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gcv-border

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Everything posted by gcv-border

  1. I agree with you. I found her thinking quite one-dimensional. And I obviously didn't follow her advice, because my dog is still with me.
  2. I have been thinking about this, and to tell the truth, I have no idea if Keppra is working or not. At the very least, there are no side effects (that I can detect), but since it is too early to really know if there is a pattern to her seizures, and if the Keppra is reducing incidence, I just have to go on faith that it is 'working'. Time will tell, I guess.
  3. CptJack, Thank you so much for your words of experience, and for your honesty. It does help to assuage my feelings of guilt? sadness? anger? frustration? that my dog has to go through this. Two days after Natt had her first cluster of seizures, I took a private lesson with an agility instructor who had travelled down from MD for a couple of workshops and some privates. We talked seizure dogs because she had an agility dog with seizures about 12-15 years ago. She was an ER nurse then, and was able to be very involved in medicating her dog (trying different dosages and combinations). Apparently her dog had major disabling side effects with many of the meds used, and it took tremendous effort and almost a year to find the right combination. The dog was seizure free for 4 years IIRC, but then started to have seizures again.She said that if she ever had another dog with seizures, that she would put it down because it (the seizures) was unfair to the dog. My thinking about seizures has been colored by that conversation, and it is good to hear another perspective. I also have a cat with seizures. [heck, I don't know what is going on in this household ;-) ]. She is very well controlled on Phenobarbital. In fact, I have been able to reduce her meds to almost nil, and she will remain seizure-free for a very long time (years maybe) - except when I have to bring her to the vet. The last time I brought her in, she seized in the crate in the waiting room. Stress probably.
  4. Agree with Gentle Lake on gauging how much to feed your pup. Many BC pups, who are not overfed, will look too skinny to the general public as they reach 4-6 months and into their 'teenage' phase. They are not too skinny, but the general public, and many vets, are so accustomed to seeing overfed dogs that you may get a comment or more about how you should fatten up your dog. Too slow the speed at which she eats, you could buy a 'slow food' bowl, which is basically a plastic (usually) bowl that has ridges in it which make it harder for the dog to gulp its food. I have had to do it for a couple of dogs and it works well (although I prefer not to feed out of a plastic bowl). Another suggestion is to put her food in a large cookie sheet (with side rims) so it is spread out. I have not tried this, but it was recommended by a vet. At her age, I would be feeding her daily allowance of food separated into 3 feedings per day. No free feeding.
  5. I know what you mean. Any rattling of the wire crate at night, and I wake instantly. So relieved when it stops a second or two later because she had adjusted her position or scratched - not a seizure.
  6. I am so blown away by my dog's 'acceptance' of a seizure. i.e she 'wants to press on' - I definitely agree with. One time, she had a seizure while she was eating her dinner. (All of her seizures are grand mal.) It took her only a couple of minutes to recover, then she went back and finished her dinner. Just about brought tears to my eyes.
  7. Good luck finding your next dog. I hope it is soon. I have fostered a bit and have had a couple of dogs come through here that were definitely not in a good place emotionally, and it was always so wonderful to see the improvement once they feel safe. Sometimes it only took a week or two, and for one definitely abused/undersocialized puppy mill dog, she came such a long way in the 4 months I had her, then her amazing adoptive mother took over and continued the socialization process. Is she a 'normal' dog? Maybe/maybe not. It depends on one's definition of 'normal'. But she and her mom are definitely happy, and that is all that matters. In short, I agree with the comments above.
  8. Thanks for your sharing your experience. Yes, raw diet recommended for my dog too. Basically, foods with a low glycemic index are recommended. It is still too early to tell if the raw diet and the Chinese herbs (Subdue Internal Wind) will help. She has only had 3 episodes of cluster seizures with 20 days between the 1st and 2nd cluster, and 29 days between the 2nd and 3rd cluster. We are now at about 17 days after the 3rd cluster. If we can get out to more than a month between clusters, I will be cautiously optimistic. She started on Keppra twice per day, but after the third cluster, we upped to 3X per day. Luckily, still no side effects. I would like to hear more about your dog being able to compete. Has s/he ever had a seizure at an event? And how did you handle it? How did other people (handlers and/or onlookers) react?Have you been able to identify triggers? I have not.
