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Thread: Newbie From Florida

  1. #1
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    Default Newbie From Florida

    Hi Everyone! What a great looking forum to assist in the care and wellbeing of these precious creatures. As well as some good comaraderie along the way.

    My name is Jim. I live on the West coast of Florida with my lovely wife of 37 years, Linda, along with our two cavvies, Charley (6 yr. old Blen.) and Megan (4 yr. old Ruby). Also with Snickers (12 yr. old Schitzu) and three rescued mix breeds; Mocha (Pekinese/Schitzu mix), Abbey & Hobie (Heinze 57), two parrots, Taco (Greenwing Macaw) & Katie (Double Yellow-Head Amazon) and the cat, Hampton.

    Unfortunately, what lead me to this site was my research over the weekend for any assistance and / or additional information to help with the problems we're having with our little boy Charley.

    Since the end of June, we've been fighting Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia with him. We have simply been beside ourselves with the treatment required to neutralize his immune system which of course includes the use of steriods then eventually Chemo which to us is akin to throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

    Then this past Thursday he took a turn to the worse. He couldn't walk after he got up and his big beautiful brown eyes indicated pain. (If only they could talk!!) We had to rush him into the Animal ER. X-rays from the 24-hr. ER showed something new, a consolidated left lung lobe. She (the 24-hr. ER Vet) said it was probably either Pnuemonia or a lesion of some sort. Pnuemonia made perfect sense to us since we've been knocking back his immune system with steriods the past two months trying to get his blood platelet counts back up. We couldn't wait for the next morning to get our regular Vet's diagnosis and recommendations.

    Then, it just got worse. Diagnosis; left lung lobe twisted (I'd never heard of such a thing except for maybe a horse's stomach!) and consolidated (a mass of some sort). Two issues with proceding with surgery; 1- his already low platlet count only gave him a 50/50 chance of coming off the table. 2- if the mass was cancer, and if it was rooted at the base of the lung, there was no point in waking him up due to the short, painful few months he'd have after that.

    Needless to say, my wife and I spent the last few moments laying on the floor with him before he was prepped for surgery, bawling our eyes out trying to be positive but all the while thinking we'd never see life in those beautiful brown eyes again.

    The Vet permitted us to be with him during surgery. It took 1-1/2 hours and all went very well. I couldn't believe seeing the lung twisted as it was. The lesion caught on the X-ray was at the best place it could have been instead of the worse. It was at the very tip of the lung so the Vet was able to excise it completely. By eye he could not find any other areas effected. The section of lung removed was sent for biopsy which will take a week or so before we'll know what it was.

    In the meantime I'm happy to say that for now, our Charley boy seems to be doing fine and recovering nicely. We were able to bring him home yesterday (Sunday) to be with his family. So far his platelet counts are holding steady for the past two days since surgery. We are hoping and praying that we don't have to re-subject our guy to those dreaded steriods. Now it's a wait & see process to ascertain whether or not this problem had anything to do with the Thrombocytopenia or if it's a separate and unrelated problem altogether.

    Sorry for the "novel", I know this is supposed to be a "introduce yourself" forum but once I get going on my Charley I can't seem to keep it short.

    We love all of our pets dearly and treat them all like children but our cavvies have taken a special place in our hearts.

    As soon as I can figure out how, I'll post some pics of our "kids".

    Thanks again for providing this special place and allowing us to be a part of it.

    Doggydad.

    Doggydad to Charley (Blen), Megan (Ruby), Mocha (Pekinese-Shih Tzu mix), Abby (Heinz 57 mix), Hobie (Poodle mix), Bessie (Min-Poodle) Butch (mix) and Snickers at The Bridge.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Wisconsin
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    Welcome to the board~ as you can tell we do love our pictures!

    Im sorry you went thru a ruff spot with Charlie, Im so happy hes on the mend~
    A Good Attitude is like Kudzu~ It spreads quickly and never stops growing.......

  3. #3
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    Mar 2005
    Location
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    Although this is the place for introductions we appreciate you telling us about your situation. This is a good way to introduce yourself! So sorry you are going through all of this with Charley. My heart was breaking just reading his story and what you and your wife were going through. I'm hoping and praying he continues to recover.
    Cathy
    Loving mom to Jake, Shelby and Micah

  4. #4
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    Aug 2006
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    Birmingham, AL
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    As you can tell my husband and I are also in Florida. I am so sorry for what you all must be going through. The thought of laying with them trying to will them to understand that you are doing all that you can to make him better. I can't imagine.

