My Dog Lefty Has Arthritis

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2016-07-19 – My dog Lefty has arthritis.

I began to figure this out on my own when I noticed that his limping seemed to follow a long period of inactivity. He seems to limber up once he gets going. I seem to do the same thing. We are about the same age if you employ the standard (though flawed) conversion of 1 dog year equaling 7 people years.

My diagnosis was confirmed by the vet. I wonder if Lefty is able to diagnose any of my ailments, by analogy.

In his late middle age, Lefty has taken up the habit of lying down in places where I customarily walk. In evenings when I sit reading or doing crossword puzzles in the living room, he lies in the path to the bathroom, which I make ample use of. At night, he often lies by my side of the bed where I step many times a night on the way to the bathroom.

He growls at me each time I pass. Because he is generally awake when this occurs—as am I.

Lefty is not troubled by politics or the troubles of the world. Like me, he does not watch TV. Unlike me, he has no social media presence other than the invisible trail he leaves in the park when he pees. At this time of year, he’s skittish about going into the park. He’s scared of the fireworks going off for maybe a month around the Fourth of July and he’s smart enough to try to stay away from things that scare him.

I’m not always that smart. But I may have a touch of arthritis. Though it’s never been diagnosed.

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