Jul. 11th, 2008

spiceofbroadway: (Dogmom - eyesthatslay)
7:45 am: 40.2 °C

She's even more lethargic this morning. Urine looked normal, as far as I could tell. I'll be calling the vet as soon at the office opens.
spiceofbroadway: (Dogmom - eyesthatslay)
I just talked to the vet again, and I'm going to bring Bella in for some more tests. She's going to repeat the bloodwork, see if she can get a urine sample, and maybe take an x-ray to see if her uterus is swollen. Bella's not drinking, so she may put her on an IV to keep her hydrated. She may also put her on a broad-spectrum antibiotic and see if that helps.

Bella's not vomiting, she doesn't have diarrhea, and there's no discharge from her vulva. I offered her a liver treat this morning, and she ate it. I was going to lift her up on the bed, and she whimpered a little, so I left her on her pillow. She might be sore from the fever (my joints always hurt when I have a fever), or something inside might hurt. She's quite reluctant to move.

I called doggy daycare, and no other owners have reported sick dogs. So at the moment, Bella has a "fever of unknown origin."

::frets::
spiceofbroadway: (Default)
I'm sitting here at work and getting NOTHING done. Except fretting. Oh yes, lots of fretting is being accomplished.

The vet just called. Bella's RBC count has actually gone up slightly since last night, so that rules out internal bleeding or anything chewing up her red blood cells (such as an autoimmune reaction to last week's vaccine). The x-ray didn't show anything, and there's still no vaginal discharge, so her uterus is probably fine. Her white blood cell count has increased since last night, which suggests that her body is mounting a defense against some kind of inflammation or infection. Her temperature is 40.1°C.

She fed Bella a soupy mixture of tinned food and lots of water, so she's gotten fluids into her that way. She obtained a urine sample and said that there are more casts in it than she would have expected. A "cast" is apparently kidney cellular debris. Some dogs naturally have more in their urine than others, but Bella had enough that there might be something going on with her kidneys.

The most likely cause is some kind of infection, so she's going to start Bella on amoxicillin. Amoxicillin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic that is effective against Lyme disease and, yes, leptospirosis. I haven't seen any ticks on Bella, but I suppose she could have picked one up on a pack walk, and we were up at Jim's cottage for an hour two weekends ago. There's a plastic kiddy pool there that had a puddle of leaves and muck from over the winter. I caught Bella drinking from it, pulled her away, and showed her where her water dish was. The vet is going to initiate tests for Lyme and lepto, but it takes a couple of weeks to get the results back. I gather that lepto is hard to diagnose definitively anyway.

Linus was at Jim's cottage several times and never got sick. Katie has been going there regularly for years (Doug owns one-third of it) and hasn't gotten sick. Bella's been up twice and was there for less than a hour the second time. After all my agonizing, if it turns out to be lepto...

::headdesk::

At least it's doesn't look like an autoimmune issue. If it is Lyme or lepto, it can be cured, and I whisked her into the vet within an hour of getting home and discovering that she wasn't well. Jim thought I was overreacting a little, but he knows how attached I am to her: she's my best girl ever...

Anyway, the vet said that Bella is comfortable and alert, she still has an appetite, and hopefully she'll respond to the amoxicillin. Barring any unforeseen complications, I'll pick her up at 5:30 tonight and hear what else the vet has learned by then.
spiceofbroadway: (Default)
Bella's home. She had a shot of amoxicillin around 1 pm, and I have a three-week supply of pills to give her. Her temperature is about the same, but the vet said that she looked perkier at the end of the day than in the morning. She was "vocalizing" at the cat in the kennel above her. :-) Hopefully, the amoxicillin will do what needs to be done.

She's still very lethargic, and she needed help getting into the car. I think her joints are sore because when I bumped against her elbow, she gave a little yelp. When we got home, she made a beeline for the back door--she really had to pee. Now she's lying on her pillow by the couch and moving as little as possible. In a little while, I'll mix her dinner with some water (to keep her fluids up).

I'll be taking her temperature several times a day for the next few days and keeping track of pees and poops. The vet is going to send a urine sample off for culture and DNA analysis to test for lepto. If it comes back positive, it means that there's lepto in her system, but it won't prove that that's what made her sick. For that, you need to do two blood titres two weeks apart. The vet saved some serum from today for the first sample and will collect a second one if we need to. Analysis of the blood titres is really expensive, but if the urine analysis indicates lepto, I want to know for sure. It'll be useful information for me and for other people in the area who struggle with the question of whether to vaccinate for lepto or not.

Poor Boo. She was happy to see me, and I think she's glad to be home, but between feeling sick and losing a lot of her coat lately, she looks rather woebegone.
spiceofbroadway: (Default)
Her temperature at this afternoon was 40.1C.

8:45 pm: 39.9C.

At least it's going in the right direction.

Liz just called me--I sent her an email telling her about Bella this afternoon. Bounty spiked a fever last week for a day, and then it went away on its own. She suggested getting some Metacam from the vet if Bella is still feverish and sore tomorrow--it'll make her feel better, if nothing else.

I'm quite touched that she phoned me. Liz is really, really nice. :-)

11 pm: 40.2C ::sigh::

She ate lots of dinner, so that's gotta be a good thing. She's walking a little better, but stairs are a challenge.

I hate this.

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