Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Eight Month Curse

Uuugghhh. What is going on in our little horse blogging community? First it was bad news for Gogo, then even worse news for Denali. And today I received some sad news of my own.

The past three animals that I've taken in have all died within eight months -- first, my little Jack Russel mix (picked up off the streets) developed Acute Lymphatic Leukemia; then Mac suffered from a massive colic; and finally Zamboni the barn-cat had a seizure. So, I had my fingers and eyes crossed for Sasha girl; I kept saying, "Just make it through the end of November and you'll have broken the eight-month curse, girl."

Ever since I've had her, I noticed that her back left leg toes in, and she doesn't walk straight on it; she brings it more towards her midline. She's only appeared to be in pain from it once or twice when she overdid things physically; and I had my vet take a look at it the last time she had a routine exam. He said that it was probably an old ligament injury, and that I should keep an eye on it and bring her in to be X-rayed if it started bothering her.

Well, with the cooler weather, she's been more active, and has been a little bit NQR on it a few nights. So, today I took her in for X-rays.

Oh. my. Gawd. The second I looked at them, even my untrained eye knew that they were very wrong. Apparently, some time in the distant past, Sasha was hit by a car. And nobody took her to the vet. Of course not. Why would you take a dog to the vet if it had been hit by a car? (That was sarcasm, if you couldn't tell.) Her whole left hip is collapsed, and she has bone spurs everywhere. Her right side has hip dysplasia and more bone spurs.

So. Where do we go from here? She has to lose a lot of weight. She can't go for long walks, but I'm supposed to try and get her to swim as much as possible. She's on Rimadyl for pain. That's all we can do. If she had been surgically treated after the accident, she would have been fine. That's what kills me. But since she wasn't treated (and it's far too late for that now), she has a year, maybe two, before that hip just falls apart.

Of course, I will not let her suffer. The minute she's in pain that the Rimadyl can't help, I will do the kind thing and let her go. I'm just so tired of people not doing right by their animals. I'm tired of cleaning up other people's messes.

At least she's comfy in her 2-layers-of-memory-foam bed!


Carol said...

I'm so sorry to read this and for all of your losses.
She looks beautiful in the lovely collar. I think you had it made?
You have a heart of gold.

eventer79 said...

Oh noooooooo! I am so sorry to hear this! Poor Sasha girl.

Just a thought you may want to consider. Rimadyl is generally the most common Rx the vets give out, but it is hard on the internal organs and can have nasty side effects. Might be worth looking into other options -- I've heard about a lot of discussion of it on pet forums as it's often prescribed for arthritis pain.

I thought about putting Smokey on it since her shoulder has flared up a bunch in the last year, but tried GLC Direct on the recommendation of a horse forum and it's been great for her.

Anyway, just thought I would throw that out there. Am hating the eight month curse for you!

SprinklerBandit said...

I'm so sorry to hear that. There really is some rotten luck going around. :'(

Best wishes for you and Sasha.

Alana said...

Don't give up hope on her. I certainly feel your pain on the cleaning up after others front. I have a LOT of rescues. My walker hound, Shawnee, I found after she had been mowed over by a car and left on the side of the road. Her hip was torn out of the socket so badly that the top of the femur was removed, and the socket, well, it had a lot done to it. Basically she has no hip. And both her front legs and her tail were broken in the wreck, and her other hip had a bullet wound.
Point being-I was worried that maybe I should just put her down, this random dog cost a lot of money to put back together, and I wasn't sure it was the right thing. It was, without a doubt. My hipless, crippled dog is one of the happiest dogs anyone has ever met. In very cold weather she may hop on the leg, but she is happy, and flies around with severe ADHD. Not many gave her a fighting chance, and she proved them all wrong. Terraboo, my other walker hound, has severe joint issues as well, hip dysplasia, some fusion in her hips, and basically the same issues as Sasha in her shoulder. As long as they are happy it is amazing what they can do.
I highly recommend some nice joint supplements for your girl.
Sorry this is so long, but I wanted you to see some success stories. The 'rotten luck' has hit so hard here, and not just in animals....good stories are nice to hear.

Frizzle said...

Thanks for the kind words and suggestions, guys! :-) It means a lot.

eventer79 (feels weird calling u that, lol), is the GLC Direct a prescription or over-the-counter? I have Sasha on Glycoflex 1 (glucosamine/chondroitin) right now, but I'll be switching her to Glycoflex 3 once this bottle runs out. I'm not terribly concerned about the Rimadyl, as I had Zoe on it for the better part of 11 years with no side effects. I know it can be hard on the liver, so of course Sasha had blood work done & we'll continue to monitor her. I do appreciate the suggestion, though, and will look into it. I'm always open to new things!

Alana, thanks for sharing your amazing success stories! Isn't incredible how much these animals deal with and are just perfectly happy? I NEVER would have suspected that Sasha had such severe injuries, as she runs around and is as happy as a lark; even my vet was pretty shocked when he saw her X-rays. Sasha's a strong girl with an incredible spirit. :-)

For the meantime, I'm doing everything I can for her -- I took the padding out of her bed and replaced it with two layers of memory foam, so she's now nice and comfy. I'm also going to ask my vet if he thinks Adequan and accupuncture would help her any. Keep your fingers crossed that her insurance will cover at least part of it (HA!).

eventer79 said...

Frizz, the GLC is just order off the website, no Rx required. It's just super concentrated feed through.