Dog questions and comments: Start a new thread forum: Disabled dogs

 
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Imagepajonica
Jul 8, 2011 9:47 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
My little Yorkie (Shaggie) was born with a deformed front paw and is unable to walk very far, I am aware this causes him frustration and sometimes manifests it'self in messing in the house. Of all the dogs I ever owned he is by far the most affectionate, how do I help him with his disability? This is a real serious problem as we all love him so much (and he knows that) I guess I got suckered when we bought him as the seller told me he would be euthanized within a week if nobody bought him, well let me tell you that noway was that gonna happen! He's four years old now and I know he loves us all simply by the affection and trust he shows us. I have sought medical advice and they have suggested amputation of the limb as there is no way to repair the congenital defect. To be honest I'm torn apart with what to do for my little Shaggy. Crying
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
ImageLance
Jul 15, 2011 8:02 AM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
Sorry for not noticing this post sooner; I have been a but occupied recently (more so than usual). Check out http://cubits.org/Dogs/articles/view/358/ for an answer to another situation that may give you ideas.
As horrible as it may seem, dogs with 3 legs can do very well. I would think there would be a way to reset the defect, but if not, the decision will be difficult and one only you can make. Do your homework, such as watching videos of other dogs with one front leg and how well they maneuver, and go from there. I hope it works out well for you.
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes
Imagepajonica
Jul 15, 2011 2:05 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
Thanks Lance, certainly gave me some ideas there.

Jon
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 16, 2011 8:33 AM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
Hi Jon. Your Shaggy sounds like such a wonderful little guy. Just a few questions.
How old was he when you got him.
Can you post a photo of his deformed leg? This would give us an idea on what would be the best direction to go for him.
Then we can discuss your relationship with Shaggy and how to help him emotionally.
Also some tips on how to house train him, even at 4 years old.
Something you really need to think about before you start into making changes that will help Shaggy is to not feel sorry for him. By feeling sorry for him you will be teaching him to be insecure and even fearful.
Petrie taught me much about that topic, and I observe the results of others feeling sorry for him when they meet him the first time. As soon as they understand that he does not feel sorry for himself and is a very happy little guy, they change their attitude and Petrie takes to them instantly. Their feelings of sadness for him makes him feel unsure and insecure, as soon as that changes his attitude towards them changes.

But first we need to address the physical part.
Imagepajonica
Jul 16, 2011 2:58 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
Shaggy was just ten weeks old when we first had him, I will try and take a photo of his paw and post it asp!
Many thanks, Jon

After thought) He has been traumatized by the earthquake, now runs and hides at the slightest shake.
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 16, 2011 5:48 PM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
Do not try to console or sympathize with him. In the dog world you are encouraging that behavior you don't want.
This is very difficult for me to explain in the written word. Each dog is an individual with it's own personality, just like people. Only with people we can give sympathy and encouragement with words and affection, that works for us because we understand that form of communication. It doesn't work the same for dogs. It just makes them more insecure. If you could calmly and quietly, with no talking, retrieve him from the hiding place and go sit quietly with him. Don't pet him, make eye contact or talk to him, just have him lay beside you quietly until you see him relax and become calm. When that happens you can give him a treat. Do not give him a treat until he is completely calm and relaxed.
Imagepajonica
Jul 16, 2011 6:38 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
I find if I do that he will just retreat further into his hiding place even if I offer a favorite treat no amount of encouragement will persuade him, even if I manage to retrieve him he will run straight back and remain there until he's satisfied it's all over.
We've had hundreds of aftershocks since the big one on March 11, perhaps he has the good sense to get under cover! He senses the sound as much as 5 minutes before the shocks arrive, prior to march 11 we had no real problem with him other than his disability. His right front foot is twisted outward and there is a considerable muscle weakness in the leg, as result the left leg over time has bowed to compensate the resultant shortening of the right leg, he walks in what looks a wedge shape with his shoulder below his hip. Having said all that other than when walking outside he seems to have little or no problems with it, walking outside the trouble is simply he walks on what would be his wrist, which of course becomes sore very quickly.

Jon
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 16, 2011 9:01 PM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
It will do no good to offer the treat to coax him out. Maybe you will just have to let him hide while you are having a quake. As soon as it's over take him outside to go potty. Keep him in a flight kennel when not with him. Take him directly outdoors as soon as you take him out of the kennel. Watch for ways he signals having to go potty. Also clean all areas that he has had an potty accident your normal way, then use a mix of 1/2 white vinegar and 1/2 water to clean the entire area again. This gets rid of the pheromones that trigger him to potty indoors.

As far as the leg is concerned, if it only gets sore when playing outdoors maybe you could put a pad on that area for outdoor time? Have you talked to a vet to see what they say about long term skeletal problems with the leg and without the leg?
I know I have to watch Petrie's back leg joints to make sure he doesn't start up with problems. So far, since the muscles have built up and are supporting the leg bones, he is not having any problems. I had to do a lot of physical therapy with him to get him where he is today.
Imagepajonica
Jul 16, 2011 9:25 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
Hi Lynn, fortunately he has good strong back legs and the vet sees no immediate problems there, he's only a little fella so carries very little weight. We have had some success with a pad but they wear very fast! Hear you about cleaning up well which we naturally do as we have two young boys, however I was unaware of using vinegar I will certainly do that, All our floors are laminated wood and easy to clean with the exception of the tatami mat floor but he's never used that!

