Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Dex Medical Update: Tuesday July 2nd, 2013

By Sass

What a wonderful Tuesday morning it has been. Dex and his foster Mama (Lisa) have been super busy with vet appointments and consults. Today, we received some AMAZING news.

As many of you know - Dex came to the Oahu SPCA in late December with a very deformed back leg. After seeing the X-Rays it was recommended by two difference sources that his leg be amputated. All the necessary blood work was completed and he was given a clean bill of health (apart from the leg of course). He recently was neutered and had some dental work done as the majority of his teeth were damaged or infected.

The fundraiser at Manifest on the 22nd of June, raised enough money to complete his amputation surgery. We were super excited and started planing ahead. However, things took a slight turn. A visiting Orthopedic vet Dr. Burns (from California) had heard of Dex's story through a colleague. He is working on building a client base here on Oahu and decided to take a look at Dex.

It was suggested that a bone biopsy be done. So, Lisa dropped Dex off to Mililani Mauka Vet Clinic. After a day at the vet and a nice nap - the results were in. Today, Lisa and Dex took a trip back to the clinic to talk to the vet staff about the results and plans. Biopsy results came back - NO CANCER, thank God. However, he probably has a low grade bone infection that will be treated with extended round of antibiotics. Easy. The Doctors did additional x-rays and Ultrasound. Now, here is the HUGE news. they do NOT feel there is a need to amputate the leg. It is not the bone that's causing the problems, it is the severed inner ligament. This is amazing news. It was thought that amputation was the only way to make Dex's life pain free - we are so happy that another way has been found.

So, the course they are looking at proceeding with is a brace (yes, Dex is going bionic) and therapy. The Physical Therapy (PT) will be intense and strenuous. However, they feel that with the brace, proper care, PT, heat therapy, acupuncture and hydrotheraphy - Dex will have full movement and be pain free. This is incredible news. None of this would be possible without the incredible support of the Mililani Mauka Vet Clinic and his foster Mama. The brace is custom made by a place out of Colorado called OrthoPets. Dex had video clips and photos done early this morning and they shot and additional two X-Rays at different angles to submit to the company. They will send us a moulding kit and Dex will have a cast put on and mould made of the leg, then cut off the cast and sent in to the company for a brace. They will send it back a as soon as possible and we again cast and re-submit and finally we get the final product. The whole process takes about three weeks. So in short - Both the Orthopedic Vet and Dr. Jamie Wicklund Furutani  of Mililani Mauka believe the brace, therapy and mild grade pain medications when necessary (i.e. Rimadyl, etc) will easily manage all pain and discomfort without exposing him to the trauma of surgery and amputation.

Without the amazing generosity of all of Dex's donation support and the support of Mililani Mauka Veterinary Clinic - Dex wouldn't have this amazing opportunity to keep all his legs!

Here is a quick note from Dex:

"Aloha, all! Sorry, we haven't been keeping everyone updated like we should but we have been busy, busy, busy. I have been to several vet appointments and met tons of new people. I liked them all! I've been super patient and well behaved while being "poked and prodded" as Mama Lisa calls it. Some of the staff at the vet started calling me Mr. Aloha because they said I have a sunny disposition. I don't know what that means but they gave me cookies, so I figure it can't be a bad thing, right?

Today when we went to the vet, we got some really good news. They did a test on me a few days ago and today we learned that I do not have cancer. Mama said she knew that but it was still a huge relief to hear someone say those words out loud. Mamas worry, you know? They said there is some low grade infection in my leg, waaayyyyyy down in the bone so I have to take some medication for a while. I hope it tastes like a treat. Otherwise, I plan to make things difficult cause that's just how I roll.

And the really, really, super duper good news.......are you ready?????............I get to keep my leg. Mama and I were in disbelief at first and Mama must have asked the vets at least four times if they were sure, really sure, really really sure...well, you get the idea. They are certain! I did have a really bad fracture or break, no one knows for sure (and I'm not at liberty to say) but that's not really my problem. My pain comes from a severed ligament. And may I just say 'OUCH'. So I am being fitted for a custom made orthotic brace for my leg. That combined with some therapy like massage, accupuncture and things like hydrotherapy will make me almost pain free. If I stick to a regimen of low grade pain medications (Dr. Miss Jamie gave me Rimadyl today to try) I will be one happy, comfortable dog. Plus I will look like a Transformer with my leg brace and everyone knows that's wicked cool.

