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Old 08-11-2014, 07:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Pretty torn on her hips..

So one of the Vets that I use, strongly suggests i put Zelda on Carprophen long term. I been through this with the vets a couple times, and have said i want to go the holistic route, but he its making me feel bad.. He said that it will give her better quality of life.
I really dont want to. I have her on Traumeel for pain, which helps considerably, but she still is acting painful, especially lately. I also noticed lately getting up is still a bit more strenuous for her like before, im not sure what changed..
He said that even if i did a surgery for her later in her life, the arthritis would be very bad and painful by than anyways..
I'm really torn. Because I cant foresee how long she is going to live. Is she going to die of cancer, of her hips and being too painful, or who knows what? If i knew for sure she would only live to be 6-8, i would probably start carprophen.. How do i know she isn't going to be living till 10-15? Long term side effects of carprophen are not pretty.. Do i really want to subject her to that? Or am i being selfish in wanting her to live longer and by doing so be in pain? (not that i want her to be in pain, but consequence of not going on carprophen until she is older, would mean pain in the mean time..)
He says we can check blood work regularly if we put it on her long term.. She isn't even two yet.
I know she wont live forever- as scary as that thought is i hate even thinking about it, but i want to be sure that i can do whatever i can in my power to make sure she lives the longest and happiest life that she can.
Traumeel helps, but am i doing enough? All these different opinions from different Vets. i see a holistic vet and two other vets that are from the same practice, i appreciate different opinions but they all have me torn. I just want to do whats right for Zelda..
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Is there a reason you are not doing the surgery? The surgery will require some meds short term, but then the dog can live a normal life for a number of years, and then as a senior dog, you may have to resort to some pain management.
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I dont have the money currently, i am slowly saving up whenever i have a little extra money-which doesn't happen with all the vet bills and then the car goes and then i need new sneakers and then another vet trip, lol. I also dont have the money to do payments on loans for it either.
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Old 08-11-2014, 08:02 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well, you don't have the money to give the dog what it needs. I don't think you should deny the dog the medication that would make her life better in the short run while you let your sneakers get holes in them saving up for the surgery your dog needs.

Have you applied for care-credit? You may be able to put some or all of the cost of the operation on to some type of credit so that you can then pay it after she has some relief.

Have you discussed the options and different surgeries with your vet? Have you tried to set up a payment plan? Just because they have a sign in the office that says they want payment up front does not mean they may not set up payments.

There are almost always options. One option of course is to put a dog that has a problem out of their pain. No one wants to think about this option. But if the homeopathic med is not working and the alternative is to put the dog on a medicine that will have problems down the road or to put the dog down, which way would you go?

When we are in the middle of a problem it is hard to see all our options. Maybe if you talk to the vet and determine the cost of the surgery that is the best for her situation and yours, then maybe people can help you see some options that maybe you aren't seeing at present.
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Old 08-11-2014, 08:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Oh trust me i wait till my sneakers have holes and are falling apart before i replace them!

I have looked up care credit and the options. And was warned it should be more of an accident, like if she got hit by a car, or got really sick- use it for those things.

I have. There are not Vets, or specialists who will perform the THR in Vermont, I would probably go to the one in MA. But that will be years from now if i do go that route, and would only be able to replace one.
The OFA, i looked into, thought about, and rethinking about. One of the Vets told me it is best as a last resort surgery, that it will cut her life shorter, and that recover after is really important, and being a bigger dog its harder rehab than for say a smaller breed. If i did decide OFA, i am sure the Vet i go to know would give me a payment plan. But i would feel better doing a big and expensive surgery like this at a specialist.

There is no reason to put her down now, she is still quite the happy honey bee! She is under 2 years though, and it raises the question how much more time it will take before getting up is a bigger chore than it is already.
If i have to get her wheels and carry her up stairs, i will.

The thing with surgeries is they are investments. For example, as much as i would love to buy a new car, more reliable, i dont have to worry about things going left and right which cost lots of money in the long run.. Is i dont have the money for it. I have money to scratch by for the car, but no money to put grands into.

I made another appointment for her, since im having a problem with under her paw pads, so i will ask the vet again. This holistic vet i see, does other practices, he isn't just into herbals, but that is the first thing he tries- and sees results for.

