Cone of Shame

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For a mangy gang of farm dogs, our pups have had their share Beverly Hill’s surgeries. Yes, each and every one of our puppies have, at one time, gone under the knife for the same procedures the rich and pampered ladies of L.A. pay big bucks for.

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When Winnie, our English Bulldog, was a puppies she went in for an eye lift. (Her Upper lid was so droopy it was causing her eyelashes to rub against her eye. This surgery was needed to prevent blindness.

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A few years later Ellie May, our Bashar (Bassett Hound/Shar pei mix), had to get her ears “quilted.” (This was a result of her breaking the blood vessels in her ears from banging them off walls and furniture.)

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This past week Olive went under the knife to have her stomach stapled. (This wasn’t a weight loss procedure. We discovered that when Toby responded to the vet’s plan with, “Ok, but I’m up next!”) Rather this was a preventative measure they decided to take while she was already opened up and under anesthesia for her spaying.

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Great Danes, like some other dogs with large chest cavities, run a risk of their stomach flipping. This is quite often fatal as you don’t realize the problem until it is too late. So far we have taken preventative measures by feeding her three small meals a day instead of one large meal, as well as not letting her run or play for 30 minutes after eating.

This surgery makes it so it is pretty much impossible for the stomach to flip.

While they were inside her, spaying her, they went ahead and stapled a portion of her stomach lining to the wall of her chest cavity. Hopefully this prevents any future medical issues.

She came home the evening of her surgery tired, sore, and sporting a cone of shame that would eventually lead to the rest of us being tired and sore!

cone of shame

I know many of you have experienced the challenge, following getting a puppy “fixed,” of keeping a recovering puppy still and calm in the week following surgery. It is no easy feat. Now imagine keeping a 100 pound, emotionally needy, hyperactive Great Dane puppy quiet and still for 10 days after surgery and you can understand our fatigue.

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Prior to surgery she was a clingy pup, as is typical with this breed, but following surgery she is a complete baby and refuses to leave my side or the side of any family member in the area.

Olive is a leaner. She must always be touching someone. She will either stand on your feet and lean against your legs, stand in front of you pressing her head against your stomach, or follow you around so closely that if you abruptly turn there is a collision. This is just part of the charm and challenge of Great Dane ownership. (Which is why she is an ideal therapy companion for Tyler)

Now add to that personality a sharp edged plastic cone and you end up with bruised and bleeding family members. She doesn’t seem to understand that she is limited and has spent the last week tearing up our legs with every lean, and knocking over every breakable in the house as she forces her cone covered self through spaces she used to be able to fit through.

Just when I thought we were in the home stretch of things returning to normal, she broke out of the house when backs were turned, and then proceeded to run, jump, and pirouette around the front yard, in joyful exuberance…finally free of the leash she has been walked on since surgery.

The result: torn stitches, internal bleeding and  round 2 of surgery.

So here we are, back to day 3 of recovery.

So if you stop by and find us all wearing snow suits and shin guards in this 78 degree heat you’ll know why.

The Cone of Shame is Back in Play!

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