So, my friends, I just want to say again how very much Mama and I appreciate everything you have done to help me reach a solution to my pain and suffering. It means a whole lot to me. I'm about 3 weeks out from having my brace and probably another 3 weeks of build up wear time. After that, I am ready if anyone wants to party, take long walks on the beach or do other random fun things that require canine companionship"

We will keep you all posted :)

Special thanks to :

Mililani Mauka Veterinary Clinic
95-1095 Ainamakua Drive
Suite 5
Mililani, HI 96789
Phone: 808-626-7600
Fax: 808-626-7603


By Montana

Blanca, perched in her usual spot on
an afternoon "walk"
Ah, Blanca.  One of my personal shelter favorites.  This big mastiff mix stole my heart from the moment I met her at the shelter.  There's something about the way she looks at you with her big brown eyes and horribly and probably painfully cropped little ears.  This girl is my big sweetheart and every time I'm at the shelter, even if its for five minutes, I stop by her kennel to say hi.  Sometimes she's right at the front, hoping I'll have the time to take her out and cuddle her while we watch the world at the shelter.  Other times, she's laying on her raised bed and gives me a happy grin.  No matter what, Blanca is always there to say hi and give me that dopey mastiff grin of hers.

Blanca is an older girl, six or so years old.  Laid back and mellow, she likes to go for slow short walks and loves to lay outside and watch the world pass her by. Her and I often venture out of her kennel on a short walk  to sit in the grass and nap or laze around and watch all the people and dogs walk by. Blanca will sit for hours if you'd let her, lazing the day away.  When you try to take her back to the kennel, she puts on the brakes.  This girl is stubborn.  It's hard to reason with this big girl, but it can be done!  With a bit of coaxing (usually involving food - she loves her treats), Blanca will rouse herself and reluctantly head back to her kennel.  

Blanca receiving some loving pets from friends at the shelter.
In January, Blanca came to the shelter from a hoarding situation with two other mastiffs (both of whom have been adopted.  She was unhappy, very thin, and suffering from hairloss from who knows what.  Blanca was not very tolerant of people.  She did not  pass the behaviour assessment, and refused to let people in her kennel.  Now,  almost five months later, she loves her people, her hair is back in and she's a very healthy weight.  Unfortunately, her weight gain was a blessing and a curse.  When she came in, Blanca was very stiff in her back legs.  As she put on more weight, it became apparent that something was not quite right.  It became more and more uncomfortable for her to walk.  Often times on our outings, when it comes time to go back to her kennel, she becomes stubborn and hard to rouse. We think its because it hurts her hips and it's difficult for her.  Once you get her up and moving, you have to maintain a light jog or she'll stop and refuse to go further.  We need X - rays to further determine what is going on with her back legs.  Along with issues in her back legs, Blanca's senses are quite dull.  Her eyesight isn't all that great, but her nose is amazing.  This girl can smell a treat from a mile away!  Anytime I have treats (or even crumbs from treats) her nose goes to the pocket they were in!  What she lacks in eyesight, she more than makes up for with her awesome sense of smell! Sass had her out one day, sitting as usual, and before Sass knew it, Blanca had Sass's whole hand in her mouth.  Blanca knew Sass had a treat in her hand, but thought Sass's WHOLE hand was the treat.  Upon realizing her mistake,  Blanca spit out Sass's hand and gave her a dirty look as if to say "hey, your fault for having the treat in there and not giving it to me!'.  

How can you not love this face?
As stated before, this girl is one of my favorites, and I've fallen madly in love with her. I would love more than anything for her to find a forever home, even a foster home would make me happy.  Unfortunately, due to the stairs that lead to my home, and the fact that I have an obnoxious six month old "in-your-face" Shar Pei that would drive this sweet older gal up the wall, she cannot be mine.   She is friendly and likes everybody, though she would probably do best in a home with no children under ten.   She's a sweet girl, who loves to petted and cuddled with. She would love to have a window or a back patio to lounge on to watch the world go by. Often times, she ends up being my big white dog pillow (yes, I've fallen asleep on her on our outings).  She is not a fan of cats and  can be picky about her fellow canine friends, so a meet n greet is a MUST if she's going to live with other dogs, thought she would prefer a home where she is the only animal. Due to her hips, we'd also like to see her go to a home with NO stairs leading to the entrance (one or two might be okay, but stairs are rough on this old girl).  She would love to finally find a home of her own, preferably a more mellow, quiet home.  Please help this beautiful girl find her forever loving home.  Give her a chance to show you what a shelter dog's love truly is!   

This awesome lady needs some medical care for bad hips. If you wish to help - please donate to www.gofundme.com/DexsSurgeryFund.