Senior Dobes - Spock & Eva DCM Thread - Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-27-2020, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
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Senior Dobes - Spock & Eva DCM Thread

Par for this year of 2020, I’m starting this DCM thread for Spock, (and possibly Eva), our 10 y/o Dobes. (Spock diagnosed Tues, Eva suspected)
Spock turned 10 in March and Eva turned 10 in June of this year.

First few posts were made on Chicken Thread (Girls Outside), starting 8/23, but I thought it better to start a dedicated thread for Spock and Eva’s health challenges in their senior years. Hopefully, this thread will last a long time!

(Please, Meadowcat, don’t Sypha paw slap me for double posting!)


________________________________________

1st Post on Chicken Thread 8/23/20:

... Spock had restless night last night, started in early morning with an occasional deep cough, only when laying down. He's doing all his normal activities well and has good appetite. Vet visit first thing in morning. Eva's cough has subsided a week ago and I'm wondering if something passed from her to him? Don't want to consider yet other issue this symptom might be indicating, always in back of my mind...


3rd Post & Dobebug Reply on Chicken Thread 8/24 - After visit to first vet- inconclusive)


Took him into shower for his "steam treatment" just before midnight before retiring to bed. He slept continuously till 0530 wake up. Only one cough heard, not extended, when he got up off dog bed for first time this morning for potty break, then pill time. No coughing since then and he appears much livelier this morning. I'm going to wait on second opinion for a couple days to see how antibiotic treatment works. Gotta ask Dobebug if there is a canine respiratory disease, besides Bordetella (kennel cough), that can be spread among pack mates?


Dobebug 8/25 Reply:

Hey SD, since you asked--there are a number of things that will present as coughing--often a general practice vet will assume that they are one of the many things that can get passed dog to dog and get reported under the general description of kennel cough--which strictly speaking is caused by bordetella. And some stuff goes around in specific areas (like the "canine flu" ) which was fairly common in the midwest and much less common in other parts of the country--they did come up with a vaccine pretty quickly for that though.

My major concern, given Spock's symptoms and the fact that the deep cough was a night time incident only? (or primarily) would be that it was cardio related. CHF--congestive heart failure which tends t be more common in older dogs (I thought Spock was 8 but I don't think I actually know how old he is) is often diagnosed because of a deep cough which often only shows up at night (fluid collecting in the lungs and the dog lying down in pretty much the same position for extended periods of time--like at night--will cause that night time cough.) And steam treatments for any kind of lung problem (pneumonia and various related bacterial caused congestion and even to some extent CHF) is often helpful.

Holters are really only half of appropriate diagnostics for cardio--what they work best for is identifying electrical malfunctioning which will cause VPC's etc but echo's will show changes in heart shape and size.

Since my very first Doberman (a 1959 model) actually died from classic DCM and was already in CHF when he was diagnosed (I can only tell you how rare it was to actually have a vet dignose DCM in 1968--it was kind of a fluke) I was aware of the problem a good bit earlier than most Dobe owners.

So ever since diagnostics have become much better my dogs have had both echos and Holters at least yearly--just as I have always shown my dog on a shoestring budget the same thing has been true of owning Dobes. I actually quit smoking to fund a bank account to handle the potential problems related to cardio issues in Dobes.


That's about all I can tell you except that bacterial infections like those that cause "kennel cough" would usually get passed around to all the other dogs n the household and pretty quickly.

Anyway if you do take Spock to see your breeders vet for a second opinion do let us know what that vet has to say.

Best wishes though from me...


Ten Doberman Rules
Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-27-2020, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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8/26 Spock Update

(Post from Chicken Thread 8/26):

I'm sitting here @0530 next to Spock, on his favorite loveseat and he's finally getting a sound sleep after another terrible night.

