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Ozzy came to join our family in October 2014, at 20 months old, four months after we had to say goodbye to our elderly black lab, Mojo. He was a gorgeous, bouncy chocolate boy who had had a THR at 11 months old. For the first four weeks he was as good as gold, and I thought ‘Could this be the world’s most well behaved lab?’, but he soon learned to show his mischievous and chewy side! We noticed that he would often become lame on his back leg where he had the implant, and so began various visits to the local vets, where he had a course of Cartrophen injections initially, followed by regular Metacam, and some physiotherapy. He wasn’t improving, so in October 2016
we had an x-ray performed, which unfortunately proved inconclusive. As he still seemed to be getting progressively worse , often not using that leg much, and bunny hopping at speed, I went to a different local vet for his opinion. He thought the implant needed to be redone, which could cost up to £7000, but he couldn’t be sure without a further x-ray, which would cost £500. As we’d been in this situation before, and couldn’t afford these sort of sums (Ozzy’s hip being a pre-existing condition, insurance wise,) I contacted Julie, our area co-ordinator, for advice. She suggested requesting all Ozzy’s medical records from the local vet and sending them to her. She would then forward them to Richard, LRSE&C’s Chairman, for his opinion. This was duly done, and Richard thought the cement from the original THR was possibly crumbling. He offered to refer Ozzy back to the vet specialists where he had his original surgery, (Davies in Hertfordshire), with the Charity funding any operating costs. After much family debate, we decided to go ahead with this kind offer, and Ozzy was duly booked in. We had a consultation with David Thomson, an orthopaedic surgeon on 13th August, and he immediately said he was not happy with Ozzy’s leg. Following a further x-ray, it transpired that the cement was indeed failing, and Ozzy’s implant was so loose it had actually pivoted ninety degrees!(It says a lot for his character that he still managed to be a happy boisterous dog under the circumstances!) Ozzy had his THR explanted on 21st August. David extracted all the bone and cement fragments he could, and then a femoral head ostectomy was performed. We collected Ozzy on 24th August, and he has since been recovering at home. As I write this, he is 15 days post surgery, and almost back to his normal self, though not yet weight bearing. His stitches are due for removal in two days, and maybe then we can get rid of the dreaded cone! He does have quite severe muscle atrophy in that leg, and at this stage I’m not sure how much improvement to his mobility will be achieved, but importantly once all healed, he will no longer be in any pain.(He has already started laying on the affected side, which we noticed he never did previously.) Many thanks to Richard , Julie and all the lovely people at LRSE&C for funding Ozzy’s surgery, and helping him to look forward to a pain free future.
Ozzy is now 8 weeks post surgery and continuing to improve all the time. After sleeping downstairs with him for the first month, he is now able to go up and downstairs quite confidently, and walks on all four legs at slow speed! His strength has greatly improved, and he is able to manage an hour’s walk without tiring. At weekends he is taken down to Bexhill beach which is all shingle and good for improving his balance. We are getting the old Ozzy back again!
If you would like to see Ozzys progress please click the video.
Give as you live
2017 has arrived and you can help support our charity by registering with Give As You Live. It costs you absolutely nothing but we get money by you shopping at top retailers like Next, House of Fraser and Debenhams etc for your gifts via Give as you Live. Please look here for full details.
Labrador Rescue South East & Central Blog
Chairman’s Christmas letter
I know how relieved you must be to discover that the brown envelope that has just appeared on your doormat does not contain a bill, or of course for those of you on our email list it must be a change to see the Link in a paper copy. We are besieged by information from all directions and subsequently I suspect that like me you become rather selective, I gather the mail from the letterbox on the gate and sort the mail directly into the paper recycling bin below, I should probably take the recycling bin in from one week to another but then where would passers-by put their sweet wrappers and coffee cups? What happens to the clear windows in the envelopes and the plastic wrappers, every piece of junk mail I receive comes in a plastic wrapper? The stamps at least can be saved and as a few become several and several become many they start to accrue value to the charity, so do please continue to save them.