What would you do Selzer if you were in my current situation? Would you put her on carprophen?
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Old 08-11-2014, 09:47 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Do you mean FHO? There is no reason for an FHO surgery to cut her life short. My first GSD had FHO's done on both hips and did search and rescue for 9 years after that, she was a year old when she had the surgeries.
Your vet is not being truthful saying FHO surgeries will shorten her life or later in life there will be pain. When an FHO is done, the bone is removed and muscle put between the femor and the hip socket, there is not bone on bone grinding away. A false joint will form and there will be no arthritis in the joints because there is no bone touching bone.
My girl was over 70 lbs and as I said, did search and rescue for years after her surgeries and lived a long happy sound pain free life.
Rehab is not a big deal, you just have to be consistent. Range of motion exercises, walking on leash, letting her decide when to put foot down. Exercise is very important with this surgery. I started range of motion exercises immediately and leash walking, let her walk around house as she wanted to and as soon as stitches were out, she swam and swam. NO issues at all.
FHO's are a VERY common surgery done on GSD's with hip issues. Lots less expensive and no chance of the dog rejecting the metal hip in the THR.

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Old 08-11-2014, 09:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I think I would. If I felt that she was not getting her pain managed and it was effecting other things like lack of appetite, inability to get up, inability to enjoy light exercise which is very good for her, I would go ahead and use the stronger drug and try to make it short term. I would make a plan to get that money together within a year so that I could get her off the meds I was worried about as soon as possible.

I guess the way I look at it, is the joint is bad and it is degrading daily. If fixing the joint would eliminate pain for a number of years, then she needs no medicine. But the longer I wait to get the surgery the more time she either has to be on meds, and is maybe suffering. And maybe the longer the recovery time, and the harder everything is in the long run.

I think that making a bill for a car can make sense, especially if it saves you on gas and repairs. So you pay interest, but hopefully pay it off before it needs to be replaced. And sometimes with a new car loan, you can get the interest low and the saving in gas and repairs really makes sense.

For her it is a savings on meds and pain, and possibly further damage. Do you have a ball park figure that you need to come up with? What is it going to cost to get the surgery. How much do you need to set aside per week to get it covered in 52? If it's 10k, what do you need to do to get together $200 per week? It's a lot of money, but if you can get half saved, and use credit for the other half, and pay that off in another year or two, she will probably have better years in front of her.

How to get $200/month? Well, 10 hours babysitting at $10/hour will get half of it -- that is just a possible suggestiong, there is also tutoring, and other stuff like lawn work, stuff that is enough different from whatever your regular job is that it doesn't wear you out. Then dump your cell phone for me that would be $37/month -- almost halfway there. What else could I get rid of? If we look closely we can drop lots of things that we really don't need. Eating out, cable TV, internet, prepared food -- or shop at a bulk place, you can live on bean soup for a while. There are a lot of ways to cut corners.

Bring home more, and put out less. Sell some stuff on e-bay. Tell family and friends you can't buy Christmas presents this year. There are lots of things we can do. Some more creative, some less. But if it was possible, and the dog needed it, I would borrow from family or borrow from care credit or borrow from any other type of credit to get the dog what it needs, and I would see if the vet would do it with a payment plan.
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Have you looked at whether she's a candidate for Adequan? I've seen it used successfully in some young dogs with bad hips. There are lots of threads about it here.
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
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This is a way I make extra money, is dog sitting. Rover.com, u can sign up for free and for me I have been bringing it about 3-400 a month. This could help with your bills. I have an option and it won't be a popular one but this is more of a last resort option... Say you bend over backwards trying to bring in extra money to put her on medicine and save up for surgery and all that, but somehow it just doesn't work out, and you see she is in pain and suffering, but she is still young and has a lot of life to live. If you love her enough you would do anything in your power to help your baby, even when things get to be out of your power. So one option (again last resort) is to speak with a gsd rescue, or a vet hospital and see if you surrendered her if they would do the surgery and treatment on their own. Sometimes when dogs are surrendered and clearly have a lot of life in them but just have one or two things wrong, the rescue or hospital will use their own resources to save the dog. Of course you would have to make sure she wouldn't be euthanized. I'm not saying to go and do this, and I don't think there is a need for you to do this, but just give keep an eye on her, and if the money isn't coming in, and you can't help her, and she's hurting, and there is no end I. Sight... Consider this before considering euthanasia. I'm sorry, but I hope the best, and feel positive about her knowing she has someone like you pulling for her. Good luck.
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Old 08-11-2014, 10:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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if you cannot afford surgery and it is not an option then give her pain relief

it is always quality over quantity
she could live another 5 - 10 yrs and be miserable
or have some great years before it ends

so give her pain relief until it no longer works
then consider your options

that said i would look into things like tramadol and even gabapentin as well as the carprofen
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