I'm new to the community, but your words have been helping me greatly. A little back story. My boyfriend and I just had to put down our sweet boy Atlas, at age 6, due to what we believe was Cauda Equina syndrome. Atlas had a history of lyme disease since puppyhood, and a few weeks ago, he had what appeared to be his usual summer flare up, as he was limping slightly and showing all signs of lyme. On wednesday, he was his normal self, running and catching a ball in the back yard. By Thursday, he was limping and didn't have much of an appetite. Friday, we took him to the vet and they ran tests, after which they prescribed an antibiotic and pain reliever. He seemed to be his normal self, smiling and happy, though having some trouble in the back still. Saturday morning, June 24, he seemed really, really stiff, but we didin't ahve cause for concern, as he was still eating, drinking, etc. Sat afternoon we started noticing changes, and by early that evening, he was not getting up at all adn had a pathetic sounding hoarse bark. We rushed him to our emergency vet, where we were given the bad news---he had complete loss of motor function in his back, and had lost all reflexes by his tail, etc. To add insult to injury, poor Atlas still maintained sensation, and had lost the ability to urinate. After weighing our options (almost $2500 in preliminary testing, MRI's, etc and another $4,000 in surgery if need be) we knew we had no choice but to put our sweet boy down. I never thought it would hurt this much, and I've not really stopped crying in the 2 weeks since it happened. He was only 6, and our old vet misdiagnosed him as having Spondy at age 4, when Cauda equina was actually the clear diagnosis (wish I knew that now). He dragged his back foot slightly, had slowed reflexes back there, constantly stretched his back, had infrequent fecal incontinence, crossed his back elgs together, etc. Our vet said 'Oh, it's just the beginnings of hip dysplaysia and possible spondy judging by the X-rays. just watch him closely and continue to exercise him and he should be fine". What we didin't know is thatw e were actually harming our boy. I'm still so distraught knowing that I killed my dog :-(
At the Bridge: Atlas Gunther Vom Milnerhaus. 3/26/06-6/24/12. We'll always love you.