Life with Jasmine and Juliet, Our Rescued Dachshunds

Random notes on our experience with our two rescued miniature dachshunds

Tell Me What You Want

Jasmine was getting much more vocal before her injury.  When she wanted something, she was starting to squeak and woof at me.  It was great to see her beginning to communicate with me, and I was thrilled.

While I thought her crate rest would hamper her communication, it has in fact reinforced it.  She has woken me up at 4:00 a.m. with a small but distinct whine, and I’ve immediately responded by taking her outside.  One time, she barely made it out the door before she went.  She has also woofed at me when I’ve given her “crate breaks” for meals or a little petting.  The woof has told me that she needs her outside break as well…and I’ve been right.  I’ve wished in the past that Jasmine would communicate her needs, and she’s finally doing it.  Of course, all of it is up to my interpretation.  She might be saying, “Woof–I want lap time” and I interpret it as “Woof–I wanna go outside;” then when we get out there, she goes out of habit.

The crate rest hasn’t been fun, but it’s now part of her daily routine.  We’re thankfully halfway there, and I think she’s going to be just fine–just in time for our cross-country odyssey.  Now THAT will be an adventure!

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Crate Rest is Hard

Jasmine is feeling better.  MUCH better.  Much better as in, “Why are you putting me in jail, Mom?  What did I do wrong?”

Hubby decided that Jasmine should be out with him.  So he let her out and laid on the floor with her for an hour giving her scratchies.  Of course, he had to get up to go use the bathroom, and when he got back, Jasmine had jumped into the leather chair.  And of course, when he went to get her down, she jumped off of it onto the floor.

Props to him for even admitting this to me…I was a bit peeved.  But the point is that we have to watch her like a hawk.  We have been letting her out for potty breaks, meals and a tiny bit of “love” time, but in general, she’s been in the crate for about 23 hours a day.  The vet told us to stop the meds (to prevent irritation, kidney and/or liver problems with long-term use of the anti-inflammatory).  So, she’s now drug free and pain free.  The next weeks of rest should assure that her recovery is not short-lived.

It breaks my heart to have to crate her.  She doesn’t like it (well, except when she wants a nap, and then the warm fluffy blanket makes te crate her favorite place).  Mostly, she doesn’t like NOT being next to us or on us.  She craves that physical connection with us.  As do I.  Jasmine is such a love and such a joy to be around.  I love seeing her happy, and even though I know this is the best think for her, it’s SO hard to do what’s best.

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Two Weeks of Crate Rest

It has now been two weeks since Jasmine’s back injury, and I’m happy to report that she’s better.  I picked Jasmine up from the kennel yesterday, and it was all I could do to keep her from jumping and re-injuring herself.  She was so happy to see me…it was so nice to be greeted with such unbridled joy.  She cried all the way home.  I had to coo and calm her the entire time so she would keep from wriggling and moving around too much.

She is back to her old self.  She is squatting as she does her business, she seems to have lots of energy, and she has her spirit back.  Of course, it could be the “honeymoon” period of being home–when that wears off, she generally rebels a little to let us know that she DOES remember that we left her.  However, the “back to the crate” routine hasn’t been a rousing success.  She’s less inclined to desire to spend her time there.  Before we left, she was on pain killers, and that tended to put her out.  She’s now whining a bit to “pretend” to need to go outside to get let out.  Of course, she had to wake up at 4:00 a.m. this morning to go out (not pretending), and it was tremendously hard for me to crawl out of bed and do it, especially with this cold/flu that I picked up during  our trip.  Hubby and I are both fairly ill and slogging it out as we go through the pain of remodeling our house.  Oy.

I’m still going to continue the crate rest until she’s fully recovered.  I have to speak to the vet about tapering her off her meds (she’s still on anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants) given her more positive disposition.  I want her to be pain-free, but I also want her to be able to let her body do the healing.  She’s off to a great start, and kenneling her was actually good for her (she was on strict crate rest at the kennel except for bathroom breaks). I just have to remember that feeling good to her can push her towards behavior that could cause further damage.  This is probably the most dangerous time for her…she’s feeling better, but her back isn’t completely healed.  I have to keep telling myself that…it’s SO tempting to give her a little more lee-way and let her romp and play as she’d like.

While she’s not thrilled with the crate, it’s what’s best for her right now.  I know that, and I *am* the adult here. 😉

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