German Shepherd Dog > The Sorrow of DM and other inheritable diseases (108 replies)
by Abby Normal on 13 January 2012 - 23:14
|I don't have a photo on my computer, as it was 23 years ago. I will see if I can dig out an old 'actual' photo and scan it in. But I wanted to remember him here.|
My old GSD X - Luke (so named after 'Cool Hand Luke') 1976-1988. Another lost to DM at 12 and a half. A beautiful fellow, naughty (!) but so kind and gentle. Like so many others, he was robbed of his body, and we were cruelly robbed of a beautiful soul. Never forgotten.
Beetree, I think although this is a sad, sad thread it is also nice to be able to remember and see them here, all so beautiful, and as a reminder that they are not just 'statistics' but real very much loved dogs.
by k9sar on 14 January 2012 - 00:26
|Very hard to lose any dog. I lost 3 working dogs to DM over a 4 years period. the youngest was 5 the oldest 7. I now test all my dogs prior to breeding or placing them into training|
so sorry to all that have had to deal with the devestation of this disease
by starrchar on 14 January 2012 - 03:22
|Abby, I'd love to see your dogs. Posting the photos for others to see is such a beautiful way to honor their memory. Of course, I also know that scanning and posting the photos can be a bit of challenge. I haven't posted pictures in a very long time and posting them today took me...well, let's just say a lot longer than it should've!|
K9sar, Do you have any photos of your dogs? I can't imagine losing three dogs in 4 years, and to a disease like DM. I am so sorry.
by Mindhunt on 14 January 2012 - 04:01
|K9Sar how heartbreaking....I am still learning to cope with the loss of Loki and I have his cousin that I am watching everytime he trips or drags his back foot. I have become a little overprotective. I found these pictures of Loki, the first when he was swimming in the last week and a visit to the vet for acupuncture. He loved the vet and his treatments, he would hobble over to the blanket and lay down then start chirping at the vet while eye-balling the electrophoresis machine (it was hooked up to various needles to maximize the effects). |
by Blitzen on 14 January 2012 - 13:05
|After this very heartbreaking thread, why are some here still offering advice to newbies to buy dogs from breeders who are NOT testing for DM? If this thread doesn't open eyes here, I'm not sure what will.|
by ggturner on 14 January 2012 - 14:15
|Beautiful dogs. Sad stories. My sympathy to everyone who had/has a dog with this condition.|
by beetree on 14 January 2012 - 15:46
|I do want to thank the posters who have shared their sorrow and their heart dogs' pictures on this thread. I'm hoping it will continue, because that is the point of this thread. I continue to find my monitor tends to get blurry reading other people's stories besides my own, but in the end I find myself smiling through the haze, feeling such love for all "our" stricken dogs.|
by starrchar on 14 January 2012 - 16:25
|"He insisted on taking his frisbee with him every time he went out because he was certain he'd somehow be able to play again. He tried so hard, but just couldn't do it. " Diane, Oh gosh, that statement broke my heart and I've not been able to get it out of my head. I also haven't been able to get the photos of him out of my mind, sitting there with his frisbee, ready to play... I'm so sorry. What happened to your beloved dog, and all the dogs with DM, is just so unfair.|
Mindhunt, I love the photo of your boy at the vet's office. It is just amazing how these dogs just make the best out of every situation.
by shepherdhope on 14 January 2012 - 16:26
Starrchar, you said you would like more info on AF. I to lost Keira to DM at 12 and abit but she also had AF for the last 5 and a bit years. Keira started with little fissures at the side of her anus. When she was having a bad time with the AF there were pits at the sides of her anus about 1/2 a centimetre deep. It's like the tissues melt round the anus. We could not treat Keira with the usual conventional medications as her immune system was already under attack form her other problems. I have a fantastic Homoeopathic vet and we managed it. Kee had her tail shaved was washed and creamed twice a day normally depending on how the AF was behaving. We couldn't operate because of where it was. I think Cyclosporin (spelling might be wrong) is one medications and there are more. Some dogs recover, some have op's, some have good and bad times I hear quite allot loose there battle with this inherited horrific condition.
by shepherdhope on 14 January 2012 - 16:44
|www.genoscoper.com Info about Anal Furunculosis.|
by Abby Normal on 14 January 2012 - 19:02
|OK I am going to try and put in a photo of my old boy Luke. I didn't realise how bad photographs were 20+ years ago LOL. Anyway, if nothing appears it didn't work! Hey it did work, sorry it's so small, but like I say photo's were so bad then (and SMALL!), I had to resize it and this was the best I could do! (Yes, he is wearing a cowboy hat!) He was a king of a dog, a big gentle bear, and EVERYBODY loved Luke, without exception. My friends 4 year old daughter actually bit him on the head once, and he screamed and rushed into my arms. Her mouth was full of black fur. One of the first cases of child bites dog. We were both there, but it happened so fast as these things can. Such a solid dog. An escape artist who could easily clear a 6ft fence if the fancy took him to go and checkout the neighbourhood, and my other dog would come and tell me he'd taken off and we would have to go and find him. He protected me from a man waving a stick at me (care in the community), but he would let 8 week old kittens nestle into him to sleep and share his bone.|
I don't even like to remember the days we struggled with his DM. The hardest part is that they cannot understand. One day he made a mess on the sofa as he lost control of his bowels. He looked stricken. It didn't matter and I told him so. But it mattered to him and I couldn't change that. One day his eyes told me everything I needed to know....
