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Tag Archives: dog health

Weeping Wednesday: Pathology

We got the results from pathology regarding the growth that was biopsied in Louise’s mouth. It is a fast-growing tumor that destroys the jaw called Canine Acanthamotous Ameloblastoma (CAA).

WARNING: Stop reading now if you will get uncomfortable with the details. 

Basically, she has a mass in the lower part of her front jaw that is visible and is around her front teeth. The good news is that CAA has never been reported to spread to other parts of the body (metastasize), so it is often called ‘benign.’ However, it is locally aggressive and her tumor is doubling in size every 10 days or so. Underneath what we see it is destroying the jaw bone. It is life-threatening.

The first option for treatment, due to a large amount of underlying bone involved, is to surgically remove a portion of the jaw, called a mandibulectomy (graphic link), and to take large margins around the tumor to ensure it is all removed. For patients, like Louise, where surgery is not an option because of multiple reasons, the second option would be radiation.

Louise turned 12 last October. The normal life expectance of a dog her size is 10 to 12 years. She has pancreatitis and irritable bowel disease. Figuring out what health intervention is in her best interest is one of the hardest decisions we ever had to make. We do not want to put her through either of these options. The surgery would take her lower jaw, which I think at her age would be a difficult recovery to regain function, and the side-effects of radiation are horrible (if her IBD would even tolerate it.)

I have started a Facebook group dedicated to this journey. It is called Canine Acanthamotous Ameloblastoma – Dog Oral Tumors Please feel free to join if you want to follow what is going on. I am not going to fill DogDaz with her medical stuff because it is graphic and sad, so I will put it there.

Keep us in your prayers as we go through this thing. We are heartbroken.

Please, don’t post any negative comments on the choices we have made for Louise’s care – they will be deleted. 

NOT Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2021 in Dogs

 

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Monday Mischief: Lulu is Doing Ok

Miss Louise had a tumor removed from inside her mouth last week. This one is scary. It seemed to be growing big fast. We are still waiting to find out what the biopsy said, so bang your drum for her!!

She is the most incredible ROCK STAR! She never complains and was hungry almost the minute she got home. Sofie and Charles, both drama queens, would be milking it for all it is worth. But not, Louise.

She is sticking close to Mom right now and her ducky. Bang those drums, please.

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on December 6, 2021 in Dogs

 

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Wonderful Wednesday: BooBoo Head is All Better

Hey, it is me, Louise. The one that Mom calls ‘BooBoo Head.’ I got my stitches out. It was no fun going to the vet but once it was done, I was relieved to get home and no longer have all these strings hanging off my ears and my skull. Mom is hoping that my hair will grow over the scars in time. But she is happy that I no longer have these large ugly thingies on my head. Now I can roll and flick my ears as much as I want without all that gooey red stuff bursting all over my face.

Louise 2014

 

I think Mom is still going to call me ‘Boo Boo’ though. I kind of like the name.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2021 in Dogs

 

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Just Another Wednesday: Pilling

Mornings start out with 4 pills for Sofie and 1 for Louise.

Then at dinner, Sofie gets another 3, and now Charles gets 1.

On the alternate days, Louise gets 2 for breakfast, Sofie gets 4, and Charles gets 1.

It has gotten more and more complicated at the Zoo as we all age. The dogs are now 10,11, and 12.

Oh and that doesn’t include the monthly Heartworm or Flea stuff.

Thank goodness, only Noel, the Christmas Cat who is 14, gets something in the morning, and the other 3 cats are good, for now.

Does your human give you medicine? How do they do it (or maybe they do it so well you just don’t know)?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on May 26, 2021 in Cats, Dogs

 

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Wonderful Wednesday: Sofie Update

Sofie had her second worming last week for those very difficult hookworms. So far, so good for Ms. Soso. Her gut seems to be getting back to normal. Now we have to figure out what new arthritis medicine to get on, since her previous one, which we stopped because her gut was ripped apart by these hookworms, is really hard on the GI tract (Previcox). She limps a great deal. I don’t know if it is her front right shoulder or coming from her neck. I do have her on pain meds so hopefully that helps. I am also trying this new thing that Mojo’s Mom gave us that provides sound waves into the area and maybe gives some relief. Testing the gut this week and waiting for the Vet to tell us what they find. Paws crossed they are gone.

