I haven’t written much about Oliver lately.  Thankfully, there hasn’t been much to tell.   Our lives have returned to the point where we aren’t constantly worried about him.  He went from being the poor, paraplegic dog that we were carrying around the house, back to being the family pet.  The family pet who wears a boot and goes to physical therapy twice a week, but still just the family dog.  We are back to playing fetch with him outside and taking him for walks.  We’re also back to being annoyed with him, which is how I know that everything is returning to normal.  Lately, when he steals Addie’s cracker out of her hand, I yell at him rather than just being thankful that he’s able to stand up to steal food.

Over the past 8 weeks Oliver has lost weight quite rapidly; over 10% of his body weight.  One day we started noticing how slim his waist was and how his hip bones stuck out.  But the weight loss doesn’t seem to adversely affect him at all.  We tried to remedy it with a failed experiment of adding more protein to his diet.  I’m not sure my living room rug will ever be the same.  Other than that Ollie’s life has been blissfully uneventful; napping, playing fetch, scrounging for food, running from Addison, getting his ears rubbed, tearing apart the trash.  Exactly what a dog’s life should be.

Until Thursday.  Thursday Addie and I picked Oliver up from his therapy appointment and got the news that they spotted a hernia on his side.  A hernia.  No, I’m not kidding.  I know, I laughed when they told me too because surely, I thought, they’re just saying this to fuck with me.  I threw my head back and laughed because it had to be one of those ironic jokes that people sometimes play.  Like when you’re running to catch a plane and the gate attendant says “Too late!”  and then smiles.  They know that we’ve had absolutely all we can take with puppy problems.  And they totally know that if we get one more vet bill we’re going to need to start selling the furniture.  Right?  And then sure enough, he walks Ollie across the waiting room and there’s a softball sized lump protruding from his abdomen.  Popping in and out, in and out.

We went to our local vet’s office and he walked into the room, looked at Ollie and said, “Ooohhh…that type of hernia doesn’t have a name.”  So it’s the rare kind of hernia?  That’s typical Oliver.  He did quite a few X-Rays but couldn’t get a good picture because of where the hernia is located.  The good news is, he thinks it could heal on it’s own.  It’s bulging and then disappearing so he doesn’t think the tissue (?), muscle (?), has completely broken apart.  That also means that his intestines aren’t getting stuck in the hole.  With rest, he said, it will likely repair itself.  If it gets bigger or starts protruding more, Oliver will need surgery to repair the hole.  We told him that if Ollie needs surgery, we need to do it on the cheap.  So he’s just going to come over to our house with his scalpel and do it on the patio table.

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