Cheesie is a 7 year old desexed male Chihuahua. He has had luxating patellas as long as we have had him, and until recently they did not cause him any problems. However late last year he had a few seizures and we assume somehow got his leg caught during one of them - resulting in a much more unstable and sore knee.
Previously Cheesie has been a very active boy, and completed a 34km walk over 3 days not long ago, however since his injury he was unable to complete even a small walk without pain.
He went to surgery at Veterinary Specialist Services (VSS) on the 12th January this year to have his knee stabilised.
Following the surgery we were tasked with keeping our very active little guy quiet. Thank DOG for crate training as over the next 10 weeks that is where he spent the majority of his time.
So how do you keep a bright bouncy boy happy that is on confinement.
We did lots of things that helped to enrich his world.
Things we did included:
- Going to work and having one on one time
- Taking him for a drive - this was a favourite of his
- Involved him in regular dog walks (he went via the pram)
- Lots of food enrichment toys
- Target training
- Physio and balance work once we were allowed
- Smelling things (either on a walk, or novel things you bring home for them)
- Just sitting in the yard and watching the chooks and neighbours etc
- Brain games - see Crate Rest Crazies liink
Cheesie also has had several physio sessions and under specialist and physio instruction we gradually increased his level of exercise.
We started with slow, 5 minute walks and have built up to 20 minute walks. I cannot emphasise the importance of allowing your dog to smell and make the most of the time they do have out of confinement. That little bit of mental stimulation made a huge difference in helping Cheesie settle back in his crate.
Good news however. After 10 weeks of confinement, he had follow up xrays and it looks like the bone is healing well.
He is allowed freedom from the crate and can gradually build back up to his pre surgery exercise level.
This makes for one very happy Cheesie.