This afternoon, Chelsie saw Dr. Kennedy for her 6 week post surgery check up. This was the visit where they took xrays of her knee to see how the repair was healing. The plates and screws were incredibly clear on the Xray.
All news was good. Dr. Kennedy was very, very happy with how the knee had healed! Told us he could tell we had been working very hard, and assured me that the hardest part was over. She has just a little bit of arthritis on her leg, which is why sometimes she locks it up during her stretches. He was also happy to learn she was going through the rehab she was at my vet - he feels the underwater treadmill will help quite a bit.
So, what does this mean?
- We can now go up and down stairs in a controlled manner.
- She can go on her retractable leash and have more freedom to trot about on her walk. We have been "walking with a purpose" - which resulted in continued use of the leg over a given period of time. In short, when I put her gentle leader on to go for her walk, she walks like a missile for 15 minutes. I can now give her the freedom to roam a little on her walk. I will still make her walk like a missile on most of her walks though...
- Still no jumping on furniture or playing with other dogs.
But, best of all....WE HAVE BEEN CLEARED TO RETURN TO OUR THERAPY VISITS!!!!!
I am feeling an overwhelming sense of relief tonight. I was pretty sure all was ok...but you just never know. I was laughing with Dr. Kennedy about that - not knowing how much is too much, how much is not enough...I told him I screwed up on night one by giving her too much water, he laughed and asked if she threw up. Yep, I said, EVERYWHERE!!! This has been such an upheaval to everyone's routine...esp Chelsie. I am so, so proud of her for getting with the new program so quickly and being such a good dog. She has accepted my new rules and seems no worse for the wear. I am incredibly thankful for my parents - her little spirit would not be what it is today without the care they gave her over the past 7 weeks. I have no doubt that her not having to be in a crate all day with an ecollar has had a significant impact on her recovery.
So now, we continue on with the new routine..more freedom in the house and on our walks, stairs, no other dogs or roughhousing. Our last appt with Dr. Kennedy is month from now, which will be 11 weeks post surgery. We will likely continue to do underwater therapy, and hopefully, at our next appointment, we can talk about an agility timetable. My guess is that we will be cleared to trial sometime in April or May.
Thanks again for all your support.