I would like to thank everyone who showed such concern when I first posted on the forum several weeks ago regarding Monty's episodic collapses.
Well the results have been a long time in coming through - but guess what? - all came back as normal!
As mentioned in my earlier post, we live in the North East of England, and Monty has been collapsing since August last year. After seeing a number of vets, we were referred to the Animal Health Trust, a leading veterinary research centre in Newmarket, England.
After doing all the various tests (which we've waited ages for - some having been sent to the US) and looking at a video which I managed to record of Monty having an episode, the neurologist came up with a diagnosis of probable Paroxysmal Dyskinesia. This is apparently a form of channelopathy in which one of the ion channels in the basal nucleii of the brain malfunctions. A few young labs have been seen at the AHT with similar symptoms.
It is thought to probably be genetic but as very few labs have so far been seen with this problem no work has yet been able to be done on researching into the genes involved. I am passing on to the neurologist a copy of Monty's pedigree and she is going to try to obtain pedigrees from the owners of the handful of other dogs seen there with PD - to see if there is any obvious link in the bloodlines
So it seems that there may be another "genetic disease" affecting labradors . It is very likely that some dogs have had episodes which have not been diagnosed - or have been mis-diagnosed - possibly as epilepsy.
Monty won't be put on any medication at this stage - but they may try the newer epilepsy type drugs at a later stage if his episodes become more severe or more frequent (let's hope not). So far he has collapsed 11 times , but I am pleased to say the last few have actually seemed a bit milder than the earlier ones . The last episode was nine days ago - after an interval of six and a half weeks. They are not really able to give a prognosis as only a few dogs seem to have this and it has only fairly recently been a diagnosis in labs.
I would be very interested to learn of any labs experiencing similar episodes (in any part of the world!) ???. Dogs having PD episodes do not lose consciousness at all and recovery very quickly from an attack - running around as if nothing had happened within minutes.
Trying to research PD on the internet - it seems that the only Chinooks seem to be mentioned as having a similar condition. I don't know if it's the same?
I had been hoping for a definitive diagnosis which could be treated fairly easily - but we are just going to have to live with these episodes. There again, some of the diseases they were testing for could have been a lot worse!
Still, I wouldn't trade my darling Monty for the world. He is very precious
Once again, thanks for all your good wishes :-*.
June and Monty
Oh my gosh. I missed your original post about Monty. Seeing a dog go thru that would be so frightening. I'm glad you have a name for the condition. Some info is better than none. Does the vet think these episodes will cause any neurological damage over time?
Yes - it's really scary. For him and for us. Fortunately he seems to be taking the collapses a bit more "in his stride" now. He's not panicking as much as he did at first.
Not much seems to be known about canine PD but it does seem that it's less likely to cause brain damage than epilepsy - as with epilepsy the dog ususally loses consciousness - even if it is momentary - and when they lose consciousness I believe the brain "forgets" to breath and that is probably what can cause the damage to the brain. Monty does not lose consciousness at all and is fully alert throughout the episode - so I'm hoping this means less chance of permanent damage. From what I can gather epilepsy affects the "wrinkly" part of the brain - while the ion channel affected in PD is in the basal nucleii of the brain.
The first episode was the worst - I had no idea what was happening and we were out playing ball at the riverside. Monty was so frightened. After about 20 mins I struggled to heave him into the front of the car and headed for the vet. Home was on the way, so I called in to collect my husband en route, and when I opened the car door Monty jumped out of the car and trotted indoors as if nothing had happened. I couldn't believe my eyes.
He's now collapsed eleven times - I am just hoping they don't get any worse.
I just wish a bit more was known about the condition. It seems to be only very recently that it has been seen in young labs.
Thank you for your concern
Please keep us updated on your vets findings, if any, with regard to the pedigrees.
Hope you can get this under control. I can just imagine the fear during these episodes.
Thanks - yes I will keep you up to date
Yes it is frightening for poor Monty :'(
It's good to have support. It's much appreciated.
I'm so glad to see that you have a diagnosis, at last. At least you now know what you are dealing with. I hope the episodes continue to get further apart and less severe. ((HUGS)) for Monty.
Won't someone please feed me!