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#346644 - 01/14/18 07:47 AM Not good news
DarkEyes Offline
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Registered: 12/04/11
Posts: 208
Loc: Tennessee
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About a month ago, I noticed Abbey taking awhile to poop. Normally, she poops and goes on, but she started taking up to two minutes to poop. We kept an eye on her, thinking she probably got a little constipated from maybe foods being dropped to the floor and she snatched it up before we got to clean up after meals. Poop texture was normal, sometimes runny. So, pooping was the first sign, and what prompted me to take her to the vet was her legs shaking as she did her business, though it was clear she was not constipated. I was concerned that there might be something going on that could not be attributed to her age....

Well, the vet listened, took her for a walk, and checked her out all over. Not constipation, not sick, but he said she could be having hip pain. The way she was walking, and the sway of her hips and her struggling to poop are early signs of hip displasia. teary We talked about options and for now, start her on pain medication to block the pain signals so she might do better, and up her supplements with additional glucosamine.

We have already started her on supplements last year and are incorporating two daily walks instead of one, or substitute with good play in the house if the weather is unsuitable, or if we can't take our young kids with us. I am so sad this is happening! We are going to try to make her comfortable. I have a natural obstacle course outside that I used to have her run through, but I am eliminating that as it takes stairs and jumping, which are not good for dogs with hip displasia.

We were looking for another GSD, a very young dog, to get him/her started on her training and have Abbey to look up to. Considering things did not go well with the last prospective young dog and her current condition, we are going hold off on the search and focus on Abbey. Though we are now in the early stages, I worry about her being comfortable and the stress this may cause us.
_________________________
Abbey: 10 years old German Shepherd
Suki: 10 years old Calico kitty

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#346646 - 01/14/18 11:14 AM Re: Not good news [Re: DarkEyes]
Codmaster Offline
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Registered: 05/14/10
Posts: 1611
Loc: CA
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X-Rays of her hips?

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#346648 - 01/14/18 11:24 AM Re: Not good news [Re: Codmaster]
Woodreb Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 5425
Loc: New Milford, CT
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My old girl Rica had HD, diagnosed at 7 years old. We did a low dose of pred, glucosamine and other supplements. She did well until almost 13, even though the ortho vet said she would be crippled by 8.
The right set of supplements will probably be a big benefit to keep her comfortable and happy. Some mild hills in her walks will help to keep the muscles strong.
If possible, chiro and/or acupuncture could help as well.
_________________________
Johanna

Caleb (aka Caleb-Moose)
Ciara(aka Ciara Belle, Black Devil)

RIP Aodhán, Rica, Max, Kelly - gone but never forgotten - forever in my heart

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#346653 - 01/14/18 06:23 PM Re: Not good news [Re: Codmaster]
DarkEyes Offline
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Registered: 12/04/11
Posts: 208
Loc: Tennessee
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No x-Ray. I asked if it was needed, ready and willing to pay for an X-Ray to confirm and he said no, confident in what he has seen from her and what I have described. I trust him. They have GSDs in their family.
_________________________
Abbey: 10 years old German Shepherd
Suki: 10 years old Calico kitty

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#346659 - 01/15/18 05:18 PM Re: Not good news [Re: DarkEyes]
DarkEyes Offline
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Registered: 12/04/11
Posts: 208
Loc: Tennessee
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Here is a photo from our outing today. It was a little warmer and we got winter weather moving in, so I kicked everybody outside to soak up the sunlight and get Abbey exercised.


Doesn't she look so young!
_________________________
Abbey: 10 years old German Shepherd
Suki: 10 years old Calico kitty

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#346660 - 01/15/18 05:52 PM Re: Not good news [Re: DarkEyes]
Woodreb Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/18/10
Posts: 5425
Loc: New Milford, CT
Likes: 147
Yes, she does. Caleb has a lot more gray in his face and he is only 8!
_________________________
Johanna

Caleb (aka Caleb-Moose)
Ciara(aka Ciara Belle, Black Devil)

RIP Aodhán, Rica, Max, Kelly - gone but never forgotten - forever in my heart

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#346661 - 01/15/18 10:04 PM Re: Not good news [Re: Woodreb]
MaxaLisa Offline

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Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 19487
Loc: Northern CA
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You'll want a combination of supplements to help with the health of the joints and to keep inflammation down. If you're going to use arthritis drugs, be sure you are monitoring bloodwork and giving liver support.

I definitely agree with a chiro and acupuncture consult. My experience is that those are huge benefits, particularly with the GSD backs.

Make sure a tick disease has been ruled out, and for some of the tremoring, sometimes making sure the anal glands aren't stuck full is also helpful.
_________________________
MaxaL (aka LisaT)

Jazmine, mini-mix, 10/18/2011
Max-n-Indy
Max, 5/2001-2/2012, RIP my partner, my Regal Boy
Indy, 5/1997-10/2010, RIP my friend, my teacher

Health Index
K9 TBD info and Tick List Links
http://www.rabieschallengefund.org/

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#346666 - 01/17/18 07:21 AM Re: Not good news [Re: MaxaLisa]
DarkEyes Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/04/11
Posts: 208
Loc: Tennessee
Likes: 10
The glands are good and I looked into the tick disease. I will keep the symptoms in mind, for now she seems far too active and alert to be showing sickness. She eats well and has always been lean. For now, age and hip displasia best fit what is happening with her. I will check about her blood work when she has her annual, the vet may plan to do that anyway. She is on Deremax (spelling?). We discussed side effects and the vet is confident this is best fit for now. He has recommended consistent exercise, heat packs, and massages.

I checked with my friend who works in vet emergency care. She knows a couple of people that do chiro and acupuncture and will get me prices. Thanks for the suggestions! Your input is appreciated!
_________________________
Abbey: 10 years old German Shepherd
Suki: 10 years old Calico kitty

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#346667 - 01/17/18 07:24 AM Re: Not good news [Re: DarkEyes]
DarkEyes Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 12/04/11
Posts: 208
Loc: Tennessee
Likes: 10

Heres a photo from yesterday. We had a lot of fun, and Abbey loved playing in the snow, but after awhile, we could tell she was starting to have a hard time and was randomly limping. We sent her inside to give her the chance to rest and be in a warm place. What doea she do? She jumpes onto the couch (not allowed) and got her paws on the window and flipping out about not playing with us. That dog! She was NOT ready to go inside while we are outside.


_________________________
Abbey: 10 years old German Shepherd
Suki: 10 years old Calico kitty

Top Likes: 0 
#346672 - 01/17/18 07:41 PM Re: Not good news [Re: DarkEyes]
Shilohsmom Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 1723
Likes: 160
She looks wonderful. wub
_________________________
Rosa

Proud Mom to Eli and Kodiak
and never to be forgotten, Shiloh and Shoshi
Every dog deserves to have a human that thinks its the greatest dog that ever lived!

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