We’ve never had a dog like Lily.
Any Golden Retriever is the best dog in the world, but our Lily came with an extra helping of oomph. Little did we realize when we brought that sweet puppy home that we had unwittingly acquired a turbocharged model.
Not gonna lie, Miss Lily was a major challenge for two olds with lots of hitches in their giddy up. We were not her perfect match by any means, but oh how we love her, and oh how the CE stepped up his game so she could play hers. Daily trips to the beach became the centerpiece of every single day. See how she runs:
Or rather, how she ran. Because during a particularly vigorous play session at the beach last year with her best buddy, Ace the Aussie, Lily gave out a yelp and then headed home with a severe limp. A specialist vet visit and some pricy x-rays later, Lily was diagnosed with a partially torn CCL (cranial cruciate ligament), the ligament that joins together a dog’s femur and tibia. Surgery was recommended. Not urgent, said the vet, but you will have to do it.
We balked. Lily stopped limping and started having fun again. On and off. She’d be fine for awhile. Then she’d limp. Then she’d be fine again. We heard stories about dogs that thrived without getting the surgery. We wanted to believe in them, because the rigors of this surgery – for Lily and for us – seemed beyond anything we could manage.
In retrospect, we should have just gotten the job done then and there. Because Lily ended up with a complete tear of the ligament as well as a meniscal tear and oh, by the way, the other leg now has a partial tear, too.
Surgery was April 18. If you end up with that most dreaded item on your calendar, I suggest you clear the decks. You can have a life, or you can have a post-surgical dog. You cannot have both.
Lily came home from Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy surgery with a shaved haunch, a gnarly incision, a Lick Sleeve (this is a lifesaver – avoids the miserable cone of shame!), a boatload of meds and three pages of strict instructions for her pursuant EIGHT WEEK confinement.
Things seemed pretty grim, but our day was brightened when a bouquet of lilies for Lily arrived from thoughtful daughters Tina and Angie.
Yes, the cats have to be in on everything. They love their Lily.
We’ve had steps and missteps. So determined was I to watch over her that I’ve slept on the couch now for a week and a half. And asleep I was when, two nights into it, Lily – who heretofore had not even been able to stand up by herself – made a jailbreak from her confinement pen and somehow managed to walk all the way upstairs. Of all the things your dog is NOT supposed to do after surgery, stairs are at the top of the list.
So we won’t know where we are with all that until we have our vet check Monday morning. Meanwhile, our English Cream Patient has surprised us with her willingness to obey and adapt to all the restraints placed upon her. Other than the middle-of-the-night escape caper, that wild and crazy puppy has been a very, very good girl. Did I mention how much we love her?
Update to come, next week…
I love that video of Lily’s perfect run! I saved it. She’s doing so well and truly prayers to our wondrous Lord and Savior for her continued and total healing will seal the deal.🙏❤️🥰🐾
Christi you gave her so much love the other night. A gift to her and to us! 💕
She has been a trooper so far. We are hopeful the vet will soon give permission for slightly increased activity. She is so used to living life in the fast lane that the slow down is a huge change for her, but her spirits remain good and we just need to run out the 8 week clock..