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Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis



 
 
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  #1  
Old June 2nd 07, 01:31 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Judy
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Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

Okay, Sassy is home and back to living up to her name. She's eating the
prescription food and begging for more. I have a couple of questions of
where we go from here - and the vets are giving me conflicting information.

Pancreatitis:

1. What is the gold standard test for it?

The original vet indicated that if I paid for the bloodword to be sent away
to A&M (the only place in the country that did the test) that it would be a
definitive answer. It came back positive for pancreatitis.

The second vet said that the only test is the ultrasound. (The original vet
could do x-rays but not ultrasound. The second vet could do ultrasound.)
She did not put much faith in the blood test. Especially since Sassy
recovered so quickly and with only palliative care.

I know - treat the dog not the test numbers. And it didn't matter because
the treatment was the same either way. But how much weight do I give to the
bloodwork test in planning our future?

2. What is the optimal percentage of fat for Sassy's diet - if we assume
that she did have a mild case of pancreatitis? (And we're also going to
assume in the scenario that it was not her previous food diet that set off
the inflammation but rather the fish treats she got at agility class.)

I know - as low as possible. The prescription food is 3% but it's also only
6.5% protein. If that's what it has to be to keep her well, then we'll do
that. But is it really necessary or even advisable to go that low for a 5
1/2 year old dog in great physical shape doing agility? (And I got to tell
you - she has a fair amount of canned dog food gas but that may just be her
system adjusting back to any food at all.)

She had been getting a mix of two foods. Canidae dry, which is 14.5% fat,
and a frozen BilJac, which is 8% fat. About equal amounts. I can go to the
Canidae Platinum - which would reduce the fat in the dry to 8.5%. That
would also make the overall protein around 18% - which is a good place
generally for it to be. Spenser can finish up the regular Canidae (new 20
pound bag is about five months for just him) and then I can try him on the
Platinum if it's working well for Sassy.

Giardiasis -

1. What are the real pros and cons of Flagyl versus Panacur?

We treated both dogs about three weeks ago with five days of Flagyl. They
are now both showing giardia in their stool. Spenser (original vet) started
on Panacur two days ago - has three to go. Sassy (second vet) got an
injection of Flagyl at the hospital and is now on it orally for ten days.

My reading is that Flagyl is about 60% effective - but covers a wider range
of parasites, handy if you're not sure what's there. And that Panacur is
about 90% effective on giardia. Spenser's stool sample also showed
coccidiosis and roundworm. He's also on Albon with a two dose treatment of
Strongid T scheduled in ten days when the Albon runs out.

So, if the dogs had giardia three weeks ago and they also have it now, what
happened? Did the Flagyl not work - that 40% - or did they reinfect?

I'm concerned that if it were a failure of the Flagyl that we will now cure
Spenser only to have Sassy reinfect him before we know if the longer course
is working for her this time. However, with her system still healing from
the pancreatitis/gastritis, is it still better to have her on the Flagyl
since we know she tolerates it well?

Each vet believes that her treatment is just a little better than the other.
Both are willing to allow the dog to have the other treatment if I really
want. I can see both sides.

Does anyone have any information that would make me weigh one side any
heavier than the other?

Thanks for your help.

Judy


  #2  
Old June 2nd 07, 01:51 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
FurPaw
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Posts: 1,469
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

Judy wrote:

Each vet believes that her treatment is just a little better than the other.
Both are willing to allow the dog to have the other treatment if I really
want. I can see both sides.

Does anyone have any information that would make me weigh one side any
heavier than the other?


I'm glad to hear that Sassy's better. No information, but since
you're within reasonable driving distance of Cornell, I'd suggest
that you look to the vet school there to get a third opinion.
http://www.vet.cornell.edu/

FurPaw

--
My family values don't involve depleted uranium.

To reply, unleash the dog.
  #3  
Old June 2nd 07, 02:23 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Melinda Shore
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Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

In article ,
FurPaw wrote:
I'm glad to hear that Sassy's better. No information, but since
you're within reasonable driving distance of Cornell, I'd suggest
that you look to the vet school there to get a third opinion.


I was thinking of Cornell, too, but for a different reason.
Rumor has it that they've got a new nutrition consulting
program available (not sure whether or not it's through the
hospital) and it might make sense to talk to them about
low-fat diets and performance dogs. That's really very
little protein.

