Of Buddy and Back Injuries

I don’t know if my absence from the blog has been noticed, but ‘I’ve been MIA for awhile, suffering from a slipped disc. Besides sapping any creativity, it is darned hard to write when lying on your belly in bed.

The offending item that resulted in my most recent aggravation of my back injury

My infirmity did cause me to think back 10 years when I first injured my back. For the six weeks during my recovery, my young Border collie, Buddy, stayed as if glued to my side. I knew he would have preferred to be out on the ranch herding or exploring, but stay with me he did. Because of his loyalty and devotion, his name became uncannily appropriate.

Buddy has of course, like me, aged in the last 10 years. He injured his own back years ago while jumping over a cattle guard, causing a thoracic disc to project out, contuse his spinal cord, and bring about a prolonged weakness of his hind legs. He is probably 70% recovered now and has continued to perform his ranch duties with a fierce determination.

Buddy when younger

Buddy is now an old dog. Of late when we’ve gone on a walk (always an activity he enjoyed immensely), he has tended to stay behind at the house while Bella and Little Jack walk off with me.

Seems to me Buddy is smart enough to know that the exertion will only aggravate his discomfort and we will, after all, return in short order.

Buddy sleeps more now following his injury

Since most of my time has been spent in my position of relative comfort, that is on my belly in bed, Little Jack and Bella have taken over Buddy’s prior close association. They bookend me on the bed while Buddy lays across the room on his dog bed or underneath my bed. He simply doesn’t have the oomph to jump up on the bed any longer. Instead he seems to delegate this position of responsibility.

Bella on the left and Little Jack on the right

Buddy seems able to accept  changes required by his age and back condition. This lesson is not lost on his pained human companion.

Injuries, such as mine, provide lots of time to think. My friends and family have been wonderfully supportive. This provides more solace than I ever would have imagined.

My dogs also provide wonderful companionship and are rooting for my recovery. While I await a visit with the neurosurgeon, I am closer than ever to achieving recovery from my injury. Loyalty is never sweeter than when it arrives at a time of special need- and on four paws with a wet nose.

3 thoughts on “Of Buddy and Back Injuries

  1. Madeline February 21, 2018 at 10:01 am Reply

    What a sweet, sad, and wise story this is, Tom, and how much we can learn from our little four-legged friends if we have the eyes to see and the ears to hear! I was actually re-reading some of your older posts just yesterday, and wondering why we haven’t heard from you in a while. I’m glad you are back to “blogging” again, and hope that your recovery continues to go well!

    • tomhuttonmd February 21, 2018 at 10:25 am Reply

      Many thanks Madeline. Yes, we can learn much from our animal friends.

  2. La Nelle Ethridge February 23, 2018 at 9:47 am Reply

    Well Tom, you have been missed. I too, was wondering if you had been working hard on a book and let the blog rest. Sorry about your back, but love that you have both 2 legged and 4 legged support. Being laid up with the flu has reminded me that we all take our routine health for granted until we can’t. Rest, recover and give those 4 legged friends a pat from me.

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