Author Topic: Mables Story. Maybe it might give someone some insight into this disease I sti  (Read 82 times)

Offline oakes cove

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 20
  • New Member
Mable's Story  Sept 2013
 4 year old Chocolate Lab Mable, very easy going, loves to chase squirrels, walk on the beam of docks, keen mouser, very agile, curious, sensitive and sucky. She is the baby of the pack. We live in northern Ontario, where major flooding and uprooting  occurred almost one year earlier, we live on the lake superior and we have 2 other dogs in home, Molly 5 yrs and Boom 15 yrs. Those two seem fine. This is our log of Mableís progress.  We don't always do things according to the book and sometimes we take actions in our own hands.  We live 220kms away from the city. If there is one thing that we can stress for this disease  is to go day by day and to live in the here and now.  If you suspect its blasto get to drugstore and buy fluconazole off the shelf.  We did not really know about blastomycosis until recently, September 26 2013 to be exact.
Sept 8- started licking her nose, sneezing and coughing a bit, still played, but looked tired   Caulked it up to a bath she had earlier in the week
-started her on oregano oil 4 times a day as precaution
Sept 12-  still coughing a bit on and off - then coughed up blood and blood was in her bowl movement, panicked, thinking it was pneumonia, I called our vet and told him and we started her on leviquin prescription and continued oregano oil that we had at home until we got to the vet. He xrayed her and it showed pneumonia. no appetite , drank water with coaxing  gave pills in peanut butter
Sept 19  -started clyndamyacin and bayril
We were still giving oregano oil  using peanut butter with pills and just because to keep her somewhat in survival mode
- no change almost getting worse, still no appetite coughing and trouble breathing, eye was looking droopy but not noticeable only to draw attention and lymph nodes were swollen on neck, hind legs called vet said that was not normal went back
Sept 25  -no change, no appetite, no energy, still no appetite coughing and trouble breathing, had to be carried into vet, more xrays there were white masses at top of lungs showing but no snowstorm like how blasto would be  blood work showed white blood cell count was leading toward cancer. her eyes were wide open at the vets showing no dropping, now I realize it was probably  her last burst of adrenaline from being at the vets. Not sure but I also think the oregano oil were giving her was maybe helping to fight the disease but the antibiotics messed that up, that's why there was no snowstorm. When we were leaving the vets her foot started to bleed. We left the vet with Mable thinking it was our last few days together and to make it comfortable as possible. We went and bought more oregano oil and were given alpo bio silver solution

