Hi everyone! Thank you all so much for inviting us to the awesome Cavalier event. We really enjoyed meeting everyone and their cavs! Zigg had a great time and completely surpassed how we thought hed be, especially thinking of where he was back in December, to say he has come a long way is a huge understatement! We never imagined hed do so well and that was really nice to see that he enjoyed it too. We thought hed be exhausted once we got back, but nope! Anyway, it was a lovely day and I hope the weather went well for the Sunday do as it did for us.
Heres a few pics:
Heres him watching the amazing agility:
And him saying hello to Kates lovely cavs!
Hope everyones journey home was well. Will keep you all posted on ziggs medication regime! (seems to be going well so far!)
We also picked up a nice "Top Dog" tag for him from the stall which he is now wearing, will get a pic when I can! :)
It was great to meet you, your lovely Mum and of course gorgeous Ziggy. He was looking so well and seemed to enjoy his outing!
Yes James, it was so nice to meet you and Ziggy and your parents. I hope you'll join the Companion Club so that we can see more of you on our walks and events.
Kate, Oliver and Aled
James, Ziggy and Mum arrived just in time to see the Fancy Dress competition!
Hey everyone! Will certainly get round to joining the companion club! Sorry for such a late reply, things have been absolute chaos back home.
Great pic Nicki! :D
Hes doing swell so far. Been really enjoying the nice weather and hes doing better than ever on his currently lower dose of steroid which is absolutely great! So pleased that the change is going well for him.
Was great seeing you all and the cavs! Was a great event. We bought Zigg a nice tag while we were there as well, so Il get a pic of that up later on.
We'l keep you posted!
Sorry its been such a long time! All been enjoying the nice weather. Ziggy has been doing okayish, it has to be said although his symptoms are still well under control, his paw licking is very obsessive and becoming more frequent. I have noticed a change in his gait too, while taking him on walks you can hear his back leg occasionally scrape against the pavement. Theres also a new symptom we have seen which involves his back legs literally completely giving up for a few seconds. Like the other day, he came into the living room just fine and all of a sudden he went really funny on his back legs and they suddenly gave way and he was basically dragging himself along somehow. It lasted for around 10 seconds or so and this has happened 3 times so far, so wel keep an eye out for that.
The Willows sent us a message to get in contact with them within 2 or 3 weeks so I think wel get hold of them earlier to see what can be done. I dont think hes in any sort of pain with his back legs, because when they give way, its almost as if theres nothing wrong with him at all, no visible signs of pain or anything like that. Something interesting though, he did just fine through all the storms! Usually the massive drop in pressure takes a really negative effect (like to the point where you *really* notice it) but it didnt effect him too much. I dont think his legs have anything to do with air pressure as it seems to happen regardless of air pressure.
Today when we were upstairs, he was with us and he was about to go down (we carry him down if he gets past the stair gate now days) but he went to go past the first step and just completely stopped, whether this was because we caught his attention or because he felt he couldnt move:
He was like that long enough for me to take a picture. Hes never actually done that before so thats pretty unusual. It took a while but I managed to make him move and once he got moving he was just fine... What could be done about his legs if it does start to become a problem?
We are joining the KC! Just havent got round to it yet due to the weather and we are all sick with a virus thats going round. (It makes us cough really bad and none of us have had much sleep haha)
Anyway, hope youre all OK! :)
Oliver also has wobbly back legs. They don't seem to be painful, just don't work. It could be relatd to his osteo-arthritis but out vet thinks that they would then be oainful. Ditto for being directly related to his syrinx. which as far as we know is still small. I haven't taken him to a neurologist, but the vet (and 1) think it may be connected to the state of his cerebellum. This lowest bit of his brain controls movement and balance and due to Oliver's Chiari Malformation it has been pushed down into the top of the spinal cord, like a stopper, for more than 6 years, which possibly hasn't done it much good!
What does help Oliver is walking. If he doesn't get taken out for a walk, his wobbliness is much worse. I try to take him out for a gentle walk for 20 minutes or so twice a day (including some time off-lead) and he gets on OK and is better generally on his legs for the rest of the day. It's the getting up and down and navigating corners in the house that he finds difficult. I'd be interested to hear what the Willows have to say about Ziggy's similar problem.
One of the Companion Club members who lives in Wolverhampton is hoping to organise a group walk in a local park. Not sure where you live, but if you and Ziggy were interested in joining in, I could put her in touch with you if you pm me your own email address.
Aled has gone into heart failure, so we're trying to find the best mix of drugs for him. Sometimes I feel as if I'm running a clinic and pharmacy!
All the best
Kate, Oliver and Aled
Hi Kate! Sorry to all for the big gap! Things have been very very busy and we also caught a nasty cough and because I have astma I didnt manage to get much sleep, only just caught up!
