Saturday, September 27, 2008

Diary Of A Dachshund Back Injury - Part 4

One month after Greta's surgery, we decided it was time to get her back outside for a bit of fresh air and our vet gave us the go-ahead. The private school behind our house provided the perfect lawn for our first outdoor excursions. To help Greta get around, we wrapped a scarf around her belly to hold her up - much like a little puppet! Using this "scarf walking" technique, Greta was able to hobble across the grass with a little help from mom and dad, while allowing all three of us to get some much needed fresh air and exercise.

At about the same time, we also decided to give up the diapers and pee pads and just express Greta's bladder instead. Our vet provided a tutorial, but warned us that it would be tricky because her bladder was so small. She was certainly right about that! It took several weeks for me to perfect my expressing technique, but once I did, it made a HUGE difference for all of us! Even though Greta was not entirely incontinent, expressing allowed us to get her back onto a predictable potty schedule that drastically reduced accidents. To this day, we still express Greta's pee and poop by squeezing her abdomen (I promise that it's not nearly as gross as it sounds!), and it has become an easy, routine part of our daily lives. For people in similar situations (or those of you who are simply curious!), there are some excellent tutorials online including this one:

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