Sept 26- developed a puss look in her left eye, felt feverish,  her  foot was bleeding, no appetite, still no appetite coughing and trouble breathing, no energy had to carry her in and out of house, she couldnít walk her legs were not working.  The weighed her and she was 79lbs.  We googled her symptoms and this blastomycosis.ca  came up. First we had to learn about fungus & yeast.  We had nothing to lose at this point and so we were going to buy some yeast infection cream and let her lick it then we discovered fluconazole pills at the drug store. We bought everything they had. It was very expensive but it was worth a shot.  On the blastomycosis.ca site we learned about dosage and thatís what we did. We learned about what we needed for that more particular time and symptom, because we only kept googling it as each symptom arose. We read lots of good and bad and did not want to become overwhelmed all at once, with too much information.  We had to be focused and we were. After a day or so we then started to really learn more about the actual site that kept popping up. There were a few but nothing as helpful as blastomycosis.ca. 
Sept 27- We then started her on fluconazole 150 mg pills 3 times a day, lecithin pill, milk thistle, oregano oil, and alpo silver solution, plus canestan cream for her lesions. All of the above 3 times a day.
  As we read that night we learned that some people were giving prednisone for swelling, so we then gave her 2.5 mg twice daily. We also did oxygen for her slow and heavy breathing about twice a day for 15 minutes. We were lucky to have a family member that was using oxygen and thatís what we did. Her feet felt feverish and her paws swelled up like Mickey Mouse hands. She couldnít walk and had to be carried everywhere.
We spent everyday possible outside on the step in the warm sun and believe that might of helped in breathing issues for day time. We made sure she got plenty of fresh air and outside time even if it was sleeping out there in the day. We wanted her to feel alive even in sickness.
She still wasnít eating, we gave her peanut butter, fed her carnation ready-made baby formula in a syringe every two hours, and pedialytes in syringe every two hours. She would not eat any canned or dry dog food, it was an effort to chew. She only had a bowel movement every four days, only once did I panic and give her some mineral oil because we were worried.   My husband had the night shift and I was on days with care. We both had the ability to work from home.
We tried to care for the symptoms that seemed most important at that particular time because we still werenít sure of anything. We did call our vet and let him know what we were treating her   for blastomycosis and he then prescribed fluconazole in prescription form. We were scared to switch at first and still used the off the shelf meds we bought.  The vet also asked if we would like different meds but we choose to stay with what we knew, which wasnít much at all. We heard horror stories about dogs not being able to handle the other meds like spornac and itrakonazole . We were still stable and not willing to risk that. Our vet supported our effort with treatment. However he did not like steroids like prednisone or eye drops. This is where we made the decision because according to the site prednizone helped breathing and swelling, which I do believe to this day is what helped save Mableís strength to survive.  This disease is nasty, it is the hardest thing I have ever encountered.
Sept 28- we upped the dose of prednisone to 5mg twice a day, which seemed to really help with the breathing. 
Sept 30- seemed a bit better, but was still iffy, we said she was stable.   She was horribly skinny we could see her bones it was like the disease was eating on her from the inside. We were worried that we were losing. We then read that it would get way worse before better, and it did. We worked even harder to keep her comfortable and stable.  She always laid on the couch but since September she had no desire to go there which is strange to us. She breathed better on the floor.  She did seem like she was getting better in subtle little ways. What an insanely crazy disease.
Oct 1 2013  She woke up next morning to almost acting like she was starving, she then started to eat on own, everything in sight, we let her eat whatever, plus we were still gave baby formula and pedialytes, oregano oil, colloidal silver, lecithin and milk thistle, at least four times a day. We learned that prednisone helped to also increase her appetite. That didnít matter as long as she eats. She also then started to have regular bowel movements on a daily basis.  She developed more eye issues, learned that we were lucky in choosing fluconazole because it helps with eye issues and cns.  That was just dumb luck there only because thatís what was available to us. She also had a gigantic lesion over her bad eye.
We wanted some drops for her eyes but vet was not into steroids said it would not make a difference so we didnít get them. Her one eye had horrible swelling like glaucoma and I was worried about the other eye too. But I was at a road block.           
Her breathing became better and walked outside for the first time in over a week.  We developed so much hope but with caution. People would ask how she was and we would say stable. To look at her was like looking at death. Many nights filled with tears wondering if we were doing her any favours.
Oct 1 called the vet and did take the prescription of fluconazole. Never started it on her just kept it just in case. We used the drugstore off the shelf fluconazole, 150mg life brand. She seems to have vision on and off, but not sure.
Oct 3- she was not doing well at all, no energy, leg swelling gone, started to swell in her face, we think she went blind, but not sure.   her head was sinking in, looked anorexic, still eating and drinking. We feared the worst.
Oct 4- she bounced back, got up on her own and walked around, was really wobbly but walked, healthy appetite which is so encouraging, however we know now she had gone blind but we could get through it. Overall had a good day
Oct 6- a ride to St Joes Island a long trip but she could sleep in truck, she seemed stable, still looked deathly ill but we thought she was great, breathing better, lesions still keep popping up but we learned thatís what is to be expected from this disease.
Oct 8 -outside all day, seemed content,  walked around a bit., ate very well, still horribly skinny doesnít appear to gain weight. I did not weigh her but I figure she weighed about 62lbs by this point.
Oct 10- drove to the vets, we were ready for the blindness diagnosis, which showed both eyes had retinas detached. I do think that if I would have had some drops that at least the other eye could have been saved, however I canít change it I can only move forward. We were concerned about lesion over eye, we were told to wash with plain old warm soap and water. We did and it works well after a few hours she scratched her lesion which then was ready to be lanced and it seemed to heal and take away pain in her face.  When I left the vets I had an unsettling feeling that he thought maybe death was possible, but we just couldnít think about that and continued on.
We still continued with flucozonole 150mg drug store pills, 3 times day, 5mg of prednisone 2 times a day, along with 4 drops of oregano oil, 1 lecithin pill,  2 droppers of colloquial silver, 3 tablespoons of milk thistle everyday
We then went to health food store and found out could use colloquial silver in eyes for drops, so I did this out of trying actually hoping that it would help her repair eyes and regain site. I now realize it was a false hope. However she has not developed any eye infections. Touch wood.  Mable seems to be getting stronger every day in different ways, she still isnít jumping around or on the couch but is getting better. Still very thin and eating everything in smell. She is learning how to map out our house and yard. She has adjusted very well, better than us. We can never move the furniture now, more cautious about where we put shoes, in house and kitchen chairs. She seems to kind of bounce off them in a cautious way to know where she is. Her nose is either high in the air or stuck to the ground. She has adapted well with the other dogs. I read somewhere that if your dog is docile in the pack they adapt better. And Mable is as docile as it gets. She has also proven to be a lot tougher than we could ever imagine. The lesions on her feet are raw but she tries so hard to walk across the driveway and does it. Throughout this whole ordeal she has not whimpered, cried, fussed or growled. Way tougher than I could ever be.
Oct 12 & 13- The family came home for Thanksgiving, she was happy to see them come and tired when they left. Mable seemed good in spirits, appeared to be tired and wheezy we gave her oxygen. Even though we thought she was great to others it appeared like death could be possible. Anything was possible but we just focused on the day to day, here and now attitude.
Oct 14 - We gave her an extra 100mg of fluconazole  for 4 days that we got from vet. We never did the loading dose at the beginning never understood, so 3 weeks into treatment we upped it for 4 days. Along with  the regular dose of flucozonole 150mg drug store pills, 3 times day, 5mg of prednisone two times daily,  along with 4 drops of oregano oil, 1 lecithin pill,  2 droppers of colloquial silver, 3 tablespoons of milk thistle every day.   We were still using our drugstore pills because we were afraid to do a big switch in pills. We also read that the change could be hard, but come to realize that was for the other meds.  Not sure if it was wrong or right but we did it. Her lesions looked somewhat better on her. We still bathed the lesions every day with warm water, Epsom salts and dish soap.  Afraid of antibacterial soaps, stayed away from them.  Applied  canestan cream to them.
  Oct 18- stopped the extra fluconazole 100mg dose, seemed to make lesions worse, wheezing gone away. The rest of week went stable and normal, learning that lesions have a mind of their own.   One day good the next day not so good. Must just be part of disease, no rhyme or rhythm to this disease.
We were at the stage now of what next are we almost out of the woods yet or are we just brushing the tree line.  We are not sure but think when she is panting that the spores might be dying off in lungs, still not sure about that. I also wondered when her lesions leak if it is better to let them for a bit so the blastomycosis can escape the body, not sure about that either. I also used on lesions just lately peroxide which seems to dry them up quite nicely.
Oct 24- We drove to town and seen the travelling vet was there. We were told he knew about blasto so we took a chance and went there. You have to remember we have not had much luck or trust with vets or doctors. We are all human and make mistakes, no matter how much knowledge we have, no one is infallible or invincible.  So we went and he swabbed her lesion and confirmed blasto. I looked myself and seen the figure eights. He said she was systematic and we were on the right track with treatment and Mable was given eye  drops to stop the inflammation. Her chest also sounded good, no struggling when she breathed.  He did recommend spornax  but we opted out to do what we know, and we knew it was working. He was amazed that we could buy fluconazole  off the shelf at drugstore. But you can in Canada.
We now have two vets that we deal with our home and away vet we call them. We listen to what they say and make our own decisions from there.
November 1-Using the out of town vets fluconazole prescription 300mg once a day, 2.5mg prednisone twice a day, oregano oil twice a day, colloquial silver twice a day, milk thistle twice a day, lecithin twice a day
November 7 Ė Mable went to our home vet and was tested for liver function. Her liver was perfect 1% enzyme out of whack, but he was suspecting that to be from prednisone. I think that it was good we started lecithin pills and milk thistle with every fluconazole that went into her body.  She also gained her weight back she is 71lbs. A few more pounds to go and she will be ready for winter. She still has lesions on body and feet, they try to heal then they come back. Not sure why, but she is stronger every day. She gets around the yard no problem and house.  We encourage her with everything that she does and responds very well to it. We are still not out of woods but we are very close. I realize that she will be on meds for at least a year. In two weeks we will do the mirovista test but we are not expecting miracles, we know it will be high and it takes a long time to kill off.
November 11 2013- same medication regime every day                                                                                                                                                                   Mable walked to office for last two days, stayed down there for morning, came home jumped on couch now we feel really good, was never sure if she would do couch again with blindness. Still has lesions, pants once in a while, other than that seems to be responding well to treatment.
January 2014-relapse or something crazy wrong                                                                                                                                             something went horrible wrong, she lost appetite, became lethargic  I figure the fluconazole was keeping this disease at bay, but not fighting as hard anymore, she was also on 2.5 mg of prednizone as well then we stopped it for two weeks Not sure if it was because we stopped the prednizone or what but will never really know. we have switched her to spornax and 5 mg of prednizone. Her liver function was tested again and was perfect on the charts. I still use lecithin and milk thistle. with every dose. Can only hope for the best.

