Monday, November 4, 2013

Bouncing Boxer

Reese is usually a bouncing, licking, loving, energetic, snugly dog, so when he goes a few days not acting like himself, it causes alarm... When it has been a few weeks it causes panic! There were a few warning signs, not wanting to go running, not eating, and lack of energy. We took him to the vet last Monday for some testing, they wanted to follow-up with more testing on Tuesday. All those tests we ran and there was nothing found, they said it was probably a bacterial infection in his intestines. We would treat it with an anti-vomit medication and some bland food. We were instructed if he wasn't better to bring him back for some more testing...
On Friday the fun really began; Reese began drinking gallons and gallons of water. Well as most of you can guess, with increased water consumption comes increased urination; we were going outside about every 15 minutes and he was still having a few accidents in between. We could not figure out what was going on. My initial thought was diabetes; Ben thought damn dog just wants attention (he really does love Reese, even though he puts up a hard front). I was up with him 6 times on Friday night/Saturday morning. Saturday was worse, he couldn't relax or lay down for more then a few minutes. I had to head to the store when Ben got home from work, I was gone for 20 minutes when I got a call, telling me to please come home, Ben had been outside with Reese numerous times and he still had two accidents in the house. I got home and found Reese was standing by his missing water dish whining. After a call to the emergency line to the vet, it was determined that if his UTI culture came back negative they couldn't do anything for him until Monday; so we made an appointment for right away Monday morning.
The weekend was slow going with bathroom breaks every 20 minutes and an extreme lack of sleep; but Monday came and I was hoping for relief, Ben had left for his last week of class in DC on Sunday, leaving me as the sole care taker of our three children and our suddenly sick canine. When we met with Dr. W; he said he was doing some extensive research before we arrived trying to figure out what was going on. There was an extreme zig zag of symptoms and none of them added up to anything concrete. So we decided do to some more blood work, to compare it last weeks blood work; and Reese and I went home. At 3pm Dr. W called me to tell me that Reese's blood work came back normal... But Dr. W decided to run an enzyme culture on his blood as well and he found some alarming results; Reese's Potassium level was off the charts and his Sodium level was barley detectable. I had no idea what that meant; so I asked for further explanation. Apparently the combination of the two is a good indicator of 'Addison's Disease', it is very rare in humans and just as rare in dogs; most dogs go undiagnosed which can result in death. Dr. W said that their office usually sees less then 5 cases a year. To make 100% sure that this is what Reese was suffering from we had to take more blood and send them to an outside lab to have the test run.
So we brought Reese back to the vet for another round of blood draws and Dr. W gave him an injection of medication that he will need to get better from this.
I am so thankful for a Veterinarian that didn't just stop after seeing the second round of blood was normal, but decided to take it a step further and help us find an answer! Reese is a huge part of our family and I am looking forward very much to having our bouncy Boxer back!

And for him to begin snuggling with me at night again! I do miss that.

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