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Healing thoughts to RD, a good friend also has an older dog (small mixbreed) suffering from Pancreatitis so we will split our energies between the two

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Thanks again for all the good vibes etc. I am sure they are helping!

 

RD has not vomited in more than 24 hours, although he now has the runs. He drank water of his own volition for the first time this morning, but still does not want to eat, though I can get him to take the occasional lap of broth when I tell him it's water. He is still lethargic and clearly not feeling well, but I am hoping these baby steps mean he is on the mend. We really do need to see more improvement over the next 12 hours though.

 

RDM

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Good to hear that RD seems to be on the mend. His pictures looked so sad. I can't imagine having to see my best friend in so much pain. I sure hope that the fact that he is vomiting much less means that he's feeling at least a little bit better. We are sending plenty of good healing thoughts his way.

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Sheena, I'm late getting to this, but wanted to let you know I'm thinking of RD and hoping you see continued improvement.

 

Hang in there, RD! We're all pulling for you.

 

ETA: Oh, I just saw the pics on your blog. :rolleyes: Poor, sweet RedDog! Give him a kiss on his head, please.

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Oh no poor RD, i am late reading all this too. Just saw his photo, he looks so unhappy.

 

Sending good vibes from the UK for your lovely boy to feel much better very soon.

 

It must be really hard for you too, we love em so much, it is so hard to see them feeling so unwell.

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We dreamed about Red Dog last night (good dreams).

 

(Well, my dreams were good ones anyway. Biko was growling in her sleep, which I'm sure meant "Stay out of the garbage, RD! Or else Woo will get to eat your piece of cake on the 29th, and he does not need any more cake!")

 

Keep those positive updates coming -- pups and their peoples the world over all want to hear the good news.

 

ETA: 39 comments so far! That must be a TWAAW record, eh?

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Poor Red Dog, we are sending our best wishes for speedy recovery from down here in Australia. My husband has idiopathic pancreatitis and it is one of the most excruciating painful conditions to have, so I really sympathise with poor ol RD. It is a huge attack on the whole body and all the organs, so any tiny improvement is a step in the right direction, even though it might not seem like it.

 

Hugs to you to RDM and RDF, and of course to all TWAAW.

 

Michelle

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What's the latest on RD.

 

I just looked and there is an update on the blog. I have been thinking about him since reading all this yesterday.

 

Oh no RDM, what a scary night you have had with him.

 

Still sending good wishes for him and you too at this difficult time.

 

He looks better on those new photo's, has a bit of RD attitude in his face which is nice to see.

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New question.

 

Tonight I found what looks like pressure sore on and around the elbow above where his catheter was. The skin right on the bony part of the elbow looks pretty dead (it's black). Around the side it's got lesions that contain pus and blood and it smells.

 

RDF shaved it for me and I've cleaned it with Hibitane and I'm changing the bandage every hour or so. RD really wants to lick it. He wants to lick it so much he keeps hiding around the other side of the deep freeze to lick in private. Guess who is wearing his Cone of Shame tonight?? I tried to get into my vet today but she was gone by the time I found the thing (did not immediately notice it since I was more elated to learn he was alive, and also his legs are very hairy) and is not in until noon tomorrow. I suppose I could go somewhere else first thing tomorrow AM but I am reluctant to go to a different vet.

 

He is on antibiotics and pain control medication as it is, so I'm not sure what else they can do. Obviously he is not a candidate for surgery. But why did this develop? Is it because the catheter was in for 4 days? I should point out that I was unaware it should be changed frequently. No one told me!

 

This gross smelly thing aside, he is eating and drinking and pooping and went for a walk today (short one). Still very much with us.

 

RDM

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It sounds to me like some necrotic tissue, probably as a result of the catheter. Assuming the area is not too large, I would think that the vet could debride the wound with just some local anesthetic. Of course, I'm not a vet. Just drawing from my relatively limited experience in the human health care field. I'm glad to hear that RD seems to be still making some progress. Continued prayers and good thoughts coming his way.

