Yesterday, Dee and I went to the orthopedic vet specialist. They did a physical exam first, where the vet said she has discomfort in her neck and pain in both shoulders. They did x-rays, and they found some arthritis and shoulder instability. She is going to have hobbles, braces to restrict shoulder movement, and she will have exercises that I can help her do. She might have physical therapy too. I talked to GDB yesterday, and they authorized $1,200 and said to call when it's about to run out. Dr. Patty asked me if i was hoping GDB would fund partial or all of it. I told her all of it, and if that didn't happen, Dee wouldn't receive physical therapy. Each PT session is $1,500, and for the eight that the vet wants her to have, that is $12,000. There is no way I could afford even one session.
It doesn't look good. Dee is in pain; the vet says the three to four months not guiding, and not playing or moving much should fix it. But I am weary of it happening again, and I don't want to cause Dee further pain by forcing her to guide. There is too much pressure and strength needed from the shoulders and neck, and I don't know if it will be safe.
I'm starting to ask people I know if they would take Dee or know someone who would in the probability of her retirement. I also have half of my application submitted to GDF; I just have the eye doctor report and video to shoot before it can go for review.