Aspergillosis - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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Aspergillosis

Hi All,
A month ago I lost my 3 yr old GSD to disseminated aspergillosis. She started showing symptoms a year ago and after 2 months of diagnostics she was finally diagnosed. We fought the horrible disease for 9 months. We went through two rounds of (9) IV treatments and had multiple oral antifungals. After a couple of months she had a real turn around. She was doing much better, her energy was good, she was gaining weight again, but did have some limited mobility as the infection was in her spine and other organs. After about 4 really good months she suddenly had a flair up in her GI. We did know she had elevated TLI and PLI which was either due to her disease or she had IBD. Over the course of the next month she started to drop weight massively (15 pounds) she wasn’t digesting any food, would barely eat but I could see she was hungry, it just went in one end and out the other. We tried all sorts of medication to help the stomach and nothing did. She then developed pneumonia. I took her into the vet and we took x rays and in addition to the pneumonia and GI issues she had a new lesion in per pelvic area from the infection. She was terrified of going into the vet, didn’t want to leave the house and wasn’t coming when I called her anymore. I was heartbroken and didn’t know what to do. I made a promise to her I wouldn’t do any more IV treatments because she had become so terrified of going to the vet that I didn’t want to put her through that. So I decided to take her home and have a vet come to help her pass. I struggle now with this guilt that perhaps I should have kept trying. There were options, primarily to do the IV treatment and try a different anrifungal medication. My vet gave a 50/50 chance of her rebounding but untimately we would be looking at 3-6 months before another relapse (barring a miracle.). That was also assuming she survived the pneumonia. I believe my dog had given up, was tired and in more pain than I can imagine, but I wonder if any of these treatments were to work would she suddenly feel energized again and try. This disease is almost always terminal except in very rare cases. I’ve never seen or heard of a dog with a relapse ever come back to be cured (not with the disseminated version). I have seen dogs switch meds and get another year or two, but typically the relapse isn’t this bad. I also don’t know if her stomach issue would have been fixed by this. Anyways I’m trying to grieve but it is so hard to be consumed with so much guilt...
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 03:08 PM
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Oh my Gosh I am SO sorry. I have never heard of this condition. Please don't feel guilty. I know it is hard, but try. She let you know she was done fighting, and trusted and loved you <3 You took care of her best you could, all the way through. My condolences
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 03:45 PM
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I am so sorry. It sounds like you did everything you could for her and then chose to spare her any more fear and pain. I have not had to make that decision with such a young companion but if I were under those same circumstances, as hard as it is, I think I would have chosen the same.

The questioning and the guilt is part of the grieving process. I have experienced those with each of ours and with each, that part of the process had a different time frame. Be kind to yourself, you deserved as much compassion as you gave to her.

RIP sweet girl

"If you can't see his soul when you look in his eyes, then you need a seeing-eye dog"
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 06:10 PM
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I'm sorry for your loss. even though my boys were much older, health issues were the reason I had to let them go. I didnt want to let them go, but I didn't want them to suffer either. i think you did all you could and kept your promise to her. Peace to you.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 08:48 PM
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I hate these kind of choices. The thing that I think is important is the message you got from your dog. She seemed not to want any more treatment. You honored that. It IS hard. It is always hard but when you feel like you are making a choice - that is just such a burden. It sounds like you gave it a try for as long as she was willing. I think that's the best any of us can do.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-12-2018, 09:40 PM
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You listened to your dog with your heart and took the best care of her you could. I'm so sorry that she had to go so young. Please be at peace with your decision. She's no longer suffering or worried about the vet visits, she is at peace thanks to you.

"If there ever comes a day when we can't be together,keep me in your heart, I'll stay there forever." A.A. Milne
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 09:20 AM
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So sorry for the loss of one so young.....you did everything you could for her day to day....it was her time and she knew it....the guilt you're feeling is a part of the grieving process....most folks here have been through the guilt...afterwards.....did I wait too long ??......did I act too quickly ??.....in the end for anyone who's ever loved a dog....we all wish for "just one more day"....again I'm very sorry.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 11:19 AM
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I'm so sorry for your loss. It is never easy and even harder when they are young. It sounds like you did the right thing.
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