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Old 11-23-2012, 07:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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My six and a half year old girl has DCM

We found out today my girl has DCM.

This girl has been through cancer a year ago which they removed successfully off her back, diagnosed with Cushings disease 3 months ago and now after the echo it was revealed she has DCM.

Unreal. I am sick. Results were bad. Dr. said 6 months to a year at best, be prepared for sudden death possibly before that.


Vet put her on:
Enalpril 10mg 1.5 tablets twice day
pimobendan 5mg 1.5 tablets twice day
Mexiletine 100mg 1 tablet 3 times day
spironolactone 25mg 1.5 tablets twice day

Echo Results:

1VSd 6.4mm
LV1Dd 56.72mm
LCPWD 9.2mm
1vSs 11.75mm
LV1Ds 47.52mm
LVPWs 12.26mm
EF (Teich) 34%
%FS 16%

Doppler

MV E Vel 0.99 m/s
MV DecT 77ms
MV Dec Slope 12.9 m/ss
MV A Vel 0.71 m/s
MV E/A Ratio 1.39
MR Vmax 5.37 m/s
MR max PG 115.38 mmHg
Av Vmax 1.49 m/s
AV max PG 8.55mmHG
RVOT Vmax 1.08m/s
RVOT maxPG 4.67 mmHG
TR Vmax 3.05 m/s
RT maxPG 37.23 mmHg

Scared to death we are going to see her die suddenly.

I have read we should love her up (but we do that anyway) and be prepared.

How does one prepare for this?
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I am so sorry you are having to deal with this. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I don't know that you ever can really prepare. IMO sudden death would be a blessing for your girl. Having gone through the long, drawn out version (CHF), I assure you they are way better off if they just drop dead doing something they love. Much harder on the humans, than the dog.

When and if I again have a Dobe afflicted with DCM, I will pray for sudden death.

Hugs to you and your girl.
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I am sorry for your pet's diagnosis. It is a horrible disease that one cannot really prepare for. Just love your girl every day you have left.
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Old 11-23-2012, 08:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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i'm sorry to hear this , When my boy got cardio he lived for almost 3yrs and died just shy of 10. He was on the same meds but higher doses of the pimo.. I also did alot of natural meds too.

coQ10 200mg a day , 2000mg of fish oil a day.
I wish you as much time as possible with your girl...
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Old 11-23-2012, 08:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm so sorry.


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Old 11-24-2012, 12:09 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Rays & Hugs to you both hope you can enjoy the time you have.
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Old 11-24-2012, 01:55 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Im so sorry to hear what your girl has been through and is going through, all the best.
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Old 11-24-2012, 02:07 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I am so sorry about your dog. Mine just passed away last week, and it was a horrible experience to say the least. We battled it for almost 7 months.

I would also recommend the CoQ-10, fish oils (I did 2 in the morning and 2 in the afternoon), vitamin C and a multivitamin. I also ended cooking for him the last months because he became very picky and lost most of his appetite.

Give her much love and take her to do all her favorite things, you never know when will be the last time. Also take tons of pictures and videos of her and both of you...
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Old 11-24-2012, 02:45 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm so sorry to hear your diagnosis, DCM is a plague upon our beloved dobes. My advice to you is treat every day like it's her last, spoil her rotten, do all the fun things with her that she loves to do, take her to her favourite places, feed her her favourite treats, take lots of pics & video's but most of all just love her & spend as much time as you can with her.

I 100% agree with Avianantics that sudden death would be a blessing, I wouldn't wish CHF on my worst enemy. My boy Homer was already in CHF when he was diagnosed with DCM earlier this year. I spent 3 months praying the arrhythmia's would take him, but sadly they didn't. He had great quality of life for the first 2-2 1/2 months doing all the things he loved doing, but then his cough returned & despite upping his diuretics ( he was on Frusemide & Spironolactone) we couldn't get the fluid under control & at that point we let him go just 3 months after diagnosis.

If there's anything you want to know about DCM/CHF just ask. Sadly, there are too many of us here who have walked your path, you are not alone.