… After Bug's response to my initial Spock posts about his coughing, we decided to go to 2nd vet after all, yesterday morning, since the onset of his symptoms came so suddenly on Sunday morning. (I ponder now, that his "night terror" incidents of 5th and 15th August might have been two precursor cardiac events)

Spock and Eva's regular vet for more than 8 years suddenly left the clinic just a short while ago and didn't tell anyone where she was going! I even emailed her with Spock's symptoms on Sunday and stated we would be coming in first thing Monday to clinic for exam. When we got there, a new DVM was present, very nice, but apparently inexperienced with Dobes or DCM. We got the prescription for the Doxycycline antibiotic and proceeded home, but still unsure about cough? As mentioned in previous post the antibiotic appeared to work and lessened frequency and depth of his severe coughing spells over Monday night.

On Tuesday morning, we had our normal round the block walk and pondered going to 2nd vet, who our breeder has used for many years. Spock started out at this vet as a puppy for a couple years. Got first appointment available in morning and took. Lady DVM there, very experienced, middle to late age examined Spock, who by that time in mid morning hadn't had a coughing spell for an hour. We explained about coming to rule in/out CHF DCM for Spock, as previous new vet just said lung infection. Did chest X-ray, EKG, followed by Echo gram of heart using Oncura remote diagnostics equipment. DVM says looks initially like cardiac problem. We'll get full Oncura report this morning. Good note: DVM & techs as second vet's office all loved Spock, didn't need any sedative for scary X-ray or ultrasound machines, just acted very calm.

As Bug has described in the numerous DCM threads, this disease can only be detected by Echograms or 24 hr. Holter monitoring, before symptoms start By then it's rather late to prevent, as in Spock's case, and can only be treated to prolong the inevitable.

2nd Vet issued Lasix and Vetmedin for Spock to start on when I went back to pick him up, near closing time of 6PM. At this point Spock was just about free of any coughing events and acting almost normal, except being at vet's office most of the day. Spock didn't eat much food for dinner after coming home and I did a stupid thing... Started him on two new medications at once and after normal vet hours!..

The Lasix is just a diuretic to reduce fluid retention, but the Vetmedin are big honkin' horse pills that directly affect heart pumping and blood flow. About 30 minutes after giving him the medications he started having dry heaves, but no discharge, every 5 minutes. Also, some drooling and bit of foaming at mouth. I felt terrible to have caused him additional anguish over the coughing he already had.

This lasted for 7 hours which Spock was like a zombie Dobe, wouldn't drink, eat or settle down. His ears were in fixed semi up position and didn't respond normally to us. Every time he tried to lay down for a bit, he'd end up getting up to dry heave in corner of room. Frequency lessened so we decided to ride it out. I walked him many times around yard and in front of house. Curiously, Spock resorted back to his puppy digging habits, maybe out of frustration with this condition, so I kept him on a lead outside.

After midnight it stopped, no more heaving, he started normal Dober whining, which was actually good to hear- no more zombie Dobe. He started drinking water then and we went outside for his FIRST pee since nausea started many hours prior, even with Lasix! Finally by 2AM he was able to lay down and sleep. Spock is obviously intolerant of the Vetmedin medication.

Back to vet this morning, after Spock recharges. Needless to say, I'm devastated by his rapid decline in health, but not surprised due to his age. His indomitable Doberman spirit is being drained from him in front of our eyes. I almost wish he might just pass peacefully in his sleep at night, so we don't have to face him on that dreadful day, in the near future, when the big decision is made for him....

Spock's now awakening and showing me his belly for a rub, even in his poor condition, showing his truly loving, sweet nature...


Epilogue: To compound situation, Eva has resumed up an occasional cough again last night, very minor compared to Spock' coughing two days ago. Both are same age, so we knew up front this was likely when adopting her in 2012.


Dobebug Response 8/26:

Oh man, Spock--don't apologize for sharing this on the DT/CT--and I'll stick some supplemental advice in here about cardiac drugs.

I've had four dogs on Vetmedin (or the generic pimobendin) two of them on high dosage and two on lower dosage. Generally Vetmedin is tolerated well although one of my boys didn't and was on 1/2 dose for his weight for the entire time he was on it. And I've never had a dog on lasix (one of my dogs, my first, was on lasix as his diagnosis occurred when he was already in full blown CHF but he was living out his final years with my parents in Washington state and I was in California.

