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Not-so-happy Tail?


Guest LovesDoggies
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Guest LovesDoggies

I have had Kimmie for almost 2 weeks. I adopted her from a shelter. She was adopted 2 years ago when the Plainfield track closed in CT. A few weeks ago her family brought her to the town shelter. When I was adopting her, the ACO pointed out that Kimmie had happy tail (I had never heard this expression before and didn't even know it existed) and that her tail had a very small amount of blood from her wagging her tail so violently against the fence there. She still wags uncontrollably, and I noticed more blood in the same area of her tail.

 

Will she always have happy tail? I saw another post on here that said something about amputation?!?!?! That can't be where we are headed, right?????????????????????? :(

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Don't worry - most dogs who get 'happy tail' don't end up with amputation. :)

 

Renie's had it twice, both times when she was in kennels. She has such a wonderful time when we board her, shouting at all the other dogs - sometimes she lashes that tail so hard she splits it on the kennels walls.

 

The reason it can be hard to get it to heal, is that the dog simply won't stop wagging their tail while it heals. So, you have to protect it. Usually, 'happy tail' is bandaged completely from tip to rump. Renie has had the type of elastic bandage which sticks to itself. You will probably also need to incorporate something to protect the tip from damage while it heals. Many people use a piece of foam pipe cladding or a foam hair curler to slide over the tail and bandage in place. My vet says this needs to be left in place for three weeks. It's a pain to get the adhesive off the fur afterwards, but it seems to work. Renie still has her beautiful long tail. :)

 

Make sure the person who wraps it knows what they're doing. It needs to be tight enough not to come off, but not so tight that it cuts off the circulation. ;)

Edited by silverfish

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest wrldruler

There are lots of posts on here about happy tail, so try a search.

 

We just got George and he just started with the same happy tail problems.

 

Went to the Rite Aid, bought foam hair curlers, 12 for a $2. Also bought some Athletic Tape (the kind which does NOT say "won't stick to hair"). I have heared J&J Elastikon Elastic tape is the best, but I am having a hard time finidng it. Not in the regular stores. Will try the Tractor Supply or similar horse store.

 

Went to the Tractor Supply and bought 3M Vetrap for $2 each. Also bought ENT Gel which is not cheap ($13 a tube). And some wound cleaner which was pretty cheap.

 

Cleaned the wound with some wound cleaner. Cut the foam curler in half, like it was a hotdog bun. Put over wound, but leave 1"+ over hanging the tip of the tail. Tape the curler to the tail. Then Vetrap over the curler and up onto the tail. Tape the Vetrap onto the tail.

 

If George is still having problems, we're going to upgrade from foam curler, to the black pipe insulation available at any ahrdware store.

 

I will say that the bandage stayed on George all yesterday night, and yesterday. But when I get home and went to his crate, he wagged so hard that the bandage came off. Sad thing is that the tape held, but he ripped his tail hair out by the roots. Then slammed the tail onto the crate. I was covered head to toe in his blood splatter, while still in my good work clothes.

 

I'll see how he does today when I get home, and talk to the vet at our appointment today. Not sure what to do if he is willing to rip his hair out -- shave the tail perhaps and let the tape stick to the skin ??

 

Best of luck.

 

Chris

Edited by wrldruler
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If George is primarily whacking the tail on the crate (meaning that's where the damage is happening), buy some foam batting or padding at a craft store. They come in squares just about the right size to put up along the back walls of the crate - where the tail would hit. Hang them in the back sides of the crate - we used zip ties, poke a hole through the foam and zip tie to the wire crate. That helped tremendously!

 

I agree with above - the key is to keep the tail protected until it can heal. Most likely 2-3 weeks. I use pipe insulation, and white athletic tape and tape up the tail about 4-5" (on to the hair).

 

Here's a good website describing the wrapping process (though I would use something other than just cotton): http://www.grassmere-animal-hospital.com/h...l_bandaging.htm

 

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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Guest wrldruler
If George is primarily whacking the tail on the crate (meaning that's where the damage is happening), buy some foam batting or padding at a craft store. They come in squares just about the right size to put up along the back walls of the crate - where the tail would hit. Hang them in the back sides of the crate - we used zip ties, poke a hole through the foam and zip tie to the wire crate. That helped tremendously!

 

Don't mean to de-rail a thread I didn't start, but...

 

Do you think the dog will leave the foam alone, or will he chew on it?

 

Thanks

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Guest IrskasMom

 

 

 

BauersMom.... I dont have a Grey with Happy Tail , but this Website you Posted is good to know and very

Educational in terms of Greyhounds . Super . :):):):)

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my new foster has happy tail.

 

I am using Elastikon. You can find it at medical stores. If they don't have it in stock they can probably order it for you. If you can't find it....google it. There are a plethura of places that sell on the web.

 

You can wrap the tail in plain gauze wrap, then put the elastikon on top. Have the tape stick to the fur about 1/2 inch. It keeps the wrap on without sticking to the whole tail. If the wrap comes off, try overlapping the tape onto the fur a little more. You want just enough to keep the bandage on, otherwise it's hard to remove without taking a lot of fur.

 

Change it regularly to make sure nothing nasty is happening underneath. But keep it wrapped a long time to make sure it's 100% healed. (I'm thinking at least 2 weeks)

 

 

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If George is primarily whacking the tail on the crate (meaning that's where the damage is happening), buy some foam batting or padding at a craft store. They come in squares just about the right size to put up along the back walls of the crate - where the tail would hit. Hang them in the back sides of the crate - we used zip ties, poke a hole through the foam and zip tie to the wire crate. That helped tremendously!

 

Don't mean to de-rail a thread I didn't start, but...

 

Do you think the dog will leave the foam alone, or will he chew on it?

 

Thanks

 

Sure, there's always a chance they'll mess with anything in their crate.

 

That said, neither of the two dogs that I had happy tail with did anything to the foam. In one case, I started with covering the the crate with a comforter, like this:

IMG_3423.jpg

It was sort of an experiment and it worked fine, so that may be an option if you think they'll mess with the foam.

 

Basically, the theme of happy tail is protect the tail from further damage while it's healing. And sometimes that means gettin' creative. :lol

 

 

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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Guest SoulsMom

My big goofus had to have his amputated when he was at the rescue kennel, waiting for a forever home. I think his was a situation where he kept breaking it, though.

 

IMG_0693.jpg

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If Kimmie is fortunate enough that she can be kept under conditions in which there are no more bars or fences for her to keep banging her tail on, there's a chance it may resolve on its own. As others have noted, the primary difficulty is preventing re-injury at the site. This is made more difficult in that shielding on the tail MUST be lightweight and durable, and can somehow be secured. Greyhound fur can be pretty slippery- good tape is a must.

 

But- if the injury isn't so bad, and there is no need to crate, there is a good chance the tail injury will resolve itself. Some caution is to be called for whenever the dog manages to get somewhere that she's going to whack her tail on a wall, appliances, hard furniture, etc., and it wouldn't be a bad idea to wrap it for cushioning just in case.

Coco (Maze Cocodrillo)

Minerva (Kid's Snipper)

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If you can wrap it with gauze and vet wrap, wrap it all the way up the tail so it stays on and leave it for about a week and then change the bandage. Do bandages for about 4 weeks and it should be completely healed by then. We've had two cases of happy tail here. Just be careful not to wrap it so tight you cut off the circulation or the tail will die. Easiest way to prevent that is to put gauze around the wounded part of the tail and then wrap it.

Judy, mom to Darth Vader, Bandita, And Angel

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