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Hmm. IV catheters and tubing in humans are not changed more than every 72 hours, usually, depending on hospital policy.

 

The DRESSING, however, may need to be changed more frequently if it has gotten wet/soiled, which I would expect in a dog.

 

I agree with MaryP about the black part being necrotic tissue. If the "sore" is around the circumference of his arm/elbow, that sounds like what has happened--was it where the tape holding the catheter in was? Does it look like the pus-filled area is very large or deep (is it just the overlying skin, or do you think the muscles are also involved)? It is not where the actual needle was inserted, was it? You don't see any petechiae (small, purple bruise-like spots) around the area where the needle was inserted?

 

Bottom line: if the sore is well above the point of needle insertion and looks like it does not affect the underlying tissue too deeply, keeping it clean is the best you can do for now. Unless he spikes a fever (keep checking, maybe every two hours?) or otherwise has a great big change in status, I would not say it is an emergency. If it is truly an abscess that needs to be drained, in humans, local anesthetic is given and the lesion is incised and irrigated with sterile saline. Otherwise, it is left open to heal. Perhaps covering it with a dressing is not the best, but being a dog, I don't know how else you would otherwise keep it clean, so I guess changing the dressing every hour and using Hibitane sounds good. Obviously, I am not a vet--I'm in human healthcare, too--but that's my opinion from what you have said. Poor RD. Otherwise, it sounds like he is feeling much better, though!! You said he was wheezing on your blog....perhaps the IV fluids were too much for him. You still may want to take it easy with the food, though...and perhaps you will need to switch to subcutaneous fluids to keep him hydrated. The vet didn't hear a heart murmur or crackling in the lungs, did he?

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P.S. Sorry, should clarify: by "usually" not changed until every 72 hours, that assumes the line is clean and open. The "petechiae", if you see them, or any pus/blood oozing where the needle actually was, may indicate that the line had been contaminated. A DEEP abscess may indicate that the infection from the line has now traveled outwards and involved the surrounding tissue...if you see that, THAT MAY be an emergency....but in only four days, I really think that is unlikely if the catheter was placed under sterile conditions by a vet. Depending on what antibiotics he is on, they may need something stronger or what he is on may be fine. If you see anything remotely like what I am describing in this post, call a 24-hospital and ask to speak to a tech, and try to describe to them what you are seeing, and perhaps they can help you ascertain exactly what is going on...in this format, it is hard for me to know without seeing the wound myself. Again, if the external sore was the result of a contaminated line, I would imagine that RD would likely already have a fever and not be looking well, though, which is why I did not think that was the case here initially.

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Thanks Mojo,

 

It is definitely not at the injection site, which is further down the leg (toward the paw). The black (dead?) tissue is on the elbow itself and looks like a big black callous. Around the side are the two lesions which are definitely full o'pus, though I keep cleaning them and trying to keep them open, but as he lies on them, I have to keep it covered. I have both oral Clavamox and sub Q Cefazolin for him, though right now he is on the oral Clavamox.

 

I think we will probably hit the vet tomorrow.

 

Thanks again, all of you. It's been a pretty stressful 5 days.

 

RDM

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Ah, okay. Those do sound more like pressure sores, then, if he is resting right on top of them. Phew. A vet visit tomorrow definitely sounds like it is in order, though. I guess the only other thoughts I would venture (again, I am still just mildly nervous about not having seen the wound and want to cover as many possible bases with my Internet advice) are to make sure the limb distal to the sores (i.e., closer to his toes) is warm, all the way to the end of each toe, and make sure you can feel a nice, strong pulse in that leg. And make sure he still has feeling in that foot (i.e., will he withdraw the limb when you tickle his pads, and can he move the leg around?) You said that he was walking around earlier, though, so once again, I doubt that there is any real immediate problem.

 

Like everyone else on this Board, I think I have been following your case with as much anxiety as if RD were my own dog. I think I speak for all of us when I say that he is extremely well loved here. I wish you the best of luck through the night.

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