Dealing with the vet school hospital can make you a little
nuts. Aside from the time required to have a student do an
exam, go away for 20 minutes or longer, and then come back
with a clinician who repeats the exam (I don't think I've
ever gotten out of there in less than two hours), they tend
to like to offer lots and lots and lots of tests and lots
and lots and lots of therapies. They're a fabulous resource
when you need them and an aggravating pain in the nether
bits when you don't.
--
Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis -

Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community
  #4  
Old June 2nd 07, 02:40 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Judy
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Posts: 1,411
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

"FurPaw" wrote in message
...
I'm glad to hear that Sassy's better. No information, but since you're
within reasonable driving distance of Cornell, I'd suggest that you look
to the vet school there to get a third opinion.
http://www.vet.cornell.edu/


That is an option for us. It's been a lot of years since I needed them.
About 20 + years ago, I spent a lot of time there with a beagle with
glaucoma. The second vet is within thowing-a-cat distance of Cornell. They
do a *lot* of referring back and forth.

But we're hardly an emergency at this point (knock wood) and since it's now
Saturday it would be next week sometime before we could see anyone there.
And by then we'd be halfway through these treatments and my inclination
would be to wait and see what happens. Unless either dog is not doing well.
Then we go. I don't think that delaying treatment of some sort until Monday
is a reasonable option. Anything is better than nothing.

I could still, today, get Sassy changed over to Panacur just by calling my
vet and picking it up there. When I mentioned the difference in the
treatments to her yesterday, she suggested that the second vet had a better
idea of Sassy's most recent condition and treatment and that she would defer
to that. But when I discussed it with the second vet, she was also about
51/49. She said she generally preferred Flagyl (and I can't figure out why
if it really is only 50% effective? never got an answer to that question)
and that Sassy was still potentially a little fragile and she knew she could
tolerate it. And that a longer treatment would make the difference. A
reasonable position. Except that weakening of her system by the giardia
*may* have been a contributing factor in her pancreatitis/gastritis. In
that case, we should lean toward the Panacur.

Basically, the first vet believes that the Flagyl didn't work. The second
vet believes that there was a reinfection. *I* believe that the source was
not in my yard but elsewhere. They have no interest in other dogs' poop
except when there was diarrhea. At agility trials, even if someone picks up
after their dog, they can't get the grass clean. I think that's the most
likely source. But I certainly can't be sure.

The first vet believes that the giardia was a contributing factor in her
recent situation. The second vet does not - since her symptoms were
vomiting and not diarrhea of any sort. Of course, neither one really knows.

Yeah, Cornell's a real option for us. (And I am grateful for that. They're
less than 90 minutes away.) Thanks for the thought.

Judy

Judy


  #5  
Old June 2nd 07, 02:48 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Judy
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Posts: 1,411
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

"Melinda Shore" wrote in message
...
I was thinking of Cornell, too, but for a different reason.
Rumor has it that they've got a new nutrition consulting
program available (not sure whether or not it's through the
hospital) and it might make sense to talk to them about
low-fat diets and performance dogs. That's really very
little protein.


That's my feeling about that protein level also. And she is fully back -
outside of being tired - so even without agility, this is not a couch potato
dog. She, both literally and figuratively, throws her entire being into
everything she does. "Tired" today seems reasonable to me. More than human
hospitals, I suspect that vet hospitals are not quiet places for sleeping.
Add in that she's confused and sick and I would be amazed if she weren't
tired. She plays and races around but she has no stamina.

That's interesting about the nutrition program. I'll check into that next
week.

Dealing with the vet school hospital can make you a little
nuts.


Yeah. As I say, I've been there, done that. I haven't heard anything to
indicate that things have changed in the least since I was last there.

Judy


  #6  
Old June 2nd 07, 03:09 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Melinda Shore
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Posts: 7,732
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

In article ,
Judy wrote:
And she is fully back -
outside of being tired - so even without agility, this is not a couch potato
dog.


About half the time we run up the road towards town there's
a miniature schnauzer that comes barreling out of its yard
to yap at us (I always have a dog or two with me when I go
for runs). I always think of your guys because this little
schnauzer just seems inexhaustable and it has an attitude
the size of Saturn.

That's interesting about the nutrition program. I'll check into that next
week.


