About Murph

Murph was born on the Red Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota with a badly deformed front leg. His mama and her litter were saved by Red Lake Rosie's Rescue after being abandoned when the puppies were just a week old. They were transported to All Dog Rescue in the Twin Cities, where mama and the rest of the litter were all adopted into wonderful forever homes. Murph had his leg amputated on 2/1/2017 and was formally adopted by his foster family after that. His mom is hoping to train him to be a therapy dog. Please adopt, don't shop!

Murph's mom Susan is the author of this blog. She's a bit smitten with her new boy :)

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Recovering from Surgery

I promised a picture of Murphy's incision once it was healed enough that I didn't think it would bother anyone even if they have a squeamish stomach, and here it is.  This picture is from 9 days post-surgery, and I am amazed at how beautifully and quickly it has healed.  The vet did a fantastic job on his incision - the stitches will come out Monday, and hopefully he will have no more activity restrictions after that.  He's always been a good boy, so it really hasn't been too hard as he's very content to lie down and chew on toys and bones.  He does want to play, but it helps that his biggest playmate Duke is 12 years old so we can shut it down quickly and distract him with something else.  It would be really hard to manage if we had another young dog, but Murph's canine brothers are both seniors.

We had beautiful weather for February in MN yesterday which melted all of the ice off of the park trails, so we decided to take Murph for a short leash walk and get him a little fresh air and exercise.  This was the first real walk he's been on since the amputation and he did great!  He looked like he'd been walking with just three legs his whole life, which he kind of had since the flipper wasn't any good for walking, but I didn't know if having the leg gone would mean he'd have to learn how to manage completely differently.  He only lost his balance and fell once - there was a little lip on the concrete that he missed and he tripped on it.  I figure that kind of stuff is going to happen, and he handled it like a champ, just popped back up and continued on. 

It has been interesting watching our other dogs adjust to Murphy being part of our family.  We have fostered close to 100 dogs over the years, so Maks and Duke are VERY used to dogs coming and going.  But they seem to understand that Murph is staying, and they are actually a little jealous of him.  They have always loved me but they adore my husband; just about every dog who meets him falls madly in love with Dennis.  Murph actually prefers me, which is nice since I will be the one training with him.  Maks and Duke have suddenly become plastered to my sides any time I try to give Murph some love - "What about us, Mama?  We love you too!!"  It's very sweet, and I am enjoying them wanting some extra attention from me these days.  The only problem is three dogs and two hands, but we take turns and it all works out.

Here's a picture of Maks blocking Murph from getting close to me on the bed (pre-Murph, Maks virtually never jumped up on the bed with me):

Jealousy aside, they have accepted him as a part of their pack.  They have been very gentle around him as he recovers - dogs have tremendous empathy, which is one of the things I love so much about them.  They know when someone is hurting, and they do what they can to help make things better.  Here is a picture from January 2016, after my beloved Pomeranian Pip died unexpectedly and I was overwhelmed with grief.  My sweet, aloof Maks jumped up on the sofa, laid his head in my lap, and didn't leave my side:

And here is Duke, resting his head on his little playmate's back while Murph is healing:

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