Today is National Walk n Roll Dog Day! Lola and I are celebrating with cuddles and an extra treat! Find out more about the holiday here!
Some of you may not know this, but on July 20, 2013 my dachshund Lola went “down.” This is the term used frequently when a dog ruptures a disc in their spine. She couldn’t move and was in so much pain. It was a Saturday night, so we had to wait until Monday to go to our regular vet, because the emergency vet couldn’t do anything. Well, what they should’ve done is sent us to UofI to get looked at right away. Time is so important with a spinal cord injury.
When we got to UofI, they examined her and let us know we had two options: 1) surgery or 2) pain meds and rest. Lola’s spine was so squished by the vertebrae cushion that had hardened that she no longer had deep pain sensation in her lower half. In other words, she was completely paralyzed. We decided to do the surgery anyways to relieve pain immediately and just get rid of the disc so it couldn’t do more damage. I am so thankful for our decision. That day is still one of the hardest days of my life. I remember talking to my dad, wondering what to do and he told me to do whatever I thought was best for Lola.
When she got out of surgery, the vet told us her spinal cord was very pinched and that she had a 10% chance of walking ever again. They said to expect to do her pottying for her, because she wouldn’t have control of herself. It was hard to hear, but I’d do anything for my beloved pup. We did 6 weeks of crate rest and acupuncture (at Bortell’s in Bloomington – HIGHLY recommend them!) to try and get her to do her best. She went down to UofI about once a month for a couple months for progress. Slowly her deep pain sensation returned, which was a miracle! This was in September, so about 2 months after her surgery.
We continued with acupuncture and physical therapy and slowly but surely, Lola improved. Today she walks. Yes, you read that right – she can walk! It’s not pretty and we often call it her “drunken walk,” but it counts! She is truly a miracle dog! She’s surpassed everybody’s expectations and is still her lively self! She does use a wheelchair because she can scoot much faster than walk and will scrape herself if she’s at the dog park or excited. I love this dog more than I can express in words and I must say that going down is not a death sentence! Dogs can have happy lives even with only two legs.
If you’d like to see more photos and videos of Lola, check out her instagram: lola_n_friends!
If you think your dog is having back issues, please check out Dodgers List, they are amazing and helped me SO MUCH during the first few months!