Many thanks,
Jon
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 16, 2011 9:46 PM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
Maybe you could use a bicycle inner tube to cut small patches out of and line that with a soft fabric?
Let me know if there is anything else I can help with Jon.
Imagepajonica
Jul 16, 2011 10:05 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
Actually Lynn I'm playing with the idea of molding a shoe in silicon, perhaps using a dentists wax to get a cast, create a plaster foot to make the shoe from. Once I've got the mold I can make any amount, thus keeping him shod. Added benefit would be extra length to the leg reducing further deformation to the other, What do you think?
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagepajonica
Jul 16, 2011 10:22 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
This little guy is really loved by the kids and shaggy plays with them endlessly, he has his own special toys and never touches theirs even though they will play with his, he is never aggressive toward them though he loves a good bark when somebody comes to the door. He's a regular good nature, loves me loves a cuddle and so do I. I've loved all the dogs I've had but this little one is just so special. Lovey dubby He's my baby and knows it! Rolling on the floor laughing Thumb of 2011-07-17/pajonica/7fd88c
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 17, 2011 12:11 AM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
Jon he is adorable.
Your solution to the leg is most wonderful. I agree, if you can do that it would help him stay sound in the rest of his body.
Would love if you could share photos of Shaggy wearing his new leg when you get it finished. It could be very helpful to others having the same difficulties.
ImageLance
Jul 17, 2011 8:37 AM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
The earthquake situation is challenging on top of the other challenges. I once helped a person with a dog that hated to go into the car. I typically do not use treats, but in this instance I used them for encouragement to overcome his aversion to getting into the vehicle on his own. I put a treat on the car seat, but that was too far away. I then moved it to the very edge of inside the car. He smelled it and grabbed it with encouragement. I moved the next one a little further in. After about 4-5 tries, he jumped on the back seat of his own accord. A similar method may work for your dog, encouraging him with whatever is tempting and rewarding for his own disposition. Lynn recommends no treats, but in this case it might be the motivation he needs, along with lots of positive encouragement, to start overcoming his fear and crawl out at least a little. The other option is to just let it happen, and when he comes out on his own, then provide a little attention.
Lynn is very correct (of course) in regards to the perception of rewarding bad behavior. So many people pet and 'console' their dog when they either show aggression or fear, or both, which only serves to reward and reinforce the behavior. I must say the same thing happens with many children, as well - bad behavior is rewarded by consoling instead of correcting.
Your extra foot idea sounds very interesting. How do you make your own silicone shapes? That could come in handy for many projects.
Here is an article I wrote a while ago on crates and training: http://cubits.org/Dogs/articles/view/293/
Now that I have re-read it, I realize I wrote this article in haste, but the information I think is all there. One day Hilarious! I will fix it up a bit better.
Keep us updated.
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes
Imagepajonica
Jul 17, 2011 1:50 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
Hi Lance and thanks! Reading your article has made me understand just what Shaggy is doing and why, his hiding place is under a large work bench that has a shelf about a foot off the floor, dark, quiet and safe, of course that's his kennel! He sleeps there at night too I've discovered. He is generally good as he will ask to go outside to potty but when he messes in the house is always during the night, Perhaps I need to adjust his feeding time? I spent last night with him just observing, he asked to go out twice at 2am and 5am.

Jon
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 17, 2011 3:11 PM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
Great observation Jon, both on the feeding schedule and watching for his potty signal. : )
Also kenneling at night keeps them feeling more secure and quiet, thus they don't usually have the urge to potty. They come to feel the kennel is their den/refuge.

Thank you for your words Lance. I am not very good at getting ideas across in the written form.. *Blush*
Imagepajonica
Jul 17, 2011 3:59 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
I'm really glad I came to this cubit for advice, I feel it's gonna help us through our current difficulties with Shaggy and therefore a benefit to all the family.
Thank you both,

Jon
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/
Imagevalleylynn
Jul 17, 2011 4:37 PM CST
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR zone 8
I know you will get it all figured out Jon. Just act with calm, quiet confidence and observe you Shaggy. Shaggy will tell you what is working and what isn't. : )
ImageLance
Jul 17, 2011 5:54 PM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
Glad we could help you out with it all. Since I do a lot writing, I need to be at least somewhat good with words. I also do a lot of reading, so I know lots of fancy words and phrases, but often the intent can be better communicated with what is simple. Between us, I think we got some good thoughts across!
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes
Imagepajonica
Jul 17, 2011 6:05 PM CST
Name: Jon
Japan, Ibaraki
I agree
Fortune favors the brave.
Tickling is no laughing matter.
http://cubits.org/DIYcomfortheserious/

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