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 Missy's Road to Recovery

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Female Join date : 2016-03-18
Location : East Coast

PostSubject: Missy's Road to Recovery   Wed Aug 10, 2016 4:42 pm

It took us months but we are finally there! I figure this is a long enough journey and my Missy such a fighter that I just had to share the story with you guys.

So around January I went to go get my baby's blood work done as we do at least once a year, while she's all up to date on shots and preventatives it always makes me feel better to hear a vet tell me she's nice and healthy on the inside. But this year the results came back positive for chronic lyme. Since I live on the east coast this isn't a big shock, about 80% of animals contract it at some point in their lives around here and about 50% of humans do too so I didn't freak out right away. She wasn't showing any signs of it effecting her so my vet thought it was best to just stay away from meds as they normally will be hell for the dog for those 30 days.

About half way through the month I noticed her slowing down a bit on our walks and sleeping in a bit later. Other than that she seemed fine but just to make sure we put her on 7 days of doxy. Three days in she perked up a bit, the vet gave us a 30 day supply to get rid of the nasty lyme and we called it a day. Sadly into week two she started having even more issues, she was pooping and peeing all over the house, started to become destructive and slowed down even more on her eating. Back to the vet she said physically she is fine, a poop sample came back clean and a quick blood panel showed lyme but normal levels otherwise. After a few phone calls we narrowed it down to separation anxiety on top of not feeling good from the meds. I had started a new job and a roommate who spent a lot of time with her while I was gone just moved out. Seeing as I work as a pet nutritional and have access to all things pet supply I decided to rescue another dog, Missy grew up with a sister and did very well so I thought that was the best option for her.

Farlow was 4 months at the time and he seemed to do the trick, the bad behaviors stopped and she was a little more active in playing with him around the house. All was well for another few weeks until Missy started refusing to eat anything. Even table scraps, chicken and rice, stake cuts, anything I could get my hands on I tried (that was doggy friendly) but she refused it all. She became almost fearful of everything, hiding under the bed and throwing up often on the way up or down the steps. We went to another vet who did another physical and couldn't see or feel anything wrong with her, but a new stool sample came back positive for giardia...that was another medication we needed to start and we gave it to Farlow too since he came from a shelter and most likely carried it into the house.

It was touch and go from there, Missy would have some good days but mostly bad, she often didn't feel like getting up even for walkies which used to have her flying down hallways and doing tap dances by the door. She would often lag behind me and her baby brother, and when I took her by herself she would sometimes even stop in the middle of the road to take a breather. I got to my breaking point and broke down to my parents after work one night. I was afraid I was losing my baby who was only 6. After a lot of talking I decided to move back home. Someone was normally around the house at all times, she had access to a back yard and her older sister once again.

This seemed to help a little, she went ahead of me and her brother by a few weeks and my parents said she was doing alright. She even finished her meds up and seemed to be pretty darn peppy again. I thought I put it all behind me and moved back home happy to have my jogging buddy back. Until about a month ago it all started again. Little things like not waking up in the morning to go potty, she stopping barking and playing, became fearful to come downstairs or go outside. Walks were slow and almost painful and she stopped eating again. The next step was an ultrasound. That's all we could do at this point, outside of exploratory surgery but we didn't even know what to look for.

The ultrasound came back with some strange results. It looked like she had first degree sunburn from her throat all the way through out her to her bottom. No wonder she was in so much pain. The consulting vet and my own vet agreed it was a mix of the giardia and lyme medication. It wasn't so uncommon that they had to second guess so it was on to some pain killers and an anti inflammatory. It helped! I thought thank god it's over! She was eating again and kibble for the first time in months!

