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Old 10-22-2010, 10:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Megaesophagus??

Has anyone heard of this? Or dealt with it?
I only ask cause i found out not to long ago, after getting my bi-color GSD Max, that his sisters (2) Had It, but werent diagnosed with it till after the owners had them for a few months. I do believe, they were put to sleep, and the breeder paid for it all and tests afterwards as well.

I wasnt sure if thats something i need to be worried about, since his sisters had it?! I know you would have to feed your dog, vertically, like in a bailey chair if i remember correctly. But how devastating is that towards a life of schutzhund, or .... JUST A LIFE!

The Mother of Max was sold to a non breeding home. If i remember correctly, the same happened to the Father. Im just in love with my max, and have high hopes for him in the future (MANY THINGS PLANNED)

Any knowledge on the subject would be welcome! Thank you!
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Old 10-22-2010, 10:30 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've had TWO dogs with this and they grew up normal and fine.

In fact it's EXTREMELY UPSETTING to me to hear your breeder killed two of her puppies just cause they had it.

Old time and uninformed breeders will kill the puppies cause it takes them out of their lines (gone and forgotten but NOT THE GENETICS).

Mega can be so bad that puppies die before they are even 4 weeks old, while just nursing. These puppies are the most afflicted and probably won't ever lead a healthy normal life.

Then next grouping of affliction (my term ) are those that start to possibly show signs only when going onto solid food and no longer 100% nursing. THESE ARE THE PUPPIES that you need to look at to see if they will have a healthy normal life. If these puppies are:
  • normal weight with other puppies in the litter
  • normal vigor with other puppies in litter
  • eating normally with other puppies in the litter
THEN those puppies have a chance to grow up 100% normal! Even grow out of the condition ENTIRELY by the time they are a year old! If you manage their eating (for me I only had to use raised feeders, no Bailey chair) and be vigilant if you think they may have gotten aspiration pneumonia to get onto meds at the vet. But if you keep them healthy and normal to a year old they will probably be fine the rest of their lives!

The following video has my Elsa Rose who lived to 10 year old, got her AKC Agility Championship, and died from something entirely NOT related to mega.


And here's my Glory B with ZERO signs/symptoms and now over 1 1/2 years!


Here's Glory at 9 months in our first (and only ) Sch class? She look sickly and ill to you!

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Old 10-22-2010, 10:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Ok, NICE. well i wasnt sure about it. Thanks for responding so quickly! As far as the breeder goes, She didnt want to put the puppy/ puppies down. The Owners had it done. Im not sure about Both, but i know for a fact one of them was put down. I also dont know if it was because it was an extreme case? But one would think, being that the dog survived doing well for that long that it wouldt be an extreme case?? Im not to sure about it. Just was worried about my baby boy, max! haha Good to know, and SEE that they can end up doing everything a normal GSD can do. :]
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Old 10-22-2010, 10:40 AM   #4 (permalink)
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My vet talked to me about it when Stosh had regurgitated food at about 4 mos old- she never gave me any indication that he couldn't lead a normal life if he had it. Turns out he doesn't but I would think killing the two sisters was extreme. Does Max show any symptoms?
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Old 10-22-2010, 10:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrsWoodcock View Post
Ok, NICE. well i wasnt sure about it. Thanks for responding so quickly! As far as the breeder goes, She didnt want to put the puppy/ puppies down. The Owners had it done. Im not sure about Both, but i know for a fact one of them was put down. I also dont know if it was because it was an extreme case? But one would think, being that the dog survived doing well for that long that it wouldt be an extreme case?? Im not to sure about it. Just was worried about my baby boy, max! haha Good to know, and SEE that they can end up doing everything a normal GSD can do. :]
GENERALLY (always?) if the puppy makes it thru 8 weeks and is 100% healthy and like the rest of the litter when sold, then it is in grouping that not only will be a healthy and normal adult... BUT MAY ACTUALLY GROW OUT OF THE CONDITION!

While you absolutely do not want to breed the same bitch/sire again. And you absolutely want to spay/neuter the puppies that have the condition. The puppies that have it that are sickly BEFORE 8 weeks tend to not do well and need the Bailey chair, and also do not grow out of this. These puppies are the ones that need to usually be managed, watched and worried the rest of their lives.

But the puppies that are normal/thriving up to 8 weeks are the ones that pretty much grow up to normal adults!

Breeders can be idiots about this too. I had a huge argument about 8 years ago at the GSDCA Nationals with a woman who was some famous La-De-Da breeder of AKC showline dogs. She TOLD me all mega pups need to be killed because she KNEW they all got sick and died....

So I have my healthy and Top Agility Dog Elsa Rose standing right beside me at the end of the leash while she's telling me this. Elsa was probably at least 5 years old at this time and we were there for the 2 day agility trial. She was right there as healthy as can be, never sick a day of her life from mega, and I knew both her brothers (also born with it) were also currently 100% fine. My personal experience with this, I'd say, was pretty high.

While ya think I changed this woman's mind at all? A woman who would kill her healthy puppy if it had it, and would tell anyone with a healthy puppy to do the same? She 'knew' the dog would get sick (eventually? ) so knew it would save this same puppy the trauma of being ill some vague time in the distant future.... I thought my head would explode/spin off my head when I realized that she absolutely knew she was right and I was wrong and nothing I could say or show her would prevent the death of healthy puppies in her lines or other breeders she had influence with

BUT YOUR DOG SHOULD BE FINE!!!!
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Old 10-22-2010, 11:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stosh View Post
My vet talked to me about it when Stosh had regurgitated food at about 4 mos old- she never gave me any indication that he couldn't lead a normal life if he had it. Turns out he doesn't but I would think killing the two sisters was extreme. Does Max show any symptoms?
I told my vet as soon as i found out about it, and she said he is growing at a nice rate, now he is 6 months and a few lbs shy of 50 lbs. and he has NEVER thrown up his food. In fact out of my 2 dogs, Ruby is the one who throws up But its never regurgitated food. Just yellow bile, with random things, like a guitar pic for instance haha But yeah when it comes to food, he is all about it, eats it within a few minutes, and is done! Ruby is picky with her food, if its on the ground she will eat it all there. But if its in her bowl, depending on how hungry she is or whats going on, she might eat half of it, or eat it all within an hour to 3 lol I think im gonna start taking it away from her if doesnt eat it within 15 minutes. I feed them both 2 cups in the morning and 2 cups at night. Sometimes i feed them 1 cup at 4pm and another at 8pm, since im usually up till 11 to 12 pm anyways.
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Old 10-22-2010, 12:32 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Sounds like Max is fine! The food coming back up without being digested, it still is in it's original shape only moist, is a symptom. So if that's never happened and he's healthy, I wouldn't worry about it. The vet isn't worried is she?
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I had one with it and we had no success with feeding vertically. By the time we got him his esophagus was so big it was pretty much too late.. I really do regret not trying more, but he just got so miserable. That being said with a bailey chair a dog with a megaesophagus that has just begun will likely not get as bad as his got. Also, if you have money some surgeries can sometimes be done. Its not a definite death sentence if you take action fast and keep on top of it. They also put him on reglan but it did nothing. The vet said for how sick he was she was shocked he was so strong and full of life... that was almost 2 years before we put him to sleep.
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