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This website gives some of the basics:

https://dogtime.com/dog-health/59753-von-willebrand-disease-dogs-symptoms-causes-treatments


vWD is a bleeding disorder. The affected dog's blood will take longer to clot than is normal. There are a few different types of vWD found in dogs; the kind found in dobermans is mild.

The condition is genetically caused—in general, in order for the dog to have symptoms, he needs to have inherited a mutant gene from each parent. A genetic test, like the one vetgen offers, will test for the mutant gene and tell you whether the dog is clear (no mutant gene), a carrier (one normal gene, one mutant gene) or affected (two mutant genes.) If the dog is a carrier, typically he will not have a bleeding problem. Even if he is genetically affected with two mutant genes, he may not seem to bleed excessively or spontaneously under ordinary conditions, and you may not realize he has a problem.

But an affected dog may have prolonged bleeding during surgery, so before any surgery, if his vWD status is unknown, a dobe should have some kind of testing to be sure his clotting ability is normal. Because a dog may need to go into surgery on an emergency basis, it is very useful if you know whether he is a genetically affected dog, so the vet can take extra precautions during the surgery. For routine surgeries like a neuter or spay of a vWD affected dog, the vet should ensure that he has supplies on hand that will help if the dog has problems during surgery.
 

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I'm probably going to get a lot of flack here because of what I believe. Neutering is actually a very simple procedure and I believe the low cost clinics are the way to go. That said, I would definitely do the vWD test first. The removal of his testicles will definitely change his behavior because of lowering his testosterone level. Because of the possibility of him accidentally breeding a bitch somewhere in his lifetime I think it's wise to neuter him. Darn, my horse vet just lays my dogs out on a table or the tailgate of his truck and does the surgery. I've NEVER had an issue
 

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Am new to DT and not seeing your boy’s age but have become very negative about early spay and neuter. If he is not at least a year old I would read up on the subject first. The UC Davis vet school study a few years back linked early spay and neuter to several health issues in larger dogs-bone and joint and ligament and I seem to recall others as well. After losing two male Dobes (in succession and unrelated but both having been neutered when a few months old and one also required ligament surgery) to bone cancer, our new girl, Tasha, will not be spayed until she is about 18 months old. She will have her normal hormones until she is grown.
 

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Discussion Starter #26 (Edited)
Now back from my little trip, it is getting close to neuter time.

We got a result back from VetGen, it says Loki is "Affected" Type 1 Von Willebrands disease. Nothing more. I'm not sure if there is another element to this test they will send. Do this info preclude a safe neuter?
Thank you in advance, for your replies!
Julia
 

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Now back from my little trip, it is getting close to neuter time.

We got a result back from VetGen, it says Loki is "Affected" Type 1 Von Willebrands disease. Nothing more. I'm not sure if there is another element to this test they will send. Do this info preclude a safe neuter?
Thank you in advance, for your replies!
Julia
Okay, affected means that he's got two copies of the gene that causes vWD, and he may have bleeding complications because of that. In which case, going to a vet who is familiar with vWD patients is the best option. One thing to have done before surgery is a bleeding time test. https://www.vet.cornell.edu/animal-health-diagnostic-center/laboratories/comparative-coagulation/clinical-topics/bleeding-time-tests
 

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Definitely find a vet who knows about Doberman vWD (there are a couple different types in dog breeds—the doberman one tends to be the least severe) and do a consult with him. There are tests that can be done in preparation for a surgery to see whether it is safe to proceed, and some products he can have ready in advance to help him manage any bleeding problems during surgery.

He can also tell you what kind of precautions and preparations you can make for your routine life. For example, you probably should have a first aid kit, specialized a bit for Loki's condition, on hand at all times. And of course, you need to tell any vet who works with him that he is a genetically affected vWD dobe (as opposed to a clinically affected, with overt symptoms.) A positive vWD gene test doesn't necessarily say he WILL have problems bleeding, just that there is more of a likelihood than with non-vWD dogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
RLM Loki is 2 weeks more than 1.5 years old at this time.
I forgot Loki did this:
"He even went under a rose bush or a cactus ( on leash). He was a little frantic because of a dog across the street and I was focused on that too...and he ended up with thorns stuck in his ears, cuts all over his head.... and looking like a war survivor."
He was pretty bloody and coagulated normally. I had had to remove dryness on his ear wound areas to get the thorns removed.
I'd like to not give up feeding the salmon oil. Some info on here says that it is bad for vWD affected dogs. I think it helps his fur. But I suppose I could switch to coconut oil???
Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Here we have a copy of the vet neuter estimate.
Loki is doing great, he is over 18 months. His fur is good and his training is happening! We are neutering him. Partly because we would like him registered at county. >>Its so funny on the vet info he is a Dachshund mix @ 90 lbs!!! We have micro chipped him already, and have a donut collar to use so total is 697.00 bucks. I'm not sure if the 1dexxx thing is plasma available??
thank in advance for you help, again, Julia. For your enjoyment Bella and Rott DWTS!!