But I know from other Dobe owners that lasix often gives an array of symptoms--including appetite loss (Vetmedin doesn't usually affect appetite) so hopefully adjusting the meds will fix the reaction you got for that first dosage. Vetmedcin is generally well dealt with and usually doesn't have any contrindications if the dose is correct (dosage is computed by dogs weight) and I know a lot of Dobes who have been on both lasix and Vetmedian without the scarey reaction you and Spock got.

I am so sorry that you had that kind of thing happen with Spock and had to live a horrid night and hope they can get the drug adjusted since both really make a lot of difference in how the dog feels. Thinking good thought and keeping fingers crossed for both Spock and Eva.

ABTLH


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Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
Bites You Back? Wrestle It!

Last edited by spocksdad; 08-27-2020 at 07:13 PM.
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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-27-2020, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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Spock Update 8/27

Took Spock into vet for a BP and labwork this morning. Dropped him off and after 1.5 hours vet tech called me saying his bladder was empty, needed to keep him another couple hours. (Uhhh, yes.....that's what peeing in morning for 10 minutes straight does from Lasix...)

Picked him up later in van with Eva for a mini "road trip" and to introduce her to vet tech. Tech said Spock was a "real sweetie" for 5 hrs. he was there today. Eva was very affectionate with her, as well!

Bloodwork results normal from today. BP borderline high, but Spock's a high energy type Dobe. Got Oncura cardiologist's report yesterday and not surprising, stated what DVM had expected:
"The findings are consistent with severe dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) with
resultant left-sided congestive heart failure (Cl-IF) and ventricular arrhythmias."


My issue with report - All measures cardiologist would do would cost $20K+ up front including multiple rechecks by holter, echo & EKG, hospital admissions to test anti-arrythmia medications, on and on and on.

I may differ from many DT members here, but I believe there should be balance for a senior dog who has lived a long life, for his breed. It's similar to the very expensive measures and operations done with end-of-life geriatric humans, only for them to expire a short time later. DW & I have discussed and agreed to this principle of this balance with our dogs. It's hard for me to even to discuss that with her, as Spock and I are so tightly bonded, more than any other dog we’ve ever had.

Discussed with head DVM at clinic about the Vetmedin and we agreed to try a quarter dose next week. I insisted Spock be at the vet for observation when administering and after taking the dose. DVM said taking with food is preferred, and no other equivalent vasodilator is available for canines.

I don't want to put him through that nauseating torture, every few minutes, for many hours, again. It just knocked the wind out of his sails and killed his appetite for days. Same with Lasix, we're adjusting the dose to stop the coughing but not have Spock peeing continuously inside and outside house which is not a good quality of life for him or us...

I discussed with DW and DVM, that even with all these measures, Spock is such a high energy boy, that he just might keel over some morning chasing the squirrels. That's his job, his quality of life, which he loves. We would be okay with that, as would be much easier for all, rather than having him deteriorate to a feeble & weakened remnant of his former self.


Spock Recovering After Bout of Nausea from New Med




Spock's Little Buddy, Lanah, Helping With His Treatment
(She's wearing a donut collar to let some foot sores to heal)





Need a mood lifter in thread, by this point, for sure.....

Splish Splash (GIF Compilation I made & added soundtrack)



Ten Doberman Rules
Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
Bites You Back? Wrestle It!

Last edited by spocksdad; 08-27-2020 at 07:11 PM.
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-27-2020, 07:25 PM
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First I want to say how deeply sorry I am that your beautiful boy is experiencing this. Second thank you for your detailed explanation and I speak for many of us here on DT knowledge is powerful and it may help one of us. I too agree with you regarding the balance of trying to ensure our beloved Dobermans have the best. Stay strong you are not alone
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-27-2020, 09:17 PM
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Well, SD, I'm just really, really sorry to hear this. I was very worried about the cough when you mentioned it, as that cough can be a classic sign of congestive heart failure.

I hope that you and your vet can figure out a medication regimen to make Spock more comfortable. With CHF, fluid is slowly building up in the lungs, making it harder to breathe. The heart is also enlarged, so the heart may be (likely) pushing against his trachea, causing discomfort and coughing.

