Friday, October 9, 2009

One year ago today.....

One year ago today, Ivy had her second TPLO. I am truly amazed by her progress. She runs, jumps, and swims like a young Lab. She will turn 8 in December. She has a trace of scarring if you look closely at her surgical sites and she doesn't really like you to mess with that area too much. I could not be more pleased with the results of both her TPLO's. She did have her surgeries in 2 different cities with two different surgeons, and I must conclude that whoever is training these guys is doing an excellent job. I still get very anxious when she tries any type of Lab acrobatics, especially on the trail or on the beach.....maybe in time I will get over that!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Checking in...Ivy has a new home

Ivy has had an eventful summer. We sold our condo suddenly in May and had to find a new home very quickly, within 30 days!! But, we did and have settled in nicely. The house is in a 55 and over active adult community, and is on the golf course. Ivy absolutely loves having her own backyard again! There are wonderful areas to walk and Ivy loves that. We tapered off our leashed walks during the summer because of the heat, but have just started that routine up again, with some cooler temperatures this week. We took Ivy to the beach the other day, where she was able to swim and run off leash. She had a blast!!! You would never know that she has 2 rebuilt knees! I'll admit that I still am very nervous when she charges into the ocean, but there were no after effects from that outing. It's been 11 months since TPLO number 2.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Ivy is out of sorts

Ivy has been acting a bit out of sorts for about 3 days. Nothing that we could really put our finger on, though. She seemed a bit more fatigued during our long walks. Plus, she was a bit lethargic during the day and not interested in playing with her inside toys. Her appetite was fine and she was not drinking any more water than usual. Pee and poop normal. She was just not right. So, off to see the Vet. Her temp was normal and both knees seemed stable and pain free. Her physical exam was fine but the vet also agreed that she did not seem right. She had some crystals in her urine so he put her on an antibiotic in case of a UTI, which she does have a history of. We have had some strange weather here in VA recently...lots of temperature swings from hot and cold and big rains. So, he thought maybe her joints were bothering her. She was given an injection of Metacam, an NSAID used to treat osteoarthritis. Well, the next day she was a different dog. Back to being the Ivy we love. Raring to go on her walks and playful. A good outcome and a week later she is still normal, so we are back to breathing easier once again.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

These paws are made for walking

Ivy is now coming up on the 7 month post op mark. Time has been flying by! We do the two mile walk about 4 or 5 times a week now. She still does not seem stiff or sore following the walks. The main issue now seems to be with the heat and walking certain trails with fallen gumballs. I think the gumballs must hurt her paws because she will be walking along and then just stop and hold up a paw. We take a look an brush it off and then she is fine. The heat does wear her out though, so on the warmer days we will walk where there is some water so she can take a short swim to cool down. She is a water loving Lab!!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Milestone: Ivy walked 2 miles today

We had a nice 50 something degree day here today, so we got out just before lunch to try a 2 mile walk with Ivy at Oak Grove Lake Park. This is one of our very favorite places to walk as it is a 2 mile unpaved loop around a small, man made lake. On warmer days, she can swim there. She did most of the walk unleashed, and at a steady pace, occasionally trotting. I think she would run, but she just did not see anything to run after. We had been walking her about a mile and a half a few days a week. But, the goal has been to get her back to where she was pre surgery, so I am happy to report that she seems to have made it. She will be 6 months post second TPLO in about a week. We have been back a couple of hours now, and she shows no signs of limping or stiffness. She seems to be hungry, but of course, she is a Lab!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Ivy is sitting normally

This might not seem like a big deal, but I noticed when Ivy went out into the yard to do her business, she sat down for a couple of minutes, just to sniff the air, I suppose. But, she was sitting like a normal dog! Both back legs tucked in! Not one or the other stretched out towards the front. This was really a first. We are now about 5 months post op from TPLO # 2.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ivy does Key West

We took Ivy into Key West for an afternoon outing. She did great on the leash in crowds of people! We were careful not to overextend her walking, so we stopped at a few places for her to rest. She visited the Southern Most Point in the continental US, a couple of bars, and Dog Beach. When we returned back to our rental house, she lounged by the pool, had dinner, and turned in early for bed. There were no after effects the next day, no stiffness and no difficulty getting up. We are very excited by her progress at this point. She is having a picture perfect recovery.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What a difference a year year ago today.....

