Saturday, October 1, 2011

BigFoot Update by Mango Momma

This will be a wordy post, but I wanted to give a complete update on Mango's BigFoot.

We were unable to get a diagnosis, but it appears to have stabilized. At this point, the vet and I are leaning towards a mechanical failure, possibly bursitis, tendon damage, or some sort of hairline fracture.

While that does not explain why he responded well to antibiotics, I note that his level of activity was severely limited while he was on antibiotics. It is also possible that a structural issue had a secondary infection which would have caused his fever.

Right now, the swelling comes and goes, but never as alarming as the gigantic BigFoot.

Sadly, I am continuing to try and restrict his movement. This is hard on the big guy as he is keen to bounce, chase his ball, and do his dance moves. Even attempts at sedate leash walking often include him popping wheelies and body slamming me. I do indulge him in tennis ball fun even though it is alarming to see the way he bounces and torques his front leg.

His on and off difficulties have caused his gait and stance to be a bit splayed. He is also getting twinges from his left rear leg which has been a chronic problem with him.

Water therapy would be the best thing for him and we do have several facilities nearby. Sadly, the water therapy treadmills are all too small for him and the one place that has a pool involves steps and scary stuff that I know he would not be able to handle (even if they have a life jacket big enough). Due to health regulations (thank you Massachusetts), I would not be able to get in the pool with him and no way some weird lady in a wet suit would convince him to walk down a set of stairs into the water.

The good news is that other than walking funny and some small difficulties getting up and down, he is feeling great and is his usual happy self.

He is currently taking metacam for inflammation and glucosamine for general joint issues.

Since I have had some queries, thought I would just get it all out at once. No worries, Mango will be back shortly with a more entertaining post.


Reilly / Denny Cowspotdogs said...

it is a perplexing problem and seems to be one of those odd things. I know when Reilly was younger from about the age of 6 months to 14 months he went through this period of limping for no reason. We had all sort of test, x-rays and so on - they never found out what caused it and it went away by itself. We can only hope this will do that that too.

Luna said...

Sending big hugs and puppy kisses!


Jasmine said...

Strange how some injuries manifest themselves. We just posted about how our Sheltie's limping ended up being from an injured tail. Hopefully the Mango will continue to improve and be back to 100% soon.

Best Wishes,
Jasmine's Mommy Lisa

fabulousflo said...

Poor Mango... I know how difficult it is trying to keep a busy dog quiet. His foot does look substantially less substantial though. Maybe he needs a skateboard.

H and Flo

Benny and Lily said...

Mango poor baby, we have our medium feets crossed for your big foot. Hope it gets better
Benny & Lily

Of Pit Bulls and Patience said...

Aw Mango, you sure are lucky to have such great people. Maybe they'll get you a Mango-sized pool to do water therapy at home. I bet Dexter would volunteer to "help."

Cyndi and Stumpy said...

I sure hope Mango's big foot gets a little less big, over time. I wonder if a support brace, for dogs, would help when you walked him or played ball?

SissySees said...

Hrmph. Glad it's somewhat better, but sorry there's no firm diagnosis.

Having had stress fractures in my feet, I'm thinking that explanation makes sense... fever and antibiotics aside.

Frankie Furter said...

I am very much glad that there is at least SOME improvement.
Is is possible that he has had a curse placed on him. Perhaps by some spurned ... WO-Dawg???
Maybe we should have a
Say ON Se !!
It is the Month fur Stuffs like that.

Sarge said...

Hey Mango!
Wow, I'm glad you feel like your normal self, but I'm sorry you're still having some tootsie troubles. Here are some more of my healing vibes to keep you feeling good. Take care!
Grr and Woof,
Sarge, COP

♥♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥♥ said...

It has to be so frustrating not being able to pinpoint the source of Mango's problem. But it is so good to know that he is doing better. We hope he continues to improve and the mystery problem disappears soon.

Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, Ciara, and Lightning

Fiona, as typed by Dr. Liz said...

Mango, we're totally disappointed; you wouldn't follow a strange woman in a rubber suit into a pool of water? Really?!? Well, okay, we wouldn't, either. Make that, I wouldn't. If the strange woman had a tennis ball or vienna sausages, Abby wouldn't probably follow her anywhere!

