View Full Version : Ozzy

29th June 2006, 01:23 PM
We took the whole lot into the vets on Monday - Ozzy stayed there and had his bits done - and we also mentioned that he was scratching in the morning and sometimes through the night - Julian (our vet) has referred us to Clare Rushbridge so we can get him checked out - there is no scratching through the day so we are trying to check on him at night or in the morning.

29th June 2006, 03:32 PM
SM dogs often scratch more at night or especially in the morning. Rory did this and Dr. Rusbridge mentioned it a talk that is available on DVD. How old is Ozzy?

29th June 2006, 09:25 PM
Oh Claire I'm sorry to hear about Ozzy's scratching. HOpe he's recovering from the little boy op, bless him.

It's good that you're going to see Clare, she's very good - I think you have the little book too which will help you.

Keep us posted and please feel free to contact me if you want to talk.

29th June 2006, 09:35 PM
Excellent that you are seeing Clare, you can't get a more experienced opinion. Good luck, and please keep us posted. :flwr:

30th June 2006, 10:27 AM
Ozzy is nearly 8 months, there is no discomfort on his neck when touched, but he does not like it if we are just putting the lead on him, but I think that has more to do with Woody grabbing hold of it and pulling him around - which is why he goes straight to the front door to have it put on last thing....

The appointment is next Tuesday at 10 am so he is coming to work with me and then I can walk him down there.... I am so nervous/scared - thinking are we imagining it or has he got it - I am praying for the first one, Julian checked his ears when he was under and said they are clear so it doesn't look like mites or anything. I have read For the Love of Ollie (with a box of tissues again) just to make sure we keep an eye out for any other trates.... will keep you all updated, thanks for all of you being there for us...

30th June 2006, 06:44 PM
Claire, thinking of you and Ozzy and hoping for a clear scan report. If you need a chat then just PM me and I'll send you my phone number. You don't have to go through this alone :flwr:

30th June 2006, 11:15 PM
I'm sorry to hear you have these conserns. Clare is really capable and reassuring. She will be able to advise on what she thinks is possble, and what she thinks is best. Remember that SM is very variable in how it affects any individual and can be very mild. If you haven't had a chance to read through the info on www.sm.cavaliertalk.com by sure to before you go; mainly the symtpoms sheet, the information sheet from Clare, and the 'Is this SM' section -- then you'll feel more prepared for when you arrive, and will probably be able to take in more and ask more specific questions. Let us know how the appointment goes and best of luck.


4th July 2006, 11:06 AM
Right - report so far.

Got there about 30 minutes early... went straight in and explained his stratching, etc. he was only scratching his ears this morning so fingers crossed.

Clare (have to remember to spell it right), did some checking on his skull, his back and legs, and explained a little further about the condition. I have left him there for a blood test, and a full MRI scan and have to go back around 3pm, think I scared her a little bit as started crying when I was saying good bye to him (what a wimp). I just hope it is nothing.... :cry*ing:

4th July 2006, 11:38 AM
Best of luck Ozzy. Don't worry, I cried all day after leaving Daisy Boo in hospital. I had to go to work and I work with only men and they didn't know what to do with me.

Hopefully everything will be ok :xfngr:

4th July 2006, 12:18 PM
Don't worry; it is emotional to leave them. I was really choked up when I left mine it to be scanned too. He'll be happy to see you when you return. Say hello to Clare -- and let us know how you get on. :flwr:

4th July 2006, 02:07 PM
We are all with you waiting and hoping for good news. I cry any time I have to leave them at the vets even if it is just for boarding...can't say good bye!

4th July 2006, 02:38 PM
Thanks for all the replies, only 20 minutes til I can call. Thanks Donna for offering the ear on the end of the telephone. How do we get so attached to these little bundles of fur that wee, poo, eats and farts - missing one big that they loves ya no matter what.

4th July 2006, 02:57 PM
They win you over in a heartbeat don't they Claire.....they certainly give life a point.

4th July 2006, 05:47 PM
Any news yet Claire...thinking of you and sending lots of positive thoughts.

Don't worry, I cried when I had to leave TedBear for his MRI - and when I picked him up, just so relieved to see him.

