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Its official - Liberty is retiring from Obedience

955 Views 17 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  LibertyME
The good new is her Snap 4 was tick-borne disease.

The bad news is her right elbow is dysplastic. (her left still looks good on xray) My head is still spinning and I though for sure I would remember the specifics of the diagnosis. However here I am and cant remember a thing....if I remember right she said mild OCD...very mild thickening of the joint...some muscle loss, supporting the fact that this has been going on for some time.... Surgery not suggested at this time (between relatively mild symptoms, heart valve issues and virtually no effect on her daily life activities). Dasuquin supplement 30 day trial....if no effect then she is suggesting Metacam.

Ive known something was up since January-ish...when she just seemed 'off'. Ive had her examined by a couple of different vets several times ....range of motion tests etc, have had folks watch her gait...but there have no 'AH-HA!" signs/symptoms until she refuse all her obedience jumps in mid June. I made the decision to stopped her jump training and just watch her. Since then she has had intermittent, odd, moments where she would avoid doing something, but then then next minute act silly and playful. No symptoms lasting long enough or repetitive enough where I could pin down a pattern. I have not been able to elicit pain or detect any loss of range of motion. However, that all changed Sunday after our trip to the was very clear it was her front right leg was took her two days to bounce back.

Sadly, I wont be bringing her into the obedience ring again. I know that if she 'feels' better she will do what I ask, even if it is not good for her. She and I will be looking for new adventures in new places...
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It must be so hard when one has to retire their dog. At least you know to do what is right for her.

Can't wait to hear what her new adventures may be.
I am so sorry! That has to be a difficult decision to make.
Mary, I am so sorry to hear this about your girl Liberty. She's had a tough year. I don't believe surgery is good for elbows after age two, so I am glad they're not pushing it. Dasuquin helps Tango immensely( jeez, is it expensive) and she takes a very occasional Rimadyl. You are such a close observer of your dogs, and I know there's been a nagging concern about why Liberty wasn't jumping. I am so sorry it is her elbow.
I'm so sorry to hear about Liberty--I know you're doing what is best for her and her body. What is the phrase? When one door closes, another one will open? I'm sure we'll be hearing about all sorts of new journeys ahead.

I don't know if they have these classes by you, but at some of the Obedience trials I've been to, they have offered Veterans obedience, which is a non-regular class, and consists of the same exercises as a Novice class (the CD). From the k9 data info, Liberty is now 7 and would be eligible to compete.

I had a wonderful time with my ol' boy (now at the Bridge) and I took some rather evil pleasure in beating a lab with a UD to take the Veterans class at a local all-breed obedience trial about a year or so ago (I only got as far as a CD) and winning the class.

Here are the regs--I think it would still be fun for you and Liberty should you ever see a chance to do that; also, my ol' boy took HIT Therapy Dog at one trial--you can always have her go in Novice B for an extra leg and a chance for any awards (HIT golden, HIT Sporting Dog, or gee whiz, HIT! Why not win it from Novice B?) at any obedience trials that are offering various trophies. Don't stop looking at those obedience premiums if you and Liberty enjoy it--JMHO.

Section 6. Veterans Class. The Veterans class will be for dogs that have
an obedience title and are at least 7 years old on the date of the trial. The
exercises will be performed and judged as in the Novice class. Dogs may
be entered in another class or classes. At breed specialty trials, the minimum
age requirement for the Veterans class may be set by the breed Parent
Club, in which case the age will be stated in the premium list.
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Excellent advice rappwizard...she just turned 6, but I get your drift and am glad for the reminder!

I have dabbled with tracking....might be time to dust off some books and see how taxing that position would be for her body....

Lib is a smart cookie and loves to learn,luckily there are a million parlor tricks left to teach :)
Im so sorry to hear this..but im sure lots of adventures await Liberty!! ;)
I hope the Dasuquin works for Liberty. Glycoflex (similar) has been godsend for Bailey. Without it he's lame, with it he still runs around and plays. It can take as much as six weeks to really kick in.
I'm sorry to hear about Liberty. I really hope the Dasuquin has her feeling like herself again. Sounds like the two of will find a new pursuit that suits you both.
Mary, I'm sorry to hear that Liberty is having to make a career change so young. A clever girl (with great teacher) will go far in whatever the two of you decide to endeavor in. Hoping the meds and some careful PT will keep her in great shape.
what terrible news, I'm sorry to hear it. The tracking sounds like a great idea. Would she enjoy therapy dog visits??
Yes she does enjoy her Therapy Dog visits :) ....This summer we were asked to become a reader dog at our local library...I am still getting adjusted to working from home....but see it in our future...
just for fun, can you do rally? The jump height is very low.....
Aww Mary, I'm sorry about Liberty! I'm glad you caught it though, and she won't have to have surgery.
Sorry about Liberty.

My Teddi has ED. Our vet said surgery but there was no way. We had not finished paying off her hip replacement yet. We are managing it, and (knock on wood) she is not limping! We are on organic salmon oil (Timberwolf), Cosequin DS (I will go up to Dausquin when I need to) and we do Adequan injections. Adequan hydrates the tissues surrounding the joint, and helps slow the progression of joint degeneration as well as maintain a healthier joint fluid. It is expensive to start as you have to "load" up. One injection every four days for a month, then it is once a month. I have not seen Teddi limp in ANY type of activity since we started.

We still do some agility, low jumps no A frames, and not a ton of training. She is a young girl and needs to be allowed to be a dog in control. My vet said as long as she was not coming home sore, let her play. We are not seriously training. We do it as something we can do together and have fun. Talk to your vet about Adequan it may make Liberty more comfortable. I gave the shots my self. The vet showed me how. They are intramuscular (not in the joint).
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We did briefly discuss Adequan injections (the vet sent me home with product literature to review) - We may consider it at some point, but her heart issues come into play becuase of the stress that Adequan can give the kidneys...she would require a complete blood workup every 6 months versus the standard yearly protocol.
It is not ruled out, but want to give the Dasuquan an honest 6 week trial first.

In my vets opinion, surgery is not an option becuase of her age ...I was told that, after age 2, the surgery has a very low, long-term, success rate...
Teddi is two. I was told it is not a one time surgery even for her. So that was another reason we opted out. Maybe later but probably not.

Does Liberty have other kidney issues? The reason I ask is my vet said nothing to me about this. I have been told by more than one person (professional and non professional) there are no known side effects. I know humans who take the canine version too. Just curious. May need to discuss with someone further if you know what I mean.
At this time Liberty has no kidney issues...just heart murmur due to a congenital valve problem (interestingly not SAS).

I haven't even begun to study can't say much. Can only repeat my vet's concerns....ideally she would like to see blood work every 3 months...but complete blood panels are expensive...said she would be happy with 6 month testing...and would tolerate yearly...she would not prescribe if I told her I would not run blood panels.
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