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Lisa
Lisa, Certified Vet Tech
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 13345
Experience:  AAS Vet Tech. Bully breed rehab & Behavior modification
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My dog is a large corgi 8 year old neutered male. He was anxious

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My dog is a large corgi 8 year old neutered male. He was anxious and wanted to go outside. He was not his usual energetic self but otherwise appeared fine. 1 hour later he barked at a stranger walking in the street, but he was not energetic, just a tired warning bark. Within an hour he was vomiting clear liquid and started having a seizure. He lost all sense of balance and became completely disoriented. He was panting heavy, but he was responsive with tail wags and his eyes. However, his back legs were completely rigid and he had little to no control of his front. I immediately picked him up and rushed him to the veterinarian. The vet ran blood tests and everything came back normal except 103 degree temperature and slightly elevated red blood cell count. The vet is stumped. We are guessing some kind of bacterial infection from a tick (located in Kansas). 24 hours later now, he has improved slightly, but his seizures continue even though he is heavily sedated. He has eaten and drank a little, and the vet has been giving him extra fluid under the skin.
He is a member of our family, and we are all concerned especially since the vet (well respected for more than 30 years in the area) has no ideas. Please let us know if any ideas come to mind.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Lisa replied 12 months ago.
Hello! My name is XXXXX XXXXX it will be my pleasure to help you with your dog today. Just like an in person consult, I have a few questions....

Did they test him for tick borne disease?

Do you know what antibiotic they're giving him?
Customer: replied 12 months ago.

the tick borne disease test was going to take 10 days to get the results (2 weekends)... so I told them to go ahead with the antibiotic they would use anyway if it was the bacterial disease. And I am sorry...I did not ask the specific name...they just said it was specific to the general category of tick borne diseases.

Expert:  Lisa replied 12 months ago.
Thanks for the additional information. I really appreciate it.

It sounds to me like he does have a tick borne disease. I understand that your vet was going to send out a titer test (that's the one that takes 10 days), but you may want to ask them if they can get a 4DX test. This is a snap test that takes 8 minutes to give you a diagnosis of whether the dog has Lyme, Anaplasma, Ehrlichia (all tick borne diseases) and heartworm.

Living and working in northern MN/WI, your dogs symtoms do sound very, very much like a tick borne disease. This would explain why he would be getting better while on the antibitoic (I would recommend Doxycycline..that's what we use).

I did a little bit of research while I was waiting for your reply, and it seems that Kansas is becoming a hot bed of tick borne illnesses. It used to be that these kinds of illnesses were sort of confined to certain states, but these days, it's pretty much an epidemic everywhere in the US. You can read about the amount of ticks and diseases in your area here:

http://www.cdc.gov/ticks/diseases/

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&am p;esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&ved=0CDAQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.vet.k-state.edu%2FVHC%2FPDF%2Fmf2653.pdf&ei=P7UrUojSIsSe2gWe04CYBg&usg=AFQjCNFd8SyNbAhtOwU_ihKrGrJQ6I1quQ&bvm=bv.51773540,d.b2I

The second link is actually a study by the University of Kansas about it.

The good news is that if he is already improving, then there's every reason to think that it will continue. When caught early, most tick borne diseases can be taken care of with Doxycyline and supportive care. Once the disease is under control, the other symptoms generally disappear as well.

I'll keep my fingers crossed for him!
Lisa, Certified Vet Tech
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 13345
Experience: AAS Vet Tech. Bully breed rehab & Behavior modification
Lisa and 6 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 12 months ago.

Would that explain why his back legs continue to be rigid, but he is very aware of his surroundings and he can wag his tail easily? He even tried to stand up this morning (we took him in yesterday at 11:30am),, but he could only stand for a moment on his front legs as his back legs were very rigid and he could not bend them or use them.

Expert:  Lisa replied 12 months ago.
Yes....I've seen the semi-paralysis with Anaplasmosis. It's because generally these illnesses can affect the joints of the dog...which would explain that his legs are affected but not his tail.

Hopefully he'll continue to improve!!
Customer: replied 12 months ago.

and it also explains the sudden onset of all of this? He does not act like he is in any pain... but he does not whine or "talk" and yesterday he had no control of his tongue...just his neck. It was so very odd, I have never seen this happen to an animal before... a bacterial infection can do all of these things? (sorry for my dumb questions...the vet was buried and could not talk to us much and her vet tech was nice, but not very knowledgeable about the details of the illness).

Expert:  Lisa replied 12 months ago.
No apologies needed for the questions...I'm happy to answer them until you're comfortable.

In my experience...the onset can be very, very sudden. My own dog had Lyme disease twice and it was super quick....like he went out to go potty and came back in super lame and lethargic. At first we thought it was some sort of toxicity until we tested him.

Customer: replied 12 months ago.

Can the disease stay dormant? We left him with a family friend 2 months ago (for 4 days) who took him to a wooded park and also to a prairie field with her dogs. We did not check him for ticks then, but he is an inside dog and stays with us almost constantly. We checked him for ticks yesterday and did not find any.


 


Will that 4dx test show if it tick borne even though he is on antibiotic?

Expert:  Lisa replied 12 months ago.
Absolutely!! We get dogs with a silent infection all the time.

We actually test the dogs in our practice every year and it's not unusual to get positives but not to treat. We generally don't treat unless the dog is symptomatic.

If your vet tests him tomorrow...even with the antibiotics it'll come up positive if he's positive. The test checks titers...which is the amount of that disease is in the antibodies, so even after a dog completes treatment, they'll often test positive for a couple years.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.

Oh wow! can people get infected? We have 2 girls ages 13 and 7... could they get it from saliva or feces or something?

Expert:  Lisa replied 11 months ago.
No...there's no worry about the girls. It's only transmissible from a bite from the tick...and the tick has to be latched on for about 24 hours to transmit the disease.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.

You have really helped all of us! Thank You!! I will tell the girls and now hopefully...no bad dreams or sad thoughts! And now maybe I can relax and not keep thinking that I will have to put him down on Monday. Happy thoughts for the rest of the weekend..he will get better...and we can love on him for at least a few more years! Thank You!

Expert:  Lisa replied 11 months ago.
Me and my furkids will send positive vibes from waaaaay up here in MN!!

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