    We will pray for your family and Charley. Please keep us posted on his health.
    Ashley - Mom to Duncan (4 years/blenheim) and Arthur (3 years/ruby)

  5. #5
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    Aug 2006
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    Thanks for sharing your story--I caught myself tearing up while reading through your ordeal. It's amazing how these precious little "furry souls" steal our hearts isn't it?

    I'm glad to hear that Charley is doing better and will send prayers and healing thoughts your way!

    Welcome to the forum and keep us posted as to Charley's progress!
    Denise, Wrigley (Golden-5 Yrs.) and
    Mia Bella (Cavalier-2 Yrs.)

  6. #6
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    Jul 2006
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    I was so sorry to hear about your little Charley and am hoping everthing gose on alright I welcome you to the site and ask if you will keep us informed about Charley sending prayers and best wishers for him Aileen

  7. #7
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    Sep 2006
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    Thanks everyone so much for the warm & friendly responses.

    Yesterday (Monday) was Charley's first check-up by the Vet since surgery last Friday. Good news - bad news.

    Good news; he's recovering from his lung surgery in leaps & bounds. All seems fine with that part of it. As a matter of fact, he seems to be his old happy self like he was before the IMT was diagnosed in June. His eyes are clear and bright and for the most part, he's "waggy tail" (my and my wife's metaphor when we think he's happy & feels good) and gives lots of good kisses like before.

    Bad news; his Platelet count is dropping again. Down to 69,000 on Monday's test whereas he was holding even at 100,000 over the weekend on both Saturday & Sunday. D _ _n IMT!!

    For those of you that might not be familiar with the danger of a low platelet count, as we were not up until 2-1/2 months ago, the animal will start to bleed-out internally and externally at some point. Apparently they are all a little different at which point they'll start to bleed out but we know our Charley started to bleed out when reached his lowest point of 55,000 back in July. (We've read where some have dropped as low as 5,000 without hemmoraging.)

    We were hoping that the lung problem was related to, or causing, the IMT so we could be rid of both at the same time. We were especially hoping to be rid of the so-called "cure" for the IMT which is various steriods and Chemo, but it appears we're dealing with two issues.

    At any rate, we have scheduled him in to see a well re-nowned small animal acupuncturist at the University of Florida in Gainesville (about 3-hours away) today. We've had great success with a local acupuncturist with our Shih-tzu, Snickers, whose getting on in age. We want to explore all natural avenues before loading him up with steriods and Chemo again.

    Just one more comment / observation about laying with our Charley before surgery on Friday. (Thanks duncans_ma & others for those kind comments). We firmly believe that they can "feel" your wishes, hopes and prayers somehow. I don't know what you call it or even how to put it into words but somehow they know. Just as they are always there for you when you come home, you should always be there for them as you are all they have. In this case, even though he couldn't get up any more at that point, so we both were laying with our faces close to his and talking to him, he struggled to raise up enough to lick the tears from both of our faces which of course just brought more. That's communication from the soul and no matter what happens, I shall never forget it.

    Thanks again all for the interest and providing a warm and friendly place to share and learn about these precious animals.


    Doggydad to Charley (Blen), Megan (Ruby), Mocha (Pekinese-Shih Tzu mix), Abby (Heinz 57 mix), Hobie (Poodle mix), Bessie (Min-Poodle) Butch (mix) and Snickers at The Bridge.

  8. #8
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    Hi and welcome to the board.

    I am so sorry to hear what you are going through with your Charley at the minute. I was in tears myself reading through this thread. Poor Charley and poor you two as well

    These are such truly wonderful little babies and you're right, they do communicate from the soul. Hoping for a good recovery for Charley and sending positive healing thoughts his way. Give him a gentle hug from me

  9. #9
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    Hello and welcome!! Oh I sure hope that your Charley will be alright, keep us posted on how he is doing. We're all pulling for him! I think that is so wonderful that you were both there with him during his surgery. When my pets were ill or had to go to the hospital, I always stayed home from work to be with them, there was just no way I could stay away from them, especially at a time when they need you the most!
    ~Renee, Bailey & Maddie, and RIP my beloved Bentley.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2005
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    Sorry to hear about all your babies problems. My dog was originally diagnosed with this issue (thrombocytopenia) and it scared me to death. Luckily he really has this-
    http://www.jaaha.org/cgi/content/abstract/33/5/411

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