Update Part One: Vacation and Dora

>> Monday, September 15, 2008

I realize now that it's been two months since posting something, because that's when we went home for vacation. We took Dora with us with visions of parks and tennis balls dancing in our heads. She flew with us in the cabin (she was just barely small enough) and was really good. My favorite travel moment was when the customs screener in Managua arrogantly stuck his hand into Dora's travel crate even though we warned him that there was a dog inside. He felt around, got a terrified look on his face and jerked his hand back which was immediately followed by her head popping out jack-in-the-box style. Otherwise it was an uneventful trip--I think we heard one whimper on the plan but it was totally justified because our ears were popping, too.
The first morning Dora woke us up at 7 to go to the bathroom, so we went to the yard (grass!) and I waited. A dog in a neighbor's fenced yard started to go nuts and she got a little scared and tried to run and get away. She ran behind some tall grass at the edge of a retaining wall but didn't know that it dropped off. She fell about 3 feet but landed really awkwardly and started to cry loudly. Dora has a penchant for the dramatic, but we knew this was something serious; she kept crying sporadically until we got her to the vet when they opened about an hour later. 

It turns out that she fractured her leg on the growth plate and that it would have been too complicated to fix at that vet's office. Our choices were to take her to a mega-vet in our same city for surgery or to drive a couple of hours away to the University of Missouri where she'd receive 24-hour student care that would improve her chances of a full recovery. We made the drive and then went back home and worried for the next two days.  We went to pick her up and were surprised that 1) she didn't have a cast (two screws and a pin instead) and 2) her leg was totally shaved and she had a big Clydesdale-style poofball on her foot.
The doctors told us that she would have to recover for eight full weeks. She was only allowed to be out of her crate if she was eating, drinking, using the bathroom, or under direct parental supervision. We're now four days shy of the eight week period and as far as we can tell she has done really well. It's hard to keep her from running, playing, and whining to go on long walks again. We think she's had a full recovery; she doesn't limp or favor her leg at all and seems ready to play and run and jump at full speed as soon as we'll let her.  I'm not sure what this picture says about Dora's recovery but it's pretty cute:
Dora kept us home more than we had planned during the vacation, but we still managed to do the things we wanted while we were there. Barack Obama made a surprise visit to our hometown, and we took that as a sign and made sure we got tickets to go. We had great seats and Obama's glory shone upon us and it was good. 
We also had enough time this trip to see family, friends, and the Cardinals.
Coming up next in the three-part series of updates: The Drug Bust. 


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