Dogs with CHF are much less likely to simply die "in the yard" in that massive heart attack way that we hear of with the one presentation of DCM. It's' more likely you will need to monitor his breathing and discomfort levels...as more fluid builds up it will become harder for him to breathe. You'll need to make a decision of when you can see that he's no longer comfortable and quality of life has declined too much.

I'm sorry if that's too blunt, but that is the unfortunate reality of this disease. I'm so very sorry that this is what you are dealing with. Hopefully you can get a dosage that he can tolerate to give him some good time yet, and Eva, too, if she is also dealing with DCM.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 06:18 AM
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I'm sorry to read this news SD
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 06:42 AM
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Very sorry to read this, SD.



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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 07:04 AM
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 08:29 AM
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I'm sorry to hear this. It's definitely not easy when our loveys get older and not well. I will send good vibes and juju your way.

Enjoy every minute with those sweet babies. I know you do already because of the pics and videos you post of their fantastic life.

Try to get the meds sorted out and see how he does.

Spock will let you know when he has had enough. I never understood this until I saw it from Coco and then I just knew it was the right time. They really do let us know and mixed in with the sadness and emotions, you also feel an odd calm and contentment because you know it is the right thing to do. Heartbreaking for us but pure love for them.

Hugs to you and your family. Kiss Spock for me on that grey muzzle and Sugar says for Spock to just rest on the couch like he taught Suggie boy to do and have dad attend to all of your needs.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 10:01 AM
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I'm sorry to hear this. I hope you can find the right combination of medicine that will help.


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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 11:01 AM
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I'm awfully sorry to hear the rest of the news but at least these days there are good meds to help minimize the symptoms (like the coughing and sometimes shortness of breath.

As MeadowCat said, Spock's diagnosis would usually not result in a sudden death situation and it should be pretty possible to figure out the correct amount of both the meds he needs to make him comfortable (Lasix and Vetmedin).

I was horrified though when you said that the cost could run to 20K just to lose your dog to DCM/CHF. That figure is beyond shocking to me. Practically all of my Dobermans has developed DCM in one or the other of it's common forms. But only two of those Dobes actually died from DCM. And DCM with CHF may cause shortness of breath and coughing but generally DCM doesn't cause a dog pain.

I've had the horrible need to have one of my males euthanized because we (his vets and several specialists) could not find an antibiotic to fix the ongoing low grade temperature that he constantly ran because of kidney disease. My dog was dying by inches in front of my very eyes--and eventually I knew that his time had come and my job was to let him go.

I'd rather have any of my dogs go the way the boy that actually died of sudden death related to his cardiac condition. We knew because I had been starting an echo and Holter regimen with all my Dobes by then (Echo and Holter yearly starting between 2 and 3 years and twice a year at around 7 or earlier if there was any suspicion that any cardiac issues were getting worse). We knew from the Holters that things were slowly getting worse by the time he was 8--and he was on Vetmedin and enalapril--and I also knew that the chances of losing him to sudden death was very likely--the cardiologist and I discussed this at length. This dog ran agility--he wasn't terribly good at it but he really loved it--not just the agility but the social aspect as well. The cardiologist told me what I really already knew--that this dogs problems could kill him in his sleep, in the backyard or just hanging out at home--and doing something he loved wasn't going to increase the probability of his death--so he went on running agility and he came home from an agility trial with my friend who ran him for me and was fine. He went out had a drink of water and came back to hang out with me to see if I would give him any of the stuff I was chopping for something. I looked at him and knew--it was obvious he was in v-tach. I snapped his leash on and told my friend to call the clinic--put him in the truck.

We didn't make it--and I knew he was gone when I couldn't see him in the back. I work at that clinic and half the staff was in the parking lot waiting--they knew this dog--he grew up in that clinic. But ask me what I'd prefer--for that dog who spent nearly all of his life (he was just a couple of month shy of 10) active, doing things he liked for nearly all that time and then having a bad 15 minutes--and he was gone. Or the kidney infection dog who was dying by inches.

