Pet of the Month: Rocky

Rocky was born July 29, 2012. He was 8 days old when we first saw him. When we brought him home on September 28 at 9 weeks old he was just 1 lb. 1 oz. He is a sweet, smart and friendly pup who loves everyone including children and other dogs. He loves to go for walks, play on the beach, play fetch and tug-of-war with his toys, and hang out with his older “brother” Angel.

In early November of 2014, we woke up on a Sunday morning and noticed that Rocky’s eyes were dilated and didn’t respond to light. His vision seemed to be impaired though he was able to see some. We took him to Del Valle the next day and were referred to an ophthalmologist. The ophthalmologist said that a spinal tap was required to determine the cause of the inflammation to his optic nerve. Unfortunately, there were complications during the tap so not enough fluid was removed to test and Rocky came out of anesthesia with terrible equilibrium issues to the point where he could not walk or even stand up without falling over. It’s been a long journey of recovery for him. During the first week or so, we had to hold him constantly because he could not stand up on his own. We hand fed him and gave him water with a dropper. We slept on the floor on an air mattress for 6 weeks for fear of him falling out of bed.

Over the weeks and months he had to learn to walk and even to bark again. He has always been a very strong willed little guy and that determination has served him well during this time. He now leads a fairly normal life though his balance is not 100% yet and his vision is still impaired. We have chosen not to put Rocky through another spinal tap so we still don’t know what caused his original vision issue.

We bought him sun glasses which he wears to protect his eyes when we’re walking outside. He looks very stylish and cool in them and he’s treated like a celebrity everywhere he goes with people stopping us to ask if they can take his picture.

If you have questions for your Del Valle Pet Hospital veterinarian, stop by our veterinary hospital in Livermore or call (925) 443-6000 to schedule an appointment.