Squirrels and Rabbits

A few days ago one of our black belts e-mailed me to check on how I’m doing and to tell me about about a neighbor’s dog, Susie, who had torn the equivalent of her ACL and had surgery to treat the condition.  She appears to have made a full recovery and is again out “chasing squirrels and rabbits like a pro.”

I was fascinated by the idea that the canine knee was susceptible to this kind of injury and that veterinarians are able to repair it surgically.   (I also wondered if there were any professional canine physical therapists out there.)  I did some research and found that human and canine joint structures are indeed similar, though not exactly the same, and that, for dogs, there are three distinct surgical options. An explanation of the canine knee structure and the surgeries are at http://www.petroglyphsnm.org/caninecorners/aclrepair.html.

Two of the procedures sound similar to human ACL reconstruction, and the third sounds very different. So, depending on what kind of surgery Susie had, her recovery may have little to do with mine.  Still, she’s kind of hero to me, because I imagine her running around in her backyard, throwing herself headlong and un-self-consciously into her play. 

That’s the mental state I’d like to acheive at the end of my recovery, when I, too, am back out chasing squirrels and rabbits again.



2 Responses

  1. I found that mental practice has paid off. When I got to the phase where running begins, I filled my thoughts with the pattern of the new kata I need to know for my next test.

    The results?

    When I actually went through the kata for the first time, it felt like I’d been doing it for months!

    So keep your mind active. If you can’t physically move, close your eyes and go through the motions mentally. You’d be surprised what it does for muscle memory.

  2. When I first researched my ACL surgery, I found so many pictures of canines recovering from surgery…more than humans. I love the picture you describe of being fully recovered and chasing the proverbial squirrel and rabbit. I can’t wait for that day!

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