There are ways to minimize the cost of keeping track of DCM--I'm lucky I live in Portland, Oregon and the Mt Hood Doberman Pinscher Club has been a leader in helping owners to keep track of DCM with health clinics twice a year with a vet cardiologist and the program of loaning Holter equipment at low cost (the equipment is owned by the club) to members.

And a friend and I bought a Holter set up from Alba Medical (a supplier of equipment and will read and send the result of Holters via computer to the owner)--it was a refurbished model--at the time between us we had 7 dogs who were being monitored at least yearly and she had a bitch who needed to be Holtered every 3 months. It cost around $1,000
(which was about what a couple of Holters done by a cardiologist would be) and we've had it for over 10 years now. It's more than paid for itself.

I don't know which of the four Texas Chapter Clubs is closest to you SD but I'd check with them to see if any of them have a program like the Mt Hood's. More and more of the Chapter clubs have started to do this.

If none of the Dobe clubs have a program like this start checking with the Boxer chapter clubs--Boxer are also a breed with may cardiac issues which are best detected by routine echo's and Holters--and many of them have such programs (the first club in Oregon to have one was a Boxer club) and most will allow non members to have dogs in their cardio testing if there is available space.

As much as I wish this whole cardiac issue was not so much a problem for Dobes--at least there are decent meds. And my dogs have remained active all of their lives--did they slow down as they aged? Sure--but that happens DCM or no DCM. Even my fawn boy, Toad, who made it to 14 didn't die from the cardio for which he was medicated from the time he was going on 12--he was euthanized when he started having difficulty breathing--this was unrelated to cardio--he was diagnosed when he started to cough--that cough was very unlike the DCM cough--after a lot of consulting and discussion the vets decided that he had laryngeal paralysis (something you don't see in Dobes but is common in older Labradors--treatment is surgery and that wasn't going to happen with a nearly 14 year old Doberman on cardiac meds) and the bad joke around the clinic was that you never see it in Dobes because they don't live long enough.

So SD--don't write Spock off yet--I've had dogs that lived years on meds--so I'll still be keeping my fingers crossed for you, Mrs SD, Spock and Eva. It's a burden to have all this stuff happen at once but give the dogs lots of pets from me and we'll go on thinking good thoughts for them.

And, for the record, the only reason I've run on and on about cardio, my dogs and your dogs is that I've been dealing with this longer than most so it's just some more information on the stuff I've already been through which might help someone like you who are going through it for the first time.

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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 03:22 PM
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I'm sorry to hear this as well.

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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the kind and informative responses!

I'll update this thread periodically, or when there is actual news to add, so I won't continue to depress everyone with a daily DCM illness log.

-------------------------------------------

Another Mood Lifter Needed!

Spock's Chew Toy, Lanah!
(They've been buddies since we took Lanah in back in 2015, when she was a skinny stray street dog)

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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 08:30 PM
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Thank you for sharing what is going on. Like Bug, I was also shocked at the price! It seems excessive to me. Losing a dog to sudden death is shocking, but I think pretty easy for the dog. I've lost two of my personal dogs to sudden death. Hugs to you and hopefully you will find a dosage that works for him - and you.
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-28-2020, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for sharing what is going on. Like Bug, I was also shocked at the price! It seems excessive to me. Losing a dog to sudden death is shocking, but I think pretty easy for the dog. I've lost two of my personal dogs to sudden death. Hugs to you and hopefully you will find a dosage that works for him - and you.

That's not an actual quote, just estimating in my head all the extensive long term measures and repeated testing the cardiologist recommended, based on cost of first batch. I was probably just in shock at the extensive treatments & testing recommended on report. Head DVM at clinic also thought the treatment list was excessive for a 10 y/o dog.

We are working together on getting the medications adjusted for Spock, as well, for a good balance. Spock is doing well today, no coughing, normal urination, but still under his normal (voracious) appetite, maybe due to Lasix? Importantly, this clinic will allow me to obtain medications from 3rd party online vendor or local grocery pharmacist, unlike previous vet clinic, so medication costs will be lower.


