Author Topic: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old  (Read 19751 times)

Offline charlie

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Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« on: March 23, 2008, 09:26:57 AM »
Well,  sad news.  We had to put Charlie down last night at age 5.  So young.  Somehow he got a fungal spore infection known as CANINE BLASTOMYCOSIS, an extremely aggressive fungal infection and has a low survival rate.
 
About two weeks ago Charlie was coughing or hacking (kinda like a cat with a hair ball).  After several days of hacking we took him to the vet. He was running a slight fever and they said his lungs and heart sounded good.  At that time the vet wanted to do about $500.00 in testes, but I felt that was overkill.  I know now it probably would not have helped if we found this a week sooner. We decided to put him on antibiotics.  About 3 days later he seemed to be doing better and was not hacking anymore.  About 3 days ago he began to insistently breath heavy, I thought this was due to me cutting one of his nails to short and he was just stressed.
 
Yesterday, I was watching him closely and he was breathing or panting non stop and would appear to go into his own world and on occasion would nearly fall over.  After seeing this I took him back to the Vet.  He had lost 3 pounds in the last two weeks! We left Charlie with the Vet to have a series of tests and x-rays.  One hour later the Vet called and asked that we come over and speak with him personally.  The news was horrible.  His lungs had filled up with the yeast form of the fungus and probably infected the rest of his body.  The treatment at this stage was a 5-10 day hospital stay and up to $15,000.00 plus another 6 months of treatment.  The survival rate after 2-3 days was below 20%.  We then took him to an emergency hospital to get a second opinion.  Our worst fears came true.  He had advanced stage of this disease and was likely he would not make it the next 1 - 2 days.  He only had about 10% of lung functioning and his oxygen level was below 70%, which explains why he was panting so heavy and nearly passing out.  We had to put him on oxygen until my wife could stop by and say good-bye.
 
With this grim news I did not want him to come home so that we could watch him die in the next day or so, suffering a horrid death of suffixation.  I just did not want my 10 year old daughter to see him struggle to take his last breaths.
 
I was with him to the end.  As I believe being the one to make the decision to end his life I should be with him instead of sending him with a stranger in a cold dark room.  I am truly shocked that such a vibrant and health dog in his prime of life had deteriorated so quickly.

I am totally in shock. Two weeks ago he was running around like a jack rabbit full of life.  I just can not think of where he could have been to contract this horrible fungus.  Is it possible it's in the house somewhere?  I have his x-rays if anyone would like to see them.  His lungs looked like someone filled a cup up with activated yeast and splattered it all over his lungs.

Totally bummed out.

Offline Lisa

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2008, 09:40:21 AM »
Ahhhh. I'm really sorry to hear about Charlie.  His story isn't that different from my Surf's.  They were both gone so quick. Heartbreaking that Charlie was only 5.

Where are you located?  Charlie could have picked up blastomycosis anywhere.  Have you added mulch or had landscaping done lately? Did he play in wet areas? Streams? Lakes?

If you can find a way to scan the xrays, I'd like to include an example on this site.  I regret not getting Surf's from the vet. 

I've had to put down 2 dogs now, and I was also with them until the end.  The vet who helped Surf pass actually charged me a $38 fee for me being present during the injections.  So distasteful.

Offline charlie

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2008, 09:55:54 AM »
We live in Northern Illinois.  Yes, we live in a townhouse and the landscapers put new mulch in every spring. They have not added any mulch this year yet because we still have snow on the ground.  We also have a pond out back, but he rarely goes down there as we have him on a leash when he goes out.  One problem we have is Canadian Geese leaving dropping alot.

The scans of his lungs are in jpg format.  Just let me know how you want them...maybe email them for you?  I think these scan would be helpful for those who wish educate themselves and see the devistation this desease can be.

I have often wondered if he may have got the spores montrhs ago before winter and his body was keeping it at bay, then in the last two his system just could not handle the infection any longer.

Should I just email the scans to you?

Offline charlie

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2008, 11:40:58 AM »
Cronological events:

Charlie’s Story (Pure Bred American Eskimo – small)
Born: February 3, 2003
Died: March 21, 2008

March 4th – Noticed Charlie “hacking” or coughing several times during the day.  The coughing reminded me of a cat when getting rid of hair balls.

March 5th – Coughing continuing, but this time I see him spit up phlegm.  A yellowish color.  He tries to run and play, but soon after activity the “hacking” starts.

March 6th – Same as the day prior.

March 7th – The hacking is persistent.  We take him to the vet.  His last check up was 6 months ago and he weighed 15 lbs.  Today he weighs 12.9 lbs.  The vet does a thorough external examination.  Charlie had a temperature of 104.5 F.  Vet says his heart and lung function sound good, but wanted to do a series of tests at a cost of $550.00.  I decide that since he was only running a slight fever and his heart and lungs sound good, let’s give it 3 days on antibiotics.  Vet agrees and does not push to get us to have the blood work and x-rays at this time.  He is put on Clavamox 125mg twice a day for 14 days.

