Just a reminder of what had happed to Fritz -
On Easter Sunday, Fritz crawled out of our garden hedge with his hind legs paralysed. The timing couldn’t have been worst. Denis and I were away, and our trusted dog sitters had to deal with the trauma.
We decided against MRI and spinal OP for several reasons. There was no promise of success, and it would have been very stressful for Fritz. Not even thinking of the financial stress…..
But one reason was very personal and encouraging.
Last year during lockdown, by coincidence, I met on Éva Németh, photographer of gardens and all things countryside, as she profiles herself on Instagram.
She told the story of her dog Henry. He went for a spinal OP and came out paralysed. It all happened during the first UK lockdown. Éva and her partner had the time to care for Henry and documented it. Their patience and commitment inspired me, and needless to say, Henry is walking, wobbly but walking. And so is Fritz, bobbly but RUNNING!
We did quite a bit of research, and the stories on Google and Social media from other dog owners, who went through the same heartbreaking experience, helped us enormously and gave us confidence.
When we took Fritz home, he needed 24/7 care, shared between Denis and myself.
Some nights were spend on the sofa, and our backs suffered a bit too.
And then there was washing, lots of washing. Keeping all those old towels was worthwhile. I’m almost enticed to write an ode to the washing machine.
Feeding and medicating Fritz was very slow and messy but had to be done. It was forced, and my grandson couldn’t watch it. “It is gross, Omi!” And off he went.
But one day, when gently massaging Fritz’s left hind leg, I noticed a push against my hand, and that was the turning moment. My personal fear was that I imagined it, so I didn’t tell Denis until I felt it again. Can you imagine the hope it gave us?
From that moment, we noticed every day a little improvement. Fritz was dying to get outside, in the garden and onto the lawn. With me placing his paws on the ground and guiding his hind legs, little assisted steps turned into stumbles and finally, he was standing unguided. All his bodily functions returned ( I’m most grateful for that ), and he is the celebrated miracle at the Remarkable Vet Clinic (no pun intended, refers to Remarkable Mountain range nearby)
He even got treats send by well-wishers.
Now, almost two month later, cheeky as ever, more attention seeking and he is ‘almost’ up to his old tricks and even more spoiled.
So far, it has been all about Fritz, and we never mentioned Otto, his trusted and very loyal companion.
The first few days after Fritz came back home from the vet clinic, Otto did not leave the house. We tried to take him for his usual evening walk, but he didn’t move. He stayed and sat by-side his mate for days.
We are almost back to normal, and as you can read, this household has gone totally to the dogs, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. We got through this emotional upheaval with the help of the odd glass of wine, but now its time to toast the brave little trooper with my favourite: HAWKSHEAD Riesling 2020*