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Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-29-2020, 10:22 AM
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We are working together on getting the medications adjusted for Spock, as well, for a good balance. Spock is doing well today, no coughing, normal urination, but still under his normal (voracious) appetite, maybe due to Lasix? Importantly, this clinic will allow me to obtain medications from 3rd party online vendor or local grocery pharmacist, unlike previous vet clinic, so medication costs will be lower.
I'm very glad to hear this SD. And I'll just add a comment about medication and then shut up.

I say for shame to all of the vet clinic's that won't write or call in prescriptions for dogs who are being medicated. That goes particularly for dogs who may be on any med on a long term basis--like Spock who really needs Lasix and Vetmedin for best control.

Kudu's to the clinics who often do know where the least expensive places to buy prescription drugs for dogs are and are willing to send their clients to those places with prescription in hand. For a long time Vetmedin which is listed only for use on dogs wasn't something that you could purchase from a ordinary pharmacy and Costco, initiated a program where they could and did keep practically any prescription drug for dogs, cats or people. They were and probably still are about the least expensive place to buy Vetmedin (which has been very expensive from the beginning).

And practically all of the pharmacies now have programs to sell common antibiotics and other drugs used in both human and vet medicine at much lower prices than most clinic's can supply them.

And again, SD--best wishes to all your doggies (poor Lanah--I forgot her in the last post) and as far as I'm concerned some of the posts we get on DT have given day to day accounts of how things are going have been invaluable so if you want to post day to day progress for Spock--it's sure OK with me.

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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 08:40 AM
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How's Spock doing? Miss Eva still bossing him around?

Hope you guys are doing ok.



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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 01:07 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coco Loco View Post
How's Spock doing? Miss Eva still bossing him around?

Hope you guys are doing ok.

Thanks for your concern, CoCo. Spock is alert, doing all his regular daily activities, acting normally and was wrestling with Eva yesterday for first time in a couple weeks! Only issue is his appetite. No more coughing since he's on Lasix, which is great. We got dosage adjusted good where there's no coughing and accidental peeing inside house is rare now.

After he had the nausea event a week and a half ago with the Vetmedin reaction, Spock never regained his appetite. For a Dobe that used to eat everything but the kitchen sink, now he turns his nose up all his favorites.

Only foods he'll eat now is chicken jerky and of all things- Reddi Whip!
Even bacon only gets an occasional taste! So he's being sustained on chicken jerky and I give him his medicine mixed in with whip cream... Of course, living on jerky results in blobby poop.

Lasix is supposed to be an appetite suppressant, but he's on a minimum quarter dose, which stopped his coughing pronto. I think Spock is a Dobe that's very sensitive to medications- imagine that for a dog that will eat deer and cat poop without a flinch! He can also smell any medicine mixed into foods easily and will reject, making hard to administer.

I have been weighing Spock on vet scale every other day. He's lost 5.7 lbs. since beginning of August and 2 lbs. in last week alone. I was able to get him to eat some hamburger and rice cooked by DW yesterday. I put chicken jerky in Oster blender, pulverized it, then spread on the hamburger rice mixture. He ate that well, but didn't finish bowl. It's such a change from the Dobergoat we are used to! I have also tried the FreshPet refrigerated food rolls with no success. We did buy a grocery store rotisserie chicken yesterday and he ate that well, although not a huge quantity!

I'll consult with vet again on Monday, but until then I'll keep trying different things...


Ten Doberman Rules
Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
Bites You Back? Wrestle It!

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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 01:30 PM
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SD..that's really hard about the appetite. One product that's worked for me with dogs that didn't feel like eating in the past is canned green tripe. The Trippett brand is excellent.

Glad Spock is feeling so peppy, though!


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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 03:46 PM
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Thanks for your concern, CoCo. Spock is alert, doing all his regular daily activities, acting normally and was wrestling with Eva yesterday for first time in a couple weeks! Only issue is his appetite. No more coughing since he's on Lasix, which is great. We got dosage adjusted good where there's no coughing and accidental peeing inside house is rare now.

After he had the nausea event a week and a half ago with the Vetmedin reaction, Spock never regained his appetite. For a Dobe that used to eat everything but the kitchen sink, now he turns his nose up all his favorites.

