View Full Version : Hello from Cape Town

8th January 2011, 08:25 AM
Hello from Cape Town, South Africa. I came upon this site doing a search for PSOMs and am so glad I did. It is fantastic so see there are so many people as crazy about their Cavaliers as I am!

The amazing thing is that I got my fist Cavalier from a pet shop! That was way back in 1987. When I walked passed the pet shop one lunch time and saw ‘Winston’, it was love at first site. I had no idea what type of dog Winston was and never imagined him to be a thoroughbred Cavalier! From his face I thought there must be a bit of St Bernard in the mix (including a few freckles on the nose) and just hoped it would not grow to the size of a St Bernard! When I paid for him, the shop assistance told me it was a thoroughbred … yeah right, I thought

Anyway I tried to find out more about the breed, not an easy task pre internet days in a country where the Cavaliers were almost unheard of, but surprise surprise, Winston was a thoroughbred Cavalier King Charles Spaniel! I believe he ended up in the pet shop because he had quite a bit wrong with him (completely deaf, very bulging eyes, opposite to a squint - where his one eye turned out, eyelashes that turned into his eyes, a very large hernia, terrible worm infestation etc) … but he was the most awesome and faithful pet! Tragically he died when he was 2. It took a while to get over this but eventually I started visiting a couple of local breeders (I lived inland in those days) and eventually purchased a Tri-colour female ‘Tandy’ who was my best friend and companion for 15 years!

She was diagnosed with MVD at the age of 8, and that was when my research of the breed began in earnest and the discovery of their health problems! (SM was not even mentioned in those days). When Tandy was about 13, I acquired ‘Caleb’, who’s owners immigrated to Australia. He was 2 at the time and what a docile loveable boy he was. Unfortunately he was also diagnosed with MVD when he was about 6, but his heart eventually deteriorated much more rapidly than Tandy’s and he died at the age of 8.

After Tandy died, I was on a waiting list for 2 years before being offered the opportunity to purchase a Tri-colour female, “Tyla” who will now be 6 in July. She was diagnosed with MVD at the age of 4 and was very soon category 3. My vet changed her medication from Fortekor to Enalapril as it was apparently discovered that a large proportion of Cavaliers don’t seem to respond well on Fortekor! With the change of medication, she improved from the top end of stage 3 to the bottom end of stage 3. I now wish that Caleb had been on Enapryl instead of Fortekor. Tandy had been on Enalapril all those years ago and went on to 15 years

After Caleb died, I was offered the opportunity to home an 18 monthly old Blenheim boy ‘Pippin’. I did not even hesitate and what a beautiful natured boy he is. He is my ‘super-glue’ child who will not let me out of his site when I am home! So far his heart is clear and he is a big strong, healthy boy. Then how lucky can you get … 8 months ago I heard of a Blenheim female whose elderly owner was immigrating and I quickly volunteered to re-home ‘Megan’. She is just such a sweet thing who amazingly has so many of the same characteristics that Caleb had. She will be 6 in April and so far has a clear heart but is very hard of hearing. Then without showing any obvious signs of pain or discomfort suddenly developed paralysis on the right side of her face and vestibular syndrome (eye movement from side to side). It like she had had a stroke. The vet diagnosed a middle ear problem and on further investigation discovered her eardrum bulging outwards. There was no external ear infection, it seemed to be the middle ear only. The vet is treating her with cortisone and antibiotics and as least the eye movement has stopped. However she still has the paralysis. In my own search for what has gone on in Megan’s middle ear, I came across an article on Primary Secretory Otitis Media (PSOM) and I believe this is what Megan’s problem is.

I printed the articles out and left copies for the vet, who is away till next week. Megan does have a follow up appointment on the 17th but if it is PSOM’s, then I think a change or more aggressive treatment will be needed. Well it was during my search for more information on PSOM that I came across this site and that is how I ended up joining.[/

Sorry for the very long introduction, but I am rather passionate about Cavaliers!


8th January 2011, 09:22 AM
Welcome, Darlene, and many thanks for all the info about your beloved Cavs. If you can work out how to add photos we'd all be thrilled to see them. There is info on how to do it at http://www.cavaliertalk.com/forums/showthread.php?17567-Posting-pictures

We know Cape Town quite well as we have friends in Kimberley, with whome we have shared many holidays in South Africa, and my stepson is currently working at the University of Cape Town, so we visit him from time to time as well.

I also have a ruby called Megan, now aged 12, who is also deaf, but not with PSOM in her case. She does have diagnosed SM though, and I gather the two conditions do often go together, especially in rubies.

You will find all sorts of helpful information and wonderful support on this forum, so well done for finding us and we look forward to hearing more from you.


Margaret C
8th January 2011, 01:35 PM

I love how international this list is. Cavalier owners from all over the world helping and supporting each other.

I too have a super-glue cavalier. If I could unzip my skin, Tommy would be in there with me.

Jasper and Holly
9th January 2011, 01:06 AM
Welcome to this great forum. I also lost my Cav Sam age 12 to MVD. I still miss him now even after nearly two years. I now have two beautiful caves, who also follow me everywhere. I love having two they are great company for each other.