Thursday, July 22, 2010

Unexpected Vet Visit

Secret and I got back from visiting Dr. Randy a bit ago. I had to call them at 8:00 to see if I could get her in this morning, because her behavior has been rather worrisome.

Last night we did a jump session (mostly just a line of four straight jumps, plus a few 90-degree turns, set at 16") and later a quicky session on the dog walk. I waited until after 7:30 p.m. to begin mowing, so the dogs were pretty much running around from the time we got home from work until almost 9:00 p.m. Secret behaved completely as normal.

While I was in the shower, I heard a rather large thud/crash noise come from the bedroom. Nobody cried out or made any sort of fuss, so I finished my shower. I presume that Secret fell off the bed while wrestling with Kaiser, but there is no way to know for sure. She was sitting on the ottoman looking out the window when I came out. She, not unexpectedly, crashed for the remainder of the night at that point. When we got up for the last potty break before bed at 10:30, she was absolutely fine.

This morning, however, she would not get out of bed. Granted, she can be exceptionally lazy when she is tired and there have been several times when she doesn't get out of bed until I am well down the hallway or opening the door for the boys. I let the boys outside and she didn't come, so I went in to check on her. Secret had moved to the end of the bed, but was taking no action to get up.

It was raining, so I elected to go let the boys inside before I did anything more with Secret. I even proceeded to fill their food dishes, thinking SURELY this would bring her out, but yet still nothing. She was in the same position when I returned, so I picked her up and placed her on the floor. She remained standing, but was very stiff-legged and walked with her back arched down the hallway to the kitchen. She plopped herself down on floor once she got out there.

I let her lay there while I prepared breakfast for Luke. I left Secret's dish dry since I had no idea if she'd be eating or not and I didn't want a sloppy mess on my hands. That was not a problem, though, because when I placed her dish in front of her she vacuumed it up like normal.

She hadn't yet been outside, so I hoisted her up to see if I could get her to walk again. Her hind end started out slow and a little shaky, but she seemed to get better the more she moved. She even managed to get down the stairs in the garage with little problem. Secret was NOT happy to go out in the rain, but she followed me outside. She hesitated the first time she attempted to squat, but she went potty on the second try and pooped shortly after. At this point she trotted back into the house with her tail up!

Once back inside I had her lay down so that I could go over everything. I massaged, poked, prodded, stretched and manipulated everything I could and didn't get a single reaction from her. I went to the fridge and grabbed the cheese to see if that would prompt her to rise. It did, eventually, and then she happily followed me all over the house to get more cheese.

She tried to jump onto the bed while I was getting ready and only made it about half-way up, so I lifted her the rest of the way and she stayed there until it was time to go. Again, I had to lift her down and place her on the floor. She seems to start out rather stiffly and then her gait improves noticeably as she moves.

I called the clinic right at 8:00 a.m. and was able to get an appointment at 8:40. I had to drag her to the back of the car to pick her up since she wouldn't get up on her own, but by the time she reached the door to the vet's office she was trotting and wagging her tail. She was bright-eyed and happy to see everyone. I'm sure people thought I was being silly, but Secret proved my point when she sat on the scale and then struggled to get up (BTW, still 41.5 lbs).

After that, she seemed determined not to sit or lay down, likely because she knew she'd be stuck. She was standing when Randy came in the room and looked for all the world to be a healthy, happy dog. He took her temperature and it was slightly elevated at 102. I explained the previous events as he put her through all the range of motion exercises and she gave him no reaction. Finding nothing else, Randy took her for a blood draw to run for Lyme & Anaplasmosis.

It was about a 10-minute wait for the results of that test, so Secret did finally decide to lay down and relax a bit. This was good, because then Randy got to see her struggle to her feet when he returned. He did some reflex tests to make sure it wasn't neurological, and she was fine.

The Lyme test was 100% negative. He said that the Anaplasmosis test was slightly more inconclusive, but still more or less negative. Randy said that 1 in 5 tests come back negative, yet when they send it into the state lab at Marshfield for more in-depth testing, it will come back positive. Because of that and because we can't find anything else, we decided to start Secret on a course of Doxy, along with aspirin for the next few days to see what happens.

Secret got her first dose of Doxy at the clinic and I ran to the store to get braunschweiger, followed by her first dose of aspirin at home (1/2 tablet twice a day).

She pee'd and poo'd again when we got back to the office, then went absolute berserk when she saw the boys. She was running around the office completely normal, tail up, happy, & barking at me for treats. You would never know there was anything wrong with her.

She is completely crashed now, which I expect to stay the same for the remainder of the day. No lunch-time walk for us today, which doesn't matter much since the weather is cruddy. Luke has a massage appointment this afternoon at 4:00, so I can check back in with Randy then to let him know how she's doing.

If we don't see fairly quick improvement, we'll figure out what to do next. I would suppose x-rays are high on the list, but Randy didn't feel the need to do that until we find out of the Doxy works.

Hopefully it does and we don't have to worry about any other possibilities. I can't help but be nagged by chants of "displasia" in my head. It's something that I worried about when she was a puppy because she would often sit funny, but then that went away and I haven't really thought of it since then. It would be pretty classic for something like that to flair up after all of her activity last night. But let's hope it's just Anaplasmosis and the Doxy will fix her right up.

1 comment:

  1. Hope Secret is ok.
    I had a somewhat similar incident with my youngest girl Darby a few weeks ago. One morning she wouldn't get out of bed. We hadn't done anything strenuous over the weekend. Just a typical weekend with an agility lesson. Darby is usually full of energy. Always the first up, always nagging me to get up, and always ready to play ball. This morning I had to pry her out of bed, push her to go potty, and she wasn't interested in her jolly ball. She wasn't really interested in eating her breakfast either, but she did eat. After she ate I could see her stomach getting distended. I've never seen anything like that. So, I rushed her to our vet. She had a slightly elevated temp, x-rays ruled out any obstructions, and then waited for blood work. Initial results showed that her thyroid level was low, but the final results showed a normal levels. The vet never did find anything wrong with her. And by that evening she had renewed her love for her jolly ball. And of course she was up first thing the next morning raring to go.
    Keep us posted.