs before the front even touch.

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There have been a few times he has landed with a yelp.  We’ve backed off on the high flying frisbee tosses but it seems injury has prevailed.

We knew something was up when Pongo started to refuse to jump up on our bed.  He would stand, staring longingly at the bed.  We would have to lift him up.  And when he did decide to jump, he would look at his back legs after the jump like something funny was going on back there.  There have been times when I’ve tried adjusting Pongo, while he’s laying on my lap, by scooting his back end and out came a yelp.

We took Pongo to the vet, who took x-rays and could only guess that there might be some calcification on a couple of his lower discs but the vet said that was a long-shot guess.  He prescribed some Rimadyl for Pongo, which I gave on occasion when he was going to be busy at daycare.

I wish Pongo could verbalize what hurts and where.  Instead, when I guess things are really hurting, he ends up picking fights with his doggie friends at doggie daycare.  That’s what happened on Thursday.  Miss Peg described his look that afternoon at daycare as “stricken.”  I would totally agree because he came home and crashed on the couch with a look of pure pain.

IMG_1816This boy is breaking my heart.  I don’t like to see him in pain and it worries me to have our 3 1/2 year old boy having back problems already!  On our way out of the daycare door, Miss Lindsay recommended a vet who does chiropractic and acupuncture work on animals, Dr. Palmatier at The Pet Stop.  I called immediately and was able to get him in the next morning (bless them!).

Dr. Palmatier took a look at Pongo’s x-rays, which he agreed didn’t tell us much.  He then did some chiropractic adjustments on Pongo’s back.  Poor Pongo wasn’t too sure about being manipulated like that.  If he only knew what was to come, he probably would have high-tailed it out of there!

The vet suggested that we try something called the Companion Therapy Laser.  It is a laser light that the vet rubs back and forth over the area that is injured.  The effect is much like acupuncture but without the needles.  It is supposed to help promote healing and provide pain relief.  We decided to give it a try because having Pongo pop a bunch of pills to manage his pain is not the avenue we want to be taking.

A small machine was rolled into the exam room, eye protection was handed out to the humans in the room (I think next time I’ll bring Pongo’s doggles), and 8 minutes was set on the timer.  EIGHT MINUTES?!?  You’ve got to be kidding!  Pongo can’t sit still for 2 minutes let alone 8 while someone is messing with him.  But, he was a trooper with Mama’s assistance.

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(Yeah, I know…I’m looking pretty darn sexy in those glasses!)

We have a couple more appointments for Pongo to receive the laser light therapy and get some chiropractic adjustments.  I just hope it helps our graceless but beloved boy!

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