Archives for January, 2015

Roxie’s seizures

Welcome to The Mutt Room, our Whole Dog Living blog! Make sure you receive your free report "Tips and Tricks for Homemade Dog Food" by keying in your first name and email, and clicking Submit in the upper-right box. Please feel free to leave a comment, or ask a question, or suggest a topic. We would love to hear from you!

Hello Everybody,

So far, I’ve written about Roxie’s cancer surgery and Gypsy’s back problem as two of the four heath issues our 15-year-old dogs Roxie and Gypsy have faced recently.

The third one surfaced this fall. Roxie began having infrequent, but frightening nonetheless, seizures. If you have ever witnessed a seizure in a human or an animal you know they are difficult to watch. In Roxie’s case, she would get stiff, stare into space, and then just fall over. These episodes would only last a few seconds, and then she would seem anxious, scared, and disoriented. The best we knew to do for her was to keep her warm and comfort her.

Our vet, Dr. Maria Williams, got her started on a Chinese herb, called Gastrodia and Uncaria, which we were to administer three times per day. I quizzed my acupuncturist about this herb who said it is used for similar conditions in humans. Dr. Maria also told us we could massage Roxie’s head or use ice on her head, all in an effort to dissipate excessive heat.

I consider myself open minded, but the use of Chinese herbs was a first for us. However, since we have been giving them to Roxie, neither Rick nor I have seen another seizure episode.

My final post regarding our recent doggie health issues will be about Gypsy having a stroke.

Until then, the best to you and your dogs,

Jean

Jan 28, 2015 | 0 | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs

Gypsy’s back problem

Hi Everyone,

The next issue that came up this summer happened to Gypsy. The morning after we found out that Roxie would need cancer surgery, Gypsy was in excruciating pain. She could barely walk, and her back legs were shaking badly. She would try to bite either of us if we tried to touch her. We gave her a pain pill, but we were at a loss as what to do with her. We, fortunately, were able to get an appointment with our vet Dr. Maria Williams that same day.

The next obstacle was getting her in the truck to make the trip to the vet. Lifting her was out of the question, so Rick built a makeshift ramp, and with the lure of treats, got Gypsy in the truck.

Dr. Maria gave Gypsy acupuncture, a chiropractic adjustment, electro stimulation, and sent her home with muscle relaxers and pain meds. The vet said it looked like a severe muscle spasm, but to be cautious, was treating it as a slipped disc. Rick said Gypsy’s relief was almost immediate. I am convinced Dr. Maria saved Gypsy’s life. If we had taken Gypsy to a traditional vet without Dr. Maria’s alternative skills, I believe Gypsy would have been put down, as that vet would not have known how to help her.

Gypsy was scheduled for more rounds of chiropractic adjustments, plus she was put under house arrest for a couple of weeks. Gypsy is a smart little dog, and a smart dog and being bored is a bad combination. So, we devised ways to occupy her brain. We took driving trips to the park where she could observe the deer. I came up with a simple puzzle using three paper cups. I would hide her treats in one of the cups, and Gypsy had to figure out which one contained the treat and determine how to get to the treat. Rick built a fantastic ramp that both dogs now use to get in and out of the truck.

Gypsy, like Roxie, is 15 years old. As of today, she is back to taking short and slow walks, and she continues to get regular chiropractic adjustments.

My next post will be about Roxie’s seizures, in the continuation of our doggie health issues.

Until then, the best to you and your dogs,

Jean

Jan 26, 2015 | 2 | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs

Roxie’s cancer surgery

Hello to All,

It has been a rough few months for both Roxie and Gypsy. I’ll start with Roxie’s cancer. We had noticed in June that a lump on her back was growing big, hard, and fast. At first I thought it was a fatty tumor, like the one she has on her belly, but it did not behave like that one at all. When we took her to see our vet, Dr. Maria Williams, she took one look at Roxie, did a biopsy, and told us it had to come off. I, of course, was quietly freaking out. We scheduled Roxie for surgery the following week.

We were told that Roxie did really well during her surgery, but Dr. Maria said she was very aggressive with the surgery and took out more tissue than she had anticipated. Roxie had about 15 staples on her incision. We would have to wait for a definitive diagnosis, as the tissue sample had to be sent off. So, Roxie was sent home with an Elizabethan collar and post-surgery instructions.

Roxie is thunder-phobic. That night and early morning we had the worst thunder and lightening storm that I can remember. Poor little Roxie, who was supposed to be resting and recovering from major surgery, spent most of the night pacing, crying, and throwing up. So, none of us got much sleep that night.

All of us hated the Elizabethan collar. It was hard plastic, Roxie had a very difficult time moving around with it, and it hurt a lot if she bumped into one of us. We got the idea to use an inflatable travel pillow instead, and it worked like a charm.

Roxie, who is 15 years old, did not get the memo that she was an elderly dog recovering from major surgery. It only took a couple of days before she was jumping around, wanting to play, and demanding her breakfast/snacks/dinner right on time.

We received the diagnosis from Dr. Maria in about ten days. It was a spindle cell sarcoma. We discussed our options with Dr. Maria, such as chemo, radiation, Chinese herbs, and we all decided our best course of action was to wait and see. As Dr. Maria put it, we would consider every day with Roxie a blessing. Besides, Rick and I had discussed that although we would never let her suffer, we also would not put our 15-year-old dog through any type of chemo or radiation. I’ve seen too many humans go through hell with those types of treatments. We are more interested in Roxie’s quality of life rather than artificial longevity.

Fast forward to today: Roxie has had no recurrence of the cancer. We have her on a homemade diet, she drinks Kangen Water® , and we started her on turmeric after her surgery. So, I am hopeful she will be with us a good while longer.

I’ll continue on with Gypsy’s back issue in my next post.

Until then, take care and please give your dogs a hug for me,

Jean

Jan 23, 2015 | 4 | Animal Communication, animal welfare, Dog Behavior, Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs