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NancyH, Pet Health Care, Rescue,Train,Breed
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience:  30+yrs pet vet care & nursing, rescue, behavior & training, responsible breeding, small animal care
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pug: wet..labored sounding breathing, lethargic yet restless

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My 7 yr old female pug has had a recurring problem for the last 9 months. Every 3-6 weeks she starts off with a stuffy wet sounding nose. Within 2 days she has labored sounding breathing, lethargic yet restless with constant wandering and weekness shown by lack of coordination. She sways while walking as if drunk. She seems to be in great discomfort. By the fourth day she seems to be at deaths door and gets head tremors and her head pulls back and to the left. She has been to the vet , the first time this occurred she was found to have a hypo-parathyroid problem and has been taking petcal since. Now when she is taken to the vet during these episodes blood tests come back negative on everything. She's been tested for everything and the vet and I don't know what to do.What is strange is that she always pulls out of this and within a few days is completely back to normal. The vet recommended a specialist, but right now I am unemployed and the last two times I took her to the vet it cost a lot of money with no answers. Do you have any idea what this could be? Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated, I hate seeing her go through this!Optional Information: Age: 7; Female; Breed: pugAlready Tried: She takes two Petcal tablets a day and Proin in the morning. I have given her phenobarbital for the last three days to ward off the head tremors, she continues to get worse though.
I think you need to read here about Pug Dog Encephalitis

If this is what is going on steriods and anti seizure meds might be all you can do.

It is suspected to be an inherited problem.

You may also want to read here about the calcium issue and the parathyroid
It appears from that article that you might also be dealing with a cancer problem.

While seeing a specialist in neurology might give you a better answer as to what is wrong it might not give you a way to cure the problem.
This site might help you find a neurologist if you want to consult one might help you with financing vet bills

and this site might help you with care for your dog from varying organizations

I hope this helps you!
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Nancy Holmes's Post: PDE was one of the first things my vet tested for nine months ago, it came back negative. PDE is fatal not recurring.
My dog had hypO parathyroid disease not hypER, cancer is not a factor with hypoparathyroid disease.
I'm afraid that none of the information given has been any help.
PDE is recurring in some forms and though always fatal the timing on it is not always immediate.
Just go out to the resource I gave you to see that there are two forms of this disease in Pugs.
You didn't mention doing spinal taps or MRI's and the only actual definitive diagnosis for PDE is examination of brain tissue of the deceased dog.
You are absolutely right I missed it was hypo not hyper in between reading your question and doing the reasearch - my apologies.
All the symptoms you relate could go along with that issue too.
Endocrine disorders are difficult and you might do better with a specialist. If not a neurologist then perhaps an internal medicine specialist for small animals. The same search site I gave you would help you find that type of specialist too.
You might also consider going back to her breeder, if you know who that is, and see if they can shed any light on problems in their line or that litter. Not worth trying if she is a pet store purchase though. A responsible breeder might be of some help as they would be specialists in the breed.
Again my apologies for the misreading and I do think you might want to do some in depth checking into PDE.

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Nancy Holmes's Post: PDE cannot last for nearly a year like my dog's recurring problem. In between bouts of whatever is her problem she is fine. She does not circle, or have full seizures, only head tremors, no head pressing, the only symptom that is similar is the lethargy/unsteadiness which is common for most illnesses. My dogs vet said tonight that she would never have lasted this long with PDE. Her problem is clearly complicated, as was the diagnosis of her hypoparathyroid problem.
Apparently you already have the answers you were seeking.
If you trust your vet then I would suggest you follow through with what he or she says to do.
Your vet has far more complete information than can possibly be offered here and has the advantage of seeing the dog.
If your vet is privy to the studies and can definitively state this has nothing to do with the hereditary disorder in the breed then try and see if the financing option or seeking help from the organizations that can contribute to pet care will let you take the next step in seeing a specialist. In person exam and review of testing history etc. may get you a treatment plan that can help your dog. It might not and it might not get you an answer either. Unfortunately not everything can be figured out or cured with animals or with humans.
I hope you can figure out how to get your dog to a specialist and that he or she can help your pet. Its obvious she has a very caring owner who is a good part of the reason the pug is still here!
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