View Full Version : Beautiful Female American Red Nose -How did she get so sick?

12-12-2007, 08:55 AM
I'm new to this forum. What brings me here today is my Pitt, Chloe. She is 5 years old, so happy and full of energy, and my Vet is telling me that is very, very sick. I don't really know where to turn to get some advise and some education on her "diagnosis". Basically, she threw up once about 10 days ago, then stopped eating her dog food for the next two days. So, I started to feed her cooked brown rice and beef. She gobbled it up. For two days she ate the rice and beef and was acting like her normal goofy self. Then, I started to feed her 1/2 rice and beef and the other 1/2 her dog food. Over 24 hours later she started trowing up again. It was solid and undigested after 24 hours. Now she is still drinking and wants to eat. I know she must be starving, it's day 7 and she really only kept down two small meals. So, I tried again with 1/4 dog food and 3/4 rice and beef. The next morning (day eight), I woke up to piles of vomit and Chloe was not acting herself. I cleaned it all up and let her rest for a few hours. I was out of her site for about 2 hours, when I went back down stairs, I found that she threw up several more times and now has diahrea with quite a bit of blood in it. So, I called our vet and made arrangements to bring her in. A few hours later, more bloody diahrea and vomit. So, later that day the vet examined her, took blood tests, and x-rays. The Dr. came back to say, it was not something she ate, like a forign object, and her blood work came back very good and normal. Although, there is an un-clear and questionable mass around her upper abdomine and she is slightly dehydrated. They suggested keeping her in ICU with fluids and doing an ultrasound in the morning. We listened. The next day I received a phone call from the hospital that basically said it is one of two things. Cancer, and in this area of her body (outside the large and small intestines, where they begin and all connect), most of the time it is not the benign kind. The second guess is an infectious disease, that is probabley not treatable. I am waiting for those results to come back in the next day or so. Anyway, I brought her home last night and again she is her normal goofy self. Wants to play and run and cuddle. With the exception that I am feeding her a tablespoon of food (from the vet) every 4 hours. She drinks on her own. I don't get it, how did this happen? Could they be wrong? She's not acting like she is in any pain at all. The vet doesn't want to tell me anything at this point, because they don't have the final results yet. They don't want to answer any of my questions and are very vague about everything. Does anyone have any advise?

12-12-2007, 03:45 PM
I'm so sorry to hear about your problem. Here if our dogs get vilently ill we starve them for 24 to 48 hours then start back on rice and hamburger like you did, but blood is a serious issue. Let me start by saying my thoughts are with you in this awful time and I hope it isn't cancer. Second I would insiste that the vet tell me everything, if they we're doing so to my setisfaction I would be telling them so and asking them to tell me everything. Third I would seek out a second opinion, espically if they're not seeing to your and your pets very important needs. I would look for another qualified vet or a collage, I would take a vet collage over an actual vet in this situation, they're more willing to help and figure things out, not to mention the mass of qualified people in these areas. Fourth I would consider sending all the information you have to a vet you can write, in my case I would be sending the info to Truro Vet as they're vet techs have email addys, and they could let me know what my vet is possibly thinking that I don't know.

Good luck to you and please keep us updated. Hopefully her healthy vitality will help pull her through this horrific time.

12-13-2007, 07:27 AM
Thanks for your reply. I am taking her to see an Internist today. Yesturday, the vet called with her results and they said they found cancer. They said it's Lymphoma? I'll have to do some research on it today, because I know nothing about it. I am in such dis-belief because she seemed so happy and healthy. I will look into a Vet college, that never crossed my mind. I got all of her labs and x-rays for a second opinoin, where hopefully this doctor can better answer my many questions, that her current vet didn't want to answer. I guess some vets can be pretty cold. I am having a hard time getting these guys to talk to me, both at their office and over the phone. I didn't think I would ever be researching cancer treatment for my dog, but if you come accross any web sites or any good info, please pass it along. In the meantime, I'm going to search the web for some info. :cry:

12-13-2007, 03:57 PM
Actually there is a little information on it here on this website. Chemo therpy is a major option as it dose not effect dogs the way it dose humans and the recovery rate is actually very good. I'll take a look around and see if I can come up with more on the web.

12-14-2007, 08:24 AM

Well, I went to see the internist yesturday, and she was so nice, patient, and explained everything to me. I wish I had found them sooner. Anyhow, they were able to remove some tissue from an enlarged node with a needle instead of opening her up. The other place did not give me that option. This is to determine that it is 100% Lymphona and what stage of cancer she has . She did explain that Lymphona is one the more treatable cancers. Statistics are 50% to 75% survival rate. With a life expectancy of one to two more years, and that includes treatment time, which is typically 6 months. Once a week to the vets for aggressive drug treatment and bloodwork. She did explain that it is not like humans. They do not push animals with drugs as much as we do with humans. Also, dogs won't loose their hair or anything like that. On the other hand, dogs can still get sick from the meds, have an allergic reaction, or may not take to the treatment and get even sicker. Please, all of you dog lovers, tell me you'r opinion. Do you put your dog through all of that for 2 years of life? With the statistics I included above, the routine doctor visits, and the chance of still loosing your dog, is it the right decision? What kind of life is that for a dog? I am so torn, this is one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make. My dog hates the vets office more than anyplace on earth, and until we decide for or against chemo, she is not getting any meds either because they can alter further tests. On the opposite end if we don't want to consider chemo, than she would be put on steroids and others meds right away, that will help her feel better, protect her upset tummy, and keep her from vomitting anymore. The steroid, if she reacts well to it, should give her 6 to 8 weeks comfortably at home. What would you do if this was your dog? :?:

