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Sarenna
2nd December 2009, 10:44 AM
Just to let you know Yoshi has his MRI tomorrow - I am not sure if I want a positive or a negative. I positive will say I know what is wrong with him let's get working on doing our best to make him more comfortable, however it's not something I really want to hear I want there to be a quick fix and it to be something simple.

I've seen a lot of comments about cheaper MRI's and who they are for. In the Netherlands Dieren kliniek "den heuvel" in Best performs an MRI for all Cavaliers at a special price €305 (this price if for Cavaliers only from what I gather and for the Syringomyelia test - other breeds / tests cost €800+) the results are sent to Dr Claire Rushbridge in the UK also. They will also ensure you have a full treatment advice for your vet - so it's not necessary to return to Best for treatment - which is good as it is far for me at least. This clinic is used by a lot of the Dutch breeders but there is not problem taking your symptomatic dog there (as I am with Yoshi). Originally I was going to visit the University Clinic in Utrecht which is excellent but is also approx €1000 - however if my vet cannot manage the treatment I will probably use Utrecht for treatment etc. Here the condition is almost a complete unknown in standard vet clinics, I have bombarded my vet with information from the sm.cavaliertalk website so she's not completely lost :)

For other Dutch Cavalier owners - the Dutch Cavalier club has been great with me I am not a member but I rang them with lots of questions and had nothing but support and help from the lady I rang. They directed me to this vets and she has kept in touch asking how it was going etc. I think maybe it is time to take up membership :)

Oh well a day of nerves waiting for me - I think I need to clean the house or something to deal with the nervous energy.

Sarenna

Charlifarley
2nd December 2009, 10:50 AM
Good luck with the MRI Yoshi. I know what you mean about not being sure if you want it to be positive or negative. The only thing is, if it is positive, it will be a relief to know that you are now doing something for your dog, and no longer wondering what is going on. You are lucky to be able to have the MRI done at such a low cost. Is there such a thing as pet insurance in the Netherlands?
Fingers crossed for tomorrow, keep us posted as to how it all turns out.
Charli

Margaret C
2nd December 2009, 11:27 AM
I will be thinking of you and Yoshi.

sins
2nd December 2009, 11:46 AM
Best of luck Sarenna,
I hope it goes well for you and Yoshi.
Sins

Claire L
2nd December 2009, 12:15 PM
:xfngr: for Yoshi tomorrow and a :hug:'s for you Serenna. I will be thinking of you both and praying for a good result for Yoshi.

*Pauline*
2nd December 2009, 12:23 PM
Keep busy and if it is SM, at least you will be able to make Yoshi more comfortable. We'll be thinking of you xx :hug:

Sarenna
2nd December 2009, 12:45 PM
Is there such a thing as pet insurance in the Netherlands?

Yes there is pet insurance - alas when I moved here my knowledge of Dutch was zero and insurance is one of those long Dutch words that just doesn't resemble English. My wonderful Dutch husband has tolerated my love of a house full of animals with a suitable amount of cluelessness (he never really had house pets) and a huge amount of support :) Including big bites out of the family finances. Needless to say he had no clue about pet insurance so it never happened. However so far we've been lucky whatever the vet has charged for the cat and dogs it hasn't been too much of a problem I just tap into my house rennovation fund :) (and my husband just smiles and says well next year we will get the house fixed up *ng*l )

Thanks for the kind words and thoughts and I will let you know the results

Sarenna

*Pauline*
2nd December 2009, 12:51 PM
Sounds like you have a lovely supportive husband there :)

Sabby
2nd December 2009, 02:13 PM
Is anybody going with you tomorrow? I went with my friend when she had one of her cavaliers MRI’d, it helps if someone is there with you for support. I will be thinking of you and Yoshi tomorrow. :hug:

Love my Cavaliers
2nd December 2009, 04:52 PM
Thinking of you tomorrow. :hug:

Sarenna
2nd December 2009, 04:55 PM
Thank you and yes my OH is coming with me - sharing the leaving of the house at 6am and even doing the driving in rush hour traffic! He is as stressed as I am, my neighbour has Emiko for the day - which she will love as she can play with their dogs all day (well boss them around, she thinks she's the matriarch!!)

I didn't really want to do this alone mostly I needed moral support but partly my Dutch doesn't go to complex medical terms the OH will understand fully what is being said if the vet can't do it in English and I think that's important too - it was good we could arrange an appointment that fitted his agenda so he could take the day off.

