Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

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Amanda
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Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Sat Feb 06, 2016 10:33 am

I am ready to neuter Zeke and amputate his tail. His tail breaks open multiple times per day. He breaks it on my legs and even on his own body. He's just a voracious tail-wagger. The tip bothers him more and more and he spends more time fussing over it so I know it hurts. And there is blood all over my house. Confining him outside is a fate worse than death to him. He hates to be separated from the family. So the tail is definitely going. I am hoping to keep 2/3 of it like a traditional dock.

Neuter is decided. He will not be bred. He will DQ in shows so it's not worth the investment and time to show him. I look forward to hopefully being able to let him play on the daycare floor at work, and maybe get just a tad more focus out of him when he isn't distracted by pretty girls and competing boys. I have no illusions though and understand that neutering may make no difference at all in his energy or focus.

So here is my problem. When a practiced eye watches him walk, he favors his right hind leg ever so slightly. You can see that his right thigh muscle is underdeveloped as compared to the left. This leg suffered the most from the pano episodes he had. It was the most lame and for the longest time. Is this continued pano? I don't know. Is it a product of an underdeveloped muscle from being off for so long? Maybe. I was putting off his neuter as long as possible to protect his bones. I was hoping for 2 yrs, but the tail cannot wait. I don't want to do the surgeries separately. He is currently 14 months old. Still pretty immature, both in mental and physical attributes. He has started to broaden in the chest in the last month or so and looks less gangly. I have the money for the surgery. I don't have money to do diagnostics on an almost imperceptible limp. We just got a $2000 bill for my daughter getting two stitches. Joy. My thought is to prohibit all out runs and crazy jumping like we did when we suspected ACL tear before. Leash walks and mental exercise along with some strengthening exercises in a few weeks. Maybe combining his surgery with this forced rest will be a good combo. I could maybe add an X-ray or two during his surgery as well to see if anything is amiss.

But is a neuter at this point too detrimental to his growth plates? It's possible they are closed. He hasn't grown taller in about two months. I just don't want him to be hurt and unable to hike or do agility. But I feel trapped by the freaking tail. It has to go asap. The end is starting to look like it's dying and if it becomes necrotic we are looking at infection and loss of more tail. Help! I feel like Icome here in desperation often. Thank you to everyone who reads my sagas and offers even moral support. :/

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Amanda
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Sat Feb 06, 2016 2:22 pm

Just had an idea... Schedule the tail amp and an X-ray of his leg. It will help me know what is going on if it's hip or knee related. Plus we can see if the growth plates are closed. If they are, proceed with the neuter. If not, I will delay it for another 9-12 months and then we can deal with whatever we find on the x-Ray.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby SherriA » Sat Feb 06, 2016 2:35 pm

That seems pretty logical to me. I'm sorry that you have to make this decision about his tail, but it sounds like he's just going to continue to hurt himself otherwise.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby connie » Sat Feb 06, 2016 3:20 pm

Yes, I vote for x-rays to get a look at the growth plates, most especially because of his pano episodes. I like the schedule you've set.

Also, when I had Alex neutered (at 28 months), he DID focus more on me and less on distractors. I said to his Nosework instructor, "I think he's the perfect dog now" to which she replied "yes, because now he only has eyes for you." LOL! I think that is a benefit of neutering a male dog. :rofl: I'll be curious what you find with Z.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Sun Feb 07, 2016 12:39 am

Thanks for the input. I am going to do my best to stall us until the end of the month. I need our house to close escrow before I let money out of our account. Plus he has three more agility classes that I would like to finish out. (Foundation class, so basically handling, obedience,and flatwork, nothing strenuous.) So long as the tail doesn't get infected I am going to *try* to keep it from continuing to make my house look like a horror film.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby connie » Sun Feb 07, 2016 5:39 am

Sounds like a plan. Here's hoping for NO blood on the floors and furniture for a while! :lol:

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Sabine » Sun Feb 07, 2016 1:38 pm

I agree, sounds like you've come up with a good decision. All fingers crossed!
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Calypso » Tue Feb 09, 2016 6:08 am

Fingers crossed for no blood spatter and closed plates!

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby MaisyPancakes » Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:16 am

Good luck!

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby JudyL » Tue Feb 09, 2016 10:41 am

That sounds like a solid plan. Good thoughts that you'll soon have no more house of horrors and no more pano either!
It's beyond time for Zeke's health issues to be in the past and for you to consistently train and have fun with your young dog.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Wed Feb 10, 2016 10:30 pm

Two more weeks. just have to keep it together for two more weeks. Pretty much wearing old pants these days because I don't want to ruin anymore good clothes with blood stains. :/ On the upside, his leg seems better than last week. It's so subtle it's hard to tell, but I don't see much lameness left.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Wed Feb 24, 2016 3:27 pm

Tomorrow is the big day. It will be an expensive day, but I am eager to get it all over with and find out what is going on with his leg. He seems sound at a walk and a full run. But at a trot or changing speeds he is wonky. My boss says it looks like he has no push off in that leg. Yet he can leap off the floor straight up like a jack rabbit, so....

Last night in class he laid down and he looked so weird. I'm attaching a picture so you can see how he holds the leg in a totally different way than the left one. And a second one showing his muscles lopsided. I am really hoping it is just an effect of prolonged pano and some rehab exercises will help him. Maybe get the chiropractor out here again. If it's some kind of dysplasia I will just be devastated. So wish us luck. Anesthesia is always scary and with so much happening he will be down for a while.
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Mismatched thigh muscles.
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Wonky right leg.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby EllaBella » Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:07 pm

Many wishes for a good surgery and the best possible answer for the wonky leg. I hope it's just a muscle issue that can be addressed with rehab and some more time.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby whiteboxerboy » Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:31 pm

Lots of good thoughts for everything to go smoothly tmo.