I am much more aware of the need for recycling, our planet will be here long after we are gone and so we have a responsibility to those yet to come, we waste resources at the expense of our children’s children and of course our own purses so please consider your rubbish and your spending this Christmas. A gift can mean so many different things; what would your Labradors
ask for Christmas I wonder and would you be as pleased or perhaps more so if you received the same rather than a book you will not find time to read or a jumper that doesn’t fit? Well I know what my two would ask for- ‘time together preferably outside’ and next on the list ‘hugs, cuddles and kind words in front of the fire’ and Peggy always asks Santa for ‘a big bowl of food and a marrow bone’. I think that sounds like a pretty good list, I don’t need any more socks but I am always grateful when friends give up their time to spend time with me, I have more books than I will ever read but I will never have received too many hugs or kind words and whilst I am a sucker for novelty musical ties I am always more grateful when someone takes time to make me a meal and invite me to share it with them, their friends and family. This Christmas create memories rather than rubbish and give yourself, your time, your love, your effort, be more Labrador.
When you are making time to spend with your friends, family and Labradors outside on wonderful walks in the beautiful countryside can I also challenge you to think about rubbish? Rubbish is a blight, but if you start collecting a few bits whilst you are out with your dogs then maybe someone will stop and ask you “what are you doing” and you can say you are part of a global campaign ‘Labradors Against Litter’. “Global campaign?” they will ask “I hadn’t heard about it?” Well now you have, you can say, you heard about it here. Dog walkers sometimes are stigmatised for not clearing up after their dogs but we can start a revolution of good will. Be careful of course. Wear gloves or invest in a picker-upper, recycle if possible and make sure to send me a photograph, every campaign needs a start and today Labradors against Litter starts with you and who knows with the help of social media we could make a difference.
I confess I am not fully conversant with ‘social media’, but I do browse through Facebook and I know that the LRSEC page is made up of an amazing and supportive community of dog lovers expertly supervised and occasionally chastened by Emily, Wendy, Fiona, Ian, Joy, Sheila, Mark D, Mindy, Liz and having just checked the list to make sure I didn’t forget anyone I find slightly more surprisingly Margaret and myself which I suspect is more honorary. Facebook enables the wonderful calendar competition for which we must thank Lisa Pearce and the fantastic 100 club thanks to Debi Gillard. If you don’t already then please take a look at @LabRescueSEandC on Twitter and labrescueseandc on Instagram both of which have a wonderful positivity thanks to Bonnie and Mark M-S and the amazing photographs of your Labs.
Christmas will be upon us by the time you read this and I have a Christmas wish, I know I ask a lot, Christmas can be a difficult time, the perception is that everyone has a wonderful family Christmas around a burgeoning table of food whilst Bing Crosby sings by the fireside and snow falls but as I discovered last Christmas by following the twitter feed of Sarah Millican there are many people for whom Christmas can be lonely and isolating. Sarah’s idea isn’t revolutionary;’ if you are lonely on Christmas day I am here with a few minutes to chat’. So, here is my wish for Christmas, if you are lonely or depressed during Christmas then LRSEC will have a Labrador with a Christmas jumper on and a wet nose who wants to make you smile
, let’s spread some canine festive cheer and Love a Labrador this Christmas, Labradors against Loneliness
I wish you and your Labradors a peaceful and enjoyable Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year and may all your walks be full of bounce and discovered tennis balls.
As a result of this post we have received a lovely letter from a member of the public.
I recently stumbled upon your Summer edition of your Chairman’s Letter on the LRSEC website and have this evening also read your Christmas edition. I have never before been so compelled to express my gratitude as this evening; I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for inspiring me to be the best person I can be (re CAN DO) and for reminding me of the things that are truely inportant in life (your Christmas edition).
Your heart of gold shines through in your writing and infects us all. I certainly feel ‘more labrador’ having read them 🙂
So my Christmas wish to you, is to never underestimate that magic you instill in people and that you know how special a gift it is to be able to make people want to contribute to making the world a better place.
From a cat owner who ones day hopes to also be a labrador owner, and who needs no response in return, I thank you for all the good work you do with very best wishes and may these kind words be a few that become many for you this festive season.