Saturday, March 05, 2016

Heidi's Health Mystery Continues

After having a lot of days in a row of good skin, today after lunch I noticed that Heidi had chewed a spot on her upper right front leg. Plus her skin had redness on the rear legs again. Instead of doing the Epsom Salt soak, I decided I wanted the vet to see what the skin looked like when it was irritated. I also wanted to check her weight and get a check-up since her last trip to the vet was last June. Plus she was due for her annual rabies vaccine. I also wanted to see if they would cut her nails further back than I do ... I found out they cut just as much as I do, not more.

After seeing three different vets since October 2014 and no changes in her skin issues, I had decided for my next trip it would be back to the original vet that Heidi had seen since I got her in July 2011. For the same reason I chose to go somewhere else in September 2014 I saw and heard the same thing today ... very little discussion on skin possibilities, and was just going to give her an allergy shot without very little discussion. I told her she the last shot she gave did not work longer than 7 days. So no allergy shot was given today. I told her the different medicines that had been tried since October 2014 and what the results were.

It might have been me taking their attitude wrong but I had the impression as I was telling the vet this information, she didn't really care since it was done at a different vet clinic. Could that be possible?

The focus was more on Heidi's thin appearance and what might be the causes. No test was given on her thyroid because the vet said in the cases she had seen with thyroid problems, the dogs were extremely overweight. She was more concerned about her liver, kidneys functions and any possible tumors. She squeezed her stomach hard, pushed and probed ... found nothing and there were no signs of pain from Heidi.

She suggested blood work. I told her last year the test results were normal ... but go ahead and try again. The results came back with normal readings. Liver and kidneys functioning normal. White and red blood cell counts in the normal range. So the good news was ... the blood test showed nothing was wrong internally.

Heidi left the vet clinic once again with a clean bill of health and no answers about her weight problem.

Although she has normal stools, just to make sure Triwormer was prescribed. She also prescribed Hema A Spike which is a potent concentrated liquid that spikes red blood cell production, supplies essential irons, folic acid and Vitamin B12. It is also contains manganese, cobalt, copper and zinc. Basically it is for older dogs that just need 'a boost' as well as dogs that have had surgery or a serious illness. It will be interesting to see if there are any improvements.

At 35 pounds, her hip bones are extremely exposed, spine is expose but you can feel muscle mass on her upper rear legs, neck and upper shoulder area. She weighed 34 pounds in June 2015.

That's about all I have for today from 'the tropics' of Southern Indiana.


  1. When I was a kid I wanted to be a vet but I am glad I picked another career. I now see vet practices as a business. It's sad to say but most I have been to are more worried about their bottom line than your animal. Most clinics aren't large enough to have an office manager so the vet has to do almost everything to keep things going. They don't have time to listen to someone who has been with the animal 24/7. And don't ask about something you read on the internet.

    1. You are right. At times it seemed she looked offended when I was trying to give her a history the past 17 months after I decided to take Heidi to other vets. I was thinking this morning that I will not be taking her back there. There is one more vet I can see locally or I can drive 25 miles to a group of other vets in a bigger city.

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  2. We are so fortunate to have the vet we do. She will take our call 24/7 and is there for us no matter what and she DOES NOT charge us for the calls and advice.

    The fact that Heidi is the same weight is a good sign. You are doing things right. Might want to find another vet though.

    1. You are fortunate. Around here you cannot breath without being charged. I reminded the vet receptions/tech one time that I bring 4 dogs into their clinic .. at that time I had one bloodhound and 3 bassets ... but told them I bring 4 all at once so you are not charging me $25 per office visit if I were to bring them separately.

      LOL ... she gave me a $6 discount and only charged me $18 per I continue to bring them all at one time for their annual shot and check up.

      Last May before I trip to Utah/Colorado I decided to take Heidi off of every medication they had prescribed for her. Also to put her on a basic blend of dog food and stop all of the different creams, oils, lotions ... and see what would happen. Well she got better.

      I wish she weighed more than 35 pounds, as she was 48 pounds in 2011 when I bought her at the rescue. With good blood work results, firm stools, and high quality food ... I decided months ago there wasn't much more I could do. None of the vets have been able to figure out her lack of weight.

      Something happened from Sept 2014 until June 2015 where she lost all of that weight.

  3. I know you have made all kinds of changes with Heidi’s food, but have you ever thought about cooking it yourself?

    My son and his family just got a pup for Christmas, who was born on October 29th and only weighed 2.3 pounds when they picked him up on January 23rd. He will probably only weigh about 20 pounds when he is grown, but should have weighed at least 3 to 4 pounds by the time he was 3 months old. The woman who they got him from gave them a couple of tubes of something she got from her vet that was supposed to be nutritional and help him gain weight. I saw this pup on December 27th and whenever this lady squeezed a little out of the tube, he loved to lick all of it off the end. She also gave them a few cans of “special” puppy food that her vet recommended, and I cannot remember what some of the ingredients were in the dog food, but the first ingredient in the “nutritional” tube was high fructose corn syrup. When my son saw this, he said, “We are NOT feeding this crap to the pup,” and threw all of it in the trash. He started cooking organic beef or chicken for the pup and adding a few chunks of sweet potato, and Obi (the pup’s name) devoured his first bowl immediately and is stilling devouring his meals. My son sent me a message on Friday and said that Obi now weighs 5.25 pounds, which is pretty incredible in just a little over a month.

    I don’t know if this would help Heidi, but if you decided to give it a try, I would start her off slowly and then let her eat all she wants.

    1. I've thought about that option last year when her skin issues increased. I might have to look at that again just for her. I go through about 75# of kibble per month for all the hounds now. I was always concerned about the nutrients I might be missing by cooking her own food. There are times when I am having baked skinless chicken breasts for myself, I will give all 3 a piece of chicken, raw carrots and raw apples at treats.