Only foods he'll eat now is chicken jerky and of all things- Reddi Whip!
Even bacon only gets an occasional taste! So he's being sustained on chicken jerky and I give him his medicine mixed in with whip cream... Of course, living on jerky results in blobby poop.

Lasix is supposed to be an appetite suppressant, but he's on a minimum quarter dose, which stopped his coughing pronto. I think Spock is a Dobe that's very sensitive to medications- imagine that for a dog that will eat deer and cat poop without a flinch! He can also smell any medicine mixed into foods easily and will reject, making hard to administer.

I have been weighing Spock on vet scale every other day. He's lost 5.7 lbs. since beginning of August and 2 lbs. in last week alone. I was able to get him to eat some hamburger and rice cooked by DW yesterday. I put chicken jerky in Oster blender, pulverized it, then spread on the hamburger rice mixture. He ate that well, but didn't finish bowl. It's such a change from the Dobergoat we are used to! I have also tried the FreshPet refrigerated food rolls with no success. We did buy a grocery store rotisserie chicken yesterday and he ate that well, although not a huge quantity!

I'll consult with vet again on Monday, but until then I'll keep trying different things...
There is an appetite stimulant, maybe you could try that? The name evades me right now but we had our boy on it for a little while and it really worked well.
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post #21 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
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SD..that's really hard about the appetite. One product that's worked for me with dogs that didn't feel like eating in the past is canned green tripe. The Trippett brand is excellent.

Glad Spock is feeling so peppy, though!

Thanks for tip, MC! Had a breakthrough just now!

Spock scarfed down a whole can of sardines in spring water, while Eva looked on incredulously! He also wolfed down some Vienna sausages, which I know are bad due to high sodium content. DW is cooking up some Basmati rice now, to which we'll add another can of sardines to for his dinner, to add some bulk to his diet.

The sardines will also be good for hiding his medicine, as they will disguise the smell of the pills, which he seems to be able to detect.

Making progress, slowly, but surely.....


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Poke Everything.
It's New? Bark At It.
Moves? Chase It.
Doesn't Move? Smell It.
Liquid? Spill and Dribble It.
Treat or Food? Wolf It Down.
Not Food? Chew It Slowly, Be Quiet & Hide From Human.
A Toy? Shred & Destroy It.
Stuffed? De-Stuff It.
Bites You Back? Wrestle It!
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post #22 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 03:52 PM
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Thanks for tip, MC! Had a breakthrough just now!

Spock scarfed down a whole can of sardines in spring water, while Eva looked on incredulously! He also wolfed down some Vienna sausages, which I know are bad due to high sodium content. DW is cooking up some Basmati rice now, to which we'll add another can of sardines to for his dinner, to add some bulk to his diet.

The sardines will also be good for hiding his medicine, as they will disguise the smell of the pills, which he seems to be able to detect.

Making progress, slowly, but surely.....
Awesome!

I think when it comes to feeding a DCM dog you really just feed what they'll eat, frankly. It's more about keeping them eating than anything. So, fabulous! If it's sardines and sausages, that's fantastic. Maybe you can figure out mixing in something else that he might be willing to eat if the extra flavor helps.

You're on the right track!


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post #23 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 04:49 PM
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Awesome!

I think when it comes to feeding a DCM dog you really just feed what they'll eat, frankly. It's more about keeping them eating than anything. So, fabulous! If it's sardines and sausages, that's fantastic. Maybe you can figure out mixing in something else that he might be willing to eat if the extra flavor helps.

You're on the right track!
This is absolutely true--none of my cardio dogs (except the one that was living out his life with my parents in Washington state) were on lasix--but I've been dog sitting for other peoples elderly Doberman who were on a variety of cardiac meds. The worst were the two who were on antiarrhymics--boy! One of the worst is Mexilatine--but it's absolutely the most effective for controlling arrythmias.

So--here are some more fairly horrible things to try for dogs not wanting to eat well when medicated.

This one that worked was from one of the first people I ever knew who had a non-eater on cardiac meds--she evidently tried everything and while her bitch would eat some things like various canned foods generally it ended up being something she'd eat for only a meal or two. But she found that her girl would eat broiled salmon filet's when she wouldn't eat anything else. And she would eat those miniature frosted wheat things.

