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post #26 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 03:33 PM
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I wonder if you 2 put your dogs on a prescription diet food that has almost no copper in it , if it would lower the ALT - I know eegreen that yours has been ruled out as far as copper storage - just asking

Ali was also on Denamarin .

Good luck you 2
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post #27 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 03:42 PM
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I wonder if you 2 put your dogs on a prescription diet food that has almost no copper in it , if it would lower the ALT - I know eegreen that yours has been ruled out as far as copper storage - just asking

Ali was also on Denamarin .

Good luck you 2
Thanks! I did ask the Internist about food and he said not to change it at this time. He's on Annamaet Extra which has 11.2 ppm copper. It's a really good local PA food and I hate to change it if I don't have to.

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post #28 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 04:50 PM Thread Starter
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Unfortunately, anything related to her ALT levels comes out of pocket because when we switched providers, it was a pre-existing condition. So if a biopsy is needed, it'll be 100% on us

Who needs to retire at 62? Not me LOL
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post #29 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 05:33 PM
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Unfortunately, anything related to her ALT levels comes out of pocket because when we switched providers, it was a pre-existing condition. So if a biopsy is needed, it'll be 100% on us

Who needs to retire at 62? Not me LOL
I hear you. Our babies are worth it though
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post #30 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 06:27 PM
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I hear you. Our babies are worth it though

Aren't they thou ?
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post #31 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-06-2020, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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I hear you. Our babies are worth it though
They sure are; some folks can't understand that though. Mocha is as much family as is my wife, and it's my job to take care of them, no matter what.

I came home today and yep, Mocha is back to 100% her perky, playful, energetic, and mischievous self.

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post #32 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-22-2020, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
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Thought I'd update this thread.

I'm so glad that I pushed my vet to refer us to the internal specialist. First they did an abdominal ultrasound to rule out a blockage and they also looked at her liver, which looked normal, then they suggested we run more tests, which we agreed to so we could find out what the heck was going on with Mocha. They did an upper GI endoscopy, an ultrasound-guided liver biopsy, and ran a ton of tests on her.
I'm pasting the email we received from the internal specialist below:
------------------------------------------------------------
Hello all- just wanted to pass along Mocha's test results - almost all completed, and to the point that I think we have a good plan moving forward. I am out of town so am emailing you all so as not to delay her management. I will followup with her final special stain results (liver biopsy) by next week.

Her GI function panel was normal, so her pancreas works well and she has no evidence of malabsorption/maldigestion.

Her intestinal biopsies showed marked eosinophilic inflammation; this is supportive of food allergy component for her diarrhea. We discussed and figured out that chicken seems to be a trigger food for Mocha.

The liver biopsies do show excessive copper accumulation and mild inflammation. Her copper level of 1760 ppm is in the toxic range; normal range is 120-400 ppm.

SO...she needs a copper chelator and a low copper diet, but also ideally a hypoallergenic/ novel ingredient diet to manage these conditions together.
---I am having my technician Shaina call in D-penicillamine (copper chelator) 280 mg capsules to Wedgewood pharmacy for us. She gets one capsule by mouth twice daily on empty stomach or with a small bit of meat. We will give this for six months to no more than 12 months, depending on her liver enzymes.
---As for her diet, I looked at the Hill's prescription l/d ad Royal Canin Hepatic Support. The L/D canned and dry formulas are based on pork, egg, and soy; the only chicken-derived ingredient is chicken fat, and if pure, fat should not be allergenic. So, this could be a feasible option for her diet to try.
The Royal Canin dry is soy-based, while the canned is chicken-based. So, the dry RC Hepatic is an option as well

****I am wondering if someone from Tiny Town could help get Mocha onto one of the diets above? We do not sell pet food.
She needs to transition slowly over 4-5 days from her current diet to the new food. If these diets do not work well, then we can see about using a custom cooked diet such as JustFoodForDogs Hepatic Low Fat fish/rice-based cooked/frozen food.

