Thursday, February 20, 2014

LaMesa's on Injured Reserve…& We're All Going Crazy

A week ago Wednesday Dally, LaMesa, and I were playing snow tennie. We were enjoying the semi-warm early evening sun, playing around since the sidewalks were still pretty difficult to navigate. After a while I noticed she was holding up her left front leg, but I couldn't tell if it was from excitement of playing (which she does, often) or she was hurt. We continued to play for a few more minutes when I started thinking something wasn't right. So we came inside, where I rubbed her shoulders, stretched her front legs, worked her toes, and did everything I could to get a reaction out of her to see where she was hurting. She never really reacted out of the norm, but I declared us done for the day, gave her half a Traumeel tablet, and kept an eye on her.

Thursday she still wasn't any better, in fact she wasn't putting any weight on that leg, so I called our chiropractor to squeeze in an appointment. I was sure it was a soft tissue injury, but it never hurts to have Dr. Forry take a look at her (plus Dally was due for an adjustment). She was out in a few random spots (lower back) and out in the lower part of her left leg, but Dr. Forry said she had seen quite a few sprains in the same area (front legs) in dogs from running in the snow the past week or so.

Since then, she's been on rest. No tennie, no walks. It's been hard. Unfortunately we didn't do so well with the "rest" this past weekend because we were visiting my parents' farm and LaMesa had too much fun running around in the snow with her Swedish Vallhund uncle, then chasing my dad's "bad kitty" through the living room. In hindsight, we should have brought a crate with us, but we just didn't think about it.

We've been combatting the injury with icing her leg for 10 minutes in the morning and in the evening, as well as she's been wearing Dally's Back On Track blanket for a few hours every night. Traumeel is a regular staple, and she has been put in a crate when I go to take Dally for a walk (I can't not walk her).

For LaMesa the only positive to this injury
is the extra loving she's been getting from
mom and dad. But being injured is boring!

LaMesa doesn't appreciate the crate while we're out for our walks--you can hear her barking outside on the sidewalk. I even came home one time to see she had pulled the bottom of the crate inside some with her teeth…brat. And this was with a pig ear chewie in her crate (which she tears into with anger).

I'm trying to keep positive that she'll heal just fine and be ready for our first trial of 2014 in mid-March, but I still worry. With rest she's able to put some weight on her leg, though she turns out her toes to compensate for it. But if she walks around too much, she's back to hopping on three legs (which she's surprisingly good and fast at). I'm going to continue with the ice, BOT blanket, Traumeel, and rest for a few more days, and add in some warm compresses as well (thanks to an article Merinda recommended). If she's not showing much improvement by Sunday, I'll call the vet first thing in the morning Monday. I've put off the vet because as a soft tissue injury, I know there's not much they can do for her, but there might be a slight chance it could be something worse, so I don't want to risk it too long.

If you're interested in learning more about sprains in dogs, here are a few articles that Merinda sent to me that are helpful:

Have you dealt with a sprain/strain in your dog? Any tips?


  1. Sorry to hear LaMesa hurt herself. No real words of wisdom to add. Jimmy finally seems to have recovered from his limping episode in January. Whatever it was it took at least 4 weeks to clear. I still watch him like a hawk to prevent jumping down as well as his idiot antics when the TV is on. As my knee begins to improve, the dog walks have been getting longer, so hopefully better fitness will help him as well.

    Good Luck with the limp and keep resting her even after it seems better.

    I optimistically signed up for a bunch of march trials, and one by one, as the close date hits, I've been withdrawing. I'm not ready yet. I do have one on the 15/16 that I'm keeping no matter what. We need a benchmark before Nat'ls!

    1. Don't worry, you won't be the only one going into Nationals cold--I haven't done an agility trial since November due to budget concerns. We have a trial the same weekend you do, March 15-16, that'll be our "welcome back/warm-up". It makes me nervous to be going in cold but what can you do? Meanwhile, I'm stressing more about LaMesa's injury than anything else. :-/