Until two weeks ago it started back. Refusing to get out of bed, refusing walks and eating and treats. Just laying there looking like she was in some much pain. My vet honestly talked to me about putting her down, I wasn't going to do that without a 100% diagnoses of something uncureable. If there was even a 1% chance I was going to take it. So I moved onto a different vet. We talked for over 2 hours about what was going on, she read her full history and made note on the fact that Missy got into a rat trap that had poison in it last summer as well as digging a whole chicken out of the trash and eating it bones and all. Everything was important to her and she took it all into account, deciding to connect everything as a cause. We did $280 worth of out of office blood tests, all clean. A full body xray was clean...we had no idea what to do but this vet wasn't going to give up. She gave Missy an antibiotic shot, even though the lyme came back in remission on a tighter test she wanted to make sure there were no lasting effects. Next was meds, and a lot of them. An anti-inflammatory in the morning, two hours later she get's 1-2 pain killers with a meal of chicken and rice with prescription wet food and a nutrition gel. A night 1-2 more pain killers if needed with dinner and right before bed on an empty stomach 1 pepto tablet. Her treats are small amounts of peanut butter mixed with some kelp supplement, a chewable supplement and white bread. A few bits of cheese are fine here and there too.

It's been 3 days so far and Missy is at last doing much better. Even in this heat she want's to go out for light jogs during our walks, is playing little by little at the dog park and spending time rolling around on the floor with Farlow again. I have my fingers crossed as this is a long term treatment that might be forever, but we will do what we need to. Missy needs to build back a great amount of muscle, after months of being unable to move or get any real exercise in she's very out of shape which makes it much harder for her to play and run. But we get her out of the house and in the car to go SOMEWHERE at least once a day. She seems happy for the first time in over half a year and I'm at last starting to see my baby again.

You know your baby, everyone told me she was fine and just lazy. While she's always been a bit of a lay around I knew something wasn't right and if I was going to have to be the crazy lady who thought her dog was sick all the time than so be it. Three vets later and we have a semi answer, by the end of the year we will most likely have a few more follow up tests done and maybe some physical therapy to get her back into shape so she can really move and grove but I'll never just give up, even if I have no idea what I'm fighting.
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Mountain Man

Join date : 2016-02-25

PostSubject: Re: Missy's Road to Recovery   Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:18 am

Aww keep at it!
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Female Join date : 2016-05-20
Location : Corpus Christi, Texas

PostSubject: Re: Missy's Road to Recovery   Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:14 am

Ughh putting down a pet should be an ABSOLUTE last option. Sorry the vet suggested it. I hope she feels better soon Sad
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Male Join date : 2014-08-18
Location : Terlingua, Texas

PostSubject: Re: Missy's Road to Recovery   Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:33 am

Good catch there Amanda, I missed that when I read it before ... I'm with Roo (and you) putting a dog down when you don't know what's wrong with it is the lazy mans way out of a problem.

Sasha, one of my two Sibes has bitten me - more than once (in fact five time and one required a trip to the ER for stitches).  Most of the time she's a good dog, but I know she has food aggression / possession problems so I work around them.  Right now she's in an extended time out because we're having some problems with her accepting the newest member to my pack (added a couple of weeks back)

Here's my take on this.  We (Sasha, Sky and I) have a problem; I'll do everything I possibly can to make things work but if I have to have a dog put down, *I'm* going to be the one to do it.  With Sasha's aggression I *will* not pass her on to anyone else - there may be no liability, but I'd feel responsible if she bit someone and did serious damage.

I'm rambling, but it really bothers me when anyone jumps to the "she's a problem, you need to put her down!" and then turns 'the problem' over to a vet.  If someone rescues a dog, they have a responsibility to it, to care for it - putting it down because it has problems (health or attitude) is not - in most cases - being responsible.  

(( oops sorry .... somethings get me on my soap box and that's one of them ..... ))
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Female Join date : 2013-06-14
Location : Missouri

PostSubject: Re: Missy's Road to Recovery   Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:09 pm

Hope you have found the solution. and it sounds like a better vet was found in the process. Glad you were willing to hunt around when you didn't hear what you wanted to from your previous vet.

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