Keep body-slamming the DOH - it's good for her! ;-)

*kissey face*
-Fiona and Abby the Hippobottomus

The Army of Four said...

What a mystery - and a bummer! What if the lady in the wet suit was holding a beef brisket or a whole watermelon? I might be willing to get my feety-feet wet if the pay-off was really enticing. Woo.

Amber DaWeenie said...

Mango, maybees you jus' wanna grow a little bit more and only one foot is cooperating!!!

Mango Mom...thanks for the update. It's always a scary thing when the vet can't give you a true and accurate diagnosis.

The Boston Lady said...

I know this must be so frustrating and I wish Mango could come down to his Southern Settlement and go into the salty, warm water of the Florida Gulf. Gentle waters too. The Boston Family hopes he isn't restricted too much longer. Ann TBL

Gus said...

Dear Mango Man and Mango Mamma.

I would be happy to offer our indoor jacuzzi tub to help in Mango Rehab. It is about 5 ft long (the muzzer can stretch out comfortably) and maybe 3 ft across at the widest point.

Probably not ideal for swimming, but it does feel good when the jets go on. Me and Teka love it!


STELLA and RORY from Down Under said...

Hi Mango Momma, its darn annoying when you can't find out exactly what is the problem. At least he appears to be happy, still wants to have a go at everything he can and I bet still loves to torment his brother.

Sending him (and you) relentlessly huge hugs.

P.S. I would love to see a lady in a wetsuit try and entice Mango into a pool. I feel a 'postal' coming on. Bet her wetsuit would be wet inside and out hehehe.

Take care all. No worries, and love, Carol (and Stella and Rory)

Tom, Tama-Chan, Sei-Chan, Bibi-Chan, Gen-Chan, Vidock said...

Hey Mango. I feel for you! I went through that restricted activity stuff and boy is it NO FUN!


Maggie and Mitch said...

Your tootsie is looking better, Mango. What a bummer that your momma can't go swimming with you in the therapy pool!

Love ya lots
Maggie and Mitch

Sue said...

Don't worry Mango, walking funny is no crime and actually adds character. Morgan and Tess both attest to this. The three of you could do a commercial together for glucosamine.

Take it easy on those body slams. You guys don't know how much they hurt.
The Portie Mom

Niamh said...

We are glad to hear that Mango's big foot is improving. However we are sorry that he can't practice his dance moves. That is a big sacrifice. But we know that the Mango momma and the vet know best so restrictions are in order. We wish that Mango could come swim in Jordan Lake with us - he would love it.

Your friends,
Niamh & Ambrose

Maggie Mae said...

If it will help Mango feel better I will put my head in his mouth! :)

Woofs and Licks,
Maggie Mae

Tessa the Maltese said...

You just get all better BIG Guy! I will keep my tiny paws crossed for you!

Woos, Tessa

houndstooth said...

It's so frustrating when you can't figure out what's wrong. At least it doesn't seem to be too serious right now. I hope that it keeps getting better!

Shmoo said...

I'll do some gimpy research and see if I can come up with anything

The Human Woman

1000 Goldens said...

Oh Mango, we hope your BigFoot continues to improve so that you can commence body slamming momma and popping wheelies! We are glad you keep your relentlessly huge spirits up despite any troubles. You are a good boy.

Just Ramblin' said...

Good to hear your foot is healing and getting least well enough to keep your human on her toes! Nice to know I am not the only one that gets body slammed!

Just Ramblin' said...

Good to hear your foot is healing and getting least well enough to keep your human on her toes! Nice to know I am not the only one that gets body slammed!

Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Has Mumsie chekhked The Beastie's khrate?

I bet there is a Mango Voodoo Stuffie with pins in da paws!



Maybe woo need to wear shoes now.
Hee hee I'd love to see that!

heel up dude... we need more dance videos

A Wonderful Dogs Life said...

Mango are you playing tricks on your Mom to get extra special attention?

It's frustrating when things are happening to the body that no one has any answers for.

Hope your up and dancing soon


Bouncing Bertie said...

Thanks for the update Mango Momma. Oh I do hope Mango's foot stays relatively small (like only ten times bigger than mine, not a hundred).
Toodle pip!

Shmoo said...

