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Thread: What might it be like for our dogs? Teen with Chiari

  1. #21
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    This has been interesting reading, and, Karlin, I agree with much of what you say. I had a long phone conversation about this subject with Holly recently and shared my thoughts that it's really not a matter of a "right or wrong" decision because there is just way too much that is not known. It's more a matter of making a decision that is right for the owner rather than trying to make a decision that is right for the Cavalier since we simply don't have enough information to do that. For just about every other canine disease that I know, the "right" treatment plan is relatively easy for me to find. CM/SM is another category altogether. I choose not to go there.

    I'll probably regret posting this since I have a rule not to make "personal info" posts - but what the heck.

    I've had 12 Cavaliers since 1989, and I'm almost certain that I'll never get another. I've been very lucky and have had relatively healthy and very long-living Cavaliers. But I simply will NOT put myself in the position of having to make the decisions one must make with a dog with symptomatic CM/SM. Things have changed so much - if I were starting out in the breed now there is absolutely no way that I could have 12 Cavaliers beginning now and out into the future that would all be symptomless for CM/SM. So I believe that my current two are my last two.

    Pat
    Pat B
    Atlanta, GA

  2. #22
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    Personally, I felt one of the hardest parts "for me" was figuring out what to do about treatment not only in regards to surgery but even medication. Toughest was deciding on surgery but there is so much to factor and sometimes you wish you had a crystal ball to know. Progression, symptoms, medication all varies I think so its not so black and white which makes it tough when all you want is to make sure you are doing everything you can.

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    Anne Proud mother of Elton 5 and Angel Ella

  3. #23
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    Pat said:

    I've had 12 Cavaliers since 1989, and I'm almost certain that I'll never get another. I've been very lucky and have had relatively healthy and very long-living Cavaliers. But I simply will NOT put myself in the position of having to make the decisions one must make with a dog with symptomatic CM/SM. Things have changed so much - if I were starting out in the breed now there is absolutely no way that I could have 12 Cavaliers beginning now and out into the future that would all be symptomless for CM/SM. So I believe that my current two are my last two.


    This makes me so sad. I know our Cavaliers have an uncertain future, but I would like to believe that this beautiful, loving breed will somehow, and with help from heaven and those who cherish them so, rise above this disorder and rally. Call me an optimist, but it's the only way I can live me life.
    Cindy and Claire
    Claire was born on Feb7, 2010

  4. #24
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    I also very much agree with what Karlin has said regarding options and personal choice!

    I get scared even thinking about surgery as the only picture that springs to mind is that of the little Cavalier in PDE that had just had surgery, he/she was lying there in a crate at the surgery looking so sad and that massive scar down his cranium just shocked me and upset me to the core. I could never imagine doing that to Ruby or Charlie.

    It is a life of unknowns and you literally have to say goodbye to the dog you had along with the dreams of your future and life together, grieve that loss and then think about what you have now!

    I can pretty much say that for Ruby, her life hasn't changed all that much, she is managed very well on Medication (nearly 2.5 yrs on) and does near on everything she did before.
    My life however has changed drastically, my relationship broke down as he was fed up of being second best to a dog, been on my own for nearly 18 months, my only social life is visiting my family (dogs in tow) and the agility and obedience and camping I do with the other ladies at shows. And although its a sacrifice to look after her I wouldn't have it any other way as her life expectancy is probably another 3-4 years maximum (if i'm lucky)- I have the rest of my life ahead of me and unfortunatley Ruby and Charlie wont be there for the majority of it!

    If you had asked me back in May 2009 that my desision was the right one I would have broken down and said I dont know! Because none of us do, now however I feel it was and still is the right desision. She has a good/great quality of life and I am pleased that the choice I made was the right one!

    Being at peace with a desision is so important, it gets rid of all the what ifs!



    Going back to the Boy with CM it is very interesting reading and very inightful to what our dogs are dealing with on a day to day basis. It really does push the importance of controlling those symptoms and pain in the best way we can!!

    Karen

    Ruby - my stunning soul mate who defies the odds every day
    Charlie- my angel at heart and devil at play


  5. #25
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    Karen,

    You are so right about being at peace no matter what one chooses. You mentioned the cavalier who had surgery in PDE. That is one thing I will say I wish was changed. I know it is a risky surgery but when you watch that and are personally trying to decide, it is terrifying! Then read 20 % failure, which I thought meant did not survive surgery which her neurologist explained more with scar tissue and not complications during surgery but it was still in my mind. I remember that day and seeing the scene over and over again and praying she would wake up. I wish I never saw it for that reason.

    I really hope less people have to even face the choice or go through that but I would not take the time I had with her back. I can relate about social life, relationship ending, and priorities changing but I think I valued each day I had with her even more.

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    Anne Proud mother of Elton 5 and Angel Ella

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by anniemac View Post



    I really hope less people have to even face the choice or go through that but I would not take the time I had with her back. I can relate about social life, relationship ending, and priorities changing but I think I valued each day I had with her even more.

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    It's one of those things, If they weren't poorly I probably wouldn't mommy them as much, I'd let them play freely with other dogs, I'd have probably even have had a holiday with out them at some point

    But thats not what life had in store for us and it makes me look back on every day and appreicate them so much more! I'm glad they are part of my holidays, i have so many wonderful memories that I can look back on in the future and that are stored safely in my heart.

    h

    Karen

    Ruby - my stunning soul mate who defies the odds every day
    Charlie- my angel at heart and devil at play


  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karen and Ruby View Post
    It's one of those things, If they weren't poorly I probably wouldn't mommy them as much, I'd let them play freely with other dogs, I'd have probably even have had a holiday with out them at some point

    But thats not what life had in store for us and it makes me look back on every day and appreicate them so much more!

    h
    I agree but I would like to share with people an email ellas neurologist sent or tell people a month ago. I will do a post but I think debra needs me but its about letting them also enjoy life too. We enjoyed it together but he said that he read a blog post of mine and would tell other people what I said as advice. That meant a lot. Gotta go! Gracie needs help.


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    Anne Proud mother of Elton 5 and Angel Ella

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