March 10th – Three days on antibiotics and his “hacking” has stopped.  We give him a grooming and I cut two of his right rear toe nails a bit short.  Minor blood from the short cuts, but does not seem to bother him.

March 12th – We notice Charlie hopping on three legs. He does not want to put his paw down where I cut the nails a bit short.  He appears to be a bit stressed and I attribute this to the manicure.

March 14th – Maybe breathing a bit shallow and acting like he has no energy, but not coughing.  Just does not seem his self.  I give him a dosage of Bayer baby aspirin 81mg.  Seems to help a bit.

March 18th – Charlie begins to persistently breathe or pant all day.  He is not eating his normal food, but will take human food. He has a hard time being comfortable and finds it real difficult to lie down.

March 21st – He is not getting better and seems to have lost considerable weight.  I notice him around noon and he seems to be going into his own little world with his eyes squinting and looking up into the sky.  He seems to be on the verge of passing out.  I decide to take Charlie to the vet.  I took video’s of him today and two weeks before for the vet to see. Vet check his weight and he is now only 9 lbs.  He has lost nearly 4 pounds in the past two weeks.  For a dog that only weighs 16 lbs full grown this is dramatic. We leave Charlie with the vet for x-rays and blood work.  45 minutes later I get a call from the vet that the doctor would like us to seem him personally.  We look at the x-rays of his lungs and see a snowy patch pattern all over his lungs.  Vet tells me Charlie’s oxygen levels are below 70% and he needs to get in an oxygen chamber right now.  I’m told he has a fungal infection and his life is at critical.  I also get an estimate for possible care at $5,000.00 to $15,000.00 and another 4-6 months of treatment, but at his critical state the chances of him recovering are very low.  We decide to get Charlie to an emergency center for another opinion and possibly in an oxygen chamber.

Vet at emergency room confirms and believes this to be Blastomicosis Pneumonia and only about 10% of his lungs are functioning.  His case is severe and the chance of him recovering is lower than 20%, if he makes it past the first few days of hospitalization.  If he does he will be in critical shape with another 5 – 7 days in ICU at a cost of about $1,000 a day.  If he survives this, then there is a 4-6 month treatment at a cost of about $600 a month.  The Vet and I talk through this, the implication of recovery, scarring, and it is decided we have to stop his suffering NOW.  He was put on oxygen for an hour in an attempt to calm him down a bit.  At 7:30PM he was euthanized.

In hind site:

I did notice Charlie months ago every now and again when play hard, to stop and "hack", but this did not seem out of the ordinary then.  My ignorance may have had a role to play in his death.  Of all the dogs I've had in my life this is the fist time I've seen anything like this.  More must be known and information spread, because if a simple sniff in the dirt can do this...........

Offline evayola

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2008, 12:09:09 PM »
We are also located in Illinois (aurora area). I cannot believe how fast Charlies blasto progressed. I am very sorry for you and your family. It is so hard losing a pet that has become part of your family. You will be in my thoughts and prayers. Charlies story made me cry. This disease is crazy. When you said, "Two weeks ago he was running around like a jack rabbit full of life" it brought tears to my eyes. Charlie is running around in doggie heaven and he is happy and healthy and no longer in pain. I again am so sorry for your family. This whole mulch thing is really bothering me because it really seems this is something we all have in common here. Who knows though, I might just be searching for an answer.
Eva
“There are bad times, but thats okay, just look for the love in it, don't burn the day away.” - Dave Matthews Band

Offline GSP_Mom

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2008, 12:49:04 PM »
My heart goes out to you and your family.  We are in the Aurora IL area as well, and like you  had never heard of Blasto until we were at the Emergency vet looking at x-rays.  Our Dog Bodi is 5 yrs old and his story seems just like Charlies with the on and off hacking and then such quick deteiration.   Truly sorry for your loss,

Vanessa
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Offline Jen

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2008, 02:46:35 PM »
I'm so sorry about your Charlie. 
 We've seen several dogs go the same way, but only DirtBike was actually diagnosed and treated, luckily with great results so far. It can progress very quickly if you don't realize what you're dealing with.
Hopefully, stories like yours on sites like this are helping to raise awareness.
 We all seem to have the mulch and landscaping factor in common as well.
I'd like to see more studies on it.
Best to you, and again, so sorry for your loss-
jen
"so put your faith in more than steel - don't store your treasures up with moth and rust - where thieves break in and steal"
Thrice

Offline Chance

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2010, 06:49:58 PM »
This is sounding pretty scarey for me!  My dog just got a tentative diagnosis based on symptoms and X rays today.  Urine results come back on wednesday.  I am so afraid!  We started treatment today...hopefully we caught it early enough.  Those X rays you posted looked very familiar!  :(  fingers crossed!