  9. Very cute! And great focus! but on what?? :-)
  10. As I read your post, I was having several of the same thoughts I saw posted in response. You are ending her fun by making her sit and then bringing her inside (by whatever means). So yes, I would be calling her to me, rewarding, then letting her go and play again. I would also call her when I was standing at the door, reward when she comes, and let her go play. And bring her inside, reward, then let her back outside to play. Or at least reward hugely for coming inside with you. Get the idea? Also, are you only doing fun training outside? Why not continue with some fun training inside the house so she is engaged fully with you there too? From what you have written: Outside = fun, Inside = ho hum.
  11. Water gun - no: because I prefer training in a positive manner, although I will use corrections (usually verbal) when necessary. In this scenario, I just think it is better to keep focusing on the positive. If you have seen a continuing improvement with his behavior, just keep it up. You are on the right track. And besides, he is a pup (IIRC), it's not necessary to bring out the "big guns". LOL.
  12. Definitely NO to the water gun! It sounds like what you are doing is working, but as for any puppy behavior, it will take time to change. Just be consistent with trying to help him work through this, and don't worry about the fact that you may have to alternate between approaches. It sounds like the approach of putting him in a sit works the best? How do you reward that behavior? He should get 'paid' for being good.
  13. I go back and forth between agility (competitive) and herding (novice handler and trial spectator) and will also compare and contrast between the two worlds. I have seen the agility handlers with the dogs that drag their handlers to the ring, and spin or other undesirable behavior - but I often associate those teams with handlers that do not fully understand (and therefore have not trained their dog appropriately) to use their brain in the ring. I agree that there is/was a trend to breed 'drivier' agility dogs - not only border collies, but other breeds as well (shelties, paps, etc.), but (most) top level agility handlers know the value of calm, focused behavior. OK, maybe not as calm as at a sheepdog trial, but definitely not spinning or dragging their handler. And with respect to border collies, most of these top handlers often use the working-bred dog vs. the "sporter collie". Just wanted to say that all the high-drive agility dogs are not crazy. That is a pretty broad brush stroke. [i do see a lot of crazy behavior at an agility trial, but prefer to focus on the well-trained dogs to see if I can learn something.] I am in awe of several handlers that can put their dog on a calm down on the side of a ring with dogs running a course on the inside of the ring and dogs being walked and played with on the outside of the ring. And these are dogs that can 'turn on' and smoke the course (and win) when asked.
  14. Maralynn, Thanks for the suggestion of another FB group. I will check it out. The TCVM vet showed me the Balance It website as an option. She encouraged me to play around with it sort of as an educational tool. Having said that, she still feels raw is best as she is not a fan of the synthetic vitamins used in their formulas. She has tried using it with her own dogs with very little success. They hate the taste of it. Same reaction from many of her clients, but every once in a while, a dog has no problem with it.
  15. Thanks waffles. It is good to hear that by keeping your eye out for sales at certain stores, the prices can be reasonable. I was hoping that I could find decent prices locally as I know that buying raw from dog food companies can often be more expensive (but at least it is readily available at a local pet store). I will definitely expand my search beyond my normal grocery stores. I will have to check and see if there are any ethnic grocers that might carry offal. At one time, I was buying raw pork necks at a Food Lion in one part of town. There are 5 or 6 Food Lions around, but this one Food Lion was the only one that carried the pork necks. And when I was in there, I think I remember seeing turkey feet and some other animal products not usually seen at white-bread grocery stores. How many dogs do you feed raw? And what do you think your daily cost per dog is? And what size is your freezer? :-))) Do you trust the advice on the "raw feeding (rf)" FB group? Thanks again,
  16. My youngest dog (2.5 years old) now has cluster seizures. She is on levetiracetam ( generic name) AKA Keppra - brand name. I have consulted a local TCVM vet who has had great success with other dogs using diet changes and herbs - in addition to the Western meds. With the positive results being reduction of dosage of Western meds (and thus reduction of side effects), and in a few cases, no longer needing Western meds. The issue with seizures is that there is not a "one size fits all" approach so I will be going through some experimentation with my girl to see what works - and that applies to both Western and Eastern approaches. At this point, I am considering both, but this post was more for the homemade/cooked variety - even though the vet encouraged raw. From her point of view, raw is best, but homemade/cooked can also work. Grains are bad, but I already feed a primarily grain-free diet. With raw, I will need to find suppliers - as I have read on these Boards before - and of course, learn how to balance meat/bone/offal. Feel free to pm. Lots of learning ahead.
