Golden Retriever Dog Forums banner

181 - 191 of 191 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
313 Posts
Discussion Starter #181
Are You Ready Guys, more traumas !!!!!!!!!

I can honestly say I don't know where the strength comes from each and every time Kai and I have another set back.
The following weeks since our small vacation Kai wasn't well, his exercise intolerance had diminished and he just didn't seem right ( that is, if you can say Kai is ever right ! )

I took him to the local vets, and as most of you know I'm not thrilled with their competence ! Due to the nature of their set-up, we see a different vet each time, none of which seem to have read up on his detailed history.

again a young vet, I explained what had happened and that he didn't seem well. It wasn't much of an examination and started to stretch his limbs saying "he might have some arthritis" he's lame !! What the ...... !!! He took Kai's drug induced Unsteadiness as lameness. I feel like typing a load of expletives here but !!!!

I asked him to check his ear as I thought he might have acquired an infection from his trip. The vet looked in his ear - (yes, ear, as in just the one !!!!) "he's got a nasty infection and burst ear drum" was the vets reply, and I think we need to scan his tummy he might have something going on. I said no, but can you give him something for his ears. The vets reply was he couldn't give him strong antibiotic drops as due to his burst ear drum they could turn toxic, but he can have something mild, ?? I've never heard that.

After informing him what medication he was on, he stated that in his opinion Kai was on too many anti-seizure meds (well he should know after all he was probably just out of vet school !!!) I asked him to contact Kai's Specialist before attempting any interventions or medication alterations, and left it that he would phone them, then get back in touch with me.

I just couldn't wait to leave, over the next few days Kai didn't seem to improve. The vet didn't call, despite me phoning him and Kai's Specialist said there had been no calls. I was worried, there was no point in taking him back to this local vet, I had lost all, of what little faith I had in them.

But what should I do, I felt I had nowhere to turn. After much consideration, I decided to take Kai to the vet I used to take my girl, Simba. It was a different town, but things couldn't get any worse.

So that was it, the decision made.

The appointment made and we attended my old vets, an experienced lady with lots of empathy for all animals. She sat and listened to me recounting Kai's long and complicated history. She was astonished to say the least, although seizures weren't her forte, she then spent time examining Kai. It was such a joy, (if one can say that) to see an experienced vet go through a systemic evaluation.
She said he had extreme tenderness of his kidneys, and suspected ?? Infection, then came the ear diagnosis, not one but both ears badly infected and yes, a perforated ear drum on one side.
She stated it was no surprise Kai was so poorly. Medication prescribed and an appointment for a weekly review.
Kai improved a little over the next few weeks with another two courses of antibiotics, though this infection is proving hard to fight, he still has signs its lingering and his exercise intolerance is still a cause for concern.

The next step is C & S of his urine ( microscopy - culture & sensitivity) to see if we can find an antibiotic that will rid him completely of this. Then there is his lethargy, could this just be post-viral lethargy or something else ? Heart and lungs good, no pain elicited on manipulation, thyroid checked again.
Kai is back for review next week, so it's a wait and see.

I know most people would have gone down a different route with Kai, by now, but he deserves a chance, he's fought through so much. What's going to happen, I don't know, I'll try to help him as long as I can physically and mentally manage, but it's getting so hard to cope alone, I need someone to lean on. I don't know if anyone will take the time to read this, but this is MY THERAPY, somewhere to talk, to let it all out. ???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,698 Posts
Keep talking to us all you want. I am very glad the new/old vet has worked out so well. If there's one thing I've learned, it's that you need a doctor you can trust for your own ailments and a vet you trust for the furry members of your household. (I used to make a 140 mile trip to see Pilgrim's vet. Well worth the effort!)
I hope this vet can give you the answers you need for this special boy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,895 Posts
I know how difficult it is to care for a dog with multiple chronic problems. I had one. It is very draining. But I, too, wanted to give him every chance as long as he demonstrated a lust for living, which he did time after time. I was always amazed at his strong constitution. It sounds like it is the same with you and Kai. You are a wonderful caretaker for Kai. Please remember to also take a little time to care for yourself. Keep posting, I think it helps to let it all out. All the best to you and your sweet Kai....
 
