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I am new to this forum, but I know that a lot of you will understand what we are going through. My 5 year old rescue dobergirl has been diagnosed with DCM, three months ago, no symptoms, but grade 4 murmur detected and subsequent testing. apparently in very early stages. Until she started coughing last week . . . it seems to be progressing very quickly and we are devastated. We were told 1-3 years before any symptoms, by a cardiology specialist. I know this is not an exact science, but 3 months I was not prepared for, if you can ever be prepared . . . .

Daisy is on 30 mg Lasix 2/day, 20 mg Benazepril/day, awaiting ultrasound before starting Vetmedin. After starting Lasix the coughing stopped for one week, only to reoccur in the last 2 days.

I had a dachshund who died in my arms after suffering acute CHF, and I cannot imagine putting her through this. I almost am at the point of wanting to put her down before it gets too bad :( :( but I cannot as long as she is relatively happy.

I dont' know what to expect or what I want from you, the readers. Maybe just to know that I am not alone in watching her breathe, not being able to sleep at night, and close to tears all the time. . . .
 

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You're not alone. My boy's baseline testing was in the gray area when he was two... I knew it would be coming, but caught it soooo early. He was officially diagnosed a bit later than your girl, still completely asymptomatic... his test results and age at diagnosis were pretty much exactly the same as those of his cardiologist's Doberman, who had lived to thirteen and ultimately died of other than DCM. That just implanted in my head, that I had caught it early, started treatment early, and he was just like the dog who lived to a ripe old age. I was wholly unprepared for his rapid decline... shocked and disbelieving. I let him go when he was tired but not (I hope) suffering. I, too, watched my dog breathe. I am sorry that you are having to go through this... it is very hard, but you find yourself able to do what you need to do, and able to be strong so that your dog doesn't have to worry about you.
 

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I am so sorry to hear this. Many people here have gone through this, I am one of them. Greta had four months after diagnosis. I know what you feel, it is a nightmare. You describe the same thing I experienced: watching my dog breathe and realizing it was getting worse and worse, there was nothing we could do. Stay strong, you will, and let your girl have a good time with a lot of love. Well, what else can we do, right?
Feel free to continue this thread of yours to keep us up to date. I experienced it somehow comforting to tell our sad story here at the forum.
 

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Holier Than Now
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I am so sorry.

It's got to be one of the hardest things about loving a Doberman, and knowing what a fabulous breed they are, what loyal, loving souls they have.

There's no right answer here, and I'm convinced it's different for each dog and their human.

Some just do not stablize with the meds. Some do, no one seems to know why one will and another won't.

As you know, CHF ain't an easy or pretty death, though.

Sigh, sorry, memories, and grief.

I got two weeks from diagnosis to death, on a very young dog. If I had it to do over, I wouldn't have kept him going those last few days--that was for me, not him.

I'm really sorry you're facing this. Please post some pics, if you're up to it.
 

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I am very sorry to hear that. This is how life is, sad moments will be always a part.... be strong and you never know cause in life everything is possible...
 

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I'm so sorry--it's just not fair.

I had one too, who died of DCM. My thoughts and prayers will be with you and yours.
 

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I am genuinely sorry for you having to go through this, you aren't alone and I agree just sharing your story, thoughts, anger and sadness somehow, acts as therapy and keeps us going. Good luck and I will be thinking of you. xx
 

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Sorry to hear about your dobergirl. With meds she could be happy for a long while. Its the hardest thing but she will let you know when it is time.
 

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i am truely sorry... i lost my first dobie to DCM.... i hate this disease and I hate that you have to go through it...
 
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Im so sorry for you. Although this disease has never touched my life, I had a beautiful girl that suffered with Addison's, and it ultimately stole her form me. Some would say it was easier to deal with, but it can sneak up and steal them sometimes faster, and more unexpected. I had no clue and lost her within a 9 hr period.
The only advice I can give you is to follow your heart, and let it lead you where you need to go. You will know, and your dobe will tell you when the time is right, it will be hard, but it will be right. I will pray for you and your baby, and hope that you both have a long time to share with each other.
 
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I understand your frustration and hurt. It is a hard disease to deal with and we really have nothing to guide us on preventing it so we wait and hope that we will find a magic bullet that will be a cure all.

Bless you for rescuing and for being there for your girl.
 

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My first male doberman died from DCM ...when he was diagnosed the vet said he would live 6 months..he was correct. I changed his eating habits to no salt and he was on meds/lasix etc. The last day he was suffering and I called the vet that it was time. I held him in my arms as the vet gave the shot. Fill your heart with precious memories and pictures........which there is no price!!
 

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First of all, welcome to the forum and so sorry you have found us under these circumstances. I am so very, very sorry for your girl's diagnosis. My Baron also has early stage DCM. You can read his progress on his thread: http://www.dobermantalk.com/doberman-health/53082-baron-has-dcm.html

This is a horrible, horrible disease in this breed and you will find lots of information on here to read. Fortunately, Baron is responding well to meds. Please feel free to PM me if you need to vent or talk. My thoughts and prayers are with your girl.
 

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I'm convinced it's different for each dog and their human.

Some just do not stablize with the meds. Some do, no one seems to know why one will and another won't.

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This is exactly what I've found as well, through personal experience. It's different for every dog, and some respond much better to treatment than others.

From my own experience, I've come to feel I'll give a dog one chance to stablilize after going into CHF. If the dog has to constantly have their meds tweaked to keep them stable, it's time for me to be thinking about letting them go. But that's just my decision after going down this road with more than one dog, everyone has to make their own decisions.

My heart goes out to the OP-this is a horrible, horrible disease. Be strong and treasure every good moment you get with your girl.
 

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My heart goes out to you, Been there... it is just so hard. I swore I would not own another. But I have just taken in a rescue. I pray everyday that his heart stays strong. Bless you
 

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I'm so sorry.
 
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I am truly and deeply sorry for what you are going though. I lost my boy Petey 7 weeks ago to DCM. He lived 20 months after his diagnosis at the age of 3. He never went into CHF, he died suddenly. For which I'm eternally grateful for. It was hard to watch him pass, but there was no suffering. He lived a full happy life until that moment. Petey's litter mate died 5 weeks before him from CHF, his DCM was never diagnosed and it came on very suddenly and he had to be PTS with in hours. Petey was on 7 different medications for the last 6 months of his life and had been medicated since about month 3 after diagnosis. His disease was not caught early and it was progressing at lightening speed, his cardiologist was very aggressive with the medications and he was able to shrink his heart back to normal measurements, but after that he developed severe arrhythmia for his final 6 months of life. Each day we had together was a blessing. I agree with the others, each dog handles the disease differently.

One thing I want to share with you that I learned from my Petey, don't mourn the death before it happens. Try to put the DCM out of your mind and enjoy each precious moment you have left.

Keeping you in thoughts, sending out hugs and positive vibes.
 

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I am so sorry to hear of your girl's diagnosis. I lost my first Dobie girl to cancer at the age of 6. No matter what takes them, it is bone crushing grief when we lose of these beautiful, loving animals. I have a 2 yr old red boy ( resc ue)...and I am constantly looking at him to check for any signs....
God bless you and your girl....I pray you get excellent cardiology followup, and a long and healthy extended life for your girl . Margie, Max and Angel Isis
 
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