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View Full Version : I'm sick of my dogs being sick :(



Charlifarley
14th March 2012, 06:08 PM
Sorry for rambling, but I need to let off some steam :(
I seem to be beating a never ending track to my vet at the moment.
Bosco who has SM, had a vestibular episode two weeks ago while I was on holiday. Luckily, after an overnight stay at the vets and investigations, all seems to be ok for him again - in as much as it can be.

Trapper has been battling CHF since last June and has been holding his own for most of the time, with the occasional scare here and there. For the last couple of days he has had a bad cough (worse than his normal one) and what sounds like congestion that he cant get rid of. He is now in an oxygen chamber at the vets, with another overnight stay on the cards. She thinks he might have a chest infection which has been making breathing hard for him. She couldn't hear his heart properly because his chest was so bad :cry*ing: I don't know about anyone else that has a dog with an illness that they are not going to recover from, I am so fed up of the constant worry, of not wanting to run to the vet for every little thing, but having to go frequently for even basic check ups. Now I'm kicking myself for not taking Trapper in yesterday. We increased his frusomide in the hopes that it would help, but it didn't.
Anyway, thanks for reading, and maybe you could keep my lovely Trapper in your thoughts while he hopefully recovers from this.

Brian M
14th March 2012, 08:09 PM
Hello Shirley

Sorry for you about your two but I know what you mean about Vet Visits ,even though my four are OK really though Rosie has CM and Daisy has more letters
after her name than any Russian General I think we have had seven VV in four weeks but thankfully nothing serious and I also know there's a little brass plate
on a chair in the Vets that says "donated by Brian Murtagh" and I know the receptions instantly recognise my voice when I phone and say "Hello Mr Murtagh
which one are you fetching today " Oh well forever onward Shirley and best wishes to you and Trapper and Bosco .

sins
14th March 2012, 08:09 PM
Sorry to hear this,sending get well wishes to Trapper.
Sometimes it must seem like there's no end to it...but your vets seem very thorough and very knowledgable about cavaliers.
Hopefully,he'll be home to you and feeling much better by morning.
Sins

Charlifarley
14th March 2012, 10:29 PM
Thanks Brian and Sins. Vet called me at 9 (there's dedication for you) to say Trappers breathing had improved so hopefully we'll see a new and improved version tomorrow!
Brian I know what you mean about the receptionists - whenever I ring I sense a sharp intake of breath and them thinking 'what's happened now' but always in a nice and caring way.

Sabby
14th March 2012, 11:45 PM
So glad that Trappers breathing has improved.

Unfortunately I know how you are feeling right now. My vets reception also knows when I phone before I even say my name she says ahh it’s Mrs K. Is it Ebony or Harley? What medication are you ordering today?
Sometimes you feel you can’t and don’t want to carry on but we have to because we love our babies so much.

Keeping you Trapper& Bosco in my thoughts.

Karlin
15th March 2012, 01:43 AM
Hi Shirley -- prilactone really helped Lucy when she had a bad MVD cough and got rid of some bad symptoms and collapsing for about 4 extra months of life for her, so that might be something to consider. It's hard for vets to gauge where dogs are in moving towards CHF etc -- I found it very worthwhile to see the cardiologist at Nutgrove vet. I assume he is on Vetmedin etc already? Glad he's doing a bit better.

It is very frustrating to be dealing with sick dogs -- hard enough to have one but two can be very tiring. I know from experience that it really helps to just share the frustration and know others know what you are going through.

Sydneys Mom
15th March 2012, 01:48 AM
So sorry you're going through this with Trapper & Bosco. I'm going through struggles with Sydney with all his heart issues. It reminds me of that old saying "when it rains, it pours". I know exactly what you mean with always go to the vet, or specialist, or picking up meds, or calling said vet/specialist for advice. It seems like it's never ending sometimes. If my vet doesn't hear from me for 2 weeks, she calls to see how Sydney is!

Hang in there, and when it gets to be too much, vent here. We all understand what you are going through.

Charlifarley
15th March 2012, 09:02 AM
Thanks for your good wishes. They really help.
Trapper had a good night but the vet told me as soon as he moved this morning his breathing was bad again. He's been on Prilactone for approx 6 months now, along with vetmedin, fortekor and frusemide. A nice little cocktail for him to take each day.

susandavis1
15th March 2012, 09:21 AM
I'm sorry that both Trapper and Bosco are having a tough time at the moment, I can only imagine how draining and worrying it is having both of them unwell. Keeping you and them in my thoughts and hoping that they both improve soon. :hug:

BrooklynMom
15th March 2012, 10:31 AM
Keeping Trapper and Bosco in my thoughts. Poor things, it's all just not fair. I will say an extra prayer for Trapper tonight and I hope that he starts to improve soon.

Margaret C
15th March 2012, 01:43 PM
I'm keeping both your boys in my thoughts.

pippa
15th March 2012, 04:11 PM
It can be very hard sometimes...I called the vet recently to order the meds for Pippin and at the end of the order she said my name, Pippin's name and told me when they be ready but I hadn't mention either yet!

All of mine are on meds or have attended the vet recently for one reason or another, seems like ours lives revolve round vet visits/prescription orders at the moment, but with three senior dogs 7,8 and 10 then I guess that's what's expected, does get tiring though and the worrying is a strain.

Keeping Trapper in my thoughts, hope he feels better soon xx

AT
17th March 2012, 07:00 PM
Unfortunately I know how you are feeling right now. My vets reception also knows when I phone before I even say my name she says ahh itís Mrs K. Is it Ebony or Harley? What medication are you ordering today?
Sometimes you feel you canít and donít want to carry on but we have to because we love our babies so much.

.

I knew i'd been to the vet too often when i rang to book my dog in for pattella surgery with the specialist and the receptionist offered me a wednesday appointment.
me : he doesnt work wednesdays ( or school holidays)
receptionist : oh yes your'e right.

The dog has had kidney problems since september so i've been going every 1 or 2 weeks with him ( they also want to castrate him and do his other pattella but i think 12 surgery's in his life is a bit much)and he has a heart murmer now and inbetween i've gone with my other accident prone dogs injuries.
They never see my other 3 dogs.

oh and you really know when you have been to the vet too often when they say you dont have to come back for a month and it makes you feel panicky ,lol

I hope your boy is feeling better now

Sabby
18th March 2012, 10:46 PM
How is Trapper doing? Hope he is ok and doing better.

Charlifarley
18th March 2012, 11:31 PM
Hi Sabby, thanks for asking.
I collected Trapper from the vet at lunchtime on Friday, to observe him at home and see how he was doing , with a view to having to make the decision none of us want to make. Well the good news is, for now anyway, that his breathing has improved and he is much better than he was. Trapoer is still unwell, but is eating and is happy in himself. I think he was a cat in a previous life- he has used up a few of their 9 lives so far :)
This is such a roller coaster, I know we are up at the moment, but we'll just take each day as it comes.

Sydneys Mom
18th March 2012, 11:43 PM
Happy to hear that Trapper is doing well today and I hope he continues to be happy and content. Keeping you in my thoughts.

pippa
19th March 2012, 10:48 AM
Glad to hear Trapper is doing ok....keeping you and him in my thoughts and hope you have many happy times with him yet x

Margaret C
19th March 2012, 05:54 PM
Fingers crossed Trapper continues to improve.

Love my Cavaliers
20th March 2012, 04:25 PM
I've been out of town so am just catching up, but can understand your frustration with the roller-coaster ride of having sick dogs. Sometimes you just have to have a good cry - for the hard lot in life they were given and for the remarkable way that they trust you to do the right thing for them and how even when they're in pain or distress, they still look at you with complete and utter love.

I hope Trapper continues to stay comfortable and Bosco's vestibular events remain under control. You're in my thoughts.

Charlifarley
20th March 2012, 04:58 PM
- .....for the hard lot in life they were given and for the remarkable way that they trust you to do the right thing for them and how even when they're in pain or distress, they still look at you with complete and utter love.

That's what I find so difficult - to know that the decisions we make are the right ones, for the right reasons. Trapper is doing ok - vet thinks it's bronchitis - he has a horrible cough that someone described as like a donkey braying, and his breathing isn't wonderful, but he is happy, and can still find any bit of food that drops on the ground if Bosco hasn't got there first :)
Thanks for the good wishes, they really help.

Nicki
20th March 2012, 05:32 PM
Oh goodness Shirley I'm so sorry, what a horrendous time for you :( It's good to hear that Trapper is doing a bit better - and if it is "just" bronchitis that might be good news.

It can be very hard to get the balance of medication right for MVD - the cardiologists are excellent at doing that which is why we recommend them but know that it is not always possible to visit with them.

There is an old fashioned diuretic, Co-amilozide a combination of amiloride and hydrochlorothiazide. Brand name Moduret 25 or Moduretic, which can be very effective at shifting the fluid, particularly belly fluid. I know of one Cavalier in particular who sadly was doing really badly and after starting this, about 6 months ago, is doing brilliantly - and actually went for a proper walk yesterday!


The key thing is that Trapper is happy, and hopefully having more good days than bad now - it's awful to have to think of these things especially when they are at crisis point, but we need to be prepared [and also decide what we want to happen if we do have to let them go - cremation etc, perhaps helping out by putting them through teh Cavalier Collection Scheme http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/Syringomyelia/Collection_scheme/ ]






Yes like you I am so down with having to manage health issues - it would be so nice to have dogs we could just enjoy...



You are in my thoughts, really hope that you will have them both for a long time yet xx Thank goodness we have this forum and can help and support each other.

Charlifarley
27th March 2012, 09:30 PM
A bit of an update:
Trapper is holding his own at the moment - thank goodness :) he is still coughing a bit and his breathing isn't exactly brilliant, but he is much better than I thought he could be and is eating and drinking as he normally does.
One thing that is bothering me now is that he seems a bit lost in himself. I often find him just standing still, as if he doesn't know what he should do next - like he is bewildered or confused. Today I found him standing under the piano stool, facing towards the piano. Not trying to get out, just standing still. I wonder is he behaving like this because he isn't getting enough oxygen to his brain and therefore doesn't really know what he is doing? We have a vet appointment on Friday and I'll discuss it then but I was wondering if anyone else has found their dogs behaving in a similar way?

Charlifarley
28th March 2012, 11:47 AM
The key thing is that Trapper is happy, and hopefully having more good days than bad now - it's awful to have to think of these things especially when they are at crisis point, but we need to be prepared [and also decide what we want to happen if we do have to let them go - cremation etc, perhaps helping out by putting them through teh Cavalier Collection Scheme http://www.veterinary-neurologist.co.uk/Syringomyelia/Collection_scheme/ ]






Yes like you I am so down with having to manage health issues - it would be so nice to have dogs we could just enjoy...



You are in my thoughts, really hope that you will have them both for a long time yet xx Thank goodness we have this forum and can help and support each other.

Thanks Nicki, totally agree re the support etc.
With regard to the Cavalier Collection scheme, sadly, Trapper isn't suitable. Hopefully when Bosco's time comes, he will be able to help - as he has been MRI'd.

Nicki
28th March 2012, 04:24 PM
I'm sorry about Trapper, very hard to see them like that. It could be lack of oxygen, possibly the tablets themselves? It's good that you are going to see the vet on Friday.

I know you already know this! but write down exactly what you are seeing, how many times a day etc, anything immediately prior - eating/excitement etc.


There is a condition called Canine Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome - similar to Alzheimers in people. The dog tends to get stuck in corners, go to the wrong side of the door [the hinge side], often toilet training seems to be lost, they can behave inappropriately.


There's lots of info about it on here..sadly the drug they mention isn't available over here [Amipryl] yet i don't think...only in the US. Selgian tends to be used instead.

http://www.swiftwaterfarms.com/swift...ysfunction.htm (http://www.swiftwaterfarms.com/swiftwater/p22CanineCognitiveDysfunction.htm)


Rupert suffered with CCDS for the last year and a half of his life, it was quite distressing as he would wake me up in the night, and would frantically paw at my leg but he didn't know what he wanted, didn't want a drink or out or anything. He was much better once he was started on Vivitonin which increases the blood flow to the brain and seems to have the reputation of being a miracle drug when it works! It really helped him. [they can't take Vivitonin and Selgian at the same time.]

Hope this helps a bit, something to mention to the vet anyway.,



I don't think they have to have had an MRI now - I will check with Tania or Margaret as I'm not sure what dogs they are looking for at present. It's lovely of you to consider it though - I know it's horrid to think about and not the easiest thing to do at the time, but it is such a comfort afterwards that their passing was not in vain, that they have gone on to help our beloved breed. Already there has been at least one study which ONLY happened due to the scheme, the results of which give hope for better pain management in the future.

Kate H
28th March 2012, 09:41 PM
My understanding (and I've enrolled Oliver) is that the Cavalier Collection scheme isn't only for dogs with diagnosed SM. It provides tissue samples for a number of research projects, including the MVD research at Edinburgh University and pancreatitis and diabetes research at Cambridge, as well as the SM genetics project at Montreal. So if you felt OK about it, Trapper could be really helping future Cavaliers not to suffer from MVD as he has.

Kate, Oliver and Aled

Charlifarley
29th March 2012, 09:15 AM
Thanks Kate and Nicki - donating tissue for other diseases would be a good idea and I've started to make enquiries. Hopefully this is something that can be arranged from Ireland.
Nicki that link about CCDS is very interesting, thank you. I've read through it and at the moment, Trapper is showing two of the symptoms - disorientation and house training problems. I think it would be reasonable at this stage to explain the disorientation as being part of his cardiac and pulmonary problems due to an insufficient oxygen supply getting to his brain, and the house training problems due to the diuretics that he takes. But I will definitely discuss it with my vet tomorrow and if more of the symptoms appear as they did with poor Rupert, then I think he could have CCDS.

Nicki
29th March 2012, 11:16 AM
Glad it helped - I think you are right though there are other explanations for his behaviour but the Vivitonin might well help with that.


I know another wee Cavalier went through the CCS in the Dublin area, so I'm sure it could be arranged when sadly that day arrives, it will just need a bit more planning - so if you feel that you would like to go ahead, it would be good to speak to Margaret or Tania to see what can be arranged.

ByFloSin
30th March 2012, 08:39 AM
Sorry to hear about Trapper having problems, but so glad to see that he is improving now.

My almost 10 years old Rebel has had one of these 'episodes'. Initially I had a word with an experienced vet who moderates another Cavalier Forum. She recommended that I see my vet, but thought it was probably a petite mal, a form of minor epilepsy. I saw my own vet later in the day, who examined him carefully, but could not make a definite diagnosis. She too thought it could be a petite mal. No specific treatment was given, but because of the pressure pain from his SM he is now permanently on 6 mgs daily, and hopefully reducing to 4 mgs, Metacam. That was 3 or 4 weeks ago and apart from an eye problem he has been absolutely fine.

I wonder if Metacam could help Trapper too?

susandavis1
30th March 2012, 09:46 AM
I hope Trapper gets on ok with the vet this morning and you get some positive news :flwr:

pippa
30th March 2012, 10:23 AM
Best of luck at the vets today:)

Charlifarley
30th March 2012, 12:28 PM
Back from the vets, nothing major to report - he thinks that Trapper's behaviour is most likely due to his heart beating more slowly at times, which then reduces the oxygen to the his brain.
I've also just been speaking to UCD vet school, and when the time comes,:cry*ing: they would be happy to have Trapper's body, which they would use for both teaching purposes and research in the pathology labs. This is something I need to discuss more with the family to be sure everyone is ok with it. In theory I'm keen to do this, in practice I hope so too.

MVD and CHF is such a long hard battle for our dogs, thank goodness cavaliers have such happy personalities and just get on with it - as has been said before, they don't know they are sick. Every time I take Bosco out for his walk I feel so guilty leaving Trapper behind :(

emmastewartliberty
30th March 2012, 02:08 PM
Just to say I'm thinking of you, there's nothing worse than having sick dogs and feeling a bit helpless. Try not to feel guilty when you take Bosco out- that's the wonder of dogs- and why we love them so much-they are so accepting!
Take care.

pippa
30th March 2012, 02:33 PM
Thinking of you xx maybe you could get or borrow a stroller to take Trapper with you, but he'll probably get used to staying behind, he should get extra cuddles later:)

Charlifarley
30th March 2012, 02:50 PM
Thanks for your good wishes.

Thinking of you xx maybe you could get or borrow a stroller to take Trapper with you, but he'll probably get used to staying behind, he should get extra cuddles later:)
He always gets a chewy treat when we go out so I suppose it's not all bad for him - just my guilty conscience.

pippa
30th March 2012, 03:48 PM
I think we worry about how they feel when sometimes they are fine with it:) We live with guilt!

Nicki
30th March 2012, 05:49 PM
It's good to hear that he is doing ok Shirley - I know what you mean about leaving someone at home, you do feel guilty but if he has a nice chew and lots of cuddles when you get home, I'm sure he doesn't mind too much. It's only fair on Bosco that he still has his walks anyway - and some one to one time.

I know you have to think through what you want to do when the worst happens, and speak to your family as it's something you must all agree with and want to do. It sounds like UCD are talking about for their own research purposes rather than the Cavalier Collection Scheme? If you were still thinking about the CCS then perhaps you could contact Margaret or Tania, or Karlin as I think she may have the contacts.

I hope it will be a long time yet but it's good to be prepared and make these decisions at a slightly less emotional time.