  • Like
Reactions: maggsd

·
Registered
Joined
·
313 Posts
Discussion Starter #184
About Time Too ?

Thought I'd give a quick update about Kai as its half way through 2018.

Yes he's still with me, though we continue to experience difficult periods. His grand mal seizures continue, but the type and severity haven't really changed. He still has clusters every 10 - 14 days, though he has gone almost a month without grand mals a couple of times.
It was felt he maybe hypothyroid due to the effects of the phenobarbitone treatment, but his thyroid levels still remained low despite medication (he was also negative for thyroid antibodies), and his lethargy didn't really improve.
He was seen in Liverpool UK, by his Neurologist who also didn't think he had true hypothyroidism and suggested a trial without the thyroid meds to elicit if he was any different without them. We are now on the 3rd week and up to now, No ill effects.

His nightly complex partial seizures have altered slightly, sometimes they seem to start with scrambling or even paddling for a few seconds, but then still go into the blind/deaf panic, running into walls, these still last a minute or two, then he returns to normal. He has done some damage to surrounding walls/furniture ??, so I'm a little nervous when visiting family and friends ?.

He's had these seizures for nearly 4 years now and compared to other sufferers, has had hundreds of seizures. They have aged him a little and he does have some odd habits, but I love him the same ???

Only time will tell how long he has left, one thing I've learned is that if he has too much or too close a dose of Levitiracetam (Keppra) his partial seizures increase (backed up by Research in some case studies) so I've reduced this dosage, only wish I could reduce the other meds. As none of the meds have stopped or reduced the seizures, I want to try and withdraw them, but the Neurologist says it could induce 'Status Epilepticus', but it's difficult to say if this would happen.

Anyway that's me for now. I found that writing on these Forums has always been very helpful for me, as close friends and family haven't the interest or patience and I hope my experiences help at least one person.
 

·
I miss my Buddy
Joined
·
11,534 Posts
I am so sorry, I always hope you will come back with great news. Sending hugs to sweet Kai and you and thank you for sharing his not so easy going life journey with us.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
313 Posts
Discussion Starter #186
Reduction of Medication and Reduction of Seizures !!!!!!!!!!!

It’s been sometime since I last posted and my life with Kai remains at times, very stressful.

Kai is almost 7 years now, which in itself is a miracle. He continues to have highs and lows and should be a cat, because there have been so many times I thought he was dying, he must have used nearly all his 9 lives !!

Where are we at now ?.

Well towards the end of February due to circumstances his diet was changed !!
He’s now eating a home cooked diet - I’ve learned to research what foods he should have to obtain the correct balance of nutrients - it’s not been easy, but on the plus side I’ve seen a great change in his seizure status.

I’ve managed to decrease his AED’s and the seizures have reduced considerably !!!!
His only problem is that he still has tiredness, lethargy and to some degree quite marked unsteadiness (all symptoms of toxicity). The only time he gets excited is meal times when he jumps around like a puppy and becomes very manic, but the rest of the time he’s very sleepy, depressed, and doesn’t want to walk any long distances.
He’s had all his bloods done including his bile acids and they’re all normal apart from his pheno/bromide levels which were at the very high end of normal despite the reduction in dosage ?

His neurologist says the absorption of meds will be different with this diet, and bromide reduction can take 12 weeks to correct, so its a wait and see situation.
To be perfectly honest I feel she thinks something neurological is going on but anything that means he doesn’t have to take as many tablets is a plus. The nightly complex partial seizures and Grand Mals’ have lessened, and he almost went 2 months without any episodes at all ???. The cluster seizures have reduced now to 1 or 2 over 24-48 hour period and up to now, I’m not quite sure of the frequency.

He’s due to have repeat levels done in a week, his unsteadiness has improved quite a lot, but the lethargy/sleepiness not so much.

