The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

Quick Parker update

Before everything descends into 18 hours of post-election punditry and chaos, a quick update on the dog.

Last week he developed an infection around the site of his April surgery, complete with oozing drainage channel just below his knee. After a couple days of antibiotics, he's stopped oozing. We met with his surgeon today, and she said that the infection is in retreat, so he probably won't need additional surgery to pull the plates out. We'll continue antibiotics for three more weeks and I'll keep an eye on his knee through the end of the year.

The surgeon also hypothesized that the proximate cause of the infection was, ironically, his teeth-cleaning last month. She said she has observed cases where mouth bacteria can get into the bloodstream during cleaning, and interfaces between surgical steel and bone make good hiding places for them.

Fortunately, at 12½ years old, Parker will probably never have his teeth cleaned again—at least not by a vet while under anaesthesia.

So, Parker is fine, with no further ill effects except for another few days with the cone.

Totally exhausted

My move isn't really over yet. I still have about two, maybe three car loads at my old place. But they'll have to stay there because I'm totally pooped right now.

So far, the only casualties of the move seem to be a pizza stone and the connection bracket for my Nest thermostat. The latter is pretty annoying because I can't connect the thermostat without it. I swapped out my thermostat for the one that was in the apartment originally while the movers were moving, so it's entirely possible it's in a box somewhere. I hope so, because Nest doesn't sell parts.

And now, bed.

Oh, one other note: Parker got his cone off today. Happy dog.

Parker is having a worse day than I am

This doesn't happen often. Parker has a pretty good life, even when it consists solely of sleeping.

Today, however, the poor pup will have his teeth cleaned and a small fatty cyst removed from his eyelid, so he's now at the vet, hungry, anxious, and kenneled. Surgery is this afternoon. Then the groggy doggy will (most probably) suffer the indignity of a Cone of Shame for a few days.

Parker update

We just got back from the vet. The x-rays show that Parker's leg is almost completely healed, so he's finally cleared to go back to his play group. He has no idea about this right now but tomorrow morning he'll be very, very happy.

Now I'm about to run to my office, so I'm queuing up these articles to read later:

OK. Chugging some tea, and hitting the CTA. More later.

Dogleg

I published today's A-to-Z post a little late because I've had a lot going on this week, between the Apollo Chorus benefit tomorrow, rehearsals, and taking care of Parker.

Yesterday Parker got his sutures out. The vet said he's healing very well, no signs of infection or re-injury, and good progress on using the injured leg. He can go without the Cone of Shame while someone is observing him, and on Friday, he can have it off permanently. Both he and I really, really, really want that to happen.

They also gave me art. Here are his X-rays from two weeks ago, showing his right leg before and after surgery. Before:

After:

The after photo looks painful, but the vet and the dog both assure me it's better than the before image.

Another improvement: he can now go on 10-minute walks, increasing by 5 minutes a week until mid-May when he can go as long as he wants. We're still walking slowly so that he has to put weight on the leg. But today, when he gets his first trip around the block in almost 3 weeks, I'm sure he'll be happier.

Parker doing much better

Yesterday Parker got fitted for a new E-collar after I discovered that his long nose and long tongue were just long enough to lick his sutures. Fortunately the incision doesn't seem irritated or infected, probably owing to the massive doses of antibiotics we've got him on.

As for the primary injury, that seems to have healed remarkably well in the few days since his surgery. He's putting more weight on the leg, and has less trouble standing up. He still seems a little shaky in some postures, particularly squatting.

So Parker's biggest problems right now are bumping into things with his Cone of Shame, and the abject boredom of a smart dog getting only 15 minutes of walkies a day.

He's really going to hate this coming week, too. I've got rehearsals or performances every single evening, so he'll be alone most of the time. Poor dude.

(There is no A-to-Z post today because it's Sunday.)

Parker update: day 3 post-surgery

Parker is both feeling a lot better and a lot worse.

In the "better" column we have his incision looking great, him putting more weight on the repaired leg, and him figuring out how to navigate with the Cone of Shame.

In the "worse" column we have listlessness, sleep disruption, and depression from the drugs, the lack of exercise, and the Cone of Shame. His surgeon followed up with me yesterday and said this is perfectly normal.

I'm still watching him closely, but I'm happy how things are going. He gets his sutures out and the cone off a week from Wednesday. I think he can make it fine.

Parker update: home but on drugs

Cone of shame, shaved leg, drugged out of his mind: that's my boy. But at least he's home:

As I've been saying, the next few weeks will be rough. But he's going to get lots of attention, especially between now and Monday.

And then there's this:

He has physical pain, I have psychic pain. All because he ran up some stairs too fast.

Again: ouch.