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on November 4, 2020 in Dogs

 

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Monday Mischief: CRUNCH Time = Allergy Time

Charles here. I want to talk to you about my 2 silly sisters who for some strange reason, that I cannot understand, go out in the cold air and crunch in the fall leaves. Don’t they realize that it is much better just to run out in the back for 2 seconds and pee than to go for a long walk with Mom and have to deal with coats and leashes and scary sounds, like the crunch crunch crunch of dead leaves? Sometimes I think they are just ridiculous.

Wouldn’t you rather stay in where it is warm?

And these dead leaves are making me itch! Mom has me on a tablet of allergy medicine, but I don’t think it is helping. Because I am so little, she thinks I get the worst of the dead stuff directly on my skin and up my nose. People think of dog allergies and allergic reactions mostly in the spring (I get those too) but for me, the dead leaves that are all over the ground in the fall, which get moldy and are full of dying insects as well as pollen, are making me wheeze. All these leaves are kind of hard to avoid when you are a little, but Mom gave me a bath and tries to towel me off when I come inside after my 2 seconds in the yard (to keep the stuff off my fur). Does the fall effect you?

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on November 18, 2019 in Dogs

 

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Wonderful Wednesday: Lulu Update

We went back to visit the nice lady Veterinary specialist and she said that I am doing a lot better. She says that I have Inflammatory Bowel Disease* (IBD) of the upper and lower GI tract and Pancreatitis. Mom has been giving me B12 shots once a week for the last 6 weeks (I am not very happy about that) but they are now going to start to be once a month. They are decreasing my prednisone little by little, though I am going to be taking this for a long time. At my checkup appointment, I hid under the chair that Mom was sitting in so that the Dr would not see me (if I can’t see them, they can’t see me – right?).

Going to the Vet makes me scared and excited. I don’t like it very much. Thankfully, if I keep improving, I won’t have to go to often.

This prednisone stuff makes me super hungry. Mom finds me begging and scavenging for food, which I never did before. That was always Sofie and Charles’ deal. I have put back on some weight, which doesn’t bother me, but Mom is afraid the Dr is going to yell. And, I drink water all the time. All 3 dogs bowls and Charles’ little bowl are empty constantly. Mom is feeding me this expensive Royal Canin Hydrolyzed Protein (wet and dry), which the Dr says is the best for me, with an occasional hypoallergic dog treat. So far, it seems to be working.

I guess that is all for now. I am happy to be feeling better. Thank you all for the healing energy.

– Louise

*Canine Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a condition that results when cells involved in inflammation and immune response infiltrate the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. This makes the wall of the GI tract thick and interferes with the bowels ability to move and absorb food. The World Small Animal Veterinary Association defines IBD as an inflammatory infiltration for which no specific cause can be found. This means they try to stop the inflammation and relieve the problem without ever really knowing why it happens. Approximately 50-70% of affected dogs have good long-term outcomes from initial treatment. IBD is not curable and flare-ups can happen throughout the dog’s life. (This is just for your information. I am not a vet or any kind of doctor. I am just a DogMom.)

 

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2019 in Dogs

 

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Monday Mischief: Pancreatitis Again

Louise is down with a really bad bout of pancreatitis again. It started mysteriously a few weeks ago when she would occasionally refuse to eat in the morning. I asked the vet and he really didn’t think much of it. Then she went for her Rabies shot. The following week she was pretty sick. I am wondering if it could have exacerbated her condition? (Your thoughts?) He took lots of blood work, and thought maybe Addison’s disease (which I did not) and sent us home with a probiotic and Flagyl (an antibiotic). Blood work was negative (they check Cortisol levels).

She got worse. She vomited in her sleep Thursday (she never does that). But the next morning (Friday) Sofie vomited too, so I thought maybe they both had a bug. I made my usual sick dog food for her. But that night she vomited 6 times in her sleep. Every time a changed the bed, she went again. Ok, now I was very concerned. I rushed to the vet in the morning (Saturday) (but of course my usual vet was on holiday) so I saw this nice stand-in guy. He took more blood ($$$$). He gave us more Flagyl and an anti-nausea drug called Cerenia.

By Monday she was worse. She wouldn’t eat (which meant I could not give her pills) and was lethargic. When I called the Vet they said to take her to the Emergency Vet. Thank goodness for Veterinary Emergency Clinics, they are just such a wonderful addition to pet care. They took X-rays and did a sonogram and gave her a shot of that Cerenia drug since I could not give it to her orally. While I was at Emergency the stand-in vet called with her blood work and said her pancreatic enzymes were elevated (no kidding, like I didn’t know that already). The Emergency doctor said her sonogram looked ok but things looked ‘thick.’ He and I decided to stop the Flagyl (if it hadn’t worked already it wasn’t going to).

