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brotymo
24th July 2008, 05:24 AM
Hi everyone, you'd think what happened with Pixie this summer was enough drama in one family's life, but the past 4 days provided another scare and what could have been deadly situation for our collie Lad. I wanted to share so those of you in tick infested areas would be aware, if you didn't know, about what happened to us. I posted over the weekend about the wobbly rear legs and unsteady gate Lad had, like he was drunk, or weak in his rear legs.

We had just pulled into the drive from being out of town, and he was outside in the yard, so I was afraid of heat injury. We treated him as if it could be the heat by hosing him down and bringing him into the airconditioner in front of the fan. We checked him all over and found a small tick on his ear. Being in the cool, calm house, he seemed to improve. The next day he also seemed much improved, no sign of stumbling, just a bit of dragging his toenails occasionally, and he really wanted to be outside, so I let him sleep out after the sun went down and it was cooler, with the intent to bring him in the next morning, which was Monday. When I went to bring him in a 9ish on Mon. morn, he could hardly control his hind legs and staggered really bad. Alarmed, I loaded up the kids and Lad and headed straight to the vet. There, we underwent a battery of xrays and bloodtests. The only abnormality was a slight elevation of kidney enzymes. The vet really wasn't sure about his spine, said overall it looked good, but was looking at a spot she thought the vertebrae might be a little close together. She sent us home with prescriptions for anti-inflammatories and pain meds in case it was the spine and doxycycline in case it was a tick-borne illness, and strict bed-rest instructions. On the way home in the car, my daughter was rubbing his chest (poor guy has collie eye anomaly, and is blind in one eye, and gets really car sick) and she felt a large tick. As soon as I got home, I pulled it off. It was very engorged, and I was able to identify it as a deer tick. Miraculously, his symptoms completely resolved overnight even though I hadn't been able to fill the scripts (pharmacy closed by the time we picked Lad up from the vet, so I was waiting until the next morning to get them). Now we are pretty sure he was stricken with tick paralysis. The cure is to remove the tick. The scary part is that if the tick doesn't fall off soon enough or you don't pull it off soon enough, your dog dies. They get ascending paralysis which reaches the diaphram and arrests breathing. I have learned that being in warm conditions or being active makes the effects of the toxin the tick is injecting progress more rapidly, which explained why it was worse when he had been outside and seemed better after he was in for a while.
I hope I am not speaking too soon, but all has been well for 2 days now, but if we hadn't found that tick, I very likely would have been burying another dog already. Watch for those ticks! If you get them off before they have been on for several days, you are usually fine. The average time to start affecting an animal is day 4-5 of feeding. Several types of ticks can transmit the toxin, too.
Just wanted to share what happened so you all might avoid the situation in the future. Oh, I also use Advantix, but I haven't found anything that keeps all the ticks off.

http://i215.photobucket.com/albums/cc230/suziesauctions/Dogs/Pixie63a.jpg

http://i215.photobucket.com/albums/cc230/suziesauctions/Dogs/IMG_4648.jpg

hbmama
24th July 2008, 05:46 AM
Oh my gosh!!! Thank the Lord you found that tick and got it removed before poor Lad got any worse! I had no idea that could happen with ticks. All I have heard about before is Lyme disease. You have really been through so much this year. Thank you for sharing the information. It could save another dogs life. I am so happy that Lad is now on the road to recovery!

hbmama
24th July 2008, 05:47 AM
Oh, I also wanted to say that those pictures you posted are some of the most precious I have seen in a long time!

brotymo
24th July 2008, 06:02 AM
Oh, I also wanted to say that those pictures you posted are some of the most precious I have seen in a long time!
Thank you, I have lots. I drive my kids crazy snapping pics all the time :snap:, but they are glad I did it since Pixie died and the photos are what we have left (and our memories, and the photos help keep the memories vivid).
I will have to post some more as time allows.

The Boys Meet Pixie for the First Time-

http://i215.photobucket.com/albums/cc230/suziesauctions/Dogs/IcomeinPeace.jpg

http://i215.photobucket.com/albums/cc230/suziesauctions/IMG_4650.jpg

pippa
24th July 2008, 08:30 AM
So glad he is ok,precious pictures.

daveoirl
24th July 2008, 11:46 AM
Great you found the tick in time! And what fantastic pictures!!

Cleo's Person
24th July 2008, 12:45 PM
So very glad to hear you got the tick and resolved the difficulty. Gorgeous photos.

Kristy
24th July 2008, 01:41 PM
oh im so glad you were able to find the tick and remove it in time. lovely photos!

Cathy T
24th July 2008, 03:42 PM
So glad your daughter found that tick! Could have had a much worse ending.

What incredible pictures! Lad is beautiful and looks like he's as sweet as can be.

*Pauline*
24th July 2008, 04:33 PM
Thanks for the warning. It must be so hard keeping that long thick coat tick free. Lad looks so beautiful as do your other dogs. You'll have to post pics of them all with a little introduction ;) Glad Lad is ok now, what a relief.

Mom of Jato
24th July 2008, 07:53 PM
Thanks for the warning. Thank goodness your daughter found the other tick- she must be very happy, and proud! He is a beautiful collie, and the pictures are just great.

brotymo
24th July 2008, 10:02 PM
Thanks for the compliments on him. He really is a beauty, and a gentle sweet fellow. Pixie was smitten with him, too. I don't know if him being the same colors (roughly) as her attracted her to him or what, but she was bonkers about him from the day we brought her home.

Rosewoodsteel
25th July 2008, 03:42 PM
Glad to hear everthing is OK.
I use Frontline Plus on Charlie and it seems to keep the ticks away.

Ticks are nothing to screw with.
Last year, almost to the day, I had to leave my vacation because of a deer tick. When I saw the lyme rash, I went straight to the hospital for treatment.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v51/rosewoodsteel/IMG_1444.jpg

brotymo
25th July 2008, 06:31 PM
Glad to hear everthing is OK.
I use Frontline Plus on Charlie and it seems to keep the ticks away.

Ticks are nothing to screw with.
Last year, almost to the day, I had to leave my vacation because of a deer tick. When I saw the lyme rash, I went straight to the hospital for treatment.
Thanks for the advice on the Frontline Plus. I had stopped using it before because my Malamute Mix had a severe reaction to it and chewed her back above the tail absolutely raw (had to go to the vet for treatment and she had to wear that lampshade thingy on her head). I didn't put two and two together until the same thing happened the next month. Switching to Advantix seemed to work. I could probably try it on Lad, though, since he is the hardest one to search for ticks.
wow! That lyme disease it scary stuff! It worries me that you can't see if your dog gets the rash most of the time.

Rosewoodsteel
26th July 2008, 03:14 PM
Thanks for the advice on the Frontline Plus. I had stopped using it before because my Malamute Mix had a severe reaction to it and chewed her back above the tail absolutely raw (had to go to the vet for treatment and she had to wear that lampshade thingy on her head). I didn't put two and two together until the same thing happened the next month. Switching to Advantix seemed to work. I could probably try it on Lad, though, since he is the hardest one to search for ticks.
wow! That lyme disease it scary stuff! It worries me that you can't see if your dog gets the rash most of the time.

Charlie has had no problems with Frontline Plus. -Give it a try!

-By the way, people don't always develop a rash with Lyme.
Also, if a rash does appear, it isn't necessarily at the site of the bite.