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Oona Posted on by Oona

This is what a post-surgery Chihuahua mix looks like.

The luxating patella surgery went well. The Seattle Humane Society volunteer vets are great – and apparently made a groove in the little Chihuahua’s patella so it would sit correctly in the trochlear groove. And then did something else with one of his tendons to support the adjustment. Taquito was really groggy the first day and half out of surgery, but is now back up and trying to escape his crates we have set up around the house.

That’s right, it’s recovery time. We’ve been told that the surgery they performed will take about eight weeks to heal completely. In the first five days, we had to keep a close watch on him and either keep him in a tiny pen (pictured here) or in his little travel crate. We only picked him up for potty breaks and a little snuggle time. He howled like a dog about three times his size when he wanted to snuggle and we were busy taking showers or cooking!

And now we’re able to make the pen a little larger – just enough so that he can take a few steps in it. We’re using his foster siblings’ wire crates for this, since they’re larger and he’s trying so hard to jump out of the pen with the open top! And we’re also letting him walk along on a leash a tiny bit – just around the yard. Stairs and jumping are still not allowed. Tough for this little jumping bean, but we all have to be good.

Then starting next week (and for the following three weeks), Taquito can start to walk on leash a bit more. But there’ll still be no jumping or playing with the other dogs. It’s gonna be a slow and steady recovery process, but by the end of it we can start extending the amount of time he spends on walks and playing with the other dogs (who miss their new little friend!). For being a dog that didn’t really ever play with dogs, he’s turning a real corner. We think he secretly knows that his foster siblings are pulling for him, even if they’re not totally excited about his barking in the meantime!

Oliver helping the conehead recover with some snuggles!

In full disclosure, since we’re just fostering Taquito, a volunteer vet at the Seattle Humane Society performed this surgery on him for free. However, luxating patella surgeries typically cost a few thousand dollars. Pet insurance coverage covers costs like these and others, as long as they’re not pre-existing to your enrollment. If you don’t think you could afford spending a few thousand dollars on your pet’s surgeries, please look into pet insurance. It’s a small monthly payment that could save you a lot in the long run.

Oh and another thing, if you’re interested in adopting Taquito (once he’s recovered!) or who we think may be his brother, Pepe, please contact the Seattle Humane Society!