Driving to a meeting yesterday I saw a “Cone of Shame” bumper sticker. After six blocks of following the yellow VW Bug, I gave up my attempt to get a picture of it. But several of the kids decided to model the cone in the first day of Bear’s recovery.
When I am home I relieve Bear of the cone. Though our human minds might think wearing a cone is emotionally straining for Bear, I am not so sure. He certainly looked sad when I first put the dish on, but since then he has adjusted quite nicely to it. He just barrels through the house. He forces his way under the table. He pushes past chairs and tables with the cone bending and snapping as he goes. And now when I put it back on him, he doesn’t even flinch.
Since Bear can’t talk, I’ll speak for him. He doesn’t mind the cone so much. It is a bit of an annoyance, and the cats aren’t sure what to think, but because he gets long stretches with it off, it isn’t so bad. He can lay and relax at Declan’s feet. And the need for the cone diminishes with the scars decreasing in annoyance.
The biggest challenge during this recovery will be the low activity needed to ensure the staples stay intact. It is day three of recovery and Bear is chomping at the bit. I take him for short walks a couple of times a day. This is not nearly enough stretching of the physical limits. This morning Dec was getting on his bike to ride to school and Bear was so excited to run to school. He ran and jumped along side Dec for half a block until I could reign him in. (The vet warned against any running and jumping for the next 12-14 days.)
Training has continued. In fact, the kids take part in a lot more of the training. Emma and Sam tend to put Bear through some drills every morning. Declan does some exercises with Bear every day. I can tell when Declan has done some training because Bear’s collar is missing. Declan thinks the collar is uncomfortable for Bear. I believe the training from different people is very helpful. It is important for Bear to receive both commands and treats from people other than me. Not only does it condition him to “listen” to others, but it also gives him permission to signal low-blood sugars to other people. In fact, this morning Bear signaled Dec, and he was indeed low.