Prayers for Kona - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-22-2020, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Prayers for Kona

Our Kona has not been well for a couple of weeks. She has had sporadic vomiting and diarrhea. We took her to the emergency vet twice and also to our own vet. Each time they gave her meds and fluids but she has still been having problems. My daughter took her today for an ultrasound as we are away in Florida. The ultrasound showed a serious ulcer in her stomach. She is in the hospital now where they are treating aggressively treating her and hopefully she will not need emergency surgery. They said the ulcer is in a bad spot right below the esophagus She is not even two years old. I am so sick over this. We do not understand what could have caused this as she has not gotten into anything as far as we know and we always watch her closely. Has anyone here had any problems with this.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-22-2020, 07:30 PM
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I'm so sorry to hear this--I've not seen anything quite like that, though we have dealt with emergency obstructions before. It does sound like she must have gotten into something.

It's so tough having a seriously ill baby--my thoughts will be with you guys. Keep us posted on how she is doing.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-22-2020, 08:21 PM
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I am so sorry to read this. I can imagine how sick you must feel. I have never heard of anything like this in dogs. Please let us know what more you find out. Thoughts and prayers will be with you and Kona.

"Lots of people talk to animals...Not very many listen, though...That's the problem. " ~ The Tao of Pooh
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-22-2020, 10:02 PM
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No experience but I found this article they maybe you can review .....

https://dogtime.com/dog-health/57577...ses-treatments

Hoss
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-22-2020, 11:52 PM
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Hello Deb....

I am very sorry to hear that your girl is ill. I know how hard it is to deal with a sudden and severe medical issue in a pup.

We will be keeping you and Kona in our thoughts.

Please keep us updated

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 07:39 AM
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Thoughts and good vibes your way 56 !

Like the others - Not heard of this .
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 08:58 AM
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I'm very sorry to hear this. You and your family has my best thoughts and wishes!

When someone you love walks in through the door, even if it happens five times a day, go totally insane with joy - David Dudley
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deb53 View Post
Our Kona has not been well for a couple of weeks. She has had sporadic vomiting and diarrhea. We took her to the emergency vet twice and also to our own vet. Each time they gave her meds and fluids but she has still been having problems. My daughter took her today for an ultrasound as we are away in Florida. The ultrasound showed a serious ulcer in her stomach. She is in the hospital now where they are treating aggressively treating her and hopefully she will not need emergency surgery. They said the ulcer is in a bad spot right below the esophagus She is not even two years old. I am so sick over this. We do not understand what could have caused this as she has not gotten into anything as far as we know and we always watch her closely. Has anyone here had any problems with this.

My girl Zipper had a bad ulcer like that. She pooped and vomited black blood, it was awful. I have to run right now, but I'll come back later and tell you what we did. She got over it, eventually. I'm sure your vet will do the right thing, but it never hurts to have a second opinion, right?
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 09:27 AM
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I'm so sorry to hear about Kona. My thoughts are with you.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 01:00 PM Thread Starter
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Kona had an endoscopy this morning and it turns out it is not an ulcer. She has bad inflammation though. There is a possibility it is from the stitches from her plexy or maybe IBS but we will know more in a couple of days when the biopsies come back. I am so relieved that is was not an ulcer that was about to perforate. They said if she does well today she will be able to come home tomorrow. I cannot tell you how I balled my eyes out when they said she did well with the endoscopy because they had
prepared us for the worst. I know we still have a lot to figure out with her but we will do what we need to for our baby girl. She is just the sweetest! This is our 5th Dobe and all of them have been great.
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 01:05 PM
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That's good news!!
I hope the rest of her healing is uneventful.

Sometimes I think dobes just like to freak us out--twice--once during their illness and then later when we get the bill. *sigh* I hope that part isn't too bad either.
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Last edited by melbrod; 01-23-2020 at 01:34 PM.
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 01:33 PM
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I'm glad it's NOT an ulcer, although the ulcer is treatable. It's just a long road and lots of stomach meds. Anyway, thanks for the update - you saved me some typing, LOL! Best wishes for Kona (and you!). Keep us posted, OK?
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-23-2020, 02:49 PM
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Great news ! Must have been them good vibes from the Hoosier state

Hoping a quick recovery and Back Home
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2020, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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Bad experience with hospital

This is a long read but it is a timeline of what we have been thru with Kona. Now we just found out from her stool sample that it shows she has been exposed to Giardia. Not sure whether to treat at this point or not as she has been thru so much. Right now she seems to be doing well with no diarrhea or vomiting.

Central Hospital for Veterinary Medicine in North Haven CT

12/26/19
Dr. Leroy Holdmeyer
$509.47

We brought Kona to the hospital for vomiting as we suspected she ate some berries that may have been poisonous on Christmas from the yard because she vomited three of them. We searched the yard and could not find any berries that she may have gotten into. We brought the vomited berries to the hospital, but they could not identify them.

