Straydog UPDATE posted FRIDAY 5/30/03 at ~10:11 p.m. CT

Pat's Daily Dog Log

FRIDAY MAY 30 2003

Emily goes to Dallas for her knee operation

     Bill and I left at a little after seven o'clock this morning with Emily in the back of Bill's car on the 83-mile trip to Dallas Veterinary Surgery Center where Dr. Darryl McDonald would be performing surgery to repair the cruciate ligament tear in Emily's right knee.

Emily sits on Pat's lap in the waiting room at Dallas Veterinary Surgical Center.

     By 9:00 a.m. we were at the surgery center on Trinity Mills Road just west of the tollway in Dallas, and we saw Dr. McDonald right away. We know him well as he has performed surgeries on several of the other dogs in our care over the years, and this vet is a wonderful specialist in this field.

Emily is a very active little dog!

     Our question is always, "How could this have happened?" And Dr. McDonald's answer is that this type of injury is an "athletic injury," and in a way we should feel good because it shows that we allow the dogs to have a lot of room to run and play, which is very important for them to have a happy life, and because of their having the room to be athletic, these injuries can (and unfortunately will sometimes) occur. Dr. McDonald added that the rescue shelters that keep their dogs in small cages never have this problem, which we all know is very expensive to repair.

     Emily is certainly a very active little dog, and she shares a big kennel with her very active, bigger friend, Pokey, a good-size black Chow mix. These two fellas are inseparable companions and are always tussling around together and chasing each other around and around their big kennel yard.

We left Emily in Dr. McDonald's care and will pick her up tomorrow

     We've been through enough of these surgeries in the past with other dogs (including Sandy, Ol' Pup, Bobby and Susie) to know the post-surgery routine really well. We know that Emily will come home with a thick cotton "cast" on her entire leg and this cast will have to stay on for two weeks. (And the cast cannot get wet!)

     Emily will have to be kept quiet for a total of eight weeks, which means she will be confined to our big recovery kennel in the kitchen. She'll be able to go outside for several short walks every day, and we'll also have her go outside when her kennel mate and pal, Pokey, has his turn in the play yard. Both dogs, of course, will have to be on leashes so that Emmy won't take off charging around the play yard!

     The last time our daughter was over and saw there were no dogs in the Recovery Kennel, she asked why we leave this big kennel up in the kitchen when it takes up so much space. Well, managing a shelter with 65+ dogs and puppies, and sometimes very tiny puppies, we never know when this inside kennel will be needed. It seems to remain empty for only short periods at a time, and it has often come in handy for emergencies. (We also often have as many as three kennels in the kitchen and living room/office areas.)

[More photos to come Saturday]