All dressed up and nowhere to go

Last Friday we took Beanie to the vet to be spayed or “dressed” as it’s often called. I’d been counting down the days to the op, convinced that she’d go into season just before it, forcing us to cancel, reschedule and endure all the hassles that come with a having a bitch on heat. Every attempted humping put me on red alert, but when the day of the op finally arrived I was nervous rather than relieved.

The operation is of course very common, and generally doesn’t require an overnight stay, but still it’s a pretty major undertaking. If you’d like to know the gory details you can click here, but I wouldn’t advise it if you’re squeamish or about to take your own dog to be spayed. I deliberately avoided any doggy Googling in the lead up to the op – trust me, ignorance is the best approach if you’re besotted with your pup!

The plan was that we’d drop Beanie off at the vets first thing in the morning, and collect her in the afternoon. Being pretty anal types we arrived early – before the practice had opened its doors – so we got to sit in the car park drumming our fingers for a few minutes. Once inside, we went through the pre-op checklist:

  • No food after nine PM the previous night? (Er, does nibbling at a bit of poo I failed to scoop from the garden count as feeding? No? OK, “Check”)
  • Been to the loo immediately prior to coming here? (Yep. Oh, you mean Beanie? Yep, her too. “Check”)

Then I signed the consent form, and we handed little Beanie over to the friendly lady vet. I was a little concerned that my nerves might have rubbed off on our pup, but no, she merrily trotted off with the vet without a single backward glance. Ungrateful, disloyal little git! We’re standing there fighting the fear that we’ll never see our treasure again and she couldn’t care less!

I filled the remainder of the morning with a visit to the gym. It was more about keeping my mind clear of worry than improving fitness, but it worked because by the time I’d got back, cleaned up and had lunch it was time to collect Beanie.

Back at the vets, we were told that Beanie had behaved herself very well – she hadn’t squirmed once – and that the op had gone very smoothly. The convalescence period would be ten days, during which only the gentlest exercise would be permitted. Also to prevent Beanie from interfering with her stitches, she’d have to wear the classic “lampshade” collar when unsupervised.

The first day there was no problem holding to the exercise restrictions. Beanie was feeling rather delicate after her operation, and was happy to be carried and pampered. The next day, she became a little bolder, especially after a little dose of her pain medication. Today though, she’s trouble! As far as she’s concerned, she’s fully recovered and has already launched herself onto the kitchen table. We’re trying to redirect her energy into chewing and to that end I spent a ridiculous amount at the pet shop on assorted hide chews, pigs ears and bones. So far, the only thing that’s holding her attention for a decent length of time is the “Piggy Rope“. I’d had high hopes for pigs ears – they’re certainly expensive enough – but Beanie can down one in less than five minutes. Plus, there’s something disconcerting about seeing an otherwise cute little pup devouring a real pig’s ear…

And you probably won’t be surprised to hear that the “lampshade” isn’t too popular with our houndlet either. We quickly learned that her collar needs to be extra tight to stop her pulling the whole thing off her head and chewing it to bits. Maybe the vet should have given us two collars – one to wear and one to chew.