Hope you're ok

5th July 2006, 10:57 AM
Sorry did'nt post anything yesterday I called at 3pm and was told that he was just going in for his MRI, and to call back at 4pm, I called and they said was just waking up and I could collect him at 6pm so I went and waited at 5.15pm, she then called me about 6.15pm and took me into the room and showed me the scan - confusing... but she said it is not SM, but he has about a millimetre of enlarged (can't remember the word she is doing a report I think so I should have the actual world), a number of the vertebrae also had a thinner lining of fluid..... he has been put on water tablets for two weeks and it will be review after that.....does that sound okay????? I was sort of crying and only really heard that he is okay and it wasn't SM.

5th July 2006, 12:17 PM
{{{{{{{{Claire}}}}}}}}, I don't know what the lining could be, but it does sound like good news - you are lucky to have an SM free dog :D

Hope Ozzy soon recovers with the water tablets. the main thing with those is to rememeber to give them at the same time of day and make sure you're around to let him out for about 2 hours afterwards. this is why Maxx has his at around 5.30pm when I know there'll be someone home to let him out for the inevitable 40 wees!

5th July 2006, 12:40 PM
Thanks Donna, he is on half a 20mg tablet twice a day...... he went out this morning and had about 4 wees.... and he will have his second tonight about 6pm, I have left paper out for him.... will is really make him wee that much???

5th July 2006, 12:56 PM
Unless this is something totally unrelated -- I'll try to explain what might be going on. It sounds like he may have the skull malformation (occipital hypoplasia, which is a little spur of skull growing inward into the area that the brain sits) and possibly herniation of the brain into the spinal cord, but no syrinx. Sometimes the two top vertebrae are affected. It is good that he has no syrinx, which means he doesn't have SM, but if she has prescribed frusimide then it sounds like she is trying to help prevent syrinx formation (I am afraid that not having syrinxes -- eg SM -- is only part of the picture and that syrinxes can develop over time in dogs where there's a restricted flow of the CSF (cerebro-spinal fluid).)

Frusimide is a drug often given to cavaliers when they get congestive heart failure as it helps to get rid of the excess water they produce (it is a diuretic -- that is why it makes them wee a lot, but they gradually adjust. Just be sure to get him out about 60 to 90 minutes after a pill and never give one right before bedtime or when you won't be able to get him outside. They are at their maximum bladder size at about an hour ot 90 minutes after. Leo used to leak a lot at first as he wasn't used to having this extra urine production, but now he is generally happy up to 2 hours).

The frusimide is prescribed because it seems to also lower the pressure at which the CSF fluid circulates around the brain and down the spine. There's no data to support this, only anecdotal evidence. Many neurologists only started widely prescribing this in the past year or so -- up to then really only Geoff Skerritt in Wales used it. He believes that if you don;t use it a dog showing symptoms will almost certainly develop syrinxes and they do develop and worsen in dogs taking it as well, as is the case with my Leo. Recently the frusemide stopped having a helpful effect for him, and while he still takes it for whatever benefits it might provide, he is now on the neurological painkiller neurontin, which has totally stopped the scracthing sessions he was having. Clare believes the scratching is connected to pain caused by neurological damage, in turn caused by the increased pressure of the CSF.

You'll want to aks Clare to explain this more clearly so you know what this actually is, and what to be watching for in future. Did she give you a sheet that lists the terms of what was noted during the MRI?

Some background:

Many neurologists no longer refer to SM as SM but as COMS (Caudal Occipital Malformation Syndrome) as they believe in more approapriate to refer to this condition as a result of the malformation, not of the syrinxes alone. This is because the SM is caused by the malformation and probably some other factors, but doesn;t need to be present for the dog to have the same symtpoms as SM and the dog can often progress to SM -- that is what Clare is trying to help you avoid or to minimise.

Similarly in humans, some have SM and some have what is called Chiari I, or the same type of malformation. Sometimes the Chiari has SM as a complication but Chairi I has many of the same symptoms. It can help understanding of this if you see what it means in human terms. I recommend this website:


Where you can see a lik to a document explaining SM, and another explaining Chiari. As with our dogs, these are related and one can become the other.