Friday, December 20, 2013

16 months - All clear

The x-rays were all clear at any rate. As you can see below the left and right hock look identical except for the soft tissue swelling in the left, but all the bones look good.

Lateral comparison. Left leg on the left, right leg on the right.

Oblique view comparison. Left leg on the right. Note the swelling in the soft tissue by the Achilles tendon.
Getting these x-rays was not easy. I was extremely unimpressed with the theatrics that Kili put on over the whole thing. Considering how well she behaved for procedures when she was younger I did not expect to have to deal with a thrashing, screaming, biting dog. It was actually ridiculous. And pain is not an excuse. I am sure the leg hurts, however, she started her dramatics when we just tried to hit a vein to give her a mild sedative. As a result of her thrashing and carrying on, her leg now looks like this:

Epic bruise caused by dumbassness.

Even with the pain killer and sedative she was an absolute drama queen, so I ended up hitting another vein to give a heavy sedative so we could avoid further bad experiences for her and get the x-rays easily. I did not originally use this sedative because it makes the heart work a lot harder and Kili has a heart murmur so it is generally advisable to avoid its use. However, I'd had enough with the ridiculous scenario that was occurring and decided I was willing to risk complications. Ironically, she actually handled the sedative better (from a cardiovascular stand point) than a lot of dogs in the sense that her heart rate did not drop as low and her gum colour stayed quite nice and pink.

Fortunately, after 2 days of antibiotics and anti-inflammatories and cold laser therapy I am seeing a marked improvement, both in the size of the swelling and also in Kili's overall demeanour. While there is still some thickness it is vastly improved. And Kili woke up this morning full of vim and vigour, with no hesitation to walk outside and jump into and out of the truck. She will continue her medications for about 2 weeks at which point I hope the leg will be completely healed. We are leaving on Saturday to visit Jarrett's parents for the holidays but I will be doing her laser therapy every day until we leave.

After some thought I think I have uncovered the mystery. 2 weeks ago today I went for a hike with some friends of mine. I brought both my hounds and they brought Kili's best friend, Cole. The path had farmer's fields on either side and in a few spots the fences were damaged. Summit is a good boy and never really strays off paths. Kili and Cole were gallivanting around. I noticed blood streaming down Kili's back leg so we headed home. After giving her a bath and cleaning the wound I found it to be a small puncture. She also had a superficial scratch on her front leg. I cleaned both well and didn't think anything of it as it healed over beautifully. However, the leg that is now a problem is the same leg that she had the puncture wound on, so I think bacteria got trapped and traveled up the leg. Interestingly, the original wound is completely gone and the swelling is a fair bit higher up on the leg, however I really have no idea what else could have caused this to happen.

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