I'm confused though, is it the right or left leg that has been so troublesome?

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby SherriA » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:42 am

Good thoughts! I hope they can give you some answers about his leg.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:43 am

It's the right leg. He tucked it in laying down instead of letting jut out like the left one which is normal for him. Just dropped him off.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Thu Feb 25, 2016 1:38 pm

Surgery went well. He has hip dysplasia though. Vet called it moderate. No surgery needed at this point, but probably will need it later. Glucosamine and maybe adequan shots for joint support. Arthritic changes already present. I'm still processing. And I'm at work. But I'm pretty bummed out. This sucks.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby MaisyPancakes » Thu Feb 25, 2016 2:57 pm

I'm so sorry, Amanda. :( Was the other things actually pano, though? Or, are they all some kind of OA?

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Kathleen » Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:05 pm

Wow Amanda I'm so sorry. I'm trying to remember I thought you had a definate diagnosis for the Pano right? So he has Pano and HD? Poor guy, and poor you.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby JudyL » Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:24 pm

What! He's so young. I really can't believe all he's been through already in his life and now HD and osteo changes! I'm really sorry for all the sucky news.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby SherriA » Thu Feb 25, 2016 5:23 pm

This just feels so unfair. Zeke sure landed in the right home to get all the help and support he needs, but I know this is not at all what you had planned when you got him.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Thu Feb 25, 2016 5:47 pm

Yes, definitely pano and definitely hip dysplasia. Knees look great. Just plain old super crappy luck. He is home now and a super whiny little man. I am sure he isn't comfortable. Tail looks good and is a nice length. Neuter sutures look great too. Dr. B says that ideally they want to see 2/3 of the femoral head covered by the socket. Zeke has barely 1/3 coverage. Femoral head show some flattening due to rubbing on the socket, and the femoral neck shows thickening. Because of those changes he isn't a candidate for TPO surgery. Later in life he could have surgery to sever the sensory nerve, or have a total hip replacement. He's not there yet though. Dr. said he can still do agility to his tolerance and to watch for signs of pain. He'll need swimming or other strengthening exercises to help his muscles even out before we do anything too strenuous. But in the immediate future, he is supposed to rest for about 14 days. That's when the tail sutures come out. I am not sure I can keep him to just leash walks for that long, but for tonight he is uncomfortable enough to lay still and whine. :(

His breeder is out of email contact for the weekend. I need to double check my contract, but I think we are now officially eligible for a 50% refund. Sigh.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby connie » Thu Feb 25, 2016 6:17 pm

I just saw this on FB, and I'm absolutely shocked. I wish I could say something that would make things better. This really, really sucks, even if Z is never in pain and has a great life ... and not trying to start something, but every single breeder I know who is worth a damn will refund the ENTIRE price if a dog they produce has CHD (or will provide a future puppy at no cost). I know that is not your main concern right now, but the breeder should do the right thing. I get angry thinking about that.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby maxs_mommy » Thu Feb 25, 2016 6:35 pm

Oh man, I'm so sorry Amanda. I knew of a dog with horrible HD who was able to to maintain a lot of motion through exercise and supplements. I hope you can stave off surgery for Zeke if it's warranted. I know this puts a serious crimp in your plans and it sucks. I hope you can get with his breeder for some recourse, even if to help cover your medical costs.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Sabine » Thu Feb 25, 2016 8:27 pm

Oh Amanda, I'm so very, very sorry for you and your poor boy. :( I agree with Sherri though, it's good he came to live with you and will get wonderful care.
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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Jen » Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:03 pm

That's so unfair. :( I'm so sorry after all your planning and work to find the best dog for your plans. I can't imagine how disappointing this is.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby UpwardDog » Fri Feb 26, 2016 9:44 pm

I am so sorry. I can't believe the number of health problems he's had in his very short life. Sad for him and for you. Is the hip dysplasia what is causing his hind leg problem or is that the pano?

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Sat Feb 27, 2016 2:52 pm

No pano in his bones right now that I saw. It's the dysplasia and lack of muscle tone in the right leg that is causing the lameness. I spoke to Jodi for a long time today as she has a dog with HD as well. It's been an overwhelming amount of research. I am probably going for a second opinion with a respected ortho vet because my contract with the breeder says opinion of two unrelated vets. She may not require it, but I want to know for sure that he isn't a candidate for some kind of surgery now. Not that I want to put him under the knife, but TPO is helpful for higher quality of life if it's possible to do it. Now I am really wishing we had put insurance on this boy before I brought him home.

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby UpwardDog » Sat Feb 27, 2016 4:57 pm

I don't know what TPO is, will google. I hope the Adequan and glucosamine make him comfortable and let him live comfortably for a long time . Your experience with Zeke if one of the reasons I bought insurance for Will, unfortunately not until after I'd spent almost $500 money on allergy testing (which was pointless)

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Re: Advice please... Tail and neuter issues

Postby Amanda » Sat Feb 27, 2016 10:38 pm

Am wishing I had picked up insurance for him after his first acl "injury" or whatever that was. I decided not to because that condition would be excluded from coverage and I never dreamed we would be dealing with so much more on top of what we started with.

No response from his breeder yet, but she's in France or Belgium or something and it's also night/early morning there. Hopefully she gets back to me tomorrow.


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