Sunday, July 22, 2007

Squirrel Terrorism Update

We have two more victims in the War on Squirrel Terrorism - while defending our backyard from the furry scourge, our schnocker (schnauzer/cocker/scottie/etc) tore his ACL. I did not realize dogs actually possess ACL's, but apparently they do. I always thought it was a labor union, but ACL is actually short for anterior cruciate ligament, one of the thingys that compose a knee. (I know, I know - dogs have knees? Who knew?)

Other things I didn't realize about canine ACL injuries:

  1. They are not covered by my HMO

  2. They are not covered by your HMO

  3. They are expensive

  4. It is difficult to find the right size crutches for a schnocker

This led to the second victim - my checkbook, which, after enduring x-rays, surgery, and doggy prescriptions, is now in critical condition. I'm guessing the squirrels own stock in the veterinary industry. This is all part of their plan to rule the universe, and it seems to be working.

Today is day one of Jake's 12-week post-operative physical therapy program. My checkbook said 'no' to hiring a private trainer to oversee the recovery, so I'm suiting up. We start with 15 minutes of ice packs, then 15 minutes of Passive Range of Motion (PROM) exercises such as slow flexing. And that's just for the checking account. Ba-dum.

Jake must do bicycling exercises, which is tough because, being a dog, he's never been on a bike. So I have to move his booboo leg around in a circle to emulate movement on a bicycle. (I can use the word 'emulate' since the vet charged me for it.) Jake and I are both less than thrilled with this physical therapy program. It's just a matter of time before one of my kids takes our picture and we're featured on "World's Funniest Dog Therapy Programs."

Squirrels, beware - you have only 12 weeks before we're back chasing you again. 12 weeks of twice daily therapy, twice daily icing, perhaps a week at a sports medicine rehab center, some retail therapy for my dwindling mental state, and a line of credit on the house to finance it all, then we're coming after you. So you'd better be ready. Because after 12 dang weeks of moving a dog's leg in circles, I'm going to be ready for you.


Anonymous said...

better 12 weeks the squirrels will be into that whole 'finding food for the winter' thing, so you and doggy will find them distracted...-insomniac

Mad Scientist said...

Annie-Sorry to hear about Jake's injury. Good luck with the physical therapy. You could consider actually teaching him to ride a bike. Then you might recoup some of your money by going on Letterman with Stupid pet tricks.

Insomniac- you forget that Annie and I live in Socal. There really is no winter for the nuts that live here. So the squirrels can feast all the time.

Kristina said...

Poor sweet doggie. It's nice that you're taking such good care of him.

You need a cat or 2 to help your dog catch the squirrels!

Seriously, there might be some ways to discourage squirrels. Sometimes pet shops have them. Also, online, you can buy urine from bobcats, etc., which is supposed to discourage outside animals from coming nearby. Although it might discourage the humans, too.

Kristina said...

I hope Jake's feeling better.

My mom's got a dog named Jake, too. He's a sweet German Shepherd who is obsessed with playing fetch.

Annie said...

Jake is doing great. He's not allowed to hunt squirrels yet, but he's been working out regularly with a personal trainer. His fur is growing back in slowly - right now he looks like a standard poodle who's clippers ran amok. 3 legs shaved in odd amounts, plus half his hindquarters bald and drafty. Other than that, he's fine, thanks for asking.

diverdowndoc said...

Diverdowndog had the same injuries to both of her rear legs. Oddly, she and I both tore our same ACLs, though hers were consecutive and despite frequent kickboxing classes, I haven't quite succeeded in actually tearing mine on my right hind leg. Anyway, we feel your pain of expense, since we are so nuts that we could barely pay our taxes the same year that we got our dog's knees fixed. It woulda been cheaper to get a new dog. Hope Jake recovers without incident. Diverdowndog still runs funny though this was several years ago.

Annie said...

ddd - they say he's at risk to tear the other ACL, since he'll favor the weak leg now and put more weight on the strong one. Great. AND he's been put on a diet, so he's one cranky schnocker. I bet swimming would really help him. But no kickboxing for THIS dog - he's built for comfort, not for speed.