She appeared to perk up on Tuesday but on Wednesday evening she went down hill again. I made some special boiled turkey cutlets for her for Thanksgiving and that perked her up again. I was able to get a Cerenia down her and I think that helps. I also read that probiotics may actually not be good for animals with pancreatitis. So I stopped those too.

I have started making large batches of dog food (and I am thinking I may move her and maybe all of them to my own mix). Each day is touch and go. Somedays she’s ok, others she is not. I have her wrapped in a nice warm sweater all the time (it’s 20 degrees out). She does want to go for walks most days and then I put a coat on top of her sweater. I want to keep those organs warm. When she is not sleeping she is following me around and giving me that look that says “Please help me feel better, Mom.”

One day at a time.

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on November 26, 2018 in Dogs

 

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Monday Mischief: Treating Pancreatitis

It all started 2 weeks ago Wednesday night with Louise throwing up, twice. Then the smelly gas started. It was so bad all night that I had to move her to another room. Louise rarely throws up. Her tummy was grumbling and making weird noises, which it does sometimes with her colitis. But this was different. She was refusing to eat, which she just doesn’t do. She was mopey and blue. I made her favorite chicken and rice. No luck. The other dogs were sniffing her behind a lot, which they do when her Perianal Fistula Disease is acting up.

When she refused her breakfast Saturday morning, I called my usual vet. But it was Saturday morning and he was packed, so he said to go to the emergency vet. Before doing that, I called the cats vet (it’s a long story why I have 2 different vets) and luckily they were able to fit her in.

After waiting almost 2 hours (Louise was a doll, as usual), they did blood work and gave her fluids and some other stuff. They put her on Metronidazole (Flagyl), which is really hard on the system. She was not herself.

On Tuesday the vet called (while I was in the middle of grocery shopping, so you know I only heard half of what she said). She is a new vet to the practice, I had not met her before, and she is really nice and spent a lot of time explaining her diagnosis to me (while my ice cream was melting). She ran this special blood test (SPEC cPL) that showed significant pancreatic inflammation (high normal is 200 ug/L and Louise is 1,369). All the other blood work was normal. The Vet added Clavamox (Oh My Dog that is expensive) and some Spleen Support Formula on top of the Metronidazole.

In the last 2 weeks, I have researched the heck out of Pancreatitis in dogs. High-fat diets are one of the main things that they blame pancreatitis on. Since Louise has been on Z/D ultra (19% protein/14% fat) exclusively for years and never gets table scraps or garbage, it is hard for me to believe this is diet based. Certain conditions may predispose dogs to pancreatitis and I am thinking that it is just a mix of genetics and her other health issues.

Getting 5 pills into Louise at every meal has been a challenge. When she first got sick I ground them with some white meat chicken and wet food in the blender. I usually use Peanut Butter to give the dogs pills, but that is off limits because of the fat issue. After a few meals Louise started to refuse the mash. So now I wrap each pill in some cooked chicken breast and gooble gooble gooble. She is happy to eat again. Louise loves chicken.

We go back to the vet today to redo the test, so hopefully this bout has passed.

What kind of mischief did you get into today?

Just another DogDaz morning at the zoo ❤

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2017 in Dogs

 

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DogDaz Zoo: How To Spot Bloat

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Symptoms of bloat include:

  • hard, swollen abdomen that may make a hollow sound if tapped
  • retching that produces no vomit OR produces foamy, white vomit
  • drooling/salivating excessively
  • whining
  • pacing/restlessness
  • lethargy
  • stiff-legged walk

If your dog shows signs of having bloat, call your vet IMMEDIATELY. Every second counts. Bloat is extremely painful and without quick veterinary intervention your dog will probably not survive.

Check out this video of an akita in the middle to late stages of bloat.

Check out this article on what bloat is, the varieties of bloat, its symptoms, and the typical treatment plans.

The best predictor of a dog’s chances of getting bloat are its relatives. If your dogs family has had bloat, your dog is at an increased risk. Other risk factors include:

  • deep, narrow chested dogs
  • feeding to soon before or after exercising
  • raised feeding bowls
  • gulping food/eating too quickly
  • eating one or two large meals per day
  • overeating
  • overdrinking
  • dry food diet

Just so everyone knows more about this, bloat is basically when a dog has eaten a large meal, exercises and the stomach actually flips. It is very very dangerous for your dog and can causes death in several hours. Know the signs of bloat. It could save your dogs life.
(via e-pic)

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Dogs

 

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