by Blitzen on 14 January 2012 - 19:20
|Thanks for the info on AF. My 2nd GSD suffered from that disease. One of the vets I consulted with told me he'd rather deal with lymphosarcoma in dogs that PF's since nothing really helped much.(My first GSD died from lymphosarcoma.) I ended up putting Blitz down after about 4, 5 months of trying one treatment and another. The fisulas never did get any better, he was a nasty dog and hard to treat - I got bit one time - and then he developed a malignant rectal tumor.|
Good to know that there is a test availble to help detect carriers. I'm all for trying to prevent diseases; I've had my fill of treating sick GSD's.
by StrayPixels on 14 January 2012 - 19:57
|So sorry to everyone!|
These stories are sooo heart breaking! Very, very sad!
This is a wonderful rememberance thread that beetree has started. She knows that the discussion part is very important. So, she was kind enough to make you a thread, where you could have your back and forth discussions. If you are missing a post here, please check this thread
Thanks for your understanding
by starrchar on 14 January 2012 - 23:23
Thank you so much for the information Shepherdhope. After I saw your original post I did research on AF and the DNA test for the condition. Through another forum I found info on Genoscoper and have already passed it on to some breeders. For anyone who is interested, here is the link to Genoscoper for the order form: http://www.genoscoper.com/in_english2/sampling_and_payment_information/
by windwalker18 on 15 January 2012 - 00:06
|Maybe an odd addition to this thread, but in memory of a beautiful Shepherd who came to our clinic with DM. He was treated for 3 years enabling him to walk on... but the inevitable day came when no medication kept his feet going in the same direction. This magnificent dog would walk on the lawn and if he turned would loose his back end and flop 1/2 way to the ground before righting himself and walking on. That last day I held him in my arms as we began the sad process. For the first time in 3 years he struggled, snapping at the Vet, then at me. I still bear the scar on my forearm... we treated my wound then again gently held him for his last journey. His huge heart stilled and he sighed his last sigh in my arms. |
I don't remember his name, just his face and his spirit...
There's now a test to save dogs and humans from this heart wrenching disease. PLEASE do get yours tested before breeding...
by Blitzen on 15 January 2012 - 04:10
|Luke sounds like a very special dog, Abby. He had a super life; how many dogs have their own cowboy hat?|
by Diane on 15 January 2012 - 04:26
|Thank you, starrchar, for the kind words. My boy Daro was and still is an inspiration to me even years after I had to say goodbye to him. He never let anything get him down, always maintained hope things would be fine, and I enjoyed every minute with him even with the DM. There were some good things that came with the DM, too. He was a very high drive dog that my grandkids didn't interact with much before the DM for fear he'd accidentally knock them over. It was heartwarming to watch my young grandson attach the flexi lead to Daro's collar and tell him "Get up, Daro, I know you can do it. I'll help you." Daro got to experience the love of a child when he could no longer accidentally hurt him, and that was a special gift for all of us. |
Yes, it's a very sad disease...but we tried to make the best of it and there were good moments, too. I appreciate this thread and reading what others have experienced with the disease. I'm thrilled to be able to finally honor Daro in this way, so thank you all!
by shepherdhope on 15 January 2012 - 11:02
|I was truly lucky to have had Keira in my life. Through out her life she let me treat her for what ever condition was at it's worst at that time. Never once growling or showing her teeth. When that final day came I had already talked to my vet about taking tissue samples after she'd gone. Keira was a walking medical miracle she helped so much in life if she could help just ONE dog in the future that would make her life even more amazing. Kee had a homoeopathic nosode made to help dogs with AF. Like many of the dogs in these very sad stories you can not help but be in awe of theses amazing dogs. Are hearts are all breaking but we have been so lucky.|
by Abby Normal on 15 January 2012 - 13:21
I have to comment about what you said about Daro. What you said about his frisbee broke me up too. It sums up the heartbreak of DM. I find it wonderful that you found so many positive things in it too, and the story of his new experience of the love of a child brought a lump to my throat. And Mindhunt, still feeling 10 feet tall and bulletproof - I like that.
Shepherdhope how wonderful that Keira has helped other dogs, that is an amazing gift.
When I went through it with my boy it was a very dark time. There was no internet (!) so there was no connection to anyone to share the experience and I felt very isolated. He was the first dog of my own that I lost, and I just wanted to howl at the moon. This thread has made me feel more positive about it retrospectively, and I too feel thrilled that I can honor his memory on this thread. I wouldn't have been without him for the world.
by Blitzen on 15 January 2012 - 13:25
Phew, what a bittersweet thread.