It’s been a long time since I posted Tory’s progress. Since the last post, she has continued going to physiotherapy and added swimming in January. She continued to get better very slowly. She regained bowel and bladder control. She started standing on her own while she ate her breakfast/dinner. Then, she could walk across the living room when motivated by peanut butter toast. Next, it was tough love. Tory could stand/walk well enough to get around our (small) house. We put mats down on the wood floors and then we started refusing to carry Tory around the house. Tory looked drunk while walking; her back end swung from side to side and she had trouble walking in a straight line. However, she was getting around better. Tory would use a sling for walks on the sidewalk or the treadmill (when it was too cold outside), but she would require less and less support. Often, the sling was stopping her back end from swinging to the side rather than actually supporting her weight.
A few weeks ago, we decided to get Tory a cart. She would still be able to use her back legs in the cart, but it would stop the back end swinging and allow Tory to go for longer walks. It would take a couple weeks for the cart to be delivered.
We also started acupuncture with Tory. The acupuncture vet also gave us some Chinese herbs. Well, Tory has progressed significantly in the last couple weeks. I don’t know if it is the acupuncture or simply a coincidence, but she is getting around much better in the house and in the backyard (which is finally snow-free). Tory still looks drunk while walking, but there is a marked improvement. She still requires the sling for walks around the neighbourhood, but she gets around the house and yard quite well. However, if she tries to run, it doesn’t go so well. She ends up hopping on her back feet. Tonight we finally videotaped her progress. Not bad for a dog given a 30% chance of recovery. This was taken after trying out her cart (see below), so she’s a little tired. The video also makes it look like the hair never grew back on her back. It’s not a completely normal length, but it’s not as short as it looks in the video.
We arrived home to a UPS package that contained Tory’s new cart from Eddie’s Wheels. She took to it right away (with the help of some salmon Rollover treats). We will have to remove the “stirrups” on the back. They are for a dog who cannot use their back feet so that their feet/legs don’t drag. This video was taken about five minutes after Tory first tried the cart.
Hopefully the cart will allow Tory to come on longer walks with Kyan and give her a little more freedom. We will try to balance the cart use with Tory walking on her own in the backyard and house. I think Tory is going to like the cart!