TAIL AMPUTATION

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donnalauria55's picture
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Joined: 2015-01-19

It has been quite a while since I've visited this website.  With this updated post I hope the "experts" on this site will not attack me, berate me, or critize.

Elias, now 2-1/2, had to have a partial tail amputation.  We noticed that his tail had gotten very swollen.  The day after we noticed it we took him to his regular veterinarian.  Dr. Gaul began an aggressive treatment of two very strong anti-biotics;  he gave him a shot of penicillin (he had a fever) and gave us an antispetic soak for his tail.

A couple of days later the tail began seeping blood and fluid.  We got very scared and took him back to Dr. Gaul for a follow up.  Dr. Gaul seemed to think that the infection (whatever it was) was coming out of his system.

Then, a couple of days after that, I got home one night and opened his crate;  there was blood EVERYWHERE inside the crate, and his tail was all bloody as well.  We took pictures of his tail and sent them to Dr. Gaul.  He felt a tail amputation was needed.  He was not comfortable doing it because he felt it was too involved.

We took him to another veterinarian's office;  this doctor specializes in soft tissue surgeries.  Dr. Wilkerson would have done it, except he did not have a cortirizing machine.  He recommended VRC Clinic in Malvern, PA.   We made an appt. there with Dr. Kenneth Sadanaga - another very qualfied surgeon specializing in soft tissue cases.

The surgery was done the very next day.  Dr. Sadanaga did an amazing job on Elias' tale.  Everything was going very smoothly - until Elias came down with - PNEUMONIA!

He started coughing and wasn't breathing right.  So - one morning, @ 2:45am we drove him back to VRC Clinic.  They kept him to do x-rays.  They confirmed that there was inflammation around his lungs and that indicated pneumonia. 

More meds!  Elias was on 7 medications at once.  We couldn't figure out how he would've contracted pneumonia.  Then James figured out that because Elias' bed bumps up against the wall where there is a window in my husband's sports room - the wall is freezing!   That must be how he got it.  Now, James has pillows lining the side of the bed that touches the wall.  There is no room to move Elias' bed anywhere else in that room.  The pillows protect him from the wall, though.

And as if all of this isn't enough going on, Maxi started coughing and hacking too!  We got him in to see Dr. Gaul (the boys' regular doctor).  Dr. Gaul felt Maxi was just experiencing a slight cold.  He had to share Elias' anti-biotic for the pneumonia.

This all occured over the Christmas holiday. 

Elias finally had the stitches removed from his tail.  Healed perfectly.

I had posted months ago about how finicky Elias was when it came to eating his meals.   He would always wait for James to feed him - morning and night.  We figured he was just being finicky.   Don't think that any more.  Since the tail surgery, not only is his appetite back, he's eating for ME again!   And - his head tremors had return with a vengeance during this whole traumatic situation.  They've stopped as well.

To me, this is very scary.  We think our boys and girls are being finicky sometimes but what if there's an underlying illness?  I think this infection was in his system for quite a while, and manifested itself in his tail.

Thank God he's okay.

SIH002's picture
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Joined: 2014-12-15

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Poor Elias, sure glad he is on the mend now!  Hope your 2017 with the guys is less eventful.

 

donnalauria55's picture
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Joined: 2015-01-19

Thank you very much!  He is finally feeling like his normal self  -  annoying as ever, and we wouldn't have it any other way!!!

Khans Keeper's picture
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Joined: 2016-05-11

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Im sure that was a scary thing to go through.  

Khan and I are happy that your boy Elias is back to himself.  Hoping for continued good health.

Joined: 2012-10-28

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What a sad and scary story! :(

I am so glad your doggies are all better!

donnalauria55's picture
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Joined: 2015-01-19

Thank you both for the kind comments!   It certainly was quite an ordeal.  Everything hit at once!!!   Wasn't much of a holiday season - but their health cannot be measured like that.

donnalauria55's picture
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Joined: 2015-01-19

Now that Elias is all healed from the tail amputation, and over the pneumonia issue, his appetite returned and he started eating for me again.

Until ... a couple of weeks ago.  The "finicky" act started up again!  He'll eat for me sometimes, but mostly he wants my husband to feed him.   If I put his food down and James is there with me - Elias will eat!

He eats on Saturday nights, without fail, because it's "stew" night.  The boys all get a tablespoon of Earthborn stew mixed in with their dry food.

And, sometimes he'll eat after he plays "fetch" because he's been running and he's hungrier than normal.

I guess he is truly my husband's "boy".  He shows me lots of love all the time, but for Elias - my husband is the alpha.