I don’t know what to think… After Phoenix’s distinct lethargy last week I took him to a new vet for testing. His first comment when he walked into the room was, “There’s something wrong with this puppy. He doesn’t act right.” I don’t know what “right” is but I know that he is stiff when he walks, never runs and doesn’t stand for long. He has gained a little weight since I got him 3.5 weeks ago but is still pretty skinny.
The vet said most of his tests were normal, albumin a little low for a puppy. The only things that stood out were low hematocrit (32) and slightly low red blood count. He feels like this is a symptom, not the problem. ???His parasite level was 1155 (normal for this vet is 0-1200.) And the vet said he was “stumped” and didn’t really know what the problem was. He speculated myasthenia gravis, myofibrous deficiency, or mytonia … maybe. In the meantime he put Phoenix on Doxycycline for two weeks. He has perked up quite a bit (a week later) but still doesn’t move around much. He seems so stiff that I stopped putting him in his crate when I’m at work. He’s not into anything … plays with his toys some and is lying on the floor waiting for me when I get home. Doesn’t seem normal for a five month old. He likes to play but wants to lie down to do it…
I called the shelter where he was born and the pet organization that placed him trying to find out more information. All I’ve learned is that the paperwork I have isn’t for my dog and that they’ve “lost” his. The guy at the matching organization actually yelled at me for wanting him to help me try to figure it out. I was in tears.
The waiting is making me crazy. I have scheduled an appointment with a vet that specializes in diagnostics and orthopedics for next week. I want to will him well but it’s not working. I see the beautiful pics of the well dogs and just pray my baby will get there. Any thoughts?
Has he been checked for tick borne diseases?
Nothing except the blood work ... don't know if that's something specific. Wil ask the vet on Monday.
That's exactly what I was going to ask, especially since he has improved a bit on the doxycycline. They can all cause stiffness when moving.Originally Posted by Labsrme
Did they check a stool sample and heartworm test to make sure there weren't any parasites, or is the number you gave just from the bloodwork? If you can call tomorrow to ask about whether they checked for this, they may be able to add on those tests to the blood that is already at the laboratory. I know that the "tick titers" (Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, ehrlichiosis, Lymes disease, etc.) usually take a few days to get back, so it may be helpful to have those finished (if your vet thinks it would help) prior to your visit with the specialist. 32% for a hematocrit isn't all that anemic.
I'm glad you're going to a specialist. There are a lot of auto-immune type problems that can happen in puppies. Definitely take copies of his records/bloodwork with you.
~Julie, Rogue, Monty, and Eddy~
"The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue." -Anon
Ditto that...Got one here that never tested positive for any tick illness, vet refused to treat for it. Long story short they put her on steroids (thinking that she was in the process of rupturing a disk in her back) with no blood work whatsoever (this was a 9 year old at the time) did do x-rays which showed a strange "spot" on the back. After going off the pred a few weeks it came back, I took her back and they were going to put her back on pred, I said no I want her tested for tick illness. They did draw blood and had it tested all neg. Had they run CBC's they would have found she was slightly anemic. Took her to a different vet and they did the blood panel, and put her on the doxy...improvement within 12 hours, by 2 days she was acting almost completely like her old self. She has not been back to the original vet since.Originally Posted by Labsrme
If this is tick related 2 weeks of doxy is NOT enough meds and if it is Lymes I you will be dealing with this for the rest of the pups life, it seems that you just can't kill it only control it and put the fires out when they surface. Do a google search for Susan Netboy lymes and you will get lots of good info on tick illness and dogs.
Bonnie ~ Ellsworth Labradors
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