In this Waggy Tale we meet Dan and his 5-and-a-half-year-old Miniature Smooth-haired Dachshund, Rudi.
Rudi is a headstrong stubborn little pup who loves nothing more than a cuddle. He’s not picky when it comes to a cuddle companion either! He has been known to let himself into the neighbour’s house and take residence on the nearest lap unbeknownst to Dan.
Dan first noticed something wasn’t quite right when he returned home with fish and chips one evening, and Rudi wasn’t immediately at his feet. Rudi did eventually come to investigate the smell, and Dan gave him a small chip. Rudi ran off with said chip, but Dan noticed he was wobbly on his feet.
‘We watched him for an hour or two to see if he got worse and before long he couldn’t climb the step into the kitchen. We rushed him to the out of hours vet as soon as we realised what was happening. True to form, he only ever gets ill late on a Sunday; the last time was when he pinched another dog’s food whilst we weren’t looking, then was ill up until the moment he sat on the vets table and realised where that thermometer was going’ says Dan.
Unfortunately, the treat of a cold thermometer didn’t solve the problem, and the emergency vet advised pain killers and rest until they could get Rudi to his regular vet.
‘The next morning, we got an emergency appointment – he was still able to walk but was a bit clumsy. The vet advised we rest him and gave us other painkillers, not that the tough little guy even showed a hint of pain – he was still trying to run around like a loon!’.
‘We took Rudi home, 6 hours passed, and we took him out to toilet. He collapsed. He’d lost all use of his back legs. Cue a mad panic to get in at our vets and a few tears. Mine, not his – he was just confused why he had suddenly gained the ability to sit still for more than 10 seconds.’ Adds Dan.
The Vet advised that Rudi should be given crate rest or a referral. Dan was put in touch with the closest referrals that could fit Rudi in. this was however a 2-hour drive away.
Upon arrival at Wear Referrals, Rudi was rushed for an MRI and then straight into surgery. Little Rudi was suffering from grade 4 paralysis (Grade 4 is when a dog has no voluntary movement in the rear legs).
‘I spent the next 4 hours googling dog wheelchairs and convincing myself I could make the house accessible (I have no DIY skills – it would have been a disaster). Fortunately, after a week of recovery – we got him back, a groggy doggy who even after a hemilaminectomy and disc fenestration (spinal surgeries) still tried (and succeeded) to jump up at us when he entered the room, much to the horrified face of the vet!’ Says Dan.
Rudi was given a sling to help him learn to walk again, and the vet also recommended physiotherapy and hydrotherapy.
‘The physio was amazed. By the time of the first visit, 14 days after surgery, Rudi was walking/stumbling around and quite well balanced. We were advised to get carpets/rugs for his recovery and fortunately we live near a carpet shop. One giant beige monstrosity of an offcut later and Rudi has the run of the living room again, much to the dismay of my wife.’
‘By the second visit, he was almost bounding around the room, energetic, unable to focus on the task at hand, rummaging through the physio’s bag and being a general pest. Back to normal.’
Rudi also started Hydrotherapy at the East Yorkshire hydrotherapy Centre near Beverley. Little Rudi made lots of friends at the centre and the staff have fallen in love with the cheeky little chap.
‘We’re about 2 and a bit month’s in now and he’s a little miracle. A pain as always, but a miracle. He’s walking around, greeting the neighbours as he used to and still breaking in next door to sit in the sun with our neighbour, Scouse (I’m sure that’s not his real name). In two months he’s gone from being unable to walk, to bounding about like a complete idiot.’
‘Thanks to the fantastic staff that have helped along the way, and a Buddies Pet Insurance policy, Rudi has his life back and I’ve not had to pay to cover the £5k worth of surgery fees! I’ve no doubt we’ll be hiking buddies again this summer!’ Says Dan.
Huge thank you to Dan and his family for sharing little Rudi’s story. The Buddies team are super glad to hear Rudi is on the mend and back to his normal mischievous self.
To find out more about Buddies pet insurance policies click here.