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Old 11-18-2012, 11:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
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An Overdue Nikita Update...

Hello All,

I know this has been long over due, but I'm finally convinced this is good news. It has been a few months since Nikita has been out of all braces/supports. It felt like forever going through this and know it was up to her and me to where we take this. At first, I was to over protected about her movements and that probably slowed her progress, but since she has gone through so much, I didn't want to take any chance for another set back. So far, the tendon has healed and in our regular vets opinion, he couldn't ask for more under these circumstances. Her movements are much better, but due to my lack of working with her, probably hindered its recovery. The other issue was with her prednisome usage. I have finally concluded, we will never get her completely off it. We made it too 10 mg every 8 days, and it seemed like her instability came back. A few weeks ago, I took her back to 10 mg every 5 days and she bounced back immediately. The vet is amazed that with such a small dose, that it makes this much of a difference, but it dose. I don't understand it.
The difference is like night and day. My old Nikita came back. Her attitude and sneakiness is like it was before all this happened. She instigates play with Alexis now and Alexis is just beside herself with excitement. Al's puppy bark has returned. Though the play style is different, they do go at it many times a day now. Nikita now wants to get back to play fetch again. So even though its not every day and is not for long sessions, she wants to do it. She chases after the frisbee with gusto, even though she can't catch it as before, she tries every time too. I'm finding that the more walks we do, her pace is improving and her gait is getting better. She still has her slow days and some days are definitely better than some, but now I feel we turned a corner in a good way. Still need to determine the right balance of prednisome to keep up the steriods and still try to avoid all the side effects of the drug. She is currently around 87 pounds, but looks good at that weight. She was at 83 pounds before the ventral slot surgery in 2010 and pretty much ballooned to 100+ at the worse of it.
I know I'm trying to fit a lot of the last 4 months and probably left out some, but I'm feeling good about her recovery at this stage and my pre-2010 Nikita is finally returning to us. It's been a long time. Now for a few pictures.

The girls....


Nikita



Not sure what to call this, but isn't Alexis all grown up


Sort of dignified look


Bad lighting but a shot of play
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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oh wow kratty so happy to hear from you again and to see how Nikita is coming alone so well !!

im really happy for you and your doberkids...

hugs and i hope things continue to improve !! xx
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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So glad to hear good news. Did you see any muscle loss with the prednisone use. Roxy was on prednisone for some time and she really loss muscle however as soon as she went off her muscle tone came back.
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Old 11-18-2012, 06:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Glad Nikita is doing well and thanks for the pics and update.


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Old 11-18-2012, 06:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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So glad to hear that Nikita is improving. Good to see you back here.
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You made an amazing progress! Nikita is really lucky girl to have you...
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Excellent news!! Both of them are looking great!
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Awesome update!

a little pred can go a long way.

so happy you are seeing the real Nikita again!

the kids look great.

please give them a hug from me.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Wonderful news and thanks for the update. They both look gorgeous.
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:50 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks everyone. Its been a long journey for her so far and finally seeing some positive signs is finally a plus. Having the ventral slot surgery, and then the lameness and all the acupuncture treatments, and then having her blow out her Achilles tendon, made it a long two years. But seeing the old Nikita attitude again is the frosting on the cake. I know she will never be able to do the things she did before, but having a normal life a again, I'll take it.


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Originally Posted by dobegal View Post
So glad to hear good news. Did you see any muscle loss with the prednisone use. Roxy was on prednisone for some time and she really loss muscle however as soon as she went off her muscle tone came back.
When Nikita was on the heavier doses of pred, like 20 mg to 40 mg a day, she did lose muscle tone, lots of weight gain, increasing appetite. and of course, the never ending peeing. The side effects are not good with this stuff. But at the level she is at now, not seeing the side effects as much. Still tinkering with the schedule to find out what is going to best with this and not having the side effects as much as we can. I really wish we could get her off the pred completely, but we can't. Even such a low dose is making a big difference.


Thanks again for all the well wishes and hoping I can report better news in the future.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:02 AM   #11 (permalink)
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So happy for you guys!
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:00 AM   #12 (permalink)
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What a fantastic update!
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:25 AM   #13 (permalink)
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She looks great and I'm so happy to hear of her continued improvement!

It's wonderful she's back to feeling a bit sneaky and playful.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:50 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Very glad to hear Nikita is getting her groove back! Excellent news. Hugs and kisses to both ladies.
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Old 11-21-2012, 09:37 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks for taking time to share your happy news! It is so wonderful to hear that Nikita is doing well and happy with her life. That is what brings joy to ours.
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