Couch Cushion Slip Causes Cavalier Catastrophe

To say that Rocky the 7-year-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is comfortable with Chelsey and Paul Weinacht of Sacramento, Calif., would  be an understatement. Rocky enjoys long naps on the couch, an occasional game of fetch, and watching television shows that feature dogs in the cast. However, one day Rocky’s comfort turned into a calamity after he slipped between the cushions of the couch during a nap and dislocated both his hips trying to get up. Rocky’s bizarre blunder and heartwarming recovery have earned him the title of October’s “Most Unusual Claim of the Month” by Nationwide, the nation’s first and largest provider of pet health insurance.

On the morning of the furniture fiasco, Chelsey was out meeting friends for brunch and Paul was relaxing with Rocky at home. Chelsey and Paul’s wedding was only a few weeks away and the couple was enjoying a nice day away from planning. As the morning went on, Rocky eventually fell asleep on the couch watching TV, as he commonly does, and Paul stepped out to grab a quick bite to eat.


“It was such a normal day,” said Chelsey. “Rocky couldn’t have been in a safer environment. It never crossed our mind that something this traumatic could happen. Ironically, we had signed Rocky up for pet insurance with Nationwide just a month prior, which ended up being a blessing.”

During Rocky’s slumber, his back legs slipped between the cushions of the couch. When Paul returned home, Rocky sprung awake and attempted to jump off the couch to greet him, but his endeavor went horribly wrong. Rocky’s back legs were pinned in the couch and halted Rocky’s jump, mid-flight. When Paul entered the room, he found Rocky hanging awkwardly off the couch by one leg.

“Paul called me when it happened and I rushed back home,” said Chelsey. “We weren’t sure exactly what his injury was, but we knew he was in trouble. He’s such a sweet and loving dog, it was devastating to see him in so much pain.”

The couple rushed Rocky to the UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital for treatment. The veterinarians ran various tests on Rocky and were astonished by the severity of the injury. The team explained that one of the Spaniel’s hips was severely dislocated that the surrounding area had suffered structural damage. Rocky was in need of major surgery.

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“We were all shocked by the test results,” said Chelsey. “They said injuries like this are usually caused by dogs getting hit by a car, not just jumping off the couch. We knew he needed an expensive procedure, but money was never a question. Rocky is part of the family and we’d do anything for him.”

The surgery was a success, but another issue was discovered. The fall had damaged Rocky’s other hip beyond what was previously expected, and would also need to be surgically repaired. A couple days later Rocky underwent his second major hip surgery.

After nearly a week in the hospital, Rocky was able to return home, but his recovery was far from over. Rocky needed more than two months to get his health back, and his family was there every step of the way. The newlyweds even postponed their honeymoon to be with Rocky during his rehabilitation.

Today, Rocky is able to run and walk without issue and is regaining his ability to jump. Chelsey couldn’t be happier with the veterinary care provided by the staff at UC Davis, and is grateful for the pet insurance support they received from Nationwide.

“Without the surgeries, Rocky may not have been able to walk again,” said Chelsey. “The veterinary team’s work gave us the opportunity to enjoy Rocky’s companionship for years to come and we’ll always be grateful for that. Having Rocky insured with Nationwide allowed us to get the procedures done without worrying about the cost. If we didn’t have pet insurance, I don’t know where we’d be right now.”


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