Yesterday at a clinic I got to help fit a dog for a wheelchair. I’ve tried to get people to consider these carts for dogs before but no one listens to me. There used to be a dog that made the rounds in the trail ride association I judge who was in a cart. She’d go out on the trails with us sometimes. We had her test sections of trail that we weren’t sure of. If she could do it (and she always could) then we knew the horses could do it.

The dog yesterday has a degenerative spinal disease. His owner got the cart about a week ago but needed help getting it all adjusted to fit him. He hadn’t walked in quite a while but when we got him in the cart he took off. He wasn’t a terribly good driver. He had no concerns for obstacles in his path such as tools or feet. He’d run them right over. He’d bounce the wheels off the walls and chair legs.

We took him out into the parking lot and then we had to station people around the perimeter to catch him and make him go back the other way. His owner was getting a work out. He’d suddenly gone from a dog that needed to be carried and that stayed where you left him to a dog that you couldn’t turn your back on or he’d be gone!

We cut his play time short because he was going to be so tired and sore the next day.

2 Replies to “Need for speed”

  1. Wow – what a blessing for that little guy! Immobile to mobile with just a little help. We have a doxie and I know they are prone to back issues. I’ve seen a lot of doxies with those little carts and I’m so glad their owners just didn’t put them to sleep!

  2. LOL Glad to hear the pooch has got some freedom of movement again. I find those pet-wheelchairs so bitter-sweet. It’s funny to watch the animal move, but knowing that they must use it because of some problem that was otherwise hindering their movement makes me sad. I’m glad that somebody had the sense to create such a device for disabled pets, but I’m sad that there’s a need for them at all. And those pets always make people look like horrible wusses. A human on crutches or in a wheel-chair is often disgruntled & grumbly about it. An animal is just happy to be able to move about with some semblence of normality, no grumpy-ness or disgruntlement because it’s not the way every other animal gets to move. Proof, again, that animals have souls, and sometimes it seems more of a soul than their human counterparts.

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