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Baker's Hind Leg and Other Affairs of State

Thursday, March 1, 2007

It's been a couple of months since Chet Baker was first laid up with an injury to his left hind knee. At first we feared he had slipping patellae (kneecaps), something that is known in many purebred dog breeds. His parents and grandparents have great knees, so it was a mystery how he could turn up with the malformation that allows the patella to slide around off the bend of the knee. An exam revealed that his knees are nice and tight, but that he'd suffered some kind of injury to a ligament inside the left hind knee joint. Maybe from doing his Michael Jordan moves on concrete? Duh?

The prescription from his veterinarian, Dr. Lutz, was a month of rest. Thanks to my very full travel schedule and bitterly cold weather, he got more than two months of rest. More rest is good, right? In that period, he took exactly two walks with me. I'd say that's some serious rest.

So when we finally lit out for some exercise a couple of days ago, I was distressed to see Chet holding that left hind leg up a LOT. Wasn't he supposed to be all better? Dr. Lutz agreed to see him the next day. He was his usual curioius self as we waited to be seen, cocking his head side to side as he listened to the other dogs in Dr. Lutz's care.She palped his kneecaps and tried to move them around. She moved the left knee laterally, something that caused him to wince and whip his head around two months ago.
Nothing. Chet didn't have a word to say about it. He was more interested in the dog scuffling sounds outside the exam room door. This was very good news.

Dr. Lutz explained that Chet has indeed healed, but that he's going to be stiff for awhile. The injured knee is actually tighter than the good right knee. The prescription was for some range of motion therapy which I'll give him before we go out, and for short walks slowly increasing to our usual 45-minute hike. I'm delighted, and looking forward to the time when Baker ceases skipping altogether.

You know I have enough Guatemala pictures to blog into 2008. Couldn't stop myself. And blog I will...

Bill walked into my studio this evening. "Bloggin'?"
"Baker. Gotta give the people what they want."
Laughs evilly. Points finger at me. "It's all about the dog, isn't it?"

"I can take pictures of wild spider monkey faces for crying out loud and all they really want is the dog. Does anybody care about spider monkeys? Nope. Outside their pale of interest. 'Monkeys creep me out. Where's Baker? Need a Baker fix!' They would rather see a lousy picture of Baker than a great picture of a wild toucan or monkey."

Evil cackle, dancing. "It's all about the dog!"
Sigh."It's all about the dog."


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Awww, Chet Baker is a sweet BT!

You should visit Lots and lots of BTs and their owners. People post pics of their BTs, give advice, ask questions, and generally have a fun time. You could even see the famous Pepito, who is plotting BT world domination, lol.

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