Blastomycosis => Case Studies => Topic started by: Taisa on August 08, 2016, 04:05:25 PM

Title: Bear, male dog - Toronto & Georgian Bay, Canada - 2016 - Did not survive
Post by: Taisa on August 08, 2016, 04:05:25 PM
As I write this, it’s August 8, 2016, I live in Toronto, Canada and I’d like to share with you the story of my dog, Bear, who did not survive an acute infection of Blastomycosis. I’m not sure how old he was - I had rescued him three years ago. He showed some signs of arthritis, so the vet said that he must have been at least eight years old. He weighed 45 lbs, was a black mutt with a fluffy coat, and everyone thought that he was a puppy.

Just over two months ago – May 2016 – Bear had surgery for a torn ligament in his left hind leg. The surgery was quite serious as they had to saw his bone and reposition it to disable the need for the ligament. He was only allowed out three times a day for short periods. During his recovery – June 2016 – he began slowing down and had to stop after 10 minutes, and would lay down on the sidewalk. In hindsight, he had already acquired the Blastomycosis infection, but I was attributing his fatigue to his leg healing.

We live downtown near a park which is under renovation. A thick path of mulch was laid down to create a short cut through the park which we took often – this is one possibility. Around the same time, we did visit the Georgian Bay area - particularly Wasaga beach - my vet suspects that he picked it up there.

July 18, 2016, I noticed Bear breathing heavily, drinking lots of water, had lost some weight, had a rash on his stomach and his eyes looked a little cloudy. I called the vet immediately and we headed over. The vet said that Bear may have developed asthma, he ordered a blood test, urinalyses, fecal test and prescribed an antibiotic (Clavaseptin) – total cost that day: $590.52

Two days later, July 20, the vet called to say that Bear had hookworm and asked us to come in for his meds. When we came, I told him that Bear’s breathing was getting worse. He did some x-rays which showed his lungs all white, but he couldn’t make a diagnoses, and suggested a radiologist take a look. Bear was also prescribed a steroid (Prednisone) – total cost for the day: $548.64

Two days later, July 22, the vet called to say that the radiologist said that Bear had pneumonia, and to come in for two injectable antibiotics (Baytril and Convenia) and another oral one (Baytril tablet) – total cost for that day: $316.90

Two days later, July 24, Bear was getting worse and we went to an emergency vet hospital, where they put him in intensive care, gave him sedation, placed oxygen tubes up his nose, took x-rays and arranged for a consultation with a specialist to assess his ‘white’ lungs – total cost for that day: $1,859.72

The next day they had taken more x-rays, did an ultrasound, a fine needle aspiration of a lymph node, a cytology, then called me to report the awful news that Bear had a severe case of Blastomycosis. I asked if we could just ‘try’ to treat him, which they did for two more days. But by then, he was far too ill, hadn’t eaten anything for days and had become incredibly thin. He was being kept alive by his oxygen tubes and I decided that it was time to end his suffering, so on July 28, 2016, Bear was euthanized. With private cremation and his ashes returned, the balance was: $3,771.41

All in all, the cost was over $7,000. And with the earlier surgery he had on his leg, the cost came to over $10,000… and I no longer have my dog. I am just devastated.
Title: Re: Bear, male dog - Toronto & Georgian Bay, Canada - 2016 - Did not survive
Post by: Karen U.P. Michigan on September 21, 2016, 05:34:28 PM
I am so sorry that you lost Bear. It is very frustrating that it takes so long for vets to check for Blasto as it is a very aggressive (and expensive) disease.  Thanks for sharing your story, and keep raising awareness for this awful disease.
Title: Re: Bear, male dog - Toronto & Georgian Bay, Canada - 2016 - Did not survive
Post by: Loulou on October 02, 2016, 08:16:50 PM
I am so very very sorry for your loss of Bear.
I'm on day 26 of my dogs treatment and it is such a terrible disease.
I lost a dog 15 years ago to blastomycosis so when my dog got it
I knew right away. We live in Alberta and the vets know nothing about it here.