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Alright, I know we have hashed out this topic a lot in the recent past, but it's something I have been lurking on and trying to do my reading on, since it's something I've been a little concerned that Chesney exhibits a lot of the symptoms.

 

I finