Now Murphy not right
I haven't posted in a while, to be honest I just couldn't face it. I find reading people's threads about health/SM really difficult now. I'm struggling to cope emotionally at the moment, I seem to do nothing but worry and have dreams that I'd sooner forget.
I'm having trouble with Murphy, which is unusual as he's always been the picture of health. He's just not been himself lately, he was treated for a sore back in November, which he seemed to get over pretty well, the vet thought he'd pulled a muscle as he was very quiet, off he food, and had spasms when you touched his back. Over the last week or so he's just been quieter, he's choosing to lay on the floor rather than with us on the furniture, his leg licking has increased(he's been a leg licker for a year or two). And he just seems a little "down", he was off his food a day last week, so we had him in to get his glands checked and a general check. At the time the vet ask if he normally sat so hunched, but we said no, we put it down to him being at the vets.
Yesterday though I noticed the spasms were back when you touched his middle back area, so back to the vets we go. He on Metacam and in for x-rays on Friday. The vet checked his reflexes, and reactions whilst we were in, and said they seem fine. However, he asked me if he had any other behaviour changes lately, and the one things that popped into my mind is he's grumpy with Misty. He's been growling at her more and more if she's trying to get up beside him or our lap, or the couch. I'm wondering if this has been because he's sore? I actually had to split them up earlier after they started fighting over a Kong, this has never happened in three years.
The vets said he could just have tweeked his back jumping off furniture, or it could be degenerative disk disease. I did mention SM, as he leg licks, and likes a good head rub in the mornings, but he wants to see if the x-rays show anything first. I'm trying not to worry, but of course I can't help myself.
I'm already stressed out over Misty as it is, as her scratching has increased a lot, she is especially sensitive down her right side of her neck, and she's lost some of her spark too. I called Glasgow about it, unfortunately Allison isn't there at the moment, but spoke to a lovely man called Jacques. I was really surprised when he mentioned Misty's MRI had showed a small amount of fluid on the brain, as this was never mentioned. He went on to say that the scratching is harder to manage that the pain at times, as Gabapentin doesn't decrease it. He did say it was possible the fluid had increased, and this was maybe causing her scratching to increase. He's put her on a course of steroids to see if they help and I've to call back and speak to Allison when she's back next week.
I can hand on heart say I will never, ever own another Cavalier. I love my two so much, but my heart breaks when I look at Misty, and I do nothing but worry over whether she is comfortable or not. I couldn't stand to go through it all again. I'm just hoping whatever this is with Murphy is nothing serious.
I really feel for you, I had a bad time nearly all last year with two off mine and of course SM is ongoing there is never a break from it. I don’t think I will ever own another Cavalier I am crying just writing this. I must say I am normally a strong person but all the health problems have left me an emotional wreck.
I am hoping that Murphy will be ok and that you can get Misty more comfortable.
Thanks Sabby. I've been crying on and off most of the day too. I seem to cope less each day. I know if I can get Misty comfortable again it will be less of a strain. But poor Murphy's pushed me over the edge. I was in floods after they fought earlier I just couldn't stop the tears.
I've just moved all the furniture around to keep Murphy off the window sill. It's his favourite spot to sit, but he does jump off it, so no more of that. The lounge looks very strange now though.
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I feel for you and know how worrying it can be. Gus has back trouble at the moment and is on pain relief and Pippin has early MVD and other heart problems he also has epilepsy but is doing well on meds. DJ's back plays up now and again too. I sometimes find myself worrying about how long they will be with me, but most days just try not to worry and take each day as it comes.
Not sure if I would have another Cavalier though if I were to ever be without my three boys ...
We are with you girls ,chins up all three of you .That's why I ended up taking my four to the vets last week as you are
continually watching and worrying which sometimes makes me imagine I am seeing things with Daisy that arn't there .
Sending you lots of :hug:! I'm right there with ya! I love my Cavaliers so much but every day is such a struggle. Managing medications, dealing with SM & MVD. On top of that , although Flash is a wonderful dog, he has such sever guarding issues that I feel like I spend all day trying to keep him from going into overload. 24/7 I have to monitor him to see if he is going "snap". I've had to start putting him alone at night, which I absolutely hate because he has slept on the bed with us since he was 12 weeks old. I have to though because he snaps at the cats and other dogs. He is not mean at all but he gets these weird "triggers" where its like he becomes another dog. I was just talking to a friend yesterday and I said I could never own another Cavalier. Not only is it a huge financial drain but it is also an emotional roller coaster. I feel like I have to be on watch 24/7 for so many different issues.
It makes me sad to hear everyone saying they wouldn't get another cavalier because I know from reading all your posts how much you guys love and cherish your dogs. I also know the pain of watching your dog suffer from end stage heart disease, so I do understand where this is coming from. Many days I sit here and cry wondering how many more good days are left. Sydney is my heart and soul.
When I pray for Sydney's well being, I also say a prayer for all our cavaliers. Hugs to all.
Murphy's back could be something as straightforward as spondylosis, which will show up on an X-ray ('straightforward' only in terms of being a well-known condition that can respond to treatment - not belittling the pain it's causing both Murphy and you). Oliver had very similar symptoms when his was diagnosed 3 years ago, but it improved enormously after 4 weeks of crate rest. Dog steps for getting onto the bed and settee/chair are a great help, as they are shallow enough not to need any pressure on the spine to climb up and down.
Thinking of you :hug:
Kate, Oliver and Aled
Hi Murphysmum: I know how hard it can be. But please do come and post -- there's so much support here for you and I think a burden shared is a burden made lighter -- it is easy to forget how many care!
I also would say this: what you are doing right now is simply looking for a source of his discomfort which in all likelihood you can then address to make him MUCH happier and less painful. Either it is a back issue which can be addressed with painkillers and rest; or it may be moderate SM symptoms which can be addressed with pain relief as well. There are lots of options ahead :flwr:. Try not to overly worry about what it could be, but wait to see what it might be. If Metacam doesn't help, you might ask for something stronger. When Lucy had disk problems, crate rest and metacam did wonders after a couple of weeks and she never had the problem again (she was clear for SM).
Agree -- dog steps are great! Hyperdrug.co.uk have lightweight plastic based ones and Zooplus.co.uk have more sturdy, heavier wood based ones. I have both.