The dog's blog no. 16 The value of knickers

 
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Hannah Capon

vet, and founder and director of Canine Arthritis Management and her dog Holly present this month's guest blog 

 
 
 

I often have random debates with friends over the odd pint, and this one came up the other day: the value of function and use. The dress you wear for one occasion sits idly in the cupboard having set you back £200, but the knick-knocks that get dragged through the wash every week and are worn countless times until they are thread bare cost barely £3 for a pack of 5 from Tesco’s!

Since I started running Canine Arthritis Management, I have had my eyes opened to so many idiosyncrasies in our profession, and the attitude to learning and development about common diseases compared to the less frequent, “sexier diseases” also displays the “knicker trait”. 

My obsession with arthritis management was born from many events happening at once. They include my own dog struggling with the disease; being unable to find guidance for decision making; having to live with a painful condition for a few months, that thankfully passed; acknowledging that common old arthritis was a bigger premature taker of lives than cancer or heart disease; and witnessing my own friend take her life, unable to bear another day of chronic pain. 

However, my obsession has certainly not met equal enthusiasm from others. In honesty most think I am barking mad to be a devoted missionary to the canine OA cause. But why? Is it simply down to other diseases being sexier, even though they may be tucked away in the “disease for a special occasion cupboard” with all the other diseases we study but infrequently see?

Logic would suggest that time, energy and finances would be better invested in something you see on an hour by hour basis. Improving your skill base on early recognition, appropriate diagnosis, and formulating management plans that you can reformulate and reformulate again as the case requires you to do. But these learning events offer less appeal to the masses. “The everyday ear”, “the annoying anal gland issue”, “the fat dog” are overshadowed by “learn to do a TTA in a weekend”, and “laparoscopic liver biopsies”.

So, for now CAM and I are going to get the old arthritis knickers out, add some tassels, sequin them up and make them look sexy! 

 
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