Big hugs to you all
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:53 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I am so very, very sorry to read another beloved Dobe diagnosed with DCM. I feel so bad for you. Have nothing to add to what has been said but dogs live in the moment. So live each day in the moment with your girl. I am glad you found DT because you will find a great support group here. Please keep us updated.
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:18 AM   #11 (permalink)
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So sad to hear about this and dax is right. This Forum is incredibly supportive as so many have gone through the same agony you are experiencing.. You're not alone. It doesn't change things, but it does help. Prayers for courage and strength to face what ever you must.
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Old 11-24-2012, 10:37 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I am so sorry to hear this diagnosis. It has been10years since we lost our beloved Max to this disease I would agree with previous posts to give extra cuddles and hugs if possible and treat every day as the most special day ever
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:30 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I am deeply sorry to hear this diagnosis. My last girl had CHF however I never knew it until the very end.
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Old 11-24-2012, 11:43 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Our heart goes out to you during this difficult time. Sending a big Dober hug.
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Old 11-24-2012, 12:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I'm so sorry. I've lost two to DCM with sudden death and while it was a shock, it was a blessing as my boys did not suffer. Take it one day at a time, follow your Cardiologist's instructions and enjoy every minute with your baby. Hugs.


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Old 11-24-2012, 12:26 PM   #16 (permalink)
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There is a ton of info. on this site regarding DCM.

I am really sorry to hear this, stay strong. Spend the next while doing things you both really love to do, you won't regret it. And who knows, maybe the vet is wrong and you may get much longer quality time with her.
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Old 11-25-2012, 01:59 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Im so very sorry that your girl has DCM, i agree with everyone else - take lots of pictures, give plenty of cuddles and make every day count.

My girl was diagnosed 4 months ago and is still doing well so far, she is on vetmedin 5mg x 2 per day and frusimide x2 per day i also give her 2000mg fish oils, vitamin e and 1000mg L-Carnitine per day.

The shock of diagnoses is so hard to cope with but slowly you do stop following them around and watching their breathing constantly.

I wish you and your girl many many happy times together. x x x
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Old 11-25-2012, 02:41 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JobeyV View Post
I'm so sorry to hear your diagnosis, DCM is a plague upon our beloved dobes. My advice to you is treat every day like it's her last, spoil her rotten, do all the fun things with her that she loves to do, take her to her favourite places, feed her her favourite treats, take lots of pics & video's but most of all just love her & spend as much time as you can with her.

I 100% agree with Avianantics that sudden death would be a blessing, I wouldn't wish CHF on my worst enemy. My boy Homer was already in CHF when he was diagnosed with DCM earlier this year. I spent 3 months praying the arrhythmia's would take him, but sadly they didn't. He had great quality of life for the first 2-2 1/2 months doing all the things he loved doing, but then his cough returned & despite upping his diuretics ( he was on Frusemide & Spironolactone) we couldn't get the fluid under control & at that point we let him go just 3 months after diagnosis.

If there's anything you want to know about DCM/CHF just ask. Sadly, there are too many of us here who have walked your path, you are not alone.

Big hugs to you all
I totally agree with all the above ^^^.

I lost 2 of my dogs to occult heart disease (sudden death) at the age of 10 or 11 in the last few years. It is so hard to accept when it is sudden and not predicted - full of guilt and hard to recover from. I can better cope with the ones who start to slip away when I go thru the process of determining "when is the best time" to release them. I have gone thru much of the grieving process with them still alive and that has always helped me. With Cato, I had 6 months to prepare and I even got my new puppy 6 wks before it was his time to go. That was a very poignantly special time with the old man (13.5 yrs) and the baby (9wks thru 15 wks). He taught her so much about how to be a good pack member - many good memories captured in photos - one of my favorites:

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Old 11-25-2012, 06:55 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Thank you all

I want to thank you all for your feedback and caring
The DCM seems to have made our girl very restless and she was having episodes of staring into space and shaking a bit as well
Since we started her meds only three days ago, it seems that she is very sleepy and lethargic.
She was prescribed enalapril, vetmedin, mexiletene(waiting for this to be delivered)and

Anyone have experience with these meds and potential side effects and benefits?

