Thursday, April 14, 2011

L Is For Lyme Disease


Obviously, L was not meant to be about Lyme Disease but that's the answer the vet came back with yesterday and so today I am blogging about Lyme Disease. I should probably thank Big for contracting a disease that lends itself so well to the A to Z Challenge.

So yeah. Lyme Disease.

I hate ticks. Now more than ever. I didn't even realize such a thing was possible.

We arrived at the vet yesterday afternoon and I launched into a monologue of what had happened between Sunday and our arrival at the office on Wednesday. We fertilized the lawn but I swear I didn't let the dogs on it! Big tripped on a chair at my mother's house on Monday! I gave him a cheeseburger Monday night! He hasn't eaten since breakfast Tuesday. He hasn't had water. He hasn't done this. He has done that. The Best Vet In The World very nicely listened to my panicky ramblings calm, very calm, dissertation and then proceeded with the exam.

And came back with Lyme Disease.

Here's what I said when the Best Vet In The World told me:

Me: Lyme Disease? Are you kidding me?
Him: Nope. Not kidding you.
Me: But it's April.
Him: Yep.
Me: There's still snow on the ground. Especially where I live.
Him: I'm sure there is.
Me: Then how- when- how? Lyme Disease?
Him: Yep.
Me: But it's April!
Him: The incubation period can be weeks but it can also be months.
Me: But he was negative for it in August.
Him: Yep.
Me: And you vaccinated him for it in August.
Him: Yep.
Me: That can happen?
Him: Yep.
Me: (Beat) Lyme Disease? Really?
Him: Really.

Here are the symptoms for a dog who has Lyme Disease:

-Reluctance to move or a slow, painful gait
-Swollen joints that are warm or painful to the touch
-Pain in the legs or throughout the body
-Fever, fatigue or swollen lymph nodes
-Loss of appetite
-Depression

Okay, so maybe there is some credence to this theory.

The good news is that it's treatable in the form of an antibiotic. Because of Big's size, he gets five pills, twice a day, for the next four weeks.

This is what I said when I heard that:

Me: Five pills twice a day? So ten pills total.
Him: Yep.
Me: Ten pills a day.
Him: Yep.
Me: For the next four weeks?
Him: Yep.
Me: Swell.

Big's pretty good about taking meds but that's when I can put them in some peanut butter or a piece of cheese or something. This method will not work for these meds because he (a) still won't eat anything and (b) can't have dairy products with these meds because calcium renders them useless. They will also make him sun sensitive. Or, I guess since the dog's already sun sensitive, they'll make him more so. I now need to be on the look out for sunburns developing on his nose and ears.

And the fun just keeps on leaving.

The Best Vet In The World says the antibiotic will make him feel better soon. As in Friday or-- at the latest, by the end of the weekend. This is excellent news. And not just because Big just threw up bright orange bile all over my living room rug.

Clean up, aisle nine.

22 comments:

  1. Hate it when my dogs get sick. Poor things. They never really complain. DO they?

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  2. Aww, poor Big. :(

    A friend of my Hubby's got Lymes disease from a tick. He'd returned from camping and realized a tick was on him. Too late. The tick transferred the disease and the guy was in the hospital for weeks. True story.

    Now we always check our bodies for ticks when we get back from camping.

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  3. Hope he feels better soon! Hadn't heard of this disease before...thanks for sharing.

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  4. Oh no, I'm sorry to read this! Poor Big, I hate to see my pets sick, it's so hard. I'm glad this is treatable, but can relate to your frustration with trying to get the medicine in him. Hope he feels better soon!

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  5. Aww, poor Big! At least you knew to take him to the vet right away! Here's to a speedy recovery!

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  6. Ooh, that's a nasty one. It's so hard to detect and scary when you have to treat it.

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  7. I'm quickly becoming that guy who advocates for not keeping pets. I don't hate animals; I just don't want to do any of the things you describe here. Yuck.

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  8. Sorry its a long term med exercise but happy to hear he will be well!

    RJRDaydreamer

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  9. @Brent- Strangely enough, my significant other feels the exact same way.

    Thanks for the well wishes, everyone. Big and I both really appreciate it.

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  10. So far my pets have avoided Lyme disease (even the one who's been to Lyme), but one of my high school friends did succumb. And when I say succumb, I mean he's fine now, he didn't die, and I really should work on my word choice.

    He was in horrible shape for a while, though, and I wish Big all the best. May he have a quick recovery.

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  11. Oh, suck on a popsicle stick, that is horrible! Poor Big. Hope he gets better soon.

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  12. @Nate- I've heard that people have a harder time with lyme diease. Glad that your friend is all right now!

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  13. Poor Big. I'm so glad it is something treatable. I also absolutely HATE dog vomit and I totally sympathize.

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  14. Jupiter's riding teacher had (has?) Lyme Disease last year and is STILL trying to shake all the complications. I had to do the math to figure out how many pills it was over the month long course of medication for Big.

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  15. The vet said 280. It was more than half the bottle.

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  16. I sure hope he gets better soon.

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  17. Aww poor big. Hope he feels better soon.

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  18. Phew! Glad to hear it is treatable. Poor thing though - with those symptoms Big (and you) must have been miserable :(

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  19. Awwww...
    That really, really sucks.

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  20. Aw, poor Big! Hope he feels better soon! I hate it when pets are sick... I have two cats and they both recently suffered severe allergic reactions to flea treatments. Nasty icky cat vomit everywhere, so I literally feel your pain.

    Thanks for visiting my blog!

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  21. @Tundiel- You have no idea how well I know your pain. I have two cats and one of them has been super sick. She vomits quite often but also has no control over her bladder or bowel movements. So much fun!

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  22. I'm so sorry he's sick, but glad that they figured out what it was and that it's treatable!

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