Both my local Vet and me are still wondering whether his thyroid could be contributing to his symptoms, but his Neurologist doesn’t seem to think so ???

I’ve no other news at the moment, but will post again once I have the new blood levels xx thanks for reading xxx
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
213 Posts
Thank you for the update. I am so happy to hear Kai is doing well. Interesting that with decreased AED the frequency of his seizures went down. Two months without seizures is a huge achievement.

My Gatsby is also on home cooked diet. He continues to have his seizures, but the frequency and severity of them decreased a lot. He is on rather large amounts of CBD and I am still figuring out which oils work for him.

He had a six month break from seizures (normally they would repeat in 1 month intervals) while on certain CBD brand, but Canadian government closed the operation and the store simply disappeared. I got him what I thought a better (based on the label, testing information and price) CBD from Colorado but he had a seizure 5 days after taking the new product.

Now I test all CBD’s on myself first. If my knees and arm stop hurting (arthritic?) then that CBD must be good for Gatsby. If the CBD tastes like water and I feel no relief from pain then I move on to another product.
 

·
Super Moderator Leader
Joined
·
48,975 Posts
Really good to hear Kai is doing so much better, what a journey it's been for the two of you.

Sending good thoughts he will continue to do well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
313 Posts
Discussion Starter #189
Can’t remember which of Kai’s bloods I was talking about, but the last two lots were as follows - the pheno was still very high - too high and bromide nearing high, though again with the bromide it’s not been 12 weeks.
So the neurologist wanted me to reduce his pheno again then retest. So I have, it’s been a few weeks now, his levels for pheno are now ok, the sleepiness - not so much, so is it the Bromide or the Keppra ?? Or is he HYPOTHYROID ????? Still the neurologist isnt convinced ?
Kai’s ataxia has almost gone and he’s back to jumping in the car - but exercise tolerance still not as it was.
I hope my struggles and somewhat markedly achievements help others who may read this.
The old saying ‘try sand try again’ comes to mind xx
It’s still very much a rollercoaster with him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
272 Posts
Hi Maggsd! So sorry to learn that you and Kai are having to deal with seizures and treatments.

Over the years, we have had two Beagles, one male, and one female. Both Beagles, Barney, and Bessie had Grand Mal Seizures starting at about age two throughout the rest of their lives. Barney lived until he was 16 and Bessie lived until she was 12 years old.

The first time Barney had a seizure, I was totally beside myself. He was sitting in my lap, and his little body became stiff as a rock and his eyes glazed over into a blank empty stare. I honestly though Barney was dying in my arms. After maybe a minute or so, Barney began coming out of the seizure. His little body was terribly weakened from the experience, and he immediately wet himself, which was so uncommon for Barney.

Just like you, we took Barney to the vet to have him checked out. Sure enough, after testing and the vets' evaluation, the vet informed us that Barney would most like continue having seizures, which as mentioned, he did until the day we put him down after having two cancerous tumors removed.

I could share the same kind of historical review regarding Bessie because her situation was very much like Barney's in that they both lived with Grand Mal Seizures, but neither of them died from them. They both eventually had to be put down due to cancer.

As others have mentioned, there is nothing you could have done to keep this from happening to your Kai. In my honest opinion, you're taking excellent care of him...When our dogs had seizures, we always could tell when they were coming on. We would do our best to make them as comfortable as possible and stay with them until they came out of the seizure. As you probably already know, Kai has no idea what is going on when he seizes. All he knows is how bad he feels when he comes out of the seizure, which is really hard on his body.

I think the best advice I could share with you is to learn to live with a dog that will most likely continue to have seizures for the rest of his life. Hopefully, they will not recur every day and only on occasion over time. God Bless! Hang in there and love ole Kai with all of your heart. He will need it...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
93 Posts
Wow.
What a good advocate you are for Kai. Someone was looking out for him to bring you together. The story from beginning to now seems to have a better quality of life for Kai.
Thanks for loving on him so much.
 
181 - 191 of 191 Posts
Top