Lady Symone

*Sigh*

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This bulldog. She is not doing so well. As I mentioned before, she has been having head tremors. They happen about every 10 days, and the episode lasts 15 minutes. Then she goes back to her normal spunky self, and all is well. Something has changed though. She had an episode within 4 days of a previous one, and her “personality” has definitely changed. The only way I can describe it…it’s like she has dementia and depression. photo 1 (37)

She sleeps more, and plays less. She doesn’t have patience for the other dogs when they are playing. She randomly gets up and wanders around the house. When I go see what she is doing, she has a very confused glazed look. So, she went to the vet on Thursday, and the techs and vet noticed that she was different too. Dr. M made a potential diagnosis of GME.

Granulomatous meningoencephalomyelitis (GME) is an inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS) that leads to the formation of granuloma(s) —  a ball-like collection of immune cells formed when the immune system tries to wall off foreign substances — which can be localized, diffused, or involving multiple locations, such as the brain, spinal cord and surrounding membranes (meninges).

Symptoms:

  • Blindness
  • Drowsiness -check!
  • Circling -wandering? check!
  • Seizures -check!
  • Behavioral changes -check!
  • Weakness of hind limbs (parapresis) -check!
  • Weakness of all four limbs (tetraparesis)
  • Constant head pressing against objects

Dr. M wasn’t positive though, and testing would include a MRI which is thousands of dollars…something the rescue can’t afford. The partner vet at the practice has had a dog die from GME, so Dr. M asked that I bring Symone back again on Friday, for a second opinion.

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So, Symone spent a second day at the vet today. The other vet, Dr. D actually thought Symone was drugged when she first saw her; that’s how sleepy and glazed she looked. She checked Symone out, and thinks that while GME is possible, it could also just be seizures. Now, what is causing those seizures? Brain tumor? Genetics? GME? We really don’t know right now. So their plan is to start her on a very low dose of seizure meds, and wait two weeks (that’s how long it takes the medication to be at a therapeutic level). If I notice a change, and she is getting more like her old self, then it is likely that it is not GME, and she can be managed with the medication. If there is no change, then the changes are not from the seizures. They will then begin to treat her for GME, which includes lots of steroids. There is no cure for GME, and with her age, it’s not a good diagnosis, that’s for sure. So hopefully it is just the seizures, as dogs can live with them for a long time, and medication can manage them, at least for a little while.

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We’ll wait to see how the next two weeks ago, and what the treatment plan is, to decide whether we will continue with looking for a forever home. If it’s seizures that can be managed, then we’ll keep searching for that perfect retirement home! If not, well we’ll deal with that when the time comes. She has a place in my home for as long as she needs it!

So, that’s that. Please keep Lady Symone in your thoughts over the next couple of weeks, and pray for improvements!

Have a great weekend, friends!

xoxo

Hound Dogs and Bulldogs

Hello friends!

So, I have some news. Nothing as exciting as adoptions, but news nonetheless!

First things first, Tooley has gone to a new foster home. It is very very rare that I would ever agree to one of my fosters going to a new foster home, but I truly think this will be a great setting for Tooley. I am going out of town for a week for work, so she would have had to go somewhere while I was gone. There is a guy from the doggie daycare that she goes to, who loves her but can’t adopt, and he asked about fostering her. So, the timing couldn’t have been better. Tooley knows him well, so I knew she’d be ok. He also has a gorgeous male bloodhound, who also goes to daycare, so Tooley knows and loves him too! Tooley has blossomed in my home, and come a long way. However, she is still a bit shy around men. Lord knows there’s no men comin’ around here.  This guy is also very knowledgeable about dogs, so he can continue helping Tooley in a safe, patient manner. It will help her become more comfortable around men, she’ll continue learning how to share and be in new settings. Also, he lives in an apartment, so we can officially find out how she does without a yard! I think she will be fine, because she can’t be trusted in a yard without supervision anyway (darn hound nose!). So, I took her over to his house last night, and everything went well. The bloodhound, Iggy, is so stinking cute, and was very happy to have Tooley there! And, if it fails, she will come back to me, but I really don’t think it will. Also, we have had THREE inquiries on her this week! Hopefully one of these will work out, and she’ll have a forever home soon! And the rescue will have a new foster home to use!

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Now on to my other foster pup, Symone. She had another “episode” yesterday. I have done some research, contacted her previous owner, and asked some various experts. It seems that she is having head tremors. Her owner said that she has had them before, only 3-4 times in the couple of years that they had her. I also asked Adopt-a-Bull Rescue, who shared a great article with me, and said that tremors are very common in English Bulldogs. I also asked a vet, who’s opinion I trust whole-heartedly, and he said it sounds like petit mal seizures. Soooo…..I don’t know! I obviously am not a vet. It seems like she is having head tremors, not seizures, because during the episodes she can walk, has no distress, breathes normal, and they last almost 15 minutes exactly. In fact, yesterday she literally fell asleep while having the tremors. Unfortunately, there is not all that much info out there regarding tremors, and the way to diagnose it is by ruling out everything else. Symone is considered a senior, so putting her through all kinds of testing is not recommended. So basically, as I said before, the treatment is to monitor her closely, track when they happen & how often. It is concerning that she’s had two w/in a few weeks, unlike when she was with her adopter. Especially since she has adjusted and settled in so well here. Hopefully she still has a happy future, with no pain, being her silly lovable bulldog self!

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Well, that’s all of the news from this corner of the world! I have to get Symone over to one of our foster’s house, also a wonderful friend of mine, where she will hang for the week that I am gone.

Have a great weekend, friends! 

xoxo

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PS: Don’t forget! Lucy & Oscar are in the Garden & Gun Magazine 2014 Good Dog Photo contest. Please take a moment to click on the links below, and vote for each of them! You can vote every day, if you feel inclined! Thank you!

Lucy: http://bit.ly/1r1iSxX

Oscar: http://bit.ly/1qrnHNc