10/5/2020 Preanesthetic Panel 1.00 $135.00 1.00 $135.00
10/5/2020 NEUTER 75 LBS - 100 LBS 1.00 $250.00 1.00 $250.00
10/5/2020 GABApentin 100mg capsules 1.00 $21.00 1.00 $21.00
10/5/2020 Bupivicaine Block 1.00 $35.00 1.00 $35.00
10/5/2020 IDEXX von Willebrand Factor*┼ 1.00 $231.00 1.00 $231.00
 

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"Its so funny on the vet info he is a Dachshund mix @ 90 lbs!!!

Perfect!

You should keep that erroneous veterinarian documentation is case you ever get caught up in some Breed Specific Bias bull$h***. My son had to jump through hoops to keep his homeowner's insurance, when the company inadvertently found out he owned a Doberman. It took getting his vet on board and sending a rep out to assure them that a mellow 11 yo semi disabled dog was not a threat! Ugh...

John Lichtwardt
Portland OR
 

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Here we have a copy of the vet neuter estimate.
Loki is doing great, he is over 18 months. His fur is good and his training is happening! We are neutering him. Partly because we would like him registered at county. >>Its so funny on the vet info he is a Dachshund mix @ 90 lbs!!! We have micro chipped him already, and have a donut collar to use so total is 697.00 bucks. I'm not sure if the 1dexxx thing is plasma available??
thank in advance for you help, again, Julia. For your enjoyment Bella and Rott DWTS!!

10/5/2020 Preanesthetic Panel 1.00 $135.00 1.00 $135.00
10/5/2020 NEUTER 75 LBS - 100 LBS 1.00 $250.00 1.00 $250.00
10/5/2020 GABApentin 100mg capsules 1.00 $21.00 1.00 $21.00
10/5/2020 Bupivicaine Block 1.00 $35.00 1.00 $35.00
10/5/2020 IDEXX von Willebrand Factor*┼ 1.00 $231.00 1.00 $231.00
That's a good question—I thought IDEXX was a reference lab. I'm wondering if it's a specific test to see what level his vWD factor is currently (it can vary)?? I would ask what supplies they plan to have available if the vWD turns out to be a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
That 231 $ item is a redo of the genetic vwb test. My vet will accept the Vetgen test. But now they don't want to do it and suggest a bigger hospital. The emergency hospital doesn't do neuter but would do Loki's for 2500-3000 bucks....!:( What a pandoras box!!! Crazy!! My poor rescue boy.... I want him to able to be boarded at our friends also.

He's not on fish oil right now. We ran out, both dogs are on Salmon Sweet potato kibble. I wonder if fish kibble is bad , makes Loki's blood thin/?
 

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I'm so irritated I can hardly bring myself to be polite. The test for vWD factor is just a test to see how much circulating vWD factor he's got in his blood--the problem with the danged Elisa Assay is that it is only measuring what's there for the moment the blood draw happened. If the thought of neutering a vWD postitive male is that frightening they should be doing a buccal clotting test (the make a small hole in a gum and see how long it takes to clot--a dog who is vWD positive and "clinical"--bleeds excessively and for a long time can be easily identified that way. And those are done the day of surgery and usually immediately before surgery. And they are, in the world of surgical procedures, cheap!.

What you need is either a spay neuter clinic where they do a whole bunch of this stuff and even if your boy was clinical--this isn't even invasive surgery--you might worry about a vWD positive bitch not clotting and leaking into her abdomen for so long because no one noticed the slow bleeding--that's how they lose vWD clinical dogs who have invasive surgery. But I though your dog had both testicles properly descended into his scrotum--so it's not such a big deal.