I would like to recheck Mocha in about three to four weeks for exam and liver enzymes.
---------------------------------------------------------------

Tiny Town is the name of her regular vet.
As you can see, we're in for some major changes around here. And we're so happy we caught the copper storage disease before there was any damage to the liver. It's going to be a bit tricky dealing with food allergy and copper storage at the same time. What if neither the Royal Canin or the Hills agree with her? If that's the case, and I hope it isn't, then I'll have to talk to the internal specialist and do a ton of research about preparing home-made food for Mocha.

And FYI, this ordeal has been very expensive. Between the tests our regular vet ran, and all the tests the internal specialist ran, plus the hospital stay and the meds they gave us, we've spent around $4,500 on this girl in the last 2 weeks. Now comes the liver medicine which is $80 a month, the Rx food which after taxes comes to almost $100 per 27.5 pound bag, and the Denamarin which is $60 a month. And the reason I bring up the money is because it's been brought up numerous times on this site in many threads that this is not a cheap breed to own so as a prospective or current owner, it's a good idea to 1. have pet insurance and 2. set aside some money for something like this. Thank God we have a "rainy day for Mocha" fund, and we also have pet insurance but unfortunately elevated ALT levels are a pre-existing condition so I doubt they'll cover our bill from the internal specialist. We're hoping they'll at least cover some of it...we'll find out soon enough.

So, that's where we are right now, at least both of Mocha's conditions can be managed with medicine, a proper diet, and regular checkups.
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Last edited by TNfisher; 08-22-2020 at 04:30 PM.
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post #33 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-22-2020, 04:44 PM
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Good news (you've got some answers) and bad news (you've spent all of your money to get them)

But the best news—looks like she's going to be OK with a little extra care from here on.

Last edited by melbrod; 08-22-2020 at 06:45 PM.
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post #34 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-22-2020, 05:12 PM
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Glad she is on her way to good health TN , So happy for you all !
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post #35 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-22-2020, 09:08 PM
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You're such a good dad TN to Mocha. At least you know what you're dealing with now and have a plan moving forward. These guys are expensive and not for the faint of heart but they are worth every cent for the love and devotion they give us.

I spent a lot of money on Coco her last year of her life and I would have spent more if I could have beaten the osteosarcoma somehow. It's only money right.

Give that beautiful girl a kiss from Sugar and I.



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post #36 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-23-2020, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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You're such a good dad TN to Mocha. At least you know what you're dealing with now and have a plan moving forward. These guys are expensive and not for the faint of heart but they are worth every cent for the love and devotion they give us.

I spent a lot of money on Coco her last year of her life and I would have spent more if I could have beaten the osteosarcoma somehow. It's only money right.

Give that beautiful girl a kiss from Sugar and I.
Exactly, Coco. You should have seen the looks some of my coworkers gave me when they asked me how much everything cost and I told them. Sorry (not sorry), that's my dog, and my responsibility
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post #37 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-23-2020, 03:14 PM
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Exactly, Coco. You should have seen the looks some of my coworkers gave me when they asked me how much everything cost and I told them. Sorry (not sorry), that's my dog, and my responsibility
Other people don't understand. These guys are our family members and we have a responsibility to them and for them.

I would sell everything I have to make sure my family was ok. And I wouldn't give 2 hoots about what anyone had to say about it!



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post #38 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-23-2020, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
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Some good news amongst all this (and I am knocking on wood that it'll last).

This afternoon, Mocha's stool was the firmest I've seen in a long time, maybe the firmest ever. Not sure if it's a fluke, the transition to the Royal Canin Hepatic food, or the lack of any other foods or treats.

Oh, and I had emailed the internal specialist with some questions and concerns, one being what could we give Mocha and she answered that cucumbers and watermelon which are some of Mocha's favorites, are fine to give her...which I was kind of thinking but wanted to make 100% sure. She also said that if for some reason Mocha couldn't handle either the Royal Canin or the Hill's, we would work with a veterinary nutritionist to come up with a diet which we can make at home.




