Monday, December 23, 2013
Health and care (Hoover’s new wheels)
After losing Shadow, Hoover has now taken over the geriatric spot by the front door. His back legs have become increasingly paralyzed though his overall health is good. We put him on thyroid and saw a HUGE improvement in attitude and interest in life so for now we have a healthy, handicapped dog. Because there is no quality of life to just lying around (plus muscles atrophy) I was looking for a solution to get him more mobile. While we were carrying him outside to enjoy the nice weather, he couldn’t go anywhere and days of looking at 4 walls or sitting under a tree were boring. He got to where he looked depressed and didn’t want to do anything. So I asked on Freecycle.org if anyone had an old wheelchair I could convert. Lo and behold, some very kind person offered one. So I cleaned it up, put in a new seat (with appropriate pee hole) and then had to figure out a way to keep Hoovie’s back feet from dragging on the ground. He was not too happy with me the first couple of days while in development as I experimented and kept putting him in and out of it. Finally I got the right combination and it worked. Because our ground is not level and there are no sidewalks, we have to help push, but it’s doing a lot for his front end strength and morale. We go for one or two short “walks” a day around the front yard. He seems much happier and can go look at things he wants to see rather than wait for the world to come to him. There’s not the space to use it indoors (plus, don’t think the other dogs would accept it). Gracie was absolutely mean to him through the fence – barking and growling at Hoover in his new contraption. But he just barked and growled back like – “yeah, I’ll take you on!” as if he could! I see a huge improvement in attitude between the thyroid and wheels and his condition is now pretty stable. For awhile we were sure he had only days because he was getting to where he didn’t even want to sit up anymore…but things are looking up for Hoover and his new Hoovermobile. Send me your handicapped dog pictures and stories – I’m thinking of doing a site just for handicapped dogs.