Has your vet ruled out Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever? (Rickettsia). It would explain why he got better with antibiotics. It is found in Mass. and swelling of one leg is one of the symptoms:

gimpy dogs

Jed and Abby in MerryLand said...

Jed has had such a rough medical year, mama is taking him to the Blessing of the Animals for the first time ever, next week. Just a thought that it can't hurt to hedge your bets :)

That prohibition on Mango Momma swimming in the therapy pool with Mango [and what kind of therapy pool for dogs has stairs instead of a ramp?!!] sounds more like CYA legislation the pool owners rammed through into law, to protect themselves from liability if they let pet parents in the pool and hostility if they denied access as their own policy. Like the phone companies hiding their excess jacked up business costs as 'federal fees' that they paid millions in lobbying to ram through Congress to 'offset their cost of doing business' - which is sort of what the basic charge should be covering.

Anyway, we sure hope all your legs and feet get better so you can continue your usual and preferred activities, RH. The suggestion for Mango Master to build you an indoor therapy pool in the basement is interesting, but he'd have to build you an elevator to get down to the basement level.

Jed & Abby

Jed and Abby in MerryLand said...

Oh - Abby will, of course, also be going to the Blessing.

Jed & Abby

Scruffy, Lacie and Stanley's Place said...

Mechanical difficulties? Oh Mango I know all about that when the motor on my Broom has issues...well, at least it's stabilized...we're keeping your foot in our prayers. And the rest of you of course.

Now it's been raining here in da Burgh for 383 hours and we're off to the basement cuz we went outside this afternoon and um dug a hole to China. Two baths in 24 hours...


KB said...

I'm glad that things are stabilizing but I'm sure that you want them to get all better!!!

Is there a horse underwater treadmill that he could use? E.g. at Tufts? I don't know where you're located so that could be a long distance away... Just a thought.

Honey the Great Dane said...

Oh - it is just SUCH a shame that there is no viable option for water therapy because it seems like that would be a really good solution - especially if Mango's problems are more mechanical than diseas-related - building up his muscles and just enabling him to continue regular exercise in a non-weight-bearing way would have been the best shot for him to heal & recover, I would think. You know how much I (and all of us) love the BIG guys but sadly, sometimes, their weight & bulk do work against them...

Is there no way of talking to the water pool people to see if there is any chance of an exception? Also, do you not think it's worth taking Mango to introduce him to the lady there (with no attempts to enter the pool the first time) - because you never know - he MIGHT just take to her and once he's build up a relationship with her, he just MIGHT consent to letting her help him inm the pool? I don't know anything about the pool people so I don't know if they're remotely amenable to helping and whether this is a stupid suggestion but that's what I would do with Honey - I would be working to try and get the dog socialised to them, as the first step - no rush - not expecting anything - and then taking it from there. I mean, he does seem to accept your kennel person and your daycare people before and the vet you never know. I think water therapy sounds so good for him that it may be worth a shot.

Otherwise, the only other thing I can think of is canine massage. I know you already do some but it may be worth finding a professional therapist because he may need more intensive treatment. It IS supposed to really help with rehab and keeping up muscle tone after injury, etc. Again, I know there is the "stranger" element but I think if you can find someone willing to take time & work with you - and knowing how to behave around dogs - then it might be enought for Mango to let them touch him. Once they can do that, I think the massage strokes/pressure points will do the rest because they'll inherently cause him to relax. Again, maybe something worth considering, even if it may take a while.

Nothing is a quick fix with our big guys!! :-)


Pippa said...

My Misery thinks it is always helpful to have long insightful posts about canine issues.

She thinks she should write them but I have written my first pharmacology post today that you commented on earlier. I think Mango should do the same.


Tucker said...

Oh Mango, the ouchies are terrible. The leg sprain I had when I was a wee pup of 1.5 set me back for over 6 months of lower activity levels. After slowly recovering I gained back my muscle strength and can run without limping afterwards now. Mango you will be able to run and play again, I know it.

Also, momma wants to knows if you take Fish Oil? Our Dane rescue recommends it highly for inflamation, they say it works better that glucosomine. It can't hurt to take it too if you aren't already. Just wrap the hooman pills in yummy cheese.

woof - Tucker

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...

At least it's finally diagnosed! Don't ya just hate our asinine laws???