  17. I apologize if this is a tired, old question, but I would like to get advice on up-to-date recipe sources for making home-made dog food. I have found at least 3 groups on FB, but don't know if any are 'good' i.e. with knowledgeable people. Does anybody follow a FB group? And which one? Does anyone recommend any other pages/blogs/forums etc. on the internet? Any book recommendations? "Real Food for Dogs and Cats" by Clare Middle has been recommended to me. I will be checking the archives, but just wanted to post a fresh question to get as much info as possible. Thanks in advance,
  18. Yup, agree with all of the above. You have a gem.
  19. I have used an inflatable collar, and my dog definitely preferred it over the hard plastic cone-type collar. He had had shoulder surgery, and the inflatable collar prevented him from worrying the incision site, but it would have been useless for protecting his back end. It was not big enough to prevent the dog from twisting around. I had a little 6 month old foster that cam back from his neuter surgery with a cone-type collar, but it was made from fabric, and was padded. I really liked it.
  20. Sending healing mojo and hope that you will be dancing again in 6 months.
  21. He sounds like a beautiful boy - both inside and out. :-D
  22. Such good advice above. I am glad you are receptive to the advice offered. Best of luck with your new pup. Photos please!!!!
  23. Count me as the sixth "I love your story". So sorry about Quinn, but one of his gifts to you was to show you that you must always have a dog in your life. I know Kit and you have a great future together. Enjoy the journey!
  24. I am sure you will find a wonderful new partner. Good Luck.
  25. Sue, thanks for your thoughts. Tommy Coyote, thank you for sharing your experiences. I have talked to several other people with experience owning dogs with seizures, and almost all have a slightly different story. I appreciate hearing them as it helps me understand the variability in the condition and the different approaches possible. Update: Natt continues seizure-free on a low dose of Levetiracetam - the generic of Keppra. Her dose is 250 mg, twice per day. The cost is about $28 per month. Tommy, I don't know why it is more expensive in your area. Since the hormone swings of heat cycles have the potential to cause seizures, Natt was spayed last week to reduce that possibility. Since I am in the throes of moving, I haven't had much time to research so am happy that the generic Keppra is working at this time. But future lines of research are: researching a low glutamate diet -- I happened to see one of the chiro vets I have used at the Finals and was discussing the seizures with her. She told me of a client of hers who had a dog with pretty bad seizures. This client really wanted a more "natural" approach and discovered that glutamate was linked to epilepsy. Possibly anecdotal evidence? Regardless, she changed her dog's diet to great benefit and was able to get her dog off all drugs except a very low dose of Pb (which the vet felt was continued almost as a superstition.) Interesting idea that I want to follow up. Cannabis product -- another person told me of her experience with consulting a neurology specialist (vet) who prescribed a hemp/cannabis product for seizure control in her dog. Now THAT is interesting. Definitely looking into that approach when I have time. :-D I was planning on agility with Natt, in addition to herding. I think she will be able to trial a bit in herding, but I will probably just play agility at home. The agility environment is so very stressful, and I would hate to have that stress cause seizures. So ---- so far, so good. Time will tell with regard to additional seizures, but am obviously hoping for a positive outcome.
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