Or you need to find a vet who's been doing neuters on dogs so long that he isn't going to be particularly concerned about the possiblity of a bleed out for a routine neuter.

Or of course you could leave him intact. Most of my males remain intact if they don't have a pressing need in later years to be neutered because of a something going on that neutering would stop. Primarily it would be a prostate issue--chronic or acute prostatitis. And I've neuter some of my dogs for those reasons but even with multiple males they start out intact because I show them in conformation and they have to be intact. I leave them intact because I spend time to teach them to not do things like pee on the sofa or the kitchen door etc.

So yes--that is a specific test to check the level of factor circulating at any particular time. They don't need it--a buccal clotting test is all they need--really.

Even if he was on fish oil they only need to have you stop that for two weeks prior to surgery.

The fish kibble would not be a problem but unless you have an allergy issue the latest feeding information leans toward recommending grain (corn is fine--wheat--rarely an issue in dogs, rice, barley etc.) Many of the fancy no grain blends have turned out to be responsible for diet related DCM in breeds not know to be particularly affected by DCM.

But that's another issue.

If they were really worried about bleed outs they'd be wanting to have several things on hand in case there was a bleeding issue. And if they don't know what those things are they can Google them or ask the closest vet surgical specialist.

I'm sorry--I'm being rude to you and it's not your fault that given the information you already have for your boy that this particular vet doesn't want to do the surgery. Vet's have been successfully neutering male Dobermans long before anyone really knew anything about vWD. I was around and had Dobes then too.

Bah, Humbug I sez...

dobebug

PS Keep giving him the fish oil--I have friends with vWD affected bitches who were on fish oil all their lives with not problems. Coconut oil does not do the same thing for them as fish oil.

dobebug
 

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I think you may be misunderstanding—I believe she's upset that the vets you've run across are running away from a surgery that shouldn't be so terribly complicated that they feel they have to charge exorbitant prices, thousands of dollars, just to do a neuter.

Many vets who don't know the dobe form of vWD (which is the mildest form of vWD) get really scared and start to overdo the precautions, and charge their clients an arm and a leg for it. There isn't really that much need to do a complicated and expensive elisa test, for example, to determine vWD factor levels the day of the surgery for a simple neuter. A buccal test (a controlled cut inside the dog's lip which is timed to see how long it takes to clot) is a relatively simple and cheap way for them to determine if they can go ahead with the surgery, or if they will need to take extra precautions.

Yes, they need to know the dog is a vWD dog. A vet may even feel they need to have on hand a blood product that provides extra vW factor if they run into problems. But they aren't doing abdominal surgery or some other kind of invasive surgery that can be bloody even under normal conditions. For a neuter, it's all right there…you can see the bleeding, if it is excess (a spay you may not be able to, because you have gone into the abdomen, and you can get into trouble with an internal bleed you don't realize is there.) A neuter is also a fairly fast procedure.

You can expect them to charge a little more for the procedure—but it shouldn't be 10X more.
 

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I apologize Princess Bella--Melbrod is right I was very aggravated that you were yet another owner, trying to do the right thing for your dog and they were preparing to charge an arm and a leg for what is very basic and pretty simple surgery. I work for a vet clinic--I've worked there for almost 17 years now and even though the clinic is a relatively expensive one our vets try to stay up to date on problems specific various breeds. The clinic owner thinks that is important.

And there really are vets who know about vWD in Dobermans and understand what the risks are and I couldn't be more sorry that it came across as insulting.

I really apologize but it still makes me furious that vets don't find out more about what they are dealing with before they charge unsuspecting clients as if they were doing a heart transplant and what the emergency clinic quoted you is absurd.

Again, I'll say that I'm sorry and hope you don't leave because of my hissy fit--it definitely was not aimed at you nor your nice boy.

I sincerely hope you find a vet who isn't worried about doing a pretty routine surgery and will charge you accordingly.

dobebug
 

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Discussion Starter #40 (Edited)
Thank you for your apology Dobebug, I appreciate and accept it:)
I think at this point we have 2 choices.
Go to neuter clinic, shut up, hope for the best, save money.
Go to new vet hospital, shut up, hope for the best, hope they do the gum slice bleeding test, pay normal neuter fee. Possibly they would become our new vet.
 
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