The Great Spay Adventure
Tesla went under the knife this last week leaving her unable to procreate. Thank goodness! I 1o0% support and follow the spay and neuter protocol since working in an animal shelter, since there is no shortage of pets, we don't need to be making more! It twasn't cheap either, but it has to be done! Tesla was very popular at the vet's office. She even received a standing ovation as she left; everyone blowing kisses and saying goodbye. It's tough having such precious, sweet, and popular dogs. It really is.
Spaying is more invasive than neutering, therefore, the recovery time is longer and the importance of keeping Tesla mellow is greater. I was sent home with lots of paperwork including these instructions:
"No rough play or jumping (What? Tesla? No jumping?) FOR 10 DAYS" Oh dear.
"No getting wet or dirty for 10 days" You can't be serious.
"Check incision daily for 5 days" Ok, more like 7 times a day. Paranoid mommy over here.
"Do not allow pet to lick incision" Game over. I never should've had her spayed. She'll surely die of infection before the week is over.
The first couple days went better than expected. I gave Tesla her pain pills, kept her quiet, and she didn't lick her incision. "Hey, this isn't so bad," I thought "We're chugging right along. She'll be healed in no time!" HA. Nice try, Sierra.
Day three she started to get a little stir crazy. Norma was actually enjoying the vacation from our usual activities, but Tesla was not happy. I increased her chew bone rations and it took the edge off, but obviously wasn't going to hold for very long. We did some training to keep her busy, though we couldn't do anything too physical.
Day four bedtime-tummy-inspection did not yield the results I was looking for. She has started licking her incision! Crapola. She's in for a rude awakening tomorrow.
Dawn of the 5th day I borrowed a Cone of Shame. Unfortunately, this cone was a little too big for Tesla, causing temporary paralysis and sudden fits in an attempt to remove the satellite from her head. As a positive/reward based trainer, I don't want this kind of reaction. I don't want her to fear her cone, but for the moment, I had no choice. After work we stopped by the local animal feed store and I bought a properly fitting cone, along with a collar light and a backseat cover for the car. I didn't intend to get the extra items, they just jumped into my arms and ripped the money from my wallet. I had no say in the matter. The new cone is a pretty purple and she adjusted better. Only after refusing to move for 15 minutes, and getting "stuck" in various places in the room. Being a puppy is hard.
Day six we had to get out of the house. We all need some fresh air and a good distance between each other. Tesla was beside herself with excitement we couldn't take two steps without her trying to drag me on lease. Good thing I weigh more than she does. I decided to let her off the leash. She sniffed for a while then took off in a fit of zoomies. "Nope, nope, NOPE!" C'mon, doesn't that hurt? Back on the leash she went, until she settled down enough and was able to walk fine off leash. We had a good, long walk. Drained a good amount of energy. Man, we really need to work on leash manners.
Day seven. On Mondays we visit the horses. Tesla was freed from her cone (which she is OK wearing after lots of treats and figuring out how to navigate) and sniffed around with Norma for an hour. She was very excited to see my brother and we both had a hard time convincing her she can't jump on him. Man, we really need to work on not jumping on people.
Day eight. We'd like our old life back please! Mom had to work all day so the girls got to chill out and chew on bully sticks. Life isn't all bad. Little walk before it got dark, but nothing too crazy.
Day nine. I think we're going to make it. There's a light at the end of the tunnel. Just a couple more days and her incisions should be healed! I'm not basing this off the 10 day instruction, I'm going off of how the incisions looks. We're back to daily walks, but not back to our full exercise routine.
Tesla has always been a fairly low maintenance puppy. I haven't had any issues with her being hyperactive or destructive. I cannot imagine trying to keep an active, working breed puppy mellow for 10 days without tranquilizers. Hmmm, maybe that's how they make it!
How did you keep your puppy 'quiet' during a surgery recovery? I'd be interested to hear! See you next week.