A year ago today, Ivy had her first TPLO. We are quietly celebrating in the Florida Keys. Ivy had a morning swim down the street at a marina and then spent the afternoon lounging by the pool. What a difference a year makes!!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Ivy in the Keys

Ivy is currently rehabbing in the Florida Keys. We thought the change in climate would do us all some good. We are in a vacation rental for the month of February, about 16 miles from Key West, on Cudjoe Key. The house is in a residential neighborhood, so Ivy's walks will be increasing to 3 walks for 30 minutes, plus perhaps one longer hike every other day as we explore the Keys. Key West is very dog friendly, so I am sure that Ivy will be spending some time there as well. Wasting away in Margaritaville....

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Vet Visit-Venting

Ivy was due for her 3 year rabies shot so we took her to see her regular vet in Tampa. Apparently they cannot just give her the shot without an exam, so after that, plus some heart worm preventative and flea killer, we shelled out $187.00. You would think that would not bother me after spending thousands of dollars on her two TPLO's last year. But, GEESH!! I sure wish my kids had gone to Vet school!!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

On the road....pit stop in South Carolina

We are on our way back to sunny Florida for a couple of months. We stopped this past weekend in Pawleys Island, SC to visit Joe's brother, who owns a beach cottage and Ivy's mom, Lily. Unfortunately, Ivy does not remember that Lily is her mom and seems to think that the beach cottage is hers and hers alone. They DO NOT get along. However, we took Ivy on a well deserved stroll on the beach. It was very cold and the water was rough so she was not interested in swimming. But, she loved strollin'!

Monday, January 12, 2009

A Longer Walk Today

We tried Ivy on a longer walk today. We went again to one of her favorite places, the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail. This is an old section of Route 17 in Chesapeake, Virginia that was closed a few years ago when a new section was opened up, and runs along the historic Dismal Swamp Canal. The city is maintaining it as a multipurpose hiking, jogging, biking, and equestrian trail, that is 8.5 miles long. We walked 3/4 mile down the trail and back in about 45 minutes. Ivy did great. Joe and I were a little cold; it was about 45 degrees. We let Ivy off leash as there were not many folks out in the chilly weather and she loved that.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Life is good for Ivy!

So, I called Dr Stallings office today to schedule Ivy's final followup (14 week) visit. Lisa, his secretary asked me how Ivy was doing and I started a dialog about how great she is progressing. Lisa told me that the final evaluation is "optional." So, I opted out of taking her. I probably would not have done this if this was her first TPLO. So, Ivy is released to ease back into normal activity. She can now do some trotting on leash and some off leash activity is permitted. We will begin to walk her up and down an incline repeatedly (we have a handicapped ramp at our condo) to build up her leg muscles. We are going to gradually lengthen her hikes. Ivy is almost back to doing what Labs do. WhooHoo! Life is good for Ivy!!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Howlidaze-Holidays

Ivy is enjoying the Howlidaze. She has been doing so well in her rehab that we have started taking her with us again to visit friends and relatives. She does great getting into the SUV with her dog ramp. She loves Christmas with all the lights and smells and all the attention she gets. Her fur is all grown back on her TPLO leg and typical Lab, she is shedding up a storm!! She does about 2 15-20 walks as part of her rehab in addition to her potty walks. We go about twice a week for short treks to her favorite walking spots like Bells Mill Park or the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail. She returns to Dr Stallings around the end of January and we hope she is released for a return to full activity.