May 16, 2011

White Dog was holding her own and I had just about convinced myself that her leg issue over the weekend had simply been a manifestation of stress build up. She came out from behind her hideout chair limping. I met her eyes and reached for the phone.

I had not finished identifying myself before the receptionist put me on hold as she went to get Dr. Julia's #1, Cindy. She was in the process of trying to get a legible copy of the vet's ER report and then was going to call me; I beat them to it. Before I started she said, "We know for you to have taken Siku to ER, it had to have been something serious." She spent almost forty minutes with me on the phone asking me to relate what had happened, what led up to it, what has WD's reaction been. Cindy wanted to know about how we had poked and prodded and manipulated and what our impressions were, about how White Dog reacted. Toward the end, she indicated that Dr. Julia had joined her and asked about the ER diagnosis. When I said that they could not get White Dog to limp so that they did not do xrays, my vet exploded. And when I indicated that Siku had been so stressed out that she needed muzzling, Cindy smacked the table with her hand. "She is in pain, didn't they realize that! Your dog would NEVER snap, we know that from experience." The vet insisted we bring our baby in today for a complete bloodworkup and xrays. "Something is wrong," she said, "and we need to know!"

When we arrived, White Dog was shaking but did not even snarl as the tech took her to draw blood. Xrays were taken and a thorough physical exam was done (Dr. Julia even asked us to show her how we had checked White Dog over when the event happened on Saturday).

Her stomach is certainly tender was the first comment followed by, she is walking with a funny gait.

The bloodwork was all fine which ruled out Lyme disease, an infection, pancreatitis, and a plethora of other possibilities. The xrays revealed a lower back issue where there appears to be some awkwardness in the structure (whether from inflammation or defect is not yet clear). This kink is causing White Dog to walk sort of hunkered over and putting pressure on the leg nerves. It is also constricting her stomach causing air to build up in her intestines because she is not digesting properly. We decided on a shot of steroids and an antibiotic with an update tomorrow. If the shots have helped return White Dog to her normal prance and loosened up her tummy, then Dr. Julia will prescribe a course of medication to clear up the problem.

If not, we will look at other possibilities, like petite mal seizures or other neurological options. Dr. Julia agreed that both the back and intestinal problems can be intensified because of stress but she was emphatic that there is a real medical problem underlying the limping.

Dr. Julia is good and pulls no punches. She has known White Dog all of her life and has taken time over the years to understand not just the dog, but her people, and her home environment. It was comforting when she said, "You know Siku better than anyone including me and you truly do pay attention to her needs and moods. When you tell me there is a problem and that it seems like mini strokes, I am going to take you seriously and start my search there. You guys know your baby girl!"

The Other White Dog, Another White Dog, Still Another White Dog, and Yet Another White Dog crowded around us as we tried to come into the door. "Please give White Dog some space," I requested. "She IS injured but Dr. Julia thinks that she will get better quickly but we must give her space and quiet if she wants it." The WDA parted, opening a floof free path for their leader. White Dog passed through in gratitude and went to lie on the bed.


Kari in WeHo said...

sounds to me like your vet is amazing and I hope all the back kinks get worked out!


Suka said...

hey White Dog Army,

I am so sad to read of Siku Marie's issue. My paws are crossed for her, and lots of healing thoughts are heading toward her.

We are so sorry she is going through this, when it should be a fun time for all with the new addition of YoYoMa. It is wonderful that you have such a caring and knowledgeable Vet working with you and Siku Marie.

Please take care of yourself, sweet Siku! You are in our thoughts and prayers and we know you will pull through this.

Power of the Paws! With lots of love! Get well soon!

Suka and K

Teddy Bear said...

Dr. Julia sounds like your second Mama.:) We're so glad she knows you so well, Siku. We hope the meds are working and that you get plenty of rest. We are sending lots of love and healing vibes.

Teddy Bear & Sierra

rottrover said...

Geez-lueeze! You don't read a blog for a couple of days and everything goes from great to scary very quickly!! Our paws are crossed for a simple diagnosis for Siku Marie -- and a very speedy recovery.

Sending Rottie Kisses

meowmeowmans said...

Hi White Dog Army,

We are so sorry to hear that dear Siku is having these issues. But it sounds as though Dr. Julia and Cindy are just wonderful, and we are confident that together with you (who know Siku better than anyone), they'll get to the bottom of this and figure out what to do. In the meantime, we will send much positive healing energy and love your way.

(((Hugs))) to you all.

Brian said...

We are sending many healing purrs to sweet Siku. What a wonderful and caring vet you have!

bbes tribe said...

You have a gem of a vet. We had one like that but he retired. They seem to be hard to come by. We are keeping our paws crossed that they find the problem and Siku heals quickly. So hard these unknowns.

Random Felines said...

What an awesome vet you have. We are purrin' for Siku and hope it is something that can be cleared up quick!

Donnamarie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
nancyturtle said...

Poor WD! We will keep her in our thoughts for swift healing.
Nancy, Amy the BC and Nell the White GSD

Remington said...

So sorry to hear this. She is in our thoughts and prayers.

Mack said...

WD is one lucky lady: An awesome vet AND an awesome family!!!


Amber DaWeenie said...

You are lucky to have such a pawsome vet. My vet is that way too. Pleeeeeeeze get better soon Siku Marie. Your Army awaits you.

Amy and The House of Cats said...

Oh no we are so sorry that Siku is feeling so badly. And oh that whole ER visit just sounsd so ridiculous to me. It is good that you have such a good regular vet that understands that you know when something is wrong and will listen to you - and that she knows that there is probably more to it then stress. We are sending her tons of purrs and prayers for the medicine to work so she will be ok quickly. And it is great that the others understand and will give her space she needs. We hope she will be ok very soon!!

Stella said...

What a puzzlement! We will be watching and waiting on the report of the meds, crossing our paws, making little prays for good and FAST healing.

Your pal,


♥♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥♥ said...

Yep, the Moms always know when something isn't right, and a good vet will listen. Paws crossed for White Dog to be more comfortable and for an easy resolution to be found.

Hugs and Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

Jan's Funny Farm said...

Oh, dear, we are sorry White Dog has been having these problems and hope the vet will soon figure out the problem. Sending lots of purrs and tail wags for White Dog to get well.

Sagira said...

Sounds like you have a wonderful vet.
Sure do hope she feels better SOON!

The Lee County Clowder said...

Purrrrring that whatever is wrong gets fixed up soonest.

Bailey Be Good! said...

I'm sorry to hear that Siku is not feeling well! Nala and I will keep her in our prayers and hope she's feeling better soon!

Woofs & hugs,


Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Paws khrossed and then some!

What a pawesome vet!

The worlds needs more like her!


Tweedles -- that's me said...

Siku- White Dog, I am thinking of you.
Rest tonight and give the medicines a chance. I know your family is looking for answers... they will come. Your vet is awsome.
The other white dogs will wait for you to get better

FiveSibesMom said...

All good thoughts coming Siku Marie's way and lots of (light) Husky hugs. So glad you have such a caring, wonderful vet. Get well soon, Siku Marie!

ForPetsSake said...

My goodness - some sort of neurological issue was in the back of my mind as I read the last post. I suppose I assumed they did xrays at the e-clinic. As good as it is to have an e-clinic, sometimes they're frustrating both in cost and ignorance. A good vet is invaluable to say the least. I'm pleased that my kiddos' vet, my friend and boss, sounds to be similar to Dr Julia.
Rest is super important for these kinds of issues. I'm hoping for a pinched nerve and a speedy recovery. I'm sorry I haven't read this until now! Many positive thoughts coming to you.