…will eventually become a difficult situation. Mel (not his real name), the 110lb labrador mix still sporting his cahones, was slowing down on his walks in Sherman Oaks. His human dad was getting old himself and having back trouble of his own. The local veterinarian had found arthritic changes in his lower back and gave him a general pain killer (Tramadol, synthetic opiod). This was the day he couldn’t make it up a long flight of slickly tiled steps. Today was the day Mel’s back was to give out. Inauguration day for Barack Obama. The day the country was finally cool enough to have a black president. Mel was going down. His human dad hoisted Mel up those steps once more. Spine strain for spine faulter. On the housecall his lymph nodes were enlarged to accompany his testicular tumor, the main medical consequence of not neutering the dog. Use it or lose it. Either Mel’s back went out structurally or a tumor of the prostate has invaded the spine. His dad and mom and other family members said goodbye and Mel was peacefully euthanized at home. And as I labored to give Mel his sleigh ride down the tiled steps I thought about how the sweet lab must have touched their lives. I was also very grateful I had pre-treated myself with Ibuprofen.

SOAPBOX:
Please neuter your pets. Please research why this is important. Please live on the first floor with a large pet if there is no elevator.

Thanks,
Dr. Steve Weinberg