Blood work was done, and Dr Holdmeyer went over the results with us. He asked us if she had been drinking excessively because he said her blood sugar was 470. He said she is probably diabetic , and we should follow up with her vet. (WHY WOULD NOTHING BE DONE FOR HER WITH A BLOOD SUGAR SO HIGH?). He also said there was another value in her blood that was elevated but he said it was common in older dogs. We said she is not even two yet! He just glazed over it and prescribed her meds for the stomach issues. We were very upset when we left thinking that she probably is diabetic. When we checked out, we asked for a copy of her blood work. When we reviewed the results, it showed her blood sugar was 98. We were furious that we had been given inaccurate information. If we had not requested a copy of the blood work, we would have incurred even more expenses taking Kona to our own vet for evaluation of diabetes.


12/30/19
Dr. Marianne Freschlin
$182.16

Kona was still not eating or drinking well so we brought her back to the hospital. I was concerned that she was dehydrated. Dr. Freschlin suggested we leave Kona overnight and for a couple of days for IV fluids and monitoring. The estimated cost would be around $2,000 or $3,000. I asked if she could just give her sub q fluids even though she never gave us that option. She said yes but it would not be as quick as IV fluids. We opted for the sub q fluids and would monitor her at home as my husband and I are both retired so she would be monitored very closely. She was given the fluids and some meds and we took her home.

1/16/20
East Side Veterinary - Our Vet

My daughter lives with us and we were on vacation in Florida. She took Kona to our vet for vomiting. X rays were done and no blockages were seen. Meds were given and they suggested if Kona did not improve she should get an ultrasound done since she has been having sporadic problems.







1/22/20
Dr. Carolyn Gross
$3065.71 – Deposit
$793.10 – Final Payment

My daughter took Kona to the hospital for an ultrasound. By late afternoon, my daughter had not heard back, so she contacted the hospital. She was told that Kona has a very severe ulcer that may perforate at any time. They said they have never seen an ulcer this bad and it is in a very bad location. They made it very clear that this was a grave situation. They advised her to leave her overnight and they would treat her aggressively with meds and repeat the ultrasound in the morning. They also told her that if things went bad during the night, they may have to do emergency surgery. They asked her if that happened would she like them to spay her while they are in there. I do not know why they would ask this as BEFORE Kona even had the ultrasound, my daughter informed them she was spayed and also that she had her stomach tacked.

When my daughter went to pay the down payment, she reviewed the charges on the estimate, and she saw a charge of $342.98 for a Von Willebrand test. She questioned them on this stating that Kona’s parents were both tested, and Kona had previously been spayed and had her stomach tacked with no complications. They said they definitely like to have this test done anyway. When my daughter told me about this, I still did not understand why we had to do the test and I spoke with Dr. Gross about this. She stated they definitely like to have it in case they need to go straight to surgery. She said it is based on percentages. I agreed to have the test done as Dr. Gross was adamant at how important it was.

1/23/20
In the morning Dr. Gross contacted me by phone at 9:18am. She said Kona did ok during the night and we have three options. The first was to just continue the meds and to monitor her. The second was to do an endoscopy and the third was to go straight to surgery. She said all of the options have risks. She said if they just continue to monitor her, they cannot be sure if the ulcer already may have perforated. The second option was the endoscopy and she said that can also be very risky because they inflate the stomach so the ulcer could potentially perforate at which time, they would have to take her right into surgery. The third option would be to head straight into surgery although the ulcer is in a very difficult location and it would be very risky. I asked her at that time if a gastro specialist would be doing the procedure and she said yes. When I look at the hospital notes I see it was Dr. Gross that did the procedure. Why didn’t she tell me it was her that would be doing the procedure?

My husband and I chose to have the endoscopy done. They made it very clear to us at the time what a grave situation this was for Kona. We were very distressed and even tried to change our airline flights to get home earlier, but it was too expensive on top of the expenses we were incurring with the hospital.

At 11:29am Dr. Gross contacted me with the results of the endoscopy. She said Kona did not have an ulcer at all. She said Kona may have IBS but the biopsies would tell more. We were elated with the news but also very upset at the misdiagnosis. When my daughter took Kona for the ultrasound, she let them know that Kona had previously had gastropexi surgery and was spayed so they definitely should have been aware of this.

1/23/20

After the endoscopy was over, my daughter went to the hospital to visit Kona, but she was told Kona was anxious and they had just given her some medicine to calm her, so it would not be a good idea to visit her. The nurse she spoke with said it was great news that Kona did not have an ulcer and they are thinking it may be IBS. She also stated something to the effect that her stomach looked different than normal anatomy on the ultrasound and it that could be due to the stomach tacking.