12-14-2007, 04:06 PM
If it were my dog, I would go all out, I love my girl, she is my life, and I would do everything I could for her, but expense is also an issue and I'm not a rich person so alot would rely on my vet too. No one can make this decision for you, your values and beliefs will play a bigger role in your decision then anything we can say. But take heart that no matter what the decision, you loved your dog very much and you have been there for her and done all you could for her to ensure her health and good living. Wait for the test results then reserch all your options, that is the biggest bit of advice I could ever give you. From there, its all up to you.

12-20-2007, 12:52 PM
Well, I got my Christmas wish and don't want anything else this Christmas! You're not going to believe this, but Chloe is getting better. Monday, the internist called me with her test results from the biopsy and said that this may not be cancer. The results casted such a doubt that Chloe is no longer a canidate for chemo. They found 1/2 the cells did look like lymphona, but the other 1/2 looked damaged due to inflammation. I brought her back to the internist on Tuesday for more tests and to pick up anti-biotics. By Tuesday, she had already been on steroids for 5 days, and the doctor found that the external lymphnodes had decreased in size by half. It's pretty amazing, but Chloe is acting more and more like herself everyday. From losing 9 lbs in 18 days and doing nothing but sleeping, she is now up, alert, and playing. So now she just had more blood work and a tick scan done. She was able to eat her first full meal in 18 days and she is keeping all of her meds down!! In 10 days she will return for another ultra-sound, and hopefully everything will be okay. The biggest lesson I have learned is alway, always get a second opinion. Just thinking that she could have died because of a wrong diagnosis, is so scary. I'm not upset with the staff & doctors at the 1st place I took her, I'm just glad that I didn't settle on their opinion. :D

12-20-2007, 02:56 PM
Thats Awsome, I'mn so glad you went with the second opinion as well and a very merry christmas, that is one extra special christmas gift thats for sure. :D My thoughts continue to be with you and I hope everything continues to get better for you and her. Be sure to send some pictures of your playful pup. If it is a tick I hope they find it those little buggers can cause some real problems. Keep us updated!

12-22-2007, 07:38 PM
I am so glad you got rid of your first vet. Hoping for the best for you and Chloe.

12-26-2007, 12:31 PM
Well, they didn't find a tick or any other evidence of what might have caused the inflamation. So, we are keeping her on all of the same meds and she needs to get a new ultra-sound in two weeks. I'm not sure what to think at this point, because as well as she seemed to be doing last week, she doesn't seem as well this week. She's started loosing weight again and she's starting to look tired again. We are making changes to her diet tonight, so we'll just have to wait and see. She can definately tell when I am happy or sad, so I am trying to be as optimistic as possible. Thanks for all of your kind words, replies, and best wishes. I will try to get a couples of pics up this week, and I will of coarse keep writing, until we come to some conclusion, diagnosis, or other treatment.

01-07-2008, 07:10 PM
Dear gtogirl: I feel your pain with your pit. I almost have the exact situation. Although I cannot offer any answers, I just wanted to let you know your helping me with my dicision. I too have a female red-nosed pit in the same heartbreaking situation. My dog is estimated to be about 10 years old (I did not get as a puppy). I got my dog when she was about 2 and I can't bare to put her down. And it's breaking my heart to see her suffer. She did not have blood in her stools, but I noticed she is not having bowel movements now. I am not sure if it's because she can't hold anything down long enough or does she have an obstructed bowel. I suspected she may have swallowed a round pork chop bone a few weeks earlier (not sure). I took her to the vet because she was losing so much weight and he said if her bowel was obstructed, her abdomin would be sore and she would be dead by now if it accured three weeks ago. How can I be sure? I am confused because she still has an appetitie and drinks water, but it usually comes back up within minutes. The vet took blood test and determined she was in kidney failure because of the readings. My question is...could an obstructed bowel cause the high out of range, readings? He said he don't think so. He feels X-rays would be a waste of time and money (and I am on a strict budget). And if I get X-rays anyway and find out they are obstructed, I could not afford the surgery unless I put it on my credit card. The vet said there is no guarantee she will live through it, or how long after it. She leaks urine all the time cause she's old (that started a month ago) The vet said kidney failure is common in dogs her age. What do you think I should do? And please let me know how your dog is doing too!

