The Vet and Diggs’ Nail

Hi friends! I’m pleased to let you all know that Diggs is doing well post-surgery from his broken nail injury. I tried to write this all as one post, but to be honest, it was just too long. So for now, we’ll start with what happened at the vet’s office.

20131203_145818Diggs was seen first thing on Monday morning, which I’m incredibly grateful for. I’m sure it helps that we were there as the first staff member pulled into the parking lot, but that’s not really the important part of the story.

Our vet, who I honestly adore, was concerned that the angle of the break in his nail, seen here, would continue to splinter and crack as his nail grew back in if we just removed the broken gross piece. Additionally, Diggs probably wasn’t going to come anywhere near ANY of us again if we removed that broken part while he was awake. Let’s be honest, even removing his bandage resulted in some crazy eyes.

So, I made the decision (with a phone consult with Zach) to put Diggs under to do the nail repairs. As a healthy adult male, the risks seems minimal, especially in light of how traumatic it was going to be for him to be awake. We decided that the nail continuing to break during the extended healing time of 6-8 weeks probably wasn’t ideal either, so the vet cut it short. Very short. And cauterized it. Yes, I found and still find this idea to just be sickening, but I swear, I think this was the best choice given the circumstances.

20131203_143515 20131203_143622 20131203_143716The good news is that the break wasn’t as bad as we initially thought! Diggs got to keep a lot more of his nail than we expected, which is a very good thing in my book. I’m more than a little bothered by the visible quick, but I’m trying not to think too much about it.

While he was asleep, the vet also cleaned his teeth. They haven’t been cleaned since we adopted him, although we’re making slow progress on at-home brushing, and given the state they were in when we adopted him… I’m not sure he’d even seen anyone about his teeth.

The vet also took a look at the problem he’s been having with extra fluid from his male parts, although she also thinks that’s not even really a minor concern. She suggested betadine flushes if the problem persists, although I think convincing Diggs that we’re not going to hurt him is going to be a challenge. We’ll tackle that problem once his toe heals all the way though.

In summary, he’s on the mend. Hurray! He was quite sleepy yesterday evening, but was able to eat and drink somewhat normally. He slept through the night and had his first round of pain medicine and antibiotics this morning, so I think we’re off to a good start.

Have your pets ever injured themselves in a mysterious way? Were there any ‘surprises’ over the Thanksgiving weekend?

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4 Responses to The Vet and Diggs’ Nail

  1. Leslie says:

    “Have your pets ever injured themselves in a mysterious way?” Oh let me count the ways!

    Bella is Miss Mysterious Injury Incarnate. And when she’s not actually sporting an injury, her tummy’s all messed up regardless of the rice and boiled hamburg regime. :/

    I’m glad to hear Diggs is doing well. (But I have to admit, I scrolled hurriedly through those pictures of his nail. Yes, that cross-section of quick gave me the shivers, too. 🙂

  2. KB says:

    We’ve been down that broken nail road. We also had our boy put under for the nail removal. He had the whole nail removed, and it took about a year for it to grow back to “normal”. Three years later, he is still much more sensitive about that paw being touched than ever before.

    I hope that Diggs recovers fast!

    • I think the worst part of this whole adventure is that Diggs is already super sensitive about his paws being touched. I’m guessing this has set us back a year or so in progress on his feet being an “ok” zone for us to touch. Who knows though? Sometimes he really surprises me with what bothers him and what doesn’t.

      It’s good to know that their nails do have a tendency to go back to normal though, although three years must have seemed like an eternity. Was that R who had his nail removed?

  3. rottrover says:

    Oh Diggs! Wishing you a speedy recovery, Buddy!

    -Bart, Ruby and Otto

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