Later in the day, my daughter was told Kona could go home. When she went to pick her up, she met with Dr. Gross. My daughter felt very rushed in her meeting. Dr. Gross said Kona had been given medication to calm her so she may act drunk, confused, or anxious so have fun with that. My daughter felt this was very rude for her to say that. She also told my daughter to just continue with her usual food which was Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach. Why would we put her right back on her food when we still did not know any results of the biopsies that were done, and she had not eaten much in days. We have kept her on the Hills Prescription canned diet as a precaution until we get the results back. My daughter asked about the Von Willebrand test and she was told it did not come back yet. So why was it so important to have this test done when it would not even be back before Kona could have possibly had to have emergency surgery.

On 1/28/20 at 7:06 pm we received a call from one of the techs informing us that the Von Willebrands test was finally back and it is negative. She said the biopsies are not back yet as they were sent to Pennsylvania and if we do not hear anything by Friday, to call.
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2020, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by melbrod View Post
That's good news!!
I hope the rest of her healing is uneventful.

Sometimes I think dobes just like to freak us out--twice--once during their illness and then later when we get the bill. *sigh* I hope that part isn't too bad either.
One of my friends who also has Dobes has a theory that any time one of her dogs suspects she might have 'extra' money (like from a bonus or anything like that) they will promptly end up at the vets to be checked out for the most expensive possible problem.

It happens to me too--I had a cat who got an endoscopy with my Christmas bonus one year. And a dog who had something so obscure that it took a zillion lab tests to get a definite diagnosis.

I always figure that if I planned to be weathly I would have gone to work for some big corporation instead of marine hardware stores and vet clinics. And I sure wouldn't have taken up showing dogs all those years ago.

Hope her healing goes well.

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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2020, 07:20 PM
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Geeze Deb--that's heartbreaking it should never be so hard dealing with medical professionals.

I work for a vet clinic and we are regarded as expensive but I like to think that our vets and techs go out of their way to make sure information both to the client and from the client is properly heard, assessed and appropriately handled.

It's too late for this to be of help on this round of stuff but here's at least one thing to keep you from getting tests that your dog didn't need. (At great expense I expect.)

If your dogs parents were tested for vWD--and she'd been spayed and had a pexy that her parents may have been tested and they were both clear so she would have been clear by parentage? Or her parents were tested and one was clear and one was a carrier or affected but because of the genetics on those combinations the puppies would have all be either clear or carriers--no affected puppies.

I have all my Dobes tested--and I make copies of the paperwork and have a folder that I take with me if I have to go to a vet who doesn't know me or my dogs. I've occasionally had to do this and a couple of times it involved surgery (nothing significant either time but they had to suture fairly big holes and were concerned about bleeding issues--I just whip out the the copy of the certification that my dog is clear or a carrier and bleeding isn't going to be an issue. That at least solves one issue.

The other thing is that most often what the test they want to do is an Elisa Assay--which is for vWD factor in the blood at the time of the blood draw so it ends up that they do
the blood draw, send it out to a lab for analysis and it doesn't come back for 24 hours --and even if they insist that you have that test done a day or a week before the surgery it's practically useless because it measures only the amount vWD fact circulating at the time of the blood draw. The genetic test, which, if you used the most expensive gene testing lab is now less expensive than the Elsa test and is identifying genetics and not something circulating in the blood which can and does change often and for many reasons.

I know this kind of stuff happens at vets (and doctors for that matter) way too often and I hate it when they scare the pants off of owners and give them three horribly expensive options for what to do.

Hope you have better luck next time. Or maybe I should just be hoping that there won't be many next times like this last one.

dobebug
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-29-2020, 08:45 PM
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Thank goodness Kona is ok. I understand the stress of having a dog being diagnosed in grave condition. I documented it about my old gal Coco. It would have been worse for you not being there.

I spent 10K saving my old lovey from having her leg amputated or being put to sleep before her time. When she was diagnosed a few years later with osteosarcoma I would have spent a million dollars if I could have done something to save her but I couldn't.

It has been a stressful, frustrating and expensive time for you but it is a blessing that she is ok and still with you. Hug that girl tight!
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Kin's Sweet Revenge aka Sugar December 31/18

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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 09:57 PM
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Every time I read stories like this, I thank God for the vet I have! Hopefully you will figure it out soon and she will be back in good health.
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Ibd

So the biopsy came back and it said Kona has IBD. Our vet recommends putting her on prednisone therapy. Has anyone had experience with IBD?
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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Deb53 View Post
So the biopsy came back and it said Kona has IBD. Our vet recommends putting her on prednisone therapy. Has anyone had experience with IBD?
Yes, not directly with my dog--the dog belonged to a good friend and it took a long time to get a definite diagnosis. She was immediately put on a specific diet (in her case it was one of Royal Canin's limited protein limited carb foods (as I recall it was the potato and duck). Her vet didn't want to put her on pred as a permanent solution if they could control it with diet--pred full time all the time has some side effects that are unfortunate. That worked for her--she couldn't have anything except her own kibble and her owner had to resort to using her kibble for treats.

