"This was a very small town in the 1960's, so there were no noise ordinances other than neighborhood disapproval. I think if such surgery had been available, my mother would have been happy to put down cash for it. Probably all the other neighbors, too."
In a small town in the '60s I'm a bit surprised that nobody fixed the problem themselves, to be honest. In most such places that dog would have "run away" in short order.
"How did I skin my knee without falling down?"
You could have abraded it against something while you were walking. Do you recall stumbling against anything or banging into a cabinet or something?