Our beautiful ol' girl has been walking with a limp on and off for a little while. We took her to the vet and it turns out she has osteochondrosis in her right shoulder. She hasn't been getting the exercise she needs (because of the limp) and has put on extra weight (because of lack of exercise), which in turn is putting more stress on the shoulder. She is now on a prescription diet, pain/anti-inflammatory medicine, and can no longer go for walks (thank goodness we have a big yard). The vet recommended we take her swimming to get her exercise. We fortunately live close to the lake, but there isn't much dog access, so we do have to take a short hike to get her to the water. She did great on the walk to the lake and had a great time swimming, but the walk back was a bit hard on her. I think next time we may try pulling her in Henry's wagon. If you knew Mason though you'd know how little we think that will work.
She's always been a bit of a curmudgeon and she thinks she's a person. She has her own chair and if a someone is sitting in it you get "the look" and a lot of heavy sighing. She doesn't like loud noises. Yelling, gunfire, fireworks, you name it - it freaks her out, my sensitive gal. And if you are upset or crying, she is the first to be at your side. She's a good listener, too. I swore she wouldn't get pushed aside with Henry's arrival, but I have to admit for a time she did. That's not an easy thing to admit to. (Who do you think I took a gazillion pictures of before the boy arrived?) It's great now that he is older because he loves on her as much as we do, so it's almost like making up that lost time.
It's so difficult to think about her getting older and the struggles she may have physically. She'll be 12 this year and she's been a tough cookie. When she was about 10 weeks old she ate my pincushion and got a pin stuck in the lining of her stomach and had to have surgery. We still have that pin framed on our mantle. Most expensive little pin around. A few weeks after that we discovered she had Parvo. That is not something to be taken lightly. She weighed 16 pounds when we took her to the vet where she stayed for over a week and was 8 pounds when we got her back. She was lucky to have lived (especially because her vet wasn't that great we discovered on that trip). Also, we later learned that all the puppies in her litter died from the disease except one of her sisters.
Mason's a fighter and I love her for it, I don't know how we could have gotten on without her these past 11 years.
So, this is to you Ol' girl, keep on truckin'.