October 6, 2011 12:02 PM Subscribe
What else can I do to help my dog with hip dysplasia? I've written a book inside.
posted by whalebreath to Pets & Animals (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Stinky is the sweetest dog ever. He's almost two years old, and is a cuddly Boxer cross. (I don't know how to link photos so I'm breaking mandatory photo rules)!
This summer he was diagnosed with hip dysplasia, just as we were moving away from a big city in one province to a small town in another. A big part of why we were moving was to be closer to nature and the outdoors, and I planned to teach him to pull me on cross country skis, etc.
So the diagnosis was devastating, and the vet said that I should be limiting his exercise, which meant not letting him run around very much, not letting him walk up big hills, helping him in and out of the car, and not letting him roughhouse with other big dogs.
I did a lot of research and found that total hip replacement was pretty much the only option that would 'cure' him. It runs about 5000$ where I live. This cost felt SO prohibitive, as another reason that we were moving was to move back into my mom and get back on my feet financially. I've been a student for a good while now, plan on being one for at least another 5 years, and am super in the hole. I'm 26 and don't get help from either parent (still have to pay rent at Mom's place...it's actually not saving me very much).
So I put him on glucosamine and bought a bottle of Metacam and tried very hard to get him to love to swim (very unsuccessfully). For a couple months while we settled into our new place and a new town I just adjusted to his diagnosis.
So I went to see a vet here, who told me something different from the previous vet regarding exercise. This vet said that I could let Stinky run as much as he wants, and let him play with other dogs. Stinky doesn't seem to be in a whole lot of pain on a day by day basis (and is no longer on Metacam), and the vet thinks he will just stop when he hurts. This is so different from what the first vet told me (and a much more appealing path), but I feel nervous because their opinions vary so much. So the first question coming out of this is which vet should I listen to? How much should I let Stinky run around and play? I've been letting him run off leash a little more and play with a couple dog friends he's made.
I've decided that I want to do whatever it takes to get him the surgery. I want us to be able to hike and snowshoe and run around together. I hate going on outdoor adventures without him.
My second question is about fundraising for the surgery. I've already decided to start a dog walking business, since I try to take Stinky around the pond twice a day anyways. He also doesn't have many friends here, and so a couple walking pals would be nice for him. Finally it will motivate me on days I'm feeling lethargic/stressed to make sure Stinky gets his walk in. I'm going to use all the revenue generated from this towards his surgery. I'm debating whether to charge a fee or ask people to just donate. That's my third question: Should I ask people to pay an hourly rate or just take donations? Donations would mean people could pay what they can afford, and some would maybe pay more than an hourly rate. If I do ask for donations, should I suggest a range? What's a reasonable price for an hour of dog walking?
Kay I know I've asked a million questions already but I just feel like there's so much to think about. So to pay for the surgery I've also thought about, and could use help with
other fundraising options?
I was thinking of doing a bottle drive, making Christmas cards with Stinky on them, and setting up some kind of online account where people can donate. Does anyone have any other fundraising suggestions, or especially, does anyone know of any online programs or anything that would let me set it up so that the money goes directly to the vet, or to an account dedicated to his surgery?
To anyone who has survived this far, thanks so much for reading. I'm overwhelmed by everything and hate not having what I need to make him better. I'd love to be able to get the surgery done over Christmas break so that Stinky could recover while I'm still living at my mom's house (recovery involves crate rest for at least six weeks!).
Also, if anyone else has been through the hip replacement surgery, or who has a dog with hip dysplasia and wants to exchange stories, memail me!