Poolside with Bao -- and as you can see, the area they shaved for the surgery was pretty extensive. They even had to shave part of his tail, but luckily, they left the little plume at the end of it.
His stitches come out on Wednesday.
We finished the antibiotics a couple of days ago, and Bao's "elevator anxiety" now seems to have dissipated. Maybe it had something to do with all the drugs he was taking. At one point he was taking seven different medications, twice a day!
What he had is called a perineal hernia, and anyone who has an intact, male dog should be aware of the dangers. Apparently, intact males (or males who are neutered late in life, as Bao was) are prone to these hernias and -- as we found out -- they just quietly get bigger and bigger until they become life-threatening.
I thought we were "managing" it with stool softeners, and that Bao's "slowing down" was due to his heart condition and advancing age. Now I know better. All that poop sitting in the "loop" of the hernia was not only constipating him, it was sapping his energy.
To see him trotting and prancing now, you wouldn't believe it was the same little dog. He's like a puppy -- full of eagerness, energy and vitality. I feel guilty. I wish we'd done this surgery years ago. I am amazed at the instantaneous difference it has made in his quality of life. If only I'd known!
Some medical diagnoses strike terror into your heart. However, "hernia" definitely isn't one of them. But now I'm thinking, maybe it ought to be.