She had occasional bad episodes and they used pred then to get her through them.

Dog number two was one related (by parentage to one of my dogs)--he'd had some problems with food when he was pretty young then had more so his owner ran through all the tests and eventually an endoscope which verified he was an IBD dog. His treatment was almost the same at the first dog--he was put back on ProPlan Sensitive Skin and Stomach--he had eaten it when he was a puppy and itad done better on it than some of the other things the owner tried. So he was restricted to that and nothing but that and got pred when he was having a bad period. For the record the bad period usually followed the dog managing to get some food that he wasn't supposed to be eating.

Number 3 IBD was not a dog but my own cat. He was a perfectly ordinary tuxedo domestic shorthair. As a kitten he ate kitten food (Hills) and grew to cat size but starting at about one he start having horrible bouts of diarrhea and spells of vomiting. We changed his kibble and he was OK for awhile and then it started again---by the time he was 2 there was nothing in conventional kibble made by manufacturers I trusted that didn't have him vomiting up everything he ate plus the diarrhea.

My vet called a gastroenterologist he knew and the specialist said it sounded like IBD--suggested an endoscopy and if it showed IBD to switch the cat to one of the fully hydrolysed prescription diets--specifically HP by Royal Canin or HA by Purina. So my cat has been on these hydrolysed kibbles since he was two and he's now 17. But he was starving to death because of the allergy that is actually part of what caused the IBD. I know when he's gotten into someone else's food because he starts vomiting and having diarrhea. But he hasn't had to have pred for years now and does very well on those fully hydrolysed diets.

Most IBD can be handled with controlled diet--but discuss this with your vet. I've seen it done often enough (I work for a vet clinic and we have several clients with iBD dogs) that I'm kind of not happy with the vets that just stick IBD dogs on pred and call it good.

Talk to your vet and find out exactly what prednisone therapy consists of. If he says it means life long being on pred and only pred for Kona you might want to get a second opinion.

But best of luck with this--IBD is a tough one--it means if you are doing a controlled diet that everyone has to be able to NOT give her anything exept what she's supposed to eat.

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post #21 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-31-2020, 10:00 PM
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Having had a dog who has been on pred or a derivative his entire life I agree with bug's take. Life long prednisone use, IMO, is a last resort kind of medical regime.

My son's now senior was born with a congenital Cervical Vertebral deformity. The symptoms mirrored those that you would see in a senior with Wobbler's Syndrome. As he became increasingly disabled, his prognosis became extremely poor and the general consensus was to euthanize him.

The long and the short of it is that my son went to extraordinary measures and expense to deal with this serious problem. He had surgeries, physical therapy, laser treatments, acupuncture, special diets and a variety of meds including prednisone.

Eventually his condition was mitigated and controlled to the extent that he was able to live a good and reasonably comfortable life. Today he is a healthy 10 yo, whose only issues are associated with his spinal condition.

He has required various dosages of corticosteroids his entire life. For years it was pred administered at a low dosage. Just enough to keep his symptoms at bay. It would be temporarily increased as needed and then titrated back down to the minimum effective amount.

He had the typical side effects early on such as increased thirst and excessive urination, as well a lethargy and weird eating habits. The all disappeared over time. Especially with a reduced dose.

His long term side effects were primarily rapid weight gain and heavy hair loss (alopecia). Also...Being on steroids his entire life from a very young age apparently stunted his growth. He is literally a 3/4 sized male. His sire is a well known stud. Both he and all his sibs and extended family are within breed standards.

Any attempt, over the years, to take him completely off corticosteroids resulted in a return of his symptoms to a certain extent.

So in his case, lifelong steroid use was necessary. Still, as I said, I wouldn't recommend it if there were alternatives.

Oh... The one thing that we had going for us (and the pup) is that our dogs' vet is my daughter-in-law'a father! And a very good Dobe savvy one at that.

Well. In any case... Best to you and Kona.

Please keep updating

John, McCoy and The Sheriff
Portland OR
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Last edited by 4x4bike ped; 01-31-2020 at 10:04 PM.
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post #22 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-04-2020, 09:08 PM
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Prednisone scares the crap out of me and I only use it as a last resort. I had a dog that was on high dose prednisone to treat meningitis, the prednisone caused an ulcer that ultimately took her life.
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