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Monday, 5 September 2011

Surviving bed rest


I hope someone can give me some suggestions. My three-and-a-half-month-old Smooth Fox Terrier puppy broke her leg last night. She is in a temporary plaster until Monday when she will be operated on and given some pins to hold the leg together. The vet has advised us to keep her in her crate for the following six weeks for it to heal properly and limit her movement, what I would like advice on is if anyone has any suggestions to keep her amused for the six weeks as she is highly intelligent and will become bored very quickly?

Secondly are there any supplements or homeopathic treatments or herbs I can give to ensure a good recovery? In humans I have heard that placing a comfrey leaf in the plaster can give very beneficial results does anyone know if this can be done for dogs? She is fed on Natural Instinct complete raw dog food so she should be getting enough calcium but should she have more?

Any help would be gratefully received as we are in for a trying six weeks!

Kind regards
Sam Salter-Rafferty, by email


  1. get one of these and fill with her favourite food, I use marmite, bread, cheese, dog treats, push them in really tight, kept my puppy entertained for HOURS when she was small (she's also very intelligent and gets bored easily)

  2. Sorry to hear about poor pup. Haven't had experience of this myself, but imagine the clicker could be your friend! Plenty of time to do shaping and really get the pup using its brain. This exhausts my collie cross. 10 mins at a time is perfect, and if you have all day, plenty of regular sessions could keep your dog motivated and amused. You could really explore shaping if you haven't done so already, teaching "touch", leg movement, maybe even facial movement (lick lips, open mouth) to get dog (and you!) thinking. Head up/head down. Karen Pryor has loads of advice on her website and Wagmore barn do step by step books. They key to it is to get your dog doing the thinking about what you click and reward. A bit like the "hot and cold" game we used to play as kids. The experts explain it better than me though, and I"m sure you could use it to great advantage in the crate. Plus, dogs LOVE it. Even my cat comes running when she hears the clicker. Good luck!

  3. I have just worked with a dog with severe hip dyplasia which was on bedrest, doing nosework exercises. A simple search for a toy or treat hidden under flower pots or cups is a brilliant game. Placed near enough that the dog can easily nudge them with their nose helps prevent excitability and movement if that is what you are trying to avoid. You can make the game progressively more difficult and interesting if you use your imagination - perhaps asking the dog to find one specific toy from under the pots by giving it a name 'Find Ball'/'Find Teddy' and so on.

    No need to buy expensive rubber toys to give your dog something to do - teach them to sniff out different textures such as wood, leather, cardboard... your limit is your imagination! Just make sure the items are not too small that your dog may choke on them. Good luck and have fun!

  4. As a Reiki/Animal healer I would recommend Reiki treatment which can speed up the healing process, once the dogs leg is in plaster. You can find a practioner at the Reiki Federation website.

    I would certainly agree that a food filled Kong (use a portion of your dog's daily ration, to keep tabs on any weight gain that this inactivity could bring), and if you freeze the Kong and it's contents first it will last even longer! I find that black Kongs are the most enduring, so are suitable for the strongest of chewers.

    I hope that your dogs recovery is speedy.

  5. At Trion:Z Pets we have found that owners have commented on how much quicker their injured animals have recovered when they have worn our magnetic and ionic collars.

    Magnetism is attracted to the iron in the red blood cells and helps to boost the circulation. This means that oxygenation of the cells is more efficient and nutrients are distributed more readily around the body. This can help all animals stay healthy and have a strong immune system but can also be beneficial in elderly and injured animals in speeding up the healing process.. The collar is designed to be fully functional, washable, durable collar and has a D-ring so an additional collar would not be needed for when your puppy can get back on her feet!

    Trion:Z Pets wish your puppy a speedy recovery!