February  27 2014- Mableís Miro Vista test came out  without a trace                                                                                                                                           She was tested miro vista and came out with no trace of blasto. Accept her liver despite all my efforts went for the worst. We still left her on the meds until the beginning of March. Even though Im happy we are not on the meds  have been watching her like a hawk. We check her temperature weekly and feel her body for lumps, check for lesions, its almost crazy.  Just cant trust this disease it has a mind of its own. 
March 27 2014- Its safe to say she has been med free for 3 weeks                                                                                          However, we will be bringing her back for another Miro vista test in about two weeks. Vet says its not necessary we do not trust this disease. She sneezed today and I almost started treatment again, you can never let your guard down too much. Thatís how this all started.
The Blastomycosis.ca site has been a wonderful reference point in somewhat guiding us. I do believe what the other pet owners have shared have been most self-empowering in the process to Mableís recovery. When we were told that it was probably cancer and prepare for the worst I couldnít believe it or wouldnít. Mable doesnít even smoke.  Every time we googled something the site popped up. We later did join the site but never asked or spoke on it until now.  It was almost like we couldnít bear the thought of sharing our story and the worst would come. Also because we somewhat went against the grain of veterinarian and did it our way.
I do know that if you suspect your dog to have this condition and donít have access to a vet immediately go to the drug store and buy fluconazole off the shelf. Itís expensive at first but it could save your pets life and get a kick start on all the damaging effects it can cause. Thanks for reading.

 

anything