The old girl that I was sitting while her owner was being sent all over the US for his job would eat most canned food for two meals --and no she wouldn't eat it alone. The vets whose very very old Pom I took care ate mostly canned cat food--the smellier the better. Mixed with a tablespoonful of kibble.

The odd things that the old Dobe bitch would eat included pasta with any kind of spaghetti sauce (either one I'd made or any canned or in the jar kind.

She also like the dried noodle things that half the world lived on in college--I did not add the seasoning packet --it's practically solid salt but she'd eat the noodles about every other day.

And the Dobes all would eat (practically anything if I cut up raw chicken gizzards or heart and either mixed them in to whatever kind of carb they were eating that day or tossed them on top of their kibble if they were eating that. Canned mackeral was something most of them would eat.

And I made chicken and rice often--that tended to be one they would eat most of the time--especially if the chicken was the stuff they sell in big packs--"hindquarters"--thigh and leg still hooked together. I cooked the chicken by simmering it until the meat was falling off the bones--stripped the cooked meat off the bones--chopped it up--saved the broth and poured some on every container of the meat which I froze in any kind of 8 oz container I had (mostly cottage cheese and sour cream tubs) and saved a bit of the broth for use for part of the liquid to cook the rice--I mixed about equal parts of chicken and rice.

The one male I took care of liked it if I'd give him some of my oatmeal --topped with coffee creamer--the kind that comes in quarts and diced raw giblets.

And Toad--he was a lucky dog--he never stopped eating--but he was only on Vetmedin and benazapril--and he ate up to and including his breakfast the day I took him to the clinic and he didn't come home with me.

I occasonally asked the cardiolgists who did the heart clinics for the Dobe club if this and that was OK to feed--I got the same answer every time. "Feed them anything they'll eat..."

Join the club . Eva will get to look at more things that Spoke eats that will horrify her...

dobebug

PS I basically stopped trying to hide meds in food for the cardio doggies--it seemed to just make them more reluctant to eat for fear the food had meds in it. What I did instead was to just drop the meds down their throats--even the big Vetmedin pills would go down easily and I'd do that before I fed them food--maybe half an hour before.
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post #24 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-06-2020, 07:22 AM
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That's good news SD. Give those loveys kisses for me. I'm glad to hear this!

I agree with the others let him eat what he likes. I feel that way about any senior dogs who go off eating.

I agree with MC about the tripe and dobebug about canned catfood. Those Coco would always eat. She actually loved canned catfood so that's how she took any meds she needed throughout her lifetime. They were put in a meatball of catfood.

Coco's go tos to restart her appetite was store bought rotisserie chicken that had to be hand fed to her. Did you hand feed Spock? If not try it. The other was bacon and scrambled eggs. Hand fed of course. If I hand fed her while sitting on the floor with her she would always eventually eat but not if I put it in her dish that first time. Once she had restarted she would then eat out of her dish.



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Coco Loco RIP April 16/09 to December 21/18
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post #25 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-06-2020, 07:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pamlocke View Post
There is an appetite stimulant, maybe you could try that? The name evades me right now but we had our boy on it for a little while and it really worked well.
I couldn't think of the name of either appetite stimulant when I read this but I was at the clinic today feeding the clinic cats and cleaning up the laundry and stuff and did remember to look.

The newest one I know of is called "Entyce" it's chemical name is capromorelin. I've never used it but i hear that this stuff has been getting rave reviews , expecially for getting older dogs to eat.

The other one isn't even really an appetite stimulant it's part of depression drugs used but it does work for both cats and dogs as an appetite stimulant
Ir's mirtazapine. One of our clients who had a non-eating dog (she's a pharmacist) asked if we could get her mirtazapine and find out what the appropriate dose was for her dog. So we got it for her and she rewarded us by telling us all about it and how well it worked as a stimulant.

So that's my hot tip for you for Spock (and I apologize to Spock for misspelling his name---I know he's really not Spoke)

dobebug
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