We have been taking Ziggy for a few small walks now we are better and hopefully we will see that making an improvement legs wise (although as of right now they seem better than they have been which is interesting!). One of his biggest issues lately has been his paw licking... He has been doing it to a bit of a ridiculous extent as of late. To the point where his paws are basically constantly wet which is obviously, not a very good sign. Not only that, but we have noticed growths sprouting up all over his body (calcium deposits due to the steroids?) which we are keeping an eye on. Not only that though, but he has had some problems with losing fur! Not sure why but the white patches of fur are starting to thin a lot, to the point now where you can actually see his skin and markings... Not only that but you can also feel the skin which is rather strange. Especially as he has never had this issue before. We noticed it after we took him off his steroids for half a week around 3 weeks ago. I was on toilet duty and noticed some small spots of blood in his stools, not soft or anything, normal but you could see it was the start of something nasty! So we aborted his steroids straight away and he was perfectly fine (stomach wise, he didnt do too well without his steroid :( ) for doing that which solved the stomach completely. After half a week off the steroid we put him back on them and thats when the fur thinning and more growths came. Strange!
Anyway, we rang Stephanie last week about his obessive paw licking, and she prescribed him Lyrica (10mg, branded under a different name but from what Wikipedia tells me, its Lyrica. I think anyway, Il get back with the proper name!) and said that the dose was very very low and that it would probably need to be boosted. So hes been on that on top of everything else but I cant say it has made that much of an improvement if Im honest. The past few days his paw licking has been a bit less worse, whether this is coincidental or whether its because the Lyrica is building up in his system.
Anyway, at the moment we are down at our caravan and he has been very good so far, so fingers crossed! :D
He was sleeping where the sun comes into the hall this morning, so thats a good sign! Havent seen him do that in a very very long time. Anyway, we'l keep you posted :)
RE to Aled, I hope everythings going OK for him :( . We could indeed run a pharmacy, with how we have his layed out in it looks like we have some sort of mini vet practice running!
Good to hear from you, James and Ziggy. The fur loss could be a side effect of the steroids; the little growths could simply be warts, which are very common, Oliver has had them most of his life. Hope Ziggy will do well on Lyrica; it's a refined version of gabapentin, but some dogs do much better on it, and usually need a smaller dose. Sorry you have had a cough - always much worse if you have asthma.
Aled is progressing slowly but steadily. He comes out with us in his buggy, which he uses to get to and from the local parks and then has a little run around off lead when we get there. His breathing is low and steady; his heart is quite slow but jumpy - altogether I think he's doing pretty well for a dog that nearly died 5 weeks ago, and I'm certainly not going to push him to do more until he's clearly ready. How long he will keep going is anybody's guess, so it's difficult to plan ahead (things like camping, for example, are definitely out at the moment because of transport problems), but he's his old self and enjoying life for the moment.
All the best
Kate, Oliver and Aled
Thats good news about Aled, Kate! :D
Im very sorry about the delayed reply! I have been insanely busy with study and numerous other things. The good news is that Ziggy has very much flatlined with his condition, he is very stable and so far since putting him on that Amitriptyline (thats the name of it, apparently from a bit of Googling its a Lyrica like drug?) it has done him the world of good! Stephanie said to lower his steroid to quarter and we had absolutely no repercussions as a result all thanks to Amitriptyline! I was really worried and cautious about lowering his steroids but the new drug literally filled in the gap perfectly, hes absolutely no worser and his condition doesnt seem to be so much of a roller coaster anymore. Since being on this new combo, its just stayed at one level of severity and thats it. I have also noticed his mobility has improved a lot! He can jump up and off the bed (although we do not allow it but hes so much more frisky now he does anyway if we dont pick him up in time :rolleyes:) and a very interesting development taken place as well: I have noticed (unless its just me but I have asked my Mom and she thinks the same) his gait has also improved as a result? Its a lot straighter which is rather bizarre as I wouldn't have thought the new meds would have helped with that? His stomach has stabilised a lot as well, we havent had any bad stomach issues since my last mention of it (fingers crossed) which is all good.
Hes had more energy and hes been playing more (it is few and far between, but I think thats more because hes 9 now) but not only that, hes been sleeping better and hes a lot more settled now. More relaxed and a lot less tense which is fantastic to see. No new symptoms either, the only thing I have noticed thats come about (although these where there beforehand anyway so its more of a progression than an occurrence) is the fact that he does collapse (just falls over completely and is able to get up straight after) on the very rare occasion and that his head tremors have worsened but its plain to see that neither are causing him any sort of discomfort.
Safe to say, Ziggy is doing marvellously and if you would have told us that hed still be with us today in this condition one year ago today, theres no way I would have believed it. Its amazing how much the medications can do once you have the right combination!
Heres a few up to date pics:
We'l keep you posted! :D