We have had a he** of a month....Last Wednesday, we were booked to euthanize our 7 year old retriever mix (toller and golden) b/c of probable brain tumor...he has been on prendisone now for a week (vet offered this treatment and we would do anything to save our big guy) and has made drastic improvement...this time last week, he wasn't moving at all and we were syringe feeding/watering him.
Long story short....first week of October, Baby stopped pooping. then he stopped eating. he would turn away from favorites like peanut butter and "dog desserts". he became listless. still drank and peed. Took him in on the 11th of October after calling my vet all week the week before with questions; she suggested Pepcid AC and thought he may have eaten something that didn't agree with him. Ended up at the MVS (MI Vet Specialists) in emergency; at this point on a Sunday afternoon, my husband and I were sure he had a bowel obstruction and didn't want to risk any internal damage. $900 later, X-rays and bloodwork came back normal with just two small bladder stones (nothing according to the vet)....we were sent home on anti-nausea and anti-diarreha and given appetite stimulants with the hesitant diagnosis of gastritis/pancreatitis (they wanted to do an ultrasound if he didn't improve in 2 days).
Well...he never started eating. He did eat cooked eggs that night, but I think in retrospect the appetite stimulants kicked in for a minute and he couldn't resist. By Wednesday of that week, he was presenting with new symptoms...unsteady gait and head tilt. I called my vet panicked and she called in a script for Antivert and told me it was probably geriatric vestibular. I called MVS back, and they said the same thing and that I should come in to see a neurologist. Vestibular is only supposed too last 72 hours to a week max, so I figured we would wait it out.
He progressed with the symptoms until by Halloween he wasn't walking at all. He went that weekend not walking and by Monday looked like a dog zombie...it was a nightmare. I was totally checked out of work and personal life....he was the only thing on my mind. I couldn't believe my dog, who just a month ago was galloping through the doggy park happy as could be would end up like this. The more research we did at home, the more it pointed to a brain tumor. He was having lip tremors at this point, which I found out were focal/facial petite mal seizures.
After 2 weeks of force feeding him and lifting him outside to pee (he weighs almost 70 pounds) we made the call to have him euthanized. Our hearts were literally broken, but anyone who looked at the dog could understand (my mom and best friend were stopping by daily to feed, water, and bring him outside and they agreed that he had no will to live).
Last Wednesday was horrible. My husband and I were bawling on our way to the vet and the poor dog was lying on the blanket in the backseat in the same position he had been laying in for a week (we were "flipping" him over periodically; he was literally not moving a muscle at this point).
We brought him in, and our vet was just in tears. She hadn't actually seen him to this point (just phone calls and script fills; we also tried Zeniquin in case this was an inner ear infection). She wanted to do another CBC on him, a urinalysis, and a neuro exam before calling it quits...of course we said yes.
Neither her nor the neurologist could confirm a brain tumor through motor tests; he still had some resistance, but was presenting with the paralysis. She offered the steroid treatment...and by this past Saturday, he was running around again. He is not 100%, but is doing almost everything he was.
Vet says unpredictable life expectancy; we would have to get an MRI and then a biopsy to show what this is....either autoimmune or tumor.
Anyone else know of/have a story like this? I would love any feedback.
Sorry so long a thread; lots to vent here. I was facing possible pet therapy last week...