Thanks again for the kind words and thoughts

Sarenna

harleyfarley
2nd December 2009, 05:24 PM
Im dieing to know how things went, di

Bet
2nd December 2009, 06:04 PM
Yoshi ,wev'e all got our Fingers crossed for you to-morrow,and of course Sarenna as well.

Not long to go now.

Karlin
2nd December 2009, 06:37 PM
Best of luck with the MRI tomorrow. :xfngr:

You probably already have this, but just wanted to note that Clare has a Dutch translation of her basic intro to SM which you and your vet might find useful:

http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/syringomyelia/docs/cmsmdutch.pdf

diddy
2nd December 2009, 10:21 PM
Wishing you and Yoshi all the best for tomorrow. Will be thinking of you.

patg
3rd December 2009, 02:22 AM
Hi Sarenna,
I was in your same position just 2 months ago. Although we got bad news, I was then in a position to start to help my pup. As much as you think you are prepared, any bad news will hit you like a bolt of lighteing...but then you pick yourself up and focus on your pup. If you get good news, which I pray you do, you will then know for sure it is not SM and you can go down different roads.
My thoughts will be with you and I pray for all good news for Yoshi

Cathy T
3rd December 2009, 04:56 AM
Thinking of you.

Sarenna
3rd December 2009, 10:36 AM
sitting at the vets now waiting for the MRI to finish the vet said there is another 20 mins to go but he has already been able to dianose Syringomyelia. I cant make sad faces on my phone but its how I feel ... Hubby is heartbeoken atm i am kinda numb but hopefully will be ok when he's done and needs his mum

Claire L
3rd December 2009, 10:43 AM
Thinking of you all - hang in there Serenna :hug::hug::hug:

Margaret C
3rd December 2009, 12:08 PM
So sorry, give him a gentle hug from me.

Love my Cavaliers
3rd December 2009, 03:47 PM
Ah, I'm so sorry. At least you have a diagnosis now and can work to make Yoshi comfortable. There are many of us on this board who can give you help or just listen to your concerns. Allow yourself time to be sad and get used to the diagnosis. It does get easier. Hugs to you, your OH and Yoshi.

Sarenna
3rd December 2009, 04:11 PM
Well we are home now, traumatic day - Yoshi didn't react well coming out of the sedative which was really really stressful (he did scream out so) but on the drive home I got to thinking what has actually changed - we know what is wrong with him so in a way it's a good day as we can work now to alleviating all his discomforts.

To be honest we are really lucky, compared to some Cavalier owners, with Yoshi - he only suffers in the Winter, in the summer he's that fearless, active busy Cavalier he's always been, the Winter comes and he starts hiding in corners, gets random pain, scratches so much and is generally a little fearful of things, but he still loves long walks on the heath and I still struggle to keep him inside even when it's raining or freezing cold (crazy dog he is)

Tomorrow we go back to our vets to start treatment etc and hopefully it will be such that in the Winter is is nearly the same naughty little boy he is in the summer.

Thanks to everyone for their kind words I really appreciate it and it was nice to be able to say something where people understand what I was feeling - hopefully we can get this managed and move in the right direction with him. If anyone had tips for diet, supplements etc that can help him I am all ears, I give my animals a little cod liver oil every day with dinner but otherwise everything is fairly standard, dried food and veggies.

Thanks again

Sarenna

*Pauline*
3rd December 2009, 05:31 PM
I'm so sorry :hug:

Margaret C
3rd December 2009, 09:22 PM
You probably already have this, but just wanted to note that Clare has a Dutch translation of her basic intro to SM which you and your vet might find useful:

http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/syringomyelia/docs/cmsmdutch.pdf

I am told there is a great deal of information actually in Dutch on Clare's website as she did her PhD at Utrecht
I am also informed the vet at BEST certainly treats SM. www.dierenkliniekdenheuvel.nl (http://www.dierenkliniekdenheuvel.nl)

I am so sorry you have joined the 'SM Owners Club' but hopefully you can now make sure Yoshi gets the medication he needs.

Wagtails
3rd December 2009, 10:40 PM
So sorry to hear about your very difficult few days. Hope poor Yoshi is now recovering well from his MRI and that things will soon get better for all of you once he starts medication etc.

