This week started off so, so promising. But the last 5 days have pretty tough on our poor Duke, and extremely tough on us, and we are definitely hoping for a less eventful time this week.

Monday started beautifully; we headed out to our favourite beach. Duke got to run around off the lead unaware that this would be his last “proper” walk for a while. We had such a lovely time he is doing really well off the lead (but we are still working on that recall). It was a little bit gloomy so it meant no one was around. Which is perfect for us. Duke, Karl and I clambered over rocks and Duke even took a small dip in the sea to retrieve his ball.

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Tuesday arrived and I took him for a leaded walk round camp. Then the poor boy went to the vets. We had booked Duke into be neutered over a month ago. All advice we have been given regarding “big dogs” has been to get them neutered to help aid the natural maturation process which calms down over exuberant puppies! We have also had several incidents of male dogs attacking Duke and unfortunately this is apparently common if your boy still has all his bits and pieces. Now neutering is supposedly a very simple, easy, everyday operation. And I suppose the operation itself was. The aftercare however was somewhat difficult.

 I was very worried about Duke so when we finally got the call to go and get him I was thrilled. While talking to the vet I could hear him begin to whine and cry. The lovely nurse said they would take out is cannula and bring him out to us. The vets cooed over him: he had been so good they told us. They spoke too soon. Cue a scene out of a doggy version of a “carry on” film. Duke escaped to try and get to us (Cannula still in). Was pulled back. Escaped. Opened the door all by himself. Pulled back. He just kept running toward us in sheer desperation. The nurse, vet and receptionist tried to get the cannula out of the wriggly dog’s legs. It was a funny scene. Eventually I went in and helped. But there was no way in hell that he was going to let anyone bandage it. So we headed home instead.  

He was definitely out of sorts. He slept most of the day. In fact at one point my husband and I stayed down on the floor with him. Wednesday I had to finish work early because he wouldn’t stop licking it. We didn’t have and E-collar as the vets didn’t have one big enough for him. When I had gone in to check on him there was quite a bit of blood. We managed to get a cone Wednesday.

Duke and the cone didn’t get on. In fact he was utterly terrified! The cone fear gripped him so badly that he wouldn’t eat, drink or even move when he had the cone on. Desperate for him to wee; we took the cone off. ERROR!! We had figured out three ways of putting the cone on. And unfortunately with such a clever dog we only had the times we could take it off and put it on again. By Friday he was just absolutely petrified and even putting the cone in his eye line caused panic.

 Friday he managed to pull out the stitches. More anaesthetic, £102, anti-biotics and new stitches. Unfortunately he had remembered the vet injecting him so this time she had to do it while he wasn’t looking, in the bottom, poor chap. Friday night he was exhausted and we spent the rest of the weekend eagle eyed desperate for him to not get over excited, lick the wound or jump about and pull the stitches again. We tried everything to stop him licking it and keep him calm but unfortunately he jumps about too much.  Sadly he got a little worked up Saturday and I’m hoping he’s done no damage. Unfortunately I can’t see as this time he has a sticky bandage covering it. Have you ever tried to give a bouncy, crazy 6 stone dog bed rest? It’s not easy.

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He’s slowly more like himself. But he is desperate to go outside and go play; he spend most of the day cuddled, stood by his lead or looking out the window. Over a week of restrictions left to go and we are both just ready for a nice long dog walk. Got to wait it out though.

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