01-08-2008, 03:54 PM
Dear Duke726: I am so sorry to hear about your girl. If your vet doesn't feel that there is an obstruction anywhere than what does he think is causing the kidney failure? Of coarse, you have to consider your buget, but an x-ray or ultra sound would confirm if there is anything else going on inside there. Or you can ask for all of your labs and get a second opinion from another vet or an internist. Unfortunatley, my situation wasn't the Christmas miracle I thought it was. Chloe reacted very well to the steroids she was on, but that was apperently a temporary fix. Since, inflamatory disease was just a 50/50 shot, my vet told me, if she starts to get sick again, her condition is most likely still lymphoma. January 2nd she threw up for the first time in two weeks. Quickly followed by loss of cordination, and she was breathing very heavily. The very next morning I had her back to the internist for another x-ray and more blood work. This time her calcium was up, her liver enzimes were up, her platelets were low, all of the nodes increased in size again, one in particular was noted to be very large and right next to her heart, and she had collected fluid around her lungs, which was causing the difficulty breathing. The internest then told me that now her survival rate, even with chemo, is very very low. They gave me the option to open her up and remove the fluids and biospy more nodes, but I don't see how putting her through that major surgery, where again she may not survive, is good for any of us. It will not make her better, she will still have cancer, and I will have put her through so much suffering for a few more weeks of life. I felt like a ton of bricks just came craching down on me. She was doing so well, and we were so hopefull. Well, I told the vet what I thought and she plain out said, there is nothing more we can do, there is no more medicine that we can give her. Also, that a resperatory problem like this for a dog is worse than a horse with a broken leg. She explained to me that Chloe is doing nothing but struggling to breath, all day and night. I need to make a decision immediatley to put her down. She even asked me if I could bring her in later that night. I just couldn't do it. I had to have one more day together. So, I went home and held my precious girl all evening, I put her in my bed and slept with her all night. The next day was horrible. I had to do it. I was devistated. I'm am still in disbelief. I can say, even through I still lost her in the end, I would not have changed a thing. I hope you are able to get some answers about your dog's condition, 10 years old is up there, but I would think if it was natural causes she would be a little older. Although, I am far from being an expert. If another vet says the same thing as the first one, it should at least help you to start deciding on what direction you may want to go. Like is it worth getting more tests. My thoughts will be with you guys, just take one day at a time, and let me know what turns out.

01-08-2008, 08:41 PM
Dear gtogirl: thankyou for your response and sympathy. I got up this early this morning to check on my red-nose (sheba), as I approached her bed I noticed her labored erratic breathing. The fact she did not hear me walk into the room was evident enough she was worse. I called her name and she raised her head slowly and still found the strenghth to wag her tail. I just cried and cried as silently as I could, not to upset her. And for the first time I heard her sounding like she was congested now. I also observed her nose running with green mucus in it (signs of nuemonia) it broke my heart knowing I had to do something because it was apparent she was suffering. But it's crazy how she still found the strength to get up and greet me. And when I realized she was too weak to walk down two steps into the front yard, it confirmed what I was feeling. I called my sister asked her to please come take her, to put her down, because I could not bare to take her to her death, after all, she trusted only me, to take care of her , love her, and protect her from harm. Well I couldn't bare to let her leave here without me, in fear all the way to her death. At least she would be calm and happy as long as I was there. I had to walk that last mile with her. I had a sleeping pill from the vet the day before so I would be prepared. I gave it to her before we left the house, but it didn't put her to sleep, she was drowsy when we got there. I almost changed my mind because she was appearing so normal in her thin, frail, week condidtion. She clung to me like the loyal dog she was, looking at me with those sad eyes. I stayed in there petting her till she fell asleep from my pill and the shot the vet gave her to put her all the way under. But she was trying to hang in there, dosing off trying to keep an eye on me. I held her and talked to her till she went under and I had to leave the room for the second shot (to stop her heart). That was the most painful experience of my life. I have not stopped crying since. I keep telling myself it was best and she is not in pain anymore but that is no help. I don't think I will ever own another dog again. I never new how much you could love an animal.
I am so sorry for your pain also, I truley know how you feel. And I hope I didn't make you feel worse. I still believe my first vet was wrong. But because sheba was up there in years, I think he made the wrong assumption. I know what the test said, but the readings could have been caused from that round pork chop bone that I believed she swallowed , blocking her intestines. I should have insisted on X-rays first. I should not have let him talk me out of it. But it's too late now. He said if there was a blockage causing the kidneys to fail, she probably wouldn't live through surgery at her age. What a choice ah? I had to ask myself... am I trying to keep her alive for me or for her? Both is what I came up with. I do believe we both (me and you) did what we had to do to stop their suffering, but it doesn't hurt any less. P.S. Hang in there and God Bless

01-09-2008, 02:39 PM
I'm so sorry to hear about both of your losses. This is a hard time in your lives, and though I have been through it, everyone takes their own time to come out of the pain that this causes. Its a long hard road by my own experiance, I hope this dose not stop either of you from owning another pet, yes it hurts, but its also one of the most rewarding things to do, to provide love to an animal that needs it. My thoughts are with you both in this terrible time, remember the good times, the wagging tails and the love you shared, and know that you'll be with them again someday, and at that time, they will have wanted you to remember them well.