The guy who's heading it up originally came to Cornell to do
a post-doc with Arleigh Reynolds, who has long since left
for Alaska. This guy is also a musher and knows an awful
lot about performance dogs and nutrition, so I think he's a
great resource for you. I've only heard good things about
him.
--
Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis -

Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community
  #7  
Old June 2nd 07, 03:21 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Judy
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Posts: 1,411
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

"Melinda Shore" wrote in message
...
About half the time we run up the road towards town there's
a miniature schnauzer that comes barreling out of its yard
to yap at us (I always have a dog or two with me when I go
for runs). I always think of your guys because this little
schnauzer just seems inexhaustable and it has an attitude
the size of Saturn.


And obnoxious. You didn't say "obnoxious". Does someone come out and stop
the yapping or does it go on until you get past? I really hate yapping.
But I also accept "raising the alarm". It's kind of a grey area sometimes
where that line is drawn. I'm sure I draw it at a different place than
some.

It's true. They are much like that Energizer Bunny. If you let them,
they'll go until they collapse. We need to always be aware of that trait
and stop them before they reach the end. They are also incredibly stoic, so
it's easy for some people to miss the signs.

And the attitude? Yeah, that's the hallmark of the breed. I love it but I
realize that not everyone does. A proper miniature schnauzer (and for that
matter, the standard and the giant as well) has a definite presence. They
control the space around them. And they consider that space a little larger
than some might think.

The guy who's heading it up originally came to Cornell to do
a post-doc with Arleigh Reynolds, who has long since left
for Alaska. This guy is also a musher and knows an awful
lot about performance dogs and nutrition, so I think he's a
great resource for you. I've only heard good things about
him.


Very cool. I will definitely be calling them. It certainly comes at a most
teachable moment for us.

Judy


  #8  
Old June 2nd 07, 05:39 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Melinda Shore
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Posts: 7,732
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

In article ,
Judy wrote:
Does someone come out and stop
the yapping or does it go on until you get past?


It goes on. And one time the owners (the guy happens to be
one of the town justices) were standing out on their porch
talking to someone and the dog actually took off after us,
and they didn't even notice.

And the attitude? Yeah, that's the hallmark of the breed. I love it but I
realize that not everyone does.


We had terriers when I was growing up, so I'm familiar with
it. Siberians are also active, high-energy dogs but they're
not as intense and focused.
--
Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis -

Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community
  #9  
Old June 2nd 07, 06:18 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Judy
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Posts: 1,411
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

"Melinda Shore" wrote in message
...
In article ,
Judy wrote:
Does someone come out and stop
the yapping or does it go on until you get past?


It goes on. And one time the owners (the guy happens to be
one of the town justices) were standing out on their porch
talking to someone and the dog actually took off after us,
and they didn't even notice.


See, that's just wrong. These are the people who I believe actually seem to
take a little pride in their "inability" to control their dogs. And since
they're so little, they think it's even cute.

If someone runs past our house - and especially with dogs - ours will be
barking. Sassy will be screaming "Alarm!!! All dogs on deck!!!". But once
the king (that would be us) has been notified that the sky may be falling,
dogs are required to SHUT UP! Any dog NOT shutting up (Spenser has more
trouble with this than Sassy) will be removed and put into a sit-stay out of
sight of the situation.

If we're not home, it's very likely that they don't shut up. But they
wouldn't be outside - the barking would be coming from the big window at the
back of the couch. And actually, if the runner didn't have the dogs, they
very likely wouldn't bark at all whether we were home or not.

It always especially irritates me when one of "those people" comment on how
our dogs get quiet and behave. They are amazed that dogs don't have to act
like theirs. But they are also convinced that it's something other than
training and consistency.

Siberians are also active, high-energy dogs but they're
not as intense and focused.


I think schnauzers consider "intense and focused" to be in the job
description.

Judy


  #10  
Old June 2nd 07, 06:37 PM posted to rec.pets.dogs.health
Melinda Shore
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Posts: 7,732
Default Questions on treatments for pancreatitis and giardiasis

In article ,
Judy wrote:
I think schnauzers consider "intense and focused" to be in the job
description.


We had Kerrys (obHealth: fatty cysts) and a Wire Fox when I
was a kid, and I find that kind of intensity really
appealing. Siberians are more along the lines of "woohoo!
It's great to be alive!! Woohoo! A bird! Woohoo! The
trail just turned! Woohoo! The wind! Woohoo! A person!
Woohoo! It's great to be alive!!" which is a different kind
of exhausting.
--
Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis -

Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community
 




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