Wilson3

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2010, 07:53:12 PM »
WOW this one goes waaay back...glad to see people do read the old posts  ;)

So sorry to hear Chance may also have blasto.
You are so lucky your vet is willing to treat before tests come back!
Also that Chance can go with you to work.

Hoping for a speedy recovery
wilson3

Offline jefndebbacon

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2010, 09:10:13 PM »
So sorry to hear about Chance, but hopefully you have had a early prognosis, and can beat this nasty disease.  Hugs and prayers.... Deb

Offline Chance

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2010, 06:54:26 AM »
Thank you.  We just got the results this morning...strong positive.  :(  He has been responding well to the meds, but from what i understand we may be looking at some difficult days ahead.

Offline Reese07

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2010, 10:12:45 PM »
We just lost our Chocolate Lab to Blasto. We discovered she had it 6 days ago, she went downhill quickly. 7 years old, also in northern Illinois. Still cannot believe it, this is just too tough.

Offline paintubturner

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2010, 09:25:51 AM »
Reese07...so sorry for your loss

Offline jefndebbacon

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2010, 06:59:10 PM »
I am so sorry to hear of your loss.  Hugs.... Deb

Offline j_bryte

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Re: Just lost my American Eskimo 5 years old
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2013, 10:45:30 AM »
Dear Charlie,

I was searching online today through google with the key words in which my young puppy is exhibiting: one eye is severely blood shot, and the actual eye ball itself appears to be covered in a greyish film-in fact to better explain the condition of my puppy's eye for others to understand more clearly I would explain her eye to appear as though she lost vision in her one eye due to the entire eye is 100% grey in color so dark to the fact where I can not even determine where her pupil is therefore making it nearly impossible to attempt checking if her pupil is capable of dilating! However in this eye that appears irritated/infected the only grey coloring is over the color of the eye ball and pupils leaving the white outer part of her eye ball appearing severely irritated, blood shot, and inflamed. Furthermore, as if this out of the clear blue eye complication is not hard enough for any pet owner to try and imagine coping with, a day after noticing the issue in her eye, she then developed a terrible hacky cough (kind of how you explained the cough in your beloved pup-to sound like a cat coughing up a hair ball) Please note my puppy is only 12 weeks old! I have a female black pug, and she is current on all vaccines and deworming therefore its safe to rule out any possible puppy k9 illness due to the lack in vaccines puppies must have in order to prevent deadly illnesses!
Moreover, again as explained I was searching online through google today trying to shed some light on my pups illness awaiting her vet exam which is scheduled today at 3pm (that is the soonest any vet office in my area was able to offer me an urgent apt) While browsing online using the key words of illness displayed in my young puppy I stumbled across your comment through this website explaining the unfortunate illness that struck your healthy 5 year old pup randomly out of the blue and with out even any warning signs! I understand that your personal situation explained in your comment posted about your experience with your 5 year old pup has nothing really to do with my current personal experience with my younger pup, and chances of finding out my young pup is currently suffering from the same illness you and your family unfortunately had to endure is slim to none. I still couldn't help these overwhelming feelings  had through out myself after reading your experience, and hence replying to your comment simply to send you all my prayers and blessings to you and your family as I could only imagine what it must have been like to raise a pup for 5 years as a part of your family, and then one day out of the blue your pup falls ill and your forced to face the unimaginable decision of having to put your pup down knowing that in doing so you were making the right decision and thinking of your loved pup rather than yourself and allowing your pup to suffer a slow a painful death.
So please I hope although you have posted this comment quite sometime ago that you do see that your story is still touching many many hearts and personally I wish you and your family all the best and pray for your family and of course your beloved pup! God bless you, your family, and your beloved pup and may he watch over you all through these hard times and help ease the pain of losing a loved one! Again my pups apt is scheduled for today at 3pm and I am praying that her symptoms are just allergies or something easily curable etc. however understand that in reality its best to prepare myself and my children for the worse case scenario here then to assume everything is fine and assure my children their puppy will be ok only to find out later on today that my pup is suffering a deadly illness or other fatal possibly incurable disease!

Take care Charlie and I sincerely appreciate you taking your time to open up with all of us and share your experience. I understand how difficult it must have been for you to open up and share such a personal upsetting tragedy; however I feel its much more important as a viewer who personally read your story to sincerely show my appreciation for your sharing because believe it or not your story may actually be the hope one answered prayers for another family and in reading your story and understanding this disease needs immediate treatment it may just be enough to save several other families from experiencing this exact situation!

Sincerely
Jen   

 

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