As this week was a holiday week I haven't kept a strict Diary. It has also been quite a stressful week which those of you who follow Dembe's page on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thedembediaries or know me personally will know.
On Wednesday this week ( 29th September ) Dembe had to go to the vets for the day to have some X-rays taken of his front legs. Dembe has had an intermittent limp for a few months this year and conservative measures of rest and pain relief were just not working. He was also showing signs of being stiff when he got up after being laid down for a while. All things we should not be seeing in a dog that isn't even three yet.
Dembe had to have both legs x-rayed, 3 different positions for each one and to do this he would need to have a general anaesthetic. We really didn't want him to have to under go a G.A but we had done all we could and we needed to know what was going on with him and that he wasn't in pain.
Dembe's daddy dropped him off at the vets at 08.30am and so began the longest day of our lives. We were told that we should hear something by 2pm and that if we hadn't we should give them a ring. Jay caved at 13.50 as he needed to know Dembe was ok. We found out that he was fine and that he had been out for a little walk and had been to the toilet. We were told the vet should ring us back in an hours or so.
The vet rang back around 90 minutes later and if it was actually possible those 90 minutes seemed longer than the whole of the rest of the day. Sadly she told us that Dembe has bilateral ( both legs ) Elbow Dysplasia, - you can find out more about ED here. The vet told us that his left leg is more badly affected than his right. However both legs are only showing very subtle changes on the x-rays. The x-rays will be sent to an orthopaedic specialist who will provide us with their expert opinion. The good news was that there were no bone fragments floating around the joint, so he wouldn't need any immediate surgery. As the condition was discovered early treatment will be conservative management, getting his weight down, physiotherapy and hydrotherapy. He will adore hydrotherapy as he is a water baby, as those who follow the blog know! We were allowed to come and get him straight away.
I have never been so glad to see my baby boy in all my life. He really wasn't with it when I saw him walking down the car park. Everyone kept telling us what a lovely boy he is and they thought it was so sweet that he had come down with his blue dinosaur. The vet nurse talked us through after care and said he would probably be out of sorts for 24-48 hours. She also told us that there was a risk of him having diarrhoea as that was a side effect of one of the medications he had been given. They had also given Dembe's nails a trim. She said that he doesn't like his legs or feet being touched, I said no doing his nails is a two person job!
When we got home I said to Jay do you think he wants to go around the block but Dembe made it clear that he didn't want to by going straight into the house and jumping on the sofa with his carrot.
Our little space cadet was really out of it.
Dembe had a really awful time after the general anaesthetic. He cried solidly for 24-36 hours, only stopping when he slept, briefly! Or when he was eating or out for a walk. He had awful diarrhoea as a side effect of the medication he had been given. As he won't go to the toilet in the garden this meant Dembe had to be taken around the block frequently. Poor Jay was out at 9pm, 10.30pm, 1.30am, 2.30am and 5am on top of the frequent trips around the block during the day.
The crying went on through most of Thursday, just a little whimper constantly. It was clear looking at him that he still wasn't fully out of the G.A. His eyes were like saucers. I was very relieved when his natural treat box arrived and he was very interested in it. The chewing broke up the crying.
He was so sad and pitiful it was heartbreaking that we couldn't comfort him. The first time he was really happy and started looking more like himself was when he had a present delivered from his Auntie Beverley. She had sent our beautiful boy a Turtle toy. He wagged his tail like mad and was so happy he paraded it around the bedroom!
That was the first time we saw a glimmer of the Dembe we know and love since he had come home from the vets.
He was still having diarrhoea on Thursday during the day so I had to ring the vets and get him some stuff to soothe his belly. The vets advised us that it might take 24-48 hours to resolve.
Dembe was a lot better Friday still a bit whingey but we had longer spells between cries and he spent an awful lot of time sleeping.
As you can see from the photos his eyes are totally different and he is fully present.
By Saturday he was completely back to normal!
As Jay went to go and see his mum, our neighbour and friend Kim walked him around the block for me so that Dembe could have a wee. Also on Saturday the diarrhoea was completely gone as well so he was much happier in himself. He really didn't do well with a general anaesthetic and it was awful not being able to comfort him.