I mean, except chatting on the phone now and then. But, wow, yesterday was a little . . . a little more . . . well, just a little more than I was expecting (or hoping).
Pippa — yes, the one who had disc surgery — has had tooth issues for a while, but I didn’t want to put her through anything major if I didn’t have to because, see above, disc surgery. Well, my ordinary vet gave me a pretty firm, “This really isn’t great, here is the number of the dental specialist in St Louis, you could put this off but …”
So yesterday Pippa had dental surgery. She had nine teeth removed and six “retained roots” extracted — I’m not sure what that latter category encompasses, but maybe all those premolars that dogs generally lose young tend to have retained roots? — and an abscess cleaned up. Let me emphasize that Pippa has never shown any particular discomfort regarding her mouth. She’s lost lots of teeth before — she is now down to a grand total of three (3) teeth left in her whole mouth. Let me see, okay, dogs have 42 teeth. Yeah, so three is pretty pathetic.
She’s on pain meds, but she isn’t too uncomfortable. Certainly this is nothing like the TOTAL HELL of the disc problem, and she is just supposed to be restricted for 24 hours rather than 6 weeks, so . . . but still, I hated to do that to her. I am told she should, quote, start acting like a puppy again. Since she always acts like a puppy, I am not quite sure what to expect. I will say, she has gotten grouchier with the younger dogs in the last few months. Maybe she will lighten up and not be so cantankerous when the younger dogs try to get on her half of the couch. I gather being bumped the wrong way might have broken her jaw because of the abscess, and she will be in a lot less danger of that in a few weeks. I can see how that kind of fragility and (I guess, though she never showed it) chronic pain could make anybody grouchy.
As a side note, the boys — Ish and Conner — would not go outside this morning without checking first on Pippa. They are such good boys, and they are both attached to the older girls. They are by far Pippa’s favorites. She has always preferred male dogs. It’s the separate hierarchy thing, I’m sure. She doesn’t care if they strut around declaring they are HOT STUFF, and they don’t take it seriously if she growls at them, so they get along great.
Canned food for two weeks, and then I will ask Pippa whether she would like to eat dry food. She can’t chew it, obviously, but I’m pretty sure she hasn’t been chewing dry food for years. I think she swallows it whole.
No chew toys ever, poor baby. I will find special non-chew treats for her. She has always loved playing tug, too. I have been very gentle with that for some time. I wonder if toothless dogs can still play gentle tug games.
As a side note, I did not expect dental surgery to get within an order of magnitude of the cost of the disc surgery. But wow, it sure did. To be fair, she was in surgery for more than two hours.