Dogging in and damaged toes….

Less than a week after returning from holiday it’s back to earth with a bump and a bang. While Elly attends pre- school I have being taking Zoe to Mountainstown to ‘dog-in’. This basically involves combing the boundaries of the estate and pushing the young pheasants back to where the gamekeeper wants them. It’s a two hour workout but my little gun-shy spaniel that won’t retrieve has finally found her niche.

With just under two weeks to the Chesapeake Bay Retriever Autumn working test in Essex training is ongoing for Winnie and Bertie. A week spent in kennels has left them with an exuberence of energy. I’ve spent the week doing regular short training sessions to allow them regain focus. Mossy had also been on the cards to compete but is unfortunately recovering from a fractured metatarsal.

The fracture was diagnosed by x-ray on Monday, followed by surgery to remove the bone fragment on Wednesday. There was no point in waiting to see if it would fuse as it was a ‘floating fragment’. I had my suspisicions he had been carrying the injury for quite a number of weeks. Intermittant lameness on hard ground, I had written off as having picked up a prod. There was no obvious injury or swelling to the paw or any tenderness on palpation. He was weight bearing but yielding ever so slightly .

Anyway after the week in kennels  all the dogs were fizzed up and raring to go. The corn had been cut behind our house. So Saturday morning I opened the gate and off they went. Galloping like young colts let out on fresh grass.

It was when we returned  from that walk  the injury to Mossy’s foot became apparent. The toe started to swell, it was extremely tender to the touch and he could now  no longer bear any weight while standing. Still convinced, however, it was a foreign body of some sort I booked him into the vets for Monday morning. The diagnosis came through that afternoon.

Following surgery Paul, my vet, confirmed it was a fracture that was at least six weeks old. The decision , therefore, to go ahead with surgery rather than defer was the correct one.

I am pleased to report that the surgery was a success and he is recovering well. He will miss his opportunity to compete at the Chesapeake Bay Retriever Autumn Working test but thankfully long term this injury will have no lasting consequences.

The week ended with Bertie winning his fourth green star towards his Irish Show champion title at the Irish Kennel club International show. He also won his second CACIB and BOB.The judge was Mrs N Davidoc from Serbia. Three more to go….

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