Tomorrow marks one week since Dory’s tumor-removal surgery, and judging by the fresh pee stains on our carpet, I’d say she’s made a complete recovery.
I haven’t a clue how to properly housebreak an old, deaf dog but someone has to hold the key out there. We’ve tried the crating method, the pee pad method, and the vigilant watchman method, but she still just roams about the house and squats as she pleases.
When she makes her casual squat, we jump up and shout, “Dory, NO!” but it’s a totally reflexive response considering she can’t even hear us. We immediately take her outside, wait for her to pee again, and then smother her with positive reinforcement once she’s done. What this routine has taught her is that she can get some outdoor lovin’ so long as she first takes a whiz on our rugs.
Dory was totally out of it for the first 48 hours following surgery. We could drag her from room to room like a drooling Swiffer but that was the limit of movement. She had entered surgery a dog and exited a stuffed animal capable of respiration.
The vet chalked her lethargy up to her age and the fact that she was under anesthesia for an hour, which is like seven hours to you and me. Eventually, she regained her strength, recovered her energy, and resumed territorially marking every square inch of our home. Dory was back!
She only ended up using two of her pain pills, which is fantastic considering the market for them in the ritzier neighborhoods where latchkey Poodles and Weimaraners seek an escape. I’ll probably store up some of the pain pills from my hernia operation before venturing out there. Unless any NARCs happen to be fans of mine. Then I’m totally kidding.
With Dory back in full swing we decided to chase three more items on her Bucket List:
- Play catch with a ball
- Retrieve Frisbees in the back yard
- Chase the kids around the yard
In the end, here’s what she accomplished:
- Ignore all balls and Frisbees
- Make a break for it
- Be chased by kids in the yard
I suppose being a dog without any history of playtime Dory just doesn’t know how to react when objects are thrown in front of her. Add in the fact that her eyesight is probably limited to 18 inches beyond the tip of her nose and it’s really no surprise to us that she lacked interest. But this doesn’t mean we’ll stop trying.
What follows is a pictorial of this afternoon’s Bucket List fail.
Play Catch with a Ball
Retrieve Frisbees in the Back Yard
Chase the Kids Around the Yard
We’ll keep trying. I’m sure there’s a playful dog in there somewhere just waiting to come out. We just need to figure out how to channel her inner-puppy. For now, we’ll continue to play the “where’s the floor cleaner” game she seems to enjoy so much.