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Dog or no dog??



  • PS: what does your hubby think about getting a dog?
    L1 - S2 "gone" useless in 1 way or another. DDD. RA. Bone Spurs. Tons of nerve damage/issues. Stenosis. Both knees replaced. 50 yrs old. I had a great fall (hence my user name) at age 41 and it has been a domino effect every since.
  • to accommodate my new special needs. I bought a no-pull harness, which will be useful when I can again take him for walks. Right now, he's content to go out to do his thing on a chain, and come right back in. I also got him an elevated feeding station. I hired a pet sitter to come in daily to take him for a really long walk and roughhouse session, for his mental health (costs anywhere from $6 to $12 a day, but a neighborhood kid might be available to do this cheaper.)

    I bought a roll-about office chair and sit in that while I'm adding food or water to his bowls. He actually has what he considers a fun new game--my tossing toys for him using my grab stick, or making sudden moves toward him with my walker. He thinks those are great games.

    You have to remember that dogs are highly adaptable, and figure out how to fit in with their human pack. Research breeds and look for ones that are gentle and laid back instead of high maintenance and in need of a lot of activity. If you're getting a mixed breed (my recommendation) look for one where the primary mix is some kind of laid-back but affectionate dog. Also, make sure that everyone in the family is on the same page concerning getting a dog.

    Fostering a dog from a rescue group might be a good way to test out the theory that a dog will enhance your emotional and spiritual connectedness with the rest of the world. If a particular dog doesn't work out, you wouldn't be relinquishing him to a shelter, he'd just go back to the rescue group.

    And be careful: A "velcro dog" (one that's underfoot constantly) can be a fall hazard.

    Ultimately, it's up to you. In my case, I can't imagine going through this ordeal without a dog!
    I'm not a spinal diagnosis. I'm a human being with a spinal diagnosis.
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  • thepretendertthepretender Posts: 36
    edited 01/02/2013 - 7:35 PM
    I have a dog and he's an excellent companion and love having him around. He is truly my best friend, so sweetly devoted to me and he's been my rock many times.

    However, having worked a lot with dog rescue I am always an advocate for the animal. Families so often get a dog and don't realize that it is like adding another child to your life and it can be A LOT of work. So I've seen many families return dogs for that reason. It is a huge decision and one that needs to be really thought out. It is very hard on an animal to adjust to a new home and family, so out of respect of the dog, don't do that until you are sure you are prepared to deal with accidents and ruined things and other behavioral issues as they adjust, vet appointments and bills, etc.

    Another thing, if you are going to be having a fusion you'll have to think about how you will be severely limited in bending, twisting, lifting activities and it is a big adjustment. It might not be the best time right now to get a dog. If you talk through with your husband adding a dog to the family and think it is right, maybe wait until a few months out of surgery.

    So I'd put the topic on hold until you find out what your surgical needs are and then open the discussion.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,111
    I couldnt imagine my life without a dog. I think it is a great idea. I agree with everyone about going to the pound to get a dog, a older dog who will not take as much training. I just want to add that you might want to consider a black dog from the pound. It is a known fact that black dogs are the most that are put to sleep as no one wants them. Why who knows. My dog has brought alot of love and enjoyment in my home.
  • Greyhounds are extremely laid back dogs. They are nicknamed 45 mph hour couch potatoes. They are trained not to pulled on the leash. Adoptions group will find a dog that is suitable for your family. They are great with kids. Most are good with small animals like cats and little dogs. Most areas have a local chapter of Greyhound Pets of America. I have had 6 of them. I currently have one that only has three legs. I fostered them and adopted them.
    Discectomies 05/08 and 04/11, fusions L4-5 Feb 9,2012 and L3-L4 June 28,2012, Staph infection washout 3/2/2012, Bulged L5-S1. SCS trial on January 17th, 2014, which was a success! Permanent SCS on February 20th.
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  • I think it's a wonderful idea, I'm getting a dog myself. Being in chronic pain limits your relations with the outside world, I'm looking forward to having something keeping me company and just being about to sit with me after my next surgery.
    be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind ••• Dr. Seuss
  • I miss my golden retriever, Sierra, who passed about 12 years ago now, but I travel quite a bit so I didn't want to bring in another dog to my hectic schedule.

    Since the introduction of the dog would be a family event, I do think it's important that your husband be on board about it, too - or - at least not negative about it. Sure, the dog may grow on him even if he's not particularly into it, but it would be helpful if he was into it, too.

    And, the breed of dog is really important based on the energy of your family. If you have an active family, you probably would not want a 'lap dog', but rather a dog that can keep the pace with your active kids and lifestyle. Or, if you are into water activities, a dog that loves water (retrievers) would be a great match.

    If you decide to get a dog, perhaps making it a project for your boys would be great - meaning - they can search the internet and come up with 3 or 4 (or whatever) number of breeds that might be a good match for the dynamics of your family.

    One last thing - if your family has not had a dog before - or hasn't been around dogs all that much, make sure no one is allergic to dogs! My neighbors got a dog for their kids only to learn that the youngest was allergic to dogs. They did not know that before. So, they ended up returning that dog and getting a dog that was hypo-allergenic.

    Good luck and let us know what you decide!
    10/26/2012 ACDF C3/4 C4/5 surgery
    No pain; no pain meds - thank goodness!
    04/01/2013 - 5 months + 1 week - FUSED
    Doing some physical therapy for even better range of motion
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