Well, one of my worst fears took place yesterday afternoon. Jackson fell out of the truck.
I've worried about this before because he doesn't seem to think that only having three legs should prevent him from planting his one front leg on the wheel well in order to smell the wind just that much higher. Even when he isn't standing up like that he's taken several nose-dives in cars and trucks as a result of simple stopping, starting and turning. A 3-legged stool might be more sturdy than a 4-legged one but this is not the case with 3-legged dogs. Needless to say he's turned quite the deaf ear(s) to my concerns.
Yesterday we packed up our daughter and the dogs to spend the day with our parents. After several (70) miles on the freeway we took the exit for my parents house. A few blocks later we were first in line to turn left. The light turned green and off we went. The next thing I know Superman is braking suddenly while saying, "We lost Jackson." He pulls over immediately after completing the turn and I am out the door before the truck comes to a full stop. I run behind the truck, praying I won't see him laying unmoving on the pavement and praying even harder that the cars behind us will have stopped. He might be able to survive falling out of a truck but if he falls out and then is immediately hit by a car... less likely.
He's standing up, near the center divide, looked dazed. I glance again at the stopped cars to make sure they aren't going anywhere before walking towards him, calling his name. He sees me and begins to hop my way. I notice he's babying his right back leg but I am SO thankful he's upright and coming to me. He makes it over to the curb where I am and I help him back to the truck and ask him to lie down. He does and I notice his muzzle and chin are scraped up as I run my hands over his legs, feeling for anything out of place. There's a few bloody spots on his feet but he looks fine. Unfortunately, there simply isn't any room in the cab for him to ride comfortably the rest of the way to my parents so Superman gently lifts him back into the truck bed.
Now that the crisis is over I begin to feel shaky. I watch him most of the way to my parents house and he stands with T-Bird, both of them leaning over the side of the bed to better catch the wind. They know they are almost to my parents house where they can play with my sister's dog.
Superman told me he saw Jackson roll out of the truck in the mirrors, his back on the edge of the bed and then over the side. I'm so glad he was watching, otherwise we probably wouldn't have realized until a block or so later. We think some tool boxes in the truck bed slid or shifted during the turn, and might have under cut Jackson's back legs. He probably tried to jump out of the way and the momentum from the turn carried him right over the side of the truck.
I did not let Jackson play with Shadow. He bled a little on my mom's floor but it stopped pretty quickly. My mom gave him some pain killers which knocked him out a little. By the end of the afternoon, though, you wouldn't have been able to guess which of the three dogs had fallen from a moving truck. That's Jackson for you, though, determined not to let anything (pain, lack of a leg, etc..) slow him down. I'll be watching him over the next few days to make sure his legs are OK.