Worried about Chama - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 02:10 AM Thread Starter
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Worried about Chama

Hopefully I am just being a worry wart but Chama seems off tonight. She had diarrhea a few days ago (not normal for her) and it lasted about 24 hours. It wasn't like she had to go that frequently but when she did go it was the watery kind. I did the normal fasting and then bland diet and today she has had two decent poops. Up until tonight her energy level and spirit have been normal.

Tonight I heard a strange sound in the kitchen so I went in and found her trying to get into a bag of dog food. I have been feeding her less b/c of the diarrhea and Chama is a big pig so I'm sure she was still hungry. She had about 1.5 cups of homemade food for dinner. Anyway, I am almost positive she didn't get anything out of the bag but I can't be 100% positive. When we went out for a walk (about an hour later) she wanted to eat snow. That is not abnormal either. She was slower than normal on the walk but was still marking and sniffing, etc. When we came home she wanted to eat more snow and when we went in the house she drank about 8 ounces of water. That seemed very strange to me b/c her food had a lot of water in it tonight since I wanted to be sure she stayed hydrated.

I did give her a snack (normal) when we came home and she's now sleeping but I just feel worried, like something isn't right with her. I actually gave her two activated charcoal tabs just in case she got some of that dry food since it was not the kind she is supposed to eat (it's Orijen with turkey in it and she's allergic to turkey).

Guess I'm not asking for advice but just looking for other people to worry with.

Ruth & the 4 Legged Rescue Gang

Rafi the malaroo

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post #2 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 02:18 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

I know very well the feeling that one of the furries is "off" but not quite knowing why.


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post #3 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 02:30 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

Yeah, me too. I hate that feeling of something, just not sure what. Still - the fact that her appetite is good is definitely preferable to the alternative. Maybe her equilibrium is still a little out of kilter from the diarrhea and fasting and she's trying to make up the difference. I've noticed sometimes dogs that haven't had food or water (for other reasons, but assuming the same thing applies) want to gorge far more than they need. Probably it takes the body a while to get the signal that it's full again.

Regardless - Worrywart solidarity! Feel better soon Charma!


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post #4 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 02:34 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Worried about Chama

I lost Basu at almost exactly this time of year 2 years ago. One day he was fine, the next day he wasn't and then 3 days later he was dead. It was hemangiosarcoma and the tumor bled out.

So that probably has a lot to do with my worrying. Plus Chama is one month away from her 14th birthday. And I know anything can happen at any time when you have a senior.

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post #5 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 02:42 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

I hear ya! Yesterday while I was trying to celebrate Grace's birthday I kept thinking how my childhood dog Princess and my husky/GSD mix Kira both seemed perfectly healthy - even young - at age 9 but then that was the year they both got cancer and both died at age 10.

Loving these guys is nerve wracking because you just never know what's around the corner and every year you have them just makes you want them to live forever that much more. But even though she's a "lady of mature years," hopefully this is a minor blip and Charma will be going strong for a good long while yet. Sending some healthy dog and happy GI vibes your way!


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post #6 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 03:32 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

Worrying over small things IMO is good because it shows you are in tune with your dogs... I would just keep an eye on her and if she still seems off I would go to the vet.
I know my vet has commended me several times on being very observant with my dogs because thanks to that we were able to catch some problems before they became more serious, or at least before they had any obvious symptoms... I brought them in and explained what was going on and my vet would do bloodwork or other diagnostics, so we discovered what was wrong before they were really showing signs at which point the problem can be pretty advanced.

I know what you mean about the worrying too...I lost both my (senior) dogs within 3 months last summer/fall to cancer and now I am even more concerned when I see anything at all off with my pets.


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post #7 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 05:08 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

I've found a digital thermometer, used appropriately, helps me decide how much to worry.
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post #8 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 05:13 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

I hope she's doing better today.

I think I started fasting the seniors for 12 hours only-I can't remember if that worked or not.

Totally understand the worry.





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post #9 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 05:47 AM
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Re: Worried about Chama

Sending out healing energy to sweet Chama. How is she feeling today? With my last senior, a few days of diarrhea could make him draggy. She may be drinking a bit more water if she will be getting another bout of the trots, but it may just be short and self-limiting. It is so easy to worry when they are seniors! I would be sure she has her nice boring bland diet if you can switch her to some homecooked chix and rice or hamburger and rice. This really could be no big thing for Chama-- but in seniors, temporary upset tummy and diarrhea can be more draining of their zip. Here is hoping that in a day or two, Chama bounces right back to feeling good again.

You are the most caring, attentive, watchful Mom, Ruth. Chama is so lucky to have you! I totally understand the worried feeling. Sending HUGS from Bavaria to you, Chama, Rafi, and Cleo.

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post #10 of 862 (permalink) Old 03-03-2009, 05:55 AM Thread Starter
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Chama Update--Not Good!

I just got back from the E-vet. Chama started to try to throw up and her stomach looked large and felt taut so we rushed over there. They took an x-ray and there was a lot of gas in her stomach as well as some sort of large, unidentifiable mass. The vet felt that the mass was a tumor. She said that most dogs who bloated at this age had something causing it and it was usually a tumor (like Kramer). Chama was very uncomfortable and disoriented.

The vet gave me the choice to do a tube and then if that didn't work do surgery or euthanize her. Based on her age and the quality of her life I decided I would let her go. I know that's not the choice that many of you would make but I decided that she had lived a wonderful life and that I didn't want to put her through a ton of surgical procedures so that I could get a few more months (if that) with her. I called a friend who had been through the same thing with her dog.

Fast forward to now. I am home with Chama. Vet brought her back in the room and she was happy and feeling better. I took her for a walk and she peed and pooped. She was happy and her stomach was better too. So I decided to take her home (I live 10 minutes from the E-Vet.) They gave her a shot of Buprenex for pain and a shot of Famotidine for the gas.

Unfortunately the drug or combo of drugs is not sitting well with her. The Buprenex literally knocked her off of her feet. Now she is lying on her bed drooling and crying. She was not doing this before. Her stomach is a normal size but because of the narcotic I have no idea what she's reacting to. I did read that drooling is a side effect in 5% of dogs. I called the E-vet back and the vet tech wasn't very helpful except to say that it sometimes made dogs drowsy.

I don't know what to do.

Ruth & the 4 Legged Rescue Gang

Rafi the malaroo

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