I'm new in the forum. I have a 4-year old beautiful female English Cocker Spaniel. Her name is Puno (you can see her picture in the dogs/English Cocker Spaniel section). She lives with us since she was 2 months old. She is a family member for us and we love her so much. She has a lovely character. She loves all the people, especially children.
I am from Turkey and and about 1 year ago we moved to Germany (Munich). Puno came with us too. This summer, after about 6 months we were in Germany, Puno started to limping on her back foot. In the beginning we thought she has a luxating capella. We waited for a few days to see if she would heal, then we to took her to the veterinary. They did X-rays and said her knees and bones are just normal and gave us some painkiller and we came back home. Her condition started to get worse, she lost her appetite and started eating less and less everyday. We took her back to the veterinary and they told us she has high fever and that we must take her to a clinic. We immediately took her to the clinic and there they said they will do tests there and her condition is critical therefore she had to stay there. Puno stayed there 2 days, got infusion. They did blood tests, Xrays, ultrasound imaging of her organs, checked for different types of viruses (lashmaniosis, etc). They did some advanced blood tests. After 2 days, we got Puno back (she was better), but we were told that they found nothing in any of the tests. They gave us some antibiotics. Puno used it the following weeks, but she was not any good. Her appetite was bad and she was losing weight everyday.
We took her again to our veterinary and the vet told me that she may have auto immune problem. For this, they took some fluid samples from her knee joints and sent it to the laboratory. When the results came, they said that they found some inflammation in her joint fluids and this could be a sign of a immunity problem. She had fever and they gave us some antibiotics. Her condition got worse in the following days and the veterinary said they will have to try cortisone assuming that she has immunity disease.
Quite miraculously, just 1 day after using the cortisone, Puno was very healthy, with appetite, active and lovely as before. We couldn't believe that she got better just in one day after about 2 months of being so bad. She was good the next day as well. Then she started to get slow again, not eating good, being lame, sleeping most of the day and not being a happy dog. She was going worse and worse in front of us every day despite using the cortisone.
Her condition got so bad, one day she just collapsed on the floor. We took her immediately to the veterinary. They told us she has lost almost all her blood and we must immediately take her to the university for blood transfusion. They also offered us that we may also let her sleep. We took her immediately to animal clinic in the university. They told us basically the same thing, the blood level in her body was in critical levels and she needed a blood transfusion. They also told us that this is a risky operation and some animals may simply not accept a foreign blood.
Anyway, Puno received the new blood and stayed in the university clinic for 4 days. They made A LOT of test there as well, and in the end they told us that Puno has auto immune disease and her body was basically destroying her own blood cells.
They prescribed cortisone and an immunity suppresive medicine plus some kidney medicine to protect her kidney. With these medicines her condition got a little better, but a few weeks after she got really bad diarrhea and we had to take her back to clinic again, where she stayed for another 3 days and got more transfusion.
Puno is still with the cortisone and immunity suppresive as of today for 2-3 months now. Some days she is better and some days she is worse. She is not active as before. She is not cheerful and happy as before. Some days she just sleeps all day. Some days I take her out and she does not even want to walk. Some days she is more active and enjoys being outside and walks around...
I don't know if there is anyone here who may have had similar experience with his/her dog. I am myself feeling very depressed and unhappy about her condition. I did my best so far to make her healthy and happy as she was before. She is still very young, only 4 years old, therefore I am ready to do anything to make her healthy and happy again.
I am quite desperate, I will appreciate any information, suggestion or feedback you could give.