Each night as I come home from work, I’m greeted by my folks and my small 13 year old pup, Mikey, happily watching the evening news. Usually Mum is trying desperately to hold back my canine ugg boot from launching himself off the lounge and onto me as if we’re reuniting after an epic separation. As dramatic as it is, I must admit this routine is the highlight of my day. But not so on Friday night.

Unfortunately, Mikey got a bit over-zealous playing fetch that afternoon, forgetting that he has a ruptured back right leg cruciate ligament (as opposed to ‘crucial’ ligament which for the longest time I called it until my friend informed they are all crucial). Predictably, in trying to catch and return his favourite toy, Mikey came down like a sack of chap potatoes and needless to say, his good leg is no longer good.

The first time Mikey did his right leg, we opted against surgery. Trying to keep a small dog immobilised for 8 weeks post-op is out of the question when living with the realities of dementia. In our case, post-surgery care was too complicated and we make decisions now based on what will make life more simpler. So we put Mikey on a cocktail of daily painkillers, and I did what any single woman with no children would do and invested in a custom built dog pram. Thanks to Gumtree, the investment was only $30.

However, now that both his two back legs are stuffed, I’m left with only one other option – a doggie knee brace. Sadly, not to be found on Gumtree, but still a lot cheaper than surgery.

So with my funds depleted again thanks to my four-legged fluff ball, and with the knee brace on its way, all has resumed to near normal in our little household. Mikey is limping around like me after one of those intense yoga classes (anything where I am not in child’s pose most of the class is considered intense), Mum is adjusting to the fact I’m about to make her take a dog out not only in a pram, but in a leg brace, and Dad is blissfully unaware that anything is wrong, until of course he learns for the first time, about every 10 minutes, then it’s all downhill again!