Dog on week 3 of sickness, looking for opinions

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Dog on week 3 of sickness, looking for opinions

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Old 11-27-2015, 12:03 AM
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Dog on week 3 of sickness, looking for opinions

Hi there, first post. I read the forum rules and read through some of the stickies. This may be a bit of a long post but this being my first ever dog issue Im looking for more input as Im not sure the many veterinarians I have seen have got it right yet.
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Little back round information. I am 29 years old and have had my dog Oreo for 14.5 years. She is half black lab and half rabbit hound and about 48lbs. You would think 14.5 years old seems old but she has been doing great and very active up until this month. We grew up in my parents house for the first 8 years of her life, then moved into my house when I bought it for the past 5-6 years with me and my girlfriend. My parents house is only 2 minutes away so she gets lots of time over there still and loves it.
It all started
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November 8th. I was outside and my dog wanted to come out with me like always so she whined and I gave in and let her out. She was normal all day and went to have a BM (bowel movement) and it was mushy and red colored like blood. I decided to keep an eye on her and if it happened again I would take her to the vet. That night she had a BM in the house and it was just a mess. Blood everywhere and diarrhea. I never seen anything like it before. --
November 9th. So we took her down immediately and got her checked out. They took blood samples and checked things and nothing came back. They said it was likely HGE and to keep a close eye on her. She still seemed ok and other then a big sluggish (she was up late and early so nothing not normal) so my girlfriend spent the day with her and that was it.
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November 10th. She had an even worse BM in the house during the night and we took he back first thing in the morning. This is the day she began to seem sick. They said it was likely HGE and she would need to be on IV and fluids until she could start to feel better. She spent the day in the vet and we drove her to the overnight vet and she stayed there. They also did an xray to make sure nothing was stuck in her and there was nothing. That night they called us and said he platelets dropped to nothing and she was very ill and was suffering from what they believed to now be IMT (immune mediated Thrombocytopenia). They immediately started her on Prednisone 50mg and azathioprine 50mg to make her stop killing her platelets. Her red blood cell count was also low and they were worried about that
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November 11th. I went to see her this day and she was next to lifeless. Wouldnt move, eat, or do much of anything. I seriously thought that was the end of her. They explained everything to me about the meds and what would happen next and we waited to see what would happen. Later that night they told us her red blood cells dropped too low, and she had a blood transfusion. She was also down to 43 lbs
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November 12th. She Seemed to start responding to treatment and got much better this day. Back and fourth from the vets she started to eat a bit and was getting more life in her at least. We found a different vet that was available to do a full chest down ultrasound and it came back fine. There was no obvious cancers and everything seemed fine. So they had no clue what triggered the IMT.
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November 13th. Later this day she was doing well enough we took her home. They gave us all the meds she needed and how to give them. There were a few antacids, Prednisone, azathioprine, and antibiotics for a week incase she needed them (cant remember why).
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November 14th - 19th. I took this week off from work and spent it with her. She was doing fine, but very picky eating and only wanting beef, boiled chicken, some rice, some veggies, and a few other things but not her dog food, not even the soft dog food. She ate fine so I did not worry about it because the vets said to feed her whatever she would eat. She had many of the common Prednisone symptoms like panting, drinking lots, and peeing more. She also was more slippery on our floors with her paws if thats normal
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November 20th. She started not wanting to eat, laying down and breathing hard, and just not well at all. I took her to the vet and they gave me some better stomach meds for ulcers, a nausea pill, and mirtazapine to make her eat. So seemed better hours later and ate more. So I figured she was fine.
Later that night though she started to shake and tremor more then ever before out of nowhere and chattering her teeth like crazy. It was like she was over stimulated. We took her to the vet immediately again and they said she must have taken a bad reaction to the mirtazapine and stopped it.
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November 21st-23rd. She did not get better and spent the next day panting and breathing heavy to the point I took her back to the vet again because something was wrong. They ran tests again and found out she now had Pancreaitis. They concluded that it was the Azathiroprine that she was having bad side effects to and after testing her blood the red blood cells were fine and her platelets were WAY higher then needed at 400k+. She spent the next two nights in the vet again on IV and monitored. She responded well again and after starting to eat again we took her home on the 23rd.
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November 24th-26th. After another blood test they decided to start weaning her off 50mg of prednisone to 37.5 for a few weeks and see how she did.They gave us Tramodol for pain whenever needed.
She is still weak from everything and needs some help jumping up on things and climbing stairs sometimes. Shes eating more stuff and seems to be doing a bit better everyday but still has the common prednisone side effects like random panting and over drinking. Shes now back to 44-45 lbs but her muscle mass is visually lower and she is more boney feeling when petting her. I hate it.
The issue we are having is in the evening the last 3 nights she started shaking for no reason. Not as bad as a few days ago but still shivering like. No panting or breathing hard just shaking a bit. We gave her the tramadol 25mg in case it was pain and one day it worked but one day it did not. I was also at work all 3 days when it happened so I dont know if she was missing me or if something was bothering her. She has no pain threshold at all also so any pain she would show and she always has. Shes a big baby. One other note I should mention is today she peed and it looked a bit discolored. Nothing much and I might have just over thought it, but it looked a bit darker like a tiny bit of brown in it. I was thinking possibly because she was dehydrated.
So as it sits she is on prednisone 37.5mg, famotodine, sucralfate, and tramodol for pain when needed.
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I dont know why she is shaking and the vets do not have a straight answer?
I dont know what started this IMT and if she will ever get over it?
I dont know if Im doing the right thing trying all this?
I dont know if shes actually in pain somehow or has something else wrong Im missing?
Really not sure what to do next now. I am keeping this up and seeing how she rebounds but as of right now she is not better then she was 8 days ago before the pancreaitis.
Could she be maybe still not fully over the pancreaitis? Did she maybe catch something else with her immune system being low right now and her stopping the antibiotics on the 18th?
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I know this is a lot of information but other opinions on what to do next would be a great help. I dont feel like its my dogs time to go yet and she has been 100% healthy her whole life up until now.
Thanks anyone who has time
Jordan

