Includes a video of a dog with the condition:
The video absolutely broke my heart!! My heartfelt prayers for those of you out there dealing with this. It must just crush your heart.
Loving mom to Jake, Shelby and Micah
Penny meets the conditions for the Extremely Affected. The long version video could be her. We have our ups and downs. We had a relatively symptom free period of time, and now she is back to having several episodes per day. We have started her on phenobarbitol, along with the clonazapam, but so far, we are not seeing too much improvement. Lately she is taking longer and longer to come out of the attacks. Afterwards she is just drained and spends most of her time in my mother's lap. She almost never wants to play anymore, as a play session often initiates an attack. I sometimes wonder if I am doing her any favors by prolonging her life. It is a delimna that tears my heart apart, as I love her to distraction. Molly, my healthy Cavalier, is also being affected, as most of my free time is spent taking care of Penny and giving my mom some relief from the constant daily care she must give to Penny while I am at work. Molly no longer gets her long daily walks with me, and must settle for a quick trot around the block instead. She is becoming sadder every day, and I wonder if dogs can suffer from depression. My fiance and I took Molly along with us this weekend for a three day camping trip, leaving Penny home with Mom. Molly perked up by the second day, and by the day we headed for home, she was her former joyful self. Then we got home, and by that evening, she was laying on the sofa, looking at me with mournful eyes, while I held Penny, and gave Mom some much needed respite. My beautiful Penny did not ask to be born with this condition, and she is completely innocent, but it is really tearing our little family apart. Keep us all in your prayers as we struggle to find an answer.
Oh Donna, it breaks my heart to read this and Penny, Molly and all of you are in my thoughts. The dogs are so innocent and we can't explain anything to them; that makes it extra hard to watch them in pain. I know how special Penny is to you. From your description this sounds so close to families who have a member with an extreme disability; you feel you are taking time sometimes from other family members and the drain is very real on your energy and emotions.
I sure hope her meds can be adjusted to give her a happier situation and to bring some relief to you as well. I didn't realise this could be so extreme; I guess like a lot of things you hear a mix of reports and until you are in contact with someone who has a dog going through this or have one yourself you just can't comprehend what it can be like.
Donna - your story just breaks my heart. I can only imagine how torn you feel. Poor Penny needs your attention yet at the same time you don't want to neglect Molly. What do you do??!! I'm so sorry you are having to go through this. Are the episodes painful? Is she in discomfort after them? It tears me up to imagine you watching her go through this. Please know that you are seriously and deeply in my prayers and thoughts.
Loving mom to Jake, Shelby and Micah
Watching the video was simply heartbreaking. What a very brave and couragegeous thing to do and it really brought it home to me raising awareness of this condition.
Donna I hope the medication can be adjusted for Penny and ease her pain. Words are never adequate at times like these, but you are in my thoughts and prayers.
Anita, Gemma & Milly& Kizzy
I am so sorry that Penny isn't responding well to the medication. It does take a while to get into the system and also to adjust it to the right level. Have you tried Diazepam ? sometimes one drug works better than another and not all of these dogs respond in the same way.
I used to put my Gracie in a baby sling and carry her when I took the others out. When she got too big I had a shopping trolley on wheels that she used to sit in. Yes I probably looked an idiot but I really didn't care. At least she could go with us that way. Gracie had multiple episodes per day but they did become less frequent as she got a bit older. It is probably more distressing for you watching her.
I would put her somewhere quiet and try to restrict her movement for an hour or so after each episode, to give her chance to really calm down.
I wish there was more I could do to help you.
Please contact me any time or Dorothie , she would love to hear from you.Details are on the website.
Oh Donna I'm so sorry to hear how severely affected your Penny is - I too didn't realise how badly affected some of these poor wee souls are.
I know how much it impacts on other family members - it's very sad for Molly that she isn't getting as much exercise and attention, and you are feeling very torn. Is there anyone who could take Molly for a walk for you, so that she is more tired?
I do hope that Penny's medication can be adjusted and that she can be better.
Sending healing thoughts and prayers for you all.
Originally Posted by Luv2Camp53
Donna = I'm so sorry to hear that Penny is regressing some. I hope you are able to modify the drugs to help her. Have you considered seeing a holistic veterinarian? I would be happy to refer you to someone my mother sees. He does phone consultations and has worked miracles. His ideas are pretty out there, but he has done some amazing stuff. He may have some alternate ideas for treating Penny.
Isn't your dog a ruby, too?/ How weird that you have a ruby named Penny with EFS, too.... Same name as the ruby dog in the video.
Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.
I remember someone who knew about this condition advising someone on another list or board (fuzzy about the details; it was probably 18 months ago now) that often these attacks lessen as the dog gets older, as Barbara has said -- so fingers crossed this this will be the case for Penny too.