Post-Op Update: Workin' Hard, But Not Too Hard

Well, it’s been pretty well exactly 4 weeks since “I went under the knife”, which still gives me shivers just saying that. I’m doing pretty well, and if you’re following me on Facebook you’ve probably seen a bit of how I’m doing – but I wanted to write this post as an official update.

I’m also getting a bit more freedom as time goes too, which is nice because at first I was going a little stir crazy! The first two weeks were pretty strict in the crate and play-pen, only to be allowed out for controlled exercises and stretches. Now I’m on more of a “room rest”, which is nice.

Kind of like going from solitary to regular jail cell.

It also means I get to spend less time in that dang stroller.

crusoe in the stroller

But, I would have had a much harder time if it wasn’t for all my fans who’ve been thinking about me and wishing me well, not to mention all the people who sent me get-well cards and little toys to keep my spirits high.

In fact, it’s been absolutely incredible and heartwarming to see the reaction from people…

crusoe dachshund receives fan mail

I always knew I had amazing fans but this is even more than what I ever could have expected! Especially when looking at some of the creative lengths people went to!

Just look how happy it made me! 🙂

You know what they say, “squeaking is good for the soul.

Or maybe I say that, but anyway, when I’m not squeaking I still need to find ways of entertaining myself.

I do a lot of snooping around the kitchen, including test-testing, criticizing, and making demands. Home-made coconut ice cream was my latest craving.

crusoe dachshund on crate rest

I watched a lot of the Olympics, which sparked the bright idea that I should become an Olympic swimmer one day.

dachshund swimmer

And my upcoming water therapy would be a perfect way to start training!

I also took up squirrel watching, since I can’t actually “chase them” just yet. So instead I’m studying their habits and routines, developing a comprehensive attack plan for the day I’ll be “released from the joint”.

dog with binoculars

I’m just counting down the days…

But between all the relaxing and squeaking at home, I’m taking my rehabilitation therapy quite seriously! I know a lot of other pups go through exactly what I’m going through as well, so hopefully my routine might help educate others to the possibilities and importance of rehabilitation following surgery or a disc episode.

Here’s what I’m doing:

  • At-home exercises and stretches, to keep the muscles working, strong, and flexible. Like any other part of the body, nerves heal when they’re stimulated and moved (appropriately), as opposed to just sitting dormant for months. Some people still advocate for 100% strict crate rest for two months, but this is somewhat old-school thinking. Don’t get me wrong – I still need plenty of rest and time to recuperate and any exercise needs to be fully controlled (no jumping, leashed, etc), but physical therapy is very important in helping to keep musculoskeletal strength and regenerating nerves. Even for humans nowadays, physical therapy starts immediately following back surgery. Always consult your vet though!

dachshund leg stretches

“Hey, watch what you’re pullin’ on back there!”

  • Electro-acupuncture, helps relax the muscles and alleviate pain so the body can heal easier.

electro acupuncture dachshund back

“I feel like frickin’ Frankenstein!”

  • Laser therapy, stimulates blood flow to the area to promote healing.

laser therapy dachshund back

“The only reason I’m so happy to do this is because Dad promised it would give me super-dog powers so I can join the X-Men.”

  • Water treadmill, works a whole bunch of muscles and stimulates the nerves in a variety of ways! (motor & sensory).

water treadmill dachshund back surgery physical therapy

“I don’t love swimming, but if it gets me to the Olympics, I’m willing to do it!”

So, let’s take a look at everything I’m doing and my progress in this video!

So things are going well, and I’ve come a long way from where I was just 4 weeks ago…

dachshund ivdd rehabilitation

Thankfully! Sheesh.

As much as this was a dreadful experience that I hope never occurs again, the unfortunate reality is that IVDD is a common issue for dachshunds. So I hope that out of this experience, perhaps I might educate pet owners out there to how to help avoid this, and some good options for care and rehabilitation if it does.

Things are finally starting to look up again. I’ll be going to visit my fans in Calgary come October as the final part of my No Bite is Right tour, I have a little trip planned in November, my 2017 calendar is now available and is bigger and better than ever, and fans are loving their new Keep Ballin’ t-shirts!

So thank you all so much, for all the support you’ve given in all these different ways.

This picture says it all.

squeaking good for the soul

“Keep ballin’,”

~ Crusoe

Keep ballin’,