New Year, New Hips

First, let’s start with a big Happy New Year to everyone out there.  Hope this year is even better than the last.  Maybe a year without predicted apocalypses (apocali?…) will make people calmer.  This year will bring changes for my dogs and me.  The last two posts about Bacio’s hips (Background story here, and X-ray and surgery consult here) have led me to scheduling Bacio for his first FHO procedure.  I called the vet yesterday, surgery is set for January 18th.  I want to get him in good shape as soon as possible.  The reaction from doctors and staff who saw his X-rays make me think Bacio has an extremely high pain tolerance, or won’t show me the amount of pain he endures.  No one could believe he still goes up and down stairs everyday, and jumps on the bed to sleep at night.

Femoral Head Ostectomy

Femoral Head Ostectomy, or FHO, is considered a salvage procedure.  It removes the knobby part of the bone (technical term here) and the nerve endings, with the intention of scar tissue forming a false joint between the hip socket and the femur bone.  I was nervous about this procedure at first because I’d read it wasn’t good for dogs over 50 lbs.  Bacio is 64lbs.  The reason it is not recommended for larger dogs is due to the weight on the hips, or false hips. Lucky for Bacio he’s tall and skinny. My mom thinks his head weighs 10 lbs alone.  I also have been scouring the internet for the last week reading about other larger dogs that have had this operation. It was hard to come by much information for large dogs.  While with any procedure,  there are situations that just don’t work out for one reason or another, the majority of the feedback and forums I came across was very positive.  I am confident that I am making the right decision.

Raising Funds to Pay for Surgery

In the weeks leading up to Bacio’s surgery I will be offering discounted photo work via Rawkstah Creations!, my photography moniker.  The details will be posted on the Facebook page in the next day or so.  I’d like to have a cocktail party or something, but I don’t think I have the time to make that happen.  I have also created a Chip-In page if anyone would care to donate a dollar or two.  The surgery is much less than the first $4400 surgery I was anticipating.  The costs are going to be close to $950 with the cone of shame and pain pills, etc.  I will also be looking for a nice soft dog bed or two for him, and I may have to buy a new crate to keep him in for when I leave the house.  The one I have now may not be big enough for him anymore.  As he is getting better with the leg, I may consider taking him to hydrotherapy a few times. It will be winter here, and I don’t want to risk him slipping on ice if the weather gets bad.  That will be decided later in his recovery though.

So happy 2013 everybody.  You may read this and think my 2013 is off to a rough start… However, this really is the best way to start the year.  I’ll get to repeat this whole thing a second time when he has the other hip fixed.  That will be more towards the summer because he needs time to strengthen and heal the first leg, so he has support after they do the procedure on the other leg.

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