Thursday, November 4, 2010

Just a Portosystemic Shunt

What the what??

I will explain. My pup saw a doggie internal specialist yesterday to figure out why he is having seizures. After a thorough physical examination the doc said he looked, felt and sounded perfectly healthy. Then they shaved his belly and did an ultrasound. What the doctor determined is that he has something called a portosystemic shunt. In simple terms this is a blood vessel that doesn't really belong there and has been channeling blood away from the liver. In fact, my dog's liver never formed properly in the first place. The problem this causes is that toxins are not filtered the way they should be, and the ones left in his system go back into the blood stream and eventually to the brain.

Treatment involves switching to a low protein diet (aka $$$ food) and continuation of the antibiotic and other medication he is already taking which helps absorb the toxins in his digestive tract. All-in-all, very doable. As you can imagine, this came as a huge relief.

As I stood at the reception desk in the vet's office today the other receptionist was talking to someone about the costs and process of putting their dog to sleep. I couldn't help but say a little "Thank You" that it wasn't me she was talking to. After his second seizure on Monday, I was seriously trying to prepare myself for having to put my 4 year old dog to sleep. He went from 3 seizures in 2 weeks, to 2 in 2 days, to 2 in the same day. I really felt like this could be it for him. I know different people look at pets in different ways. I'm not someone who lets my dog sleep in my bed or have his own room in our house, but he is part of our family. I would be heartbroken to have to part with him under any circumstances and I really pray that when that time comes it's not because of a decision I have to make. Thankfully, for now, I'm out of the woods and my furry little guy is going to be ok.

Thanks to all of you for your thoughts, prayers and kind words :)

1 comment:

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