Last edited by maxpower29; 11-27-2015 at 12:09 AM.
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Old 11-27-2015, 08:21 AM
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My dog had pancreatitis which then became chronic exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI). The acute phase lasted almost a month. She lost weight and the BM's were horrible slimy, gray cow patties.

My dog has bouts of shaking, too. We're not sure of the cause, whether it's pain or not. For us, it doesn't seem to be pain, but that would be my first thought. Pancreatitis hurts in humans, so I would imagine she's quite uncomfortable.

This is a good site for info on treating pancreatitis. I highly recommend the home cooked diet and slippery elm.

My neighbor's elderly dog got pancreatitis last year from getting chicken bones out of another neighbor's garbage. He was really sick, but recovered. His mom cooked all his food for a year.

Good luck to you and your baby.

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Old 11-27-2015, 09:03 AM
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Thanks. To me it does not seem like pain but I dont know what else it could be. I start thinking about it and I just over think it. I know shes on a very low does of Tramodol (25mg for 46lb dog) but thats what they gave us. its been a week now with the pancreatitis so we are just playing it day by day. The vet is keeping in contact with us as well so I have a list of questions to ask her later.
With her being sick I changed to night shift at work to look after her in the day, and its the evening she gets the shakes. So that might also have something to do with it.
Thanks again
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Old 11-27-2015, 10:49 AM
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My dog started to have fear aggression and anxiety after her bout with pancreatitis. The anxiety (shaking) comes and goes and we medicate her for it. The fear aggression (dogs only) never completely left despite our attempts at counter-conditioning. She remained friendly with every dog she knew before she got sick.

If it doesn't resolve, I would ask the vet about testing for EPI.
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Old 11-27-2015, 05:30 PM
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So talking to my girlfriend again and she said Oreo started shaking again just now. It's at the same time everyday and it doesn't seem like she's in pain because she's begging for food and acting normal still. I really wish we could figure this out
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Old 12-05-2015, 08:14 PM
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Maxpower, first I think you are doing everything possible, you obviously care a great deal about and for Oreo. Sometimes the Vets, just like human doctors just don't have the answers. There are times that we humans, and our beloved pets just become sick, and the medical explanation is elusive and sometimes impossible to find. I wish you and Oreo more years together. Sounds like you have a dedicated and caring Vet on board.
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Old 12-06-2015, 10:15 AM
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Yes thank you. She's doing fine the last week and after we stopped the 9 days of sucralfate
She has only done the shaking thing twice in 12 days. I really don't think it's pain because she's eating everything again and not having and other symptoms. The thing that worries me most is she is still very weak some days and sometimes needs help walking up and down stairs if she looks tired. I think it's still a side effect of the prednisone though and her dose is down to 37.5mg from 50mg and in another week she might be down to 25mg a day. Hopefully these symptoms disappear. The thirst and peeing a lot has gone though that's for sure.
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Old 12-06-2015, 02:08 PM
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Glad to hear she is doing better. The fact that she is eating and drinking on her own is a very good sign. Oreo is fortunate to have you caring for her.
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Old 12-15-2015, 06:42 AM
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Been doing better the last week. Still a little blah from the prednisone but after blood work today she will be down to 25 MG per day. Her weight is about 42-43 lbs so it will be a good drop from 37.5
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Old 12-15-2015, 02:14 PM
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When you can get her completely off the prednisone, she should feel better.
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