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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 19632
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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What is wrong with my mi-ki dog that is 7 years old. For the

Customer Question

What is wrong with my mi-ki dog that is 7 years old. For the last few months we have noticed that she is having trouble breathing. She no longer will go up or down steps & must be carried. She started having potty accidents. We have taken her to the vet. They have done blood panels & showed her white blood count was slightly elevated & the liver count was up. She has been on antibiotics for 6 weeks. Blood work every 2 weeks & numbers keep going up. Had a ultrasound 2 was ago. Today wbc was over 34,000 & liver count was 19,068. She was running slight fever of 103.2
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about the dog?
Customer: her breathing is very hard. Has to breathe with mouth open & after a few breaths just stops & rests. Vet today says he hears nothing in her lungs. We don't know what to do about her. The vet seems to have no idea & is grasping at "I think we should try this...." Also the ultrasound showed the gall bladder was full of mucous sludge but he said that those are usually not removed from dogs.
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but can you tell me:

Do you mean her vet has heard nothing abnormal when listening to her chest or actually hears nothing (ie dullness/no air movement sounds)?

I see she has had bloods and an ultrasound, but have her lungs ever been xrayed?

Has any anemia (low red blood cell levels) been noted?

Are her gums pink, yellow tinted, or pale/white?

Did they take a sample from the gall bladder?

What treatments is she on besides antibiotics?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
The vet said that he hears nothing abnormal when listening to her. Said she sounds clear.
With the blood work, all other things were pretty normal.
Her gums look pink.
They did not take a sample of the gall bladder, just what they saw on the ultrasound.
She is on 1/4 tablet of carprofen once daily for arthritis in her lower back & back legs.
She has also gained over 2 # in 2 months. & 7# ***** 17 months. She will eat everything she can find.
She has lost a lot of her hair on her body & tail.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

Hello again,

Now I have to say that I am concerned about your lass's worsening WBC/liver values on bloods. The former suggests an infection that isn't under control and the progressive liver enzyme elevation raises concerns of liver function issues, liver disease (with cell damage or death) or that that gall bladder is representative of something significant here (ie GB obstruction, infection, bile duct disease, etc). Therefore, if her vet is struggling to get to the heart of this, you may want to have her referred to an internal medicine specialist at the nearest vet school or private referral center.

That way we can get a specialist ultrasonographer to scan that liver and sample the gall bladder contents for bacterial culture and analysis. They can also check liver function with a bile acid stimulation test. Furthermore, we'd want her on treatment for those liver issues (ie Denamarin/Milk thistle +/- fluids +/- further antibiotics). At the same time, since her being out of breath is so abnormal and we can only hear so much in a lung, we may need to think about having her lungs xrayed to make sure we don't have changes (ie infection, cancer, etc) lurking. And if that is confirmed clear, then we may need to have her acid/base and electrolyte levels checked on blood sample (which can require specialty labs/blood machines on site) to make sure she doesn't have a metabolic imbalance (acidosis/alkalosis) causing her breathing changes a they can do.

Kind regards,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond.

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Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. B.