Sunday, January 6, 2013

Post-Surgical Bliss

Feeling a little dopey.
My heart is bursting with how happy I am about Margot’s recent surgery and recovery.  As you may recall, I took her to the vet to be spayed first thing in the morning, the day after Christmas.   I was nervous about the surgery because of her Von Willebrand factor, but Dr. Ellis said that she “did fine” during the surgery and had no real bleeding issues.  WHEW! 

The reason I scheduled Margot’s surgery on Dec. 26th was because I was off from work that entire week, and I wanted to be able to keep an eye on her.  I was really dreading her having to wear that awful cone around her neck because I knew Margot would probably just try to take it off the whole time, but when I went to the vet to pick her up, they actually gave me an alternative to the cone.  It’s called a Medical Pet Shirt, but really it’s just a “onsie” for dogs.  Haha!  It’s brilliant, though!  It’s made out of some kind of compression-type material that gives her a gentle squeeze around her midsection, and then it closes in the back with snaps and Velcro, leaving a hole for her tail.  Her entire belly and stitches are completely covered, and the shirt’s closures are in a place that’s pretty hard for her to reach.  Honestly, though, Margot hasn’t tried to take the shirt off at all, and, in fact, I think she kind of likes wearing it. 

When I brought Margot home, she was pretty doped up and just wanted to fall asleep, but her surgical site was still fresh, and it hurt her to sit or lie down.  Therefore, she actually kept falling asleep while standing up.  It was kind of funny at first, but after about an hour of making sure she didn’t fall and hurt herself and also not being able to get her to lie down, I started feeling really sorry for Margot.  I was afraid it might hurt her to sit or lie down for several days, but thank goodness that wasn’t the case. 

First night of recovery.  FINALLY lying down.
The very next morning, Margot grabbed her Christmas rawhide (a present from her Aunt Kristy), laid on the floor without any sign of discomfort, which was a huge relief, and she chewed on her rawhide until there was nothing left.  I tried my best to keep her from jumping onto the couch, but she snuck up there a couple times when I wasn’t looking.  It didn’t seem to bother her, though, except one time when she tried to jump down, which caused her to give a little yelp.  By the third day of Margot’s recovery, she was obviously feeling a lot better and even kept bringing me the ball, but I refused to play with her.  I hated that because I could tell she was really bored and didn’t understand why I wouldn’t throw the ball or wrestle with her, but I also knew that it was for the best. 

Margot's Frankenbelly.
By the fourth day of her recovery, I had completely stopped giving Margot her pain medication because she was getting on and off the couch without any problems, and she was running around a bit, playing on her own.  So, at that point, I decided to start playing with her again.  I took it easy, only rolling the ball a few feet away so that she wouldn’t take off in a sprint to chase it, but she didn’t seem to mind.  I think she just appreciated the fact that I was no longer ignoring her when she brought me the ball.  By Day 5, Margot was completely back to her old Tasmanian Devil self, and we’ve been playing our usual games ever since.

The only time Margot ever tried to lick her stitches was the first time I took the Medical Pet Shirt off to throw it in the wash.  I immediately put a different sweater on her, hoping that it would deter from messing with the stitches, but it just wasn’t as effective.  So, while her medical shirt was in the dryer, I took Margot with me to the studio because I was supposed to meet with my new partner, Mark, and I didn’t trust her to leave her stitches alone while I was gone.  That proved to be a smart move on my part because not only was Margot distracted by exploring the studio, but Mark also took a couple of test shots of me and Margot that day, which I love! 
Impromptu modeling at my studio!
Cuddling Daddy in her Medical Shirt.
I actually really missed Margot when I went back to work this past Wednesday.  I spent most of my Christmas break sitting on the couch and working on my laptop, re-designing my photography website and preparing for the upcoming Bridal Expo.  While I was working, Margot would entertain herself by chewing on a toy or ripping apart her Wubba for a while (she’s still in Margot the Destroyer mode).  After she got tired, she’d curl up beside me on the couch and sleep for a few hours.  Sometimes, she’d get tired of me being on the computer and would try to climb into my lap, despite my laptop and the fact that she no longer actually fits in my lap, at which point I would usually put the computer a way and cuddle her for a while.  She was such great company, though, as always.  I really couldn’t have asked for a sweeter puppy.

Anyway, I’m taking Margot back to the Animal Care Clinic tomorrow morning to have her stitches removed, and, as I said before, I am just so pleased with how well she handled both the surgery and her recovery.  I give a LOT of credit to that wonderful little Medical Pet Shirt, and I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone whose pet has had or needs to have surgery.  It is a genius alternative to that awful Elizabethan collar (aka The Cone).   

1 comment:

  1. That Medical Pet Shirt is pretty neat! That's definitely something I'm going to be look at for future dogs, at spay time. Elka was bummed out by her spay, and the painkillers made her seriously spacey. She seemed kind of freaked by the effect of them, really, and it's also the only time she had to wear a cone, so it was a difficult few days immediately post op.

    The good news is that post spay is when our friends finally listened to me when I told them not to let her jump on them, because not only would it hurt her, but THEY would be paying for any subsequent vet bills that came of it.