#73 – Have my dog’s teeth cleaned

by Elizabeth on March 22, 2009 · 0 comments

in 101 in 1001, Harry

Part of my 101 Things in 1001 Days challenge.

Last year we were warned by our vet that we would need to think about having Harry’s teeth cleaned in the near future. His gums were nice and healthy, but there was a buildup of tartar along his gumline that would have caused serious problems later if we didn’t attend to it. And since it’s a procedure that’s done under general anaesthetic, it was obviously better to do it while he was young enough to withstand all the risks.

Harry turned 7 a couple of weeks ago, and for his birthday he gave himself a nasty knee injury. After a course of anti-inflammatories his leg wasn’t any better, so the vet decided to put him under and manipulate his leg to see what was going on. It seemed like a good opportunity to get his teeth sorted out too.

I didn’t take any “before” shots, but here is an hilarious attempt at photographing the final result:


Luckily, his teeth were pretty healthy under the tartar, and he didn’t have to have any removed. My vet tells me that tartar buildup often gets into the bloodstream and ends up in a dog’s heart so it’s worth making sure that your pet’s teeth are ok. (It’s the same for people, so brush your teeth!)

And of course, there was the small matter of his leg injury. She confirmed that his knee is dislocated (although he’s comfortable with it in or out, so it’s probably been that way for years) and that he has a ruptured cruciate ligament. It’s a really common injury in dogs, but pretty painful. He’s struggling to put any weight on the affected foot, and because of his age treating it with medication isn’t ideal.

So we’re taking the $3000 (!) quote for surgery, shopping around some other vets that my coworkers have recommended to me, and trying to keep him quiet in the meantime. It’s not easy when he’s throwing his OWN toys and running after them to keep himself amused!

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