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post #39 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-23-2020, 07:25 PM
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That's great news!


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post #40 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-24-2020, 06:11 AM
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Glad to caught in time TN ! Ali really showed no signs till she was deathly ill . Glad you got good news !
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post #41 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-25-2020, 02:55 PM
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My question is that they "think" her copper is high, but I don't see where a liver biopsy was done? I'm no vet, but I'd want to know definitively if she has copper storage disease.... or not. Is she on denamarin? I know it costs about $80/month so I'm guessing she is.

The LD kibble should help if it is liver related. I fed my Jezebel LD for a month and then switched to a mix of low copper kibble (Annamaet Aqualuk) and fresh food: 2 eggs in the am and pm. Plain full fat yogurt am, cottage cheese pm, fruit in the am and veggies in the PM. Her liver values remain high 6 years later, but they have not continued to go up. She is 8 now.

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post #42 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-25-2020, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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My question is that they "think" her copper is high, but I don't see where a liver biopsy was done? I'm no vet, but I'd want to know definitively if she has copper storage disease.... or not. Is she on denamarin? I know it costs about $80/month so I'm guessing she is.

The LD kibble should help if it is liver related. I fed my Jezebel LD for a month and then switched to a mix of low copper kibble (Annamaet Aqualuk) and fresh food: 2 eggs in the am and pm. Plain full fat yogurt am, cottage cheese pm, fruit in the am and veggies in the PM. Her liver values remain high 6 years later, but they have not continued to go up. She is 8 now.
Yes, they did an ultrasound-guided liver biopsy; here's a snippet from the email we got:

The liver biopsies do show excessive copper accumulation and mild inflammation. Her copper level of 1760 ppm is in the toxic range; normal range is 120-400 ppm.



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post #43 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-26-2020, 07:18 PM
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Yes, they did an ultrasound-guided liver biopsy; here's a snippet from the email we got:

The liver biopsies do show excessive copper accumulation and mild inflammation. Her copper level of 1760 ppm is in the toxic range; normal range is 120-400 ppm.
I'm sorry if you already answered this, but what is her ALT on her bloodwork - I'm just curious as I'm not familiar with the copper level measurement they use. My Jezebel's ALT hovers around 700 - normal goes up to 140. She had a biopsy done 5 years ago.

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Fitzmar's Victory Hop Devil RN CGC "Jezebel"
Ch Jalyn One Moment Please "Mabel"
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post #44 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-26-2020, 07:42 PM Thread Starter
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I'm sorry if you already answered this, but what is her ALT on her bloodwork - I'm just curious as I'm not familiar with the copper level measurement they use. My Jezebel's ALT hovers around 700 - normal goes up to 140. She had a biopsy done 5 years ago.
Her last reading was in the low 400's; it hovered in the low 300's for months and then it went up 100 in the span of a month.



She is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are her life, her love, her leader.
She will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of her heart. You owe it to her to be worthy of such devotion.
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post #45 of 46 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 08:20 PM
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Her last reading was in the low 400's; it hovered in the low 300's for months and then it went up 100 in the span of a month.
If it makes you feel any better, Jezebel's was in the 400's at age 2. At age 8 1/2, she is at 700 and still doing fine. I never expected to have her this long, so it's all a win.

Mary Jo Ansel
Fitzmar


AKC GRCH/UKC CH Fitzmar's Command A Minute CGC "Harvard"
Fitzmar's Victory Hop Devil RN CGC "Jezebel"
Ch Jalyn One Moment Please "Mabel"
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post #46 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-23-2020, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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We went for a recheck today and Mocha's ALT levels have climbed even higher, in the low 500s now from the low 400s about a month ago. The internal specialist is hoping it's the anti-inflammatory meds Mocha is on for her leg, she said that medicine is known to be hard on the liver (which our regular vet should have known, kinda miffed about that one) so no more of that and she wants us to come back in 3 weeks for another checkup and if things haven't improved by then, she's talking about starting steroids.



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