Hi Karlin,

I have noticed a few things in my youngest Cavalier, Ruby, who is 1-1/2 years old, and wondered if you think this is enough to warrant an appointment with a neurologist, or if I am perhaps overreacting because of all the threads on SM lately...

Ruby has yelped periodically for the last few months, with no one near her or touching her, and no cause we can determine. She has probably done so 3 times in the last 2 weeks. The last time, she then went and curled up in a corner that she has never sat in, and shivered for about 30 minutes. That was quite a shock, as I saw the shivering on your list of symptoms.

Ruby will often move about restlessly in different positions, before settling down. And she will sometimes lay down on our marble fireplace surround, which our other dog never does.

Last week, I opened the dishwasher to unload it. Ruby loves to play, and whenever I open the dishwasher, she runs to get a toy, then puts it on the open door so that I will throw it for her. She was sitting about 2 feet from the dishwasher, but never looked up once while I unloaded and then loaded it over a 10-minute period. She was busy chewing on her paw the whole time. I let her continue just to see how long she would chew, as I have never seen her ignore the opening of the dishwasher door.

Most of this I dismissed as just things dogs do, until she had the shivering/hiding in the corner episode. I brought her to the vet today for a regular checkup, and the vet was not aware of SM - although I did bring her your printout and she was very interested. She suggested talking with the neurologist at the University of Minnesota vet school, Dr. McVey. The vet did check Ruby's paw carefully, and between each pad to see if there was something that would cause her to chew, but couldn't find anything.

Do you think I should pursue this, or that this is not enough to cause concern? Your opinion is appreciated. Thanks very much!