Thanks
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Old 11-25-2012, 06:57 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Medicine

The other medicine she is prescribed is spironolactone
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Old 11-25-2012, 07:27 PM   #21 (permalink)
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... our girl very restless and she was having episodes of staring into space and shaking a bit as well...
Our Cushings dog (notaDobe) had the staring into space as she neared the end of her path. It seemed to be related to growth of the pituitary tumor, as she developed difficulty with balancing and managing her tongue not long after (about six weeks).

I am so sorry you have this to deal with. I can't imagine dealing with both diseases at the same time.
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Old 11-26-2012, 02:43 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Dillon, my boy was on Vetmedin & spironolactone as well as 2 other drugs that your girl isn't on. He had no side effects other than peeing for England with all the diuretics he was taking.

Lethargy is a common symptom of the disease. Hopefully the vetmedin will kick in soon & make her feel better. Regarding her restlessness, staring into space & shaking. Have you noticed that she can't seem to get comfortable or she can't lay down at all? Towards the end, when the build up of fluid got real bad with Homer he couldn't lay down, he just stood beside me staring into space. The only way he coud lay was to adopt a "sphinx" position. He would shake too & sometimes his ears & feet felt cold to the touch. How is her appetite? Is she eating normally or is she gettig picky with her food or refusing it? Dogs in CHF find it hard to eat & you may find it helps her to raise her food bowl.

I can't imagine what it's like for you & your girl going through so much with Cushings & DCM at the same time. I shall keep you in my thoughts & please keep us updated. We are here for you.

Big big hugs to you & your girl.
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Old 11-26-2012, 04:31 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Yes, she has had a hard time settling down for a while now.
Eating and drinking is still normal
She is actually settling down more since on the medication. About 45 minutes after we give her the meds she is very sleepy.

Still waiting for the mexiletene to arrive for the arythmia. Should be here tomorrow.


No coughing yet either.
This is horrible just waiting.
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Old 11-26-2012, 05:56 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I was in your shoes earlier this year,as have so many of us. I found being on this forum a great help as everyone 'gets' how you feel,no explanation needed. My boy was great for 3 months on meds similar to yours but then we couldn't control fluid or heart rate,he ate whatever c**p he wanted,chocolate,cake,the cats food,I let him steal from the kitchen work tops,all the stuff I spent the first 5 years stopping. I took him to all our favourite places and built up memories,I let him chase the cats and come on the bed.
I wanted him to die running in a huge circle,but it was not to be. I think the decision was the hardest I have ever made,it was right but still haunts me! I had too many tests done,too much time at the vet hospital,when I should have been spoiling him,but hindsight is a wonderful thing. My biggest regret is that I didn't learn how to save all my video clips and photos from my phone and when it crashed I lost the lot! I had,luckily,commissioned a portrait and the artist had a lot of photos which he put on a CD for me. 9 months on I still cannot look at them but am hoping I can in the future.
I had said never again but I have weakened and I am waiting for my new pup to be born (due 1st December) I am so scared but so excited and so sad. I decided that life without a Doberman was nothing like as much fun as with one.
My heart goes out to you and my thoughts are with you.
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Old 11-26-2012, 06:26 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dillon View Post
Yes, she has had a hard time settling down for a while now.
Eating and drinking is still normal
She is actually settling down more since on the medication. About 45 minutes after we give her the meds she is very sleepy.

Still waiting for the mexiletene to arrive for the arythmia. Should be here tomorrow.


No coughing yet either.
This is horrible just waiting.
sorry to hear about your girl and dcm, one thing I will tell you when you start the mexiletene she may get a wobbly head if this happens call your vet so they can adjust the medication, I had to give to my dog and it happened right away and I knew to cut down on the dose I was giving, also the mexiletene did help alot. Spend as much time as you can and just spoil her as you would a new puppy. Hugs to you and your dobergirl.
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