There are lots of us on here who have been through similar times and now have dogs who are kept comfortable and are able to lead a fairly normal life, so don't despair and do keep in touch and let us know how you get on.

Every good wish, Marie-Anne :l*v:

patg
4th December 2009, 02:13 AM
Hi Sarenna,
I am so sorry to hear the diagnosis but like you said, now you know. Instead of wondering now you can focus on helping Yoshi live the best life possible. He is a very lucky pup to have you for his Mom. This is a very suppportive group of people here with alot of knowledge. I have learned so much in a short time. I found it helpful to write my list of questions for the Dr. on paper so I wouldn't forget. Hang in there!

Charlifarley
4th December 2009, 08:41 AM
Hi Sarenna, I am sorry that you got the diagnosis, but at least you know now where things stand for Yoshi, and that his symptoms should begin to affect him less when he gets started on the meds. Sadly, you are not alone in this.:(

Just to let you know, I found two main changes in Bosco when he started his meds, one was the scratching reduced, but secondly, he now sleeps more during the day, which can be a side effect of gabapentin. It could take a while for your vet to get the right level of meds for Yoshi, they seem to start low and build it up, so don't panic if there isn't an immediate improvement.
Best of luck
Charli

ppotterfield
4th December 2009, 03:04 PM
. . . on the drive home I got to thinking what has actually changed - we know what is wrong with him so in a way it's a good day as we can work now to alleviating all his discomforts. . . .

I always get tears in my eyes when I read these posts but the attitude that Sarenna has is the right one. Knowledge is power. Let's hope you can get good relief with medication and have a happy winter.

I am curious if anyone else has noticed seasonal differences in SM symptoms. Our BudBud's symptoms have been generally mild and really not noticeable much at all until late last winter.

Charlifarley
4th December 2009, 03:27 PM
I haven't noticed seasonal differences (sometimes it feels like it is always winter here;)) but twice when Bosco seemed to be really low and out of sorts, there was a heaviness about in the air, and lots of rain followed. Mind you, we have just had a couple of weeks of really heavy rain here, and I haven't noticed any difference this time, so from my point of view, it just depends.

Kate H
4th December 2009, 04:48 PM
My Oliver is quite light sensitive (gets pain behind his eyes) - due, his neurologist thinks, to his dilated ventricles (fluid accumulating in the brain - one of the symptoms of Chiari Malformation) causing pressure behind his eyes. I wonder if this is why Yoshi seems worse in the winter - that he is sensitive to artificial light (Oliver is particularly affected by strong fluorescent light)? Perhaps worth thinking about and discussing with your vet - if there does seem to be a connection, an eye shade or doggles might make Yoshi more comfortable.

I always feel like saying to people with newly-diagnosed SM dogs, 'Let battle commence!' At least now you know what you are dealing with, you can fight to keep Yoshi comfortable for as long as possible. Good fighters, us Cavalier people!

Kate, Oliver and Aled

Sarenna
4th December 2009, 06:18 PM
Thanks again all we are all feeling good today - the weather was cold and not too wet so we went and had a good 3 hour run on the heath before the vets visit. There's nothing like inflicting a pair of muddy cavaliers on my vet :)

I am not sure on the seasonal differences, he is such an outside dog and in the summer in full bright sunlight he is happy as can be. I thought it might be low pressure (as generally there is more low pressure in the winter) He doesn't seem to have any discomfort in lights and if anything we have a very gently lit house because I hate bright artificial lights myself (I can understand headaches under bright fluorescent lights!) However I was chatting with his breeder and she said that at cavalier club meetings it was mentioned a lot of sm cavaliers are worse in the summer and was surprised that he suffered in the winter. This might sound crazy but maybe it's even distraction with him, in the summer he is outside from early morning until late evening with us, on the heath or in the garden and is just to busy to notice he's itchy or to be bothered crying if it hurts - and in the winter we are indoors a lot more and he is generally less occupied.

Battle has commenced with box 1 on Dr Rushbridges treatment plan so Furosemide to start and the joy of cutting tablets into quarters .... we will review it in around a month and see how it goes. I think it's good to take it slowly I don't really want to over medicate him (I have spent so much time in the Netherlands I have developed an aversion to all medication! I am now convinced the cure to all ills is to take a paracetamol and rest for a week as that is all the doctor ever tells me!)

Now it's time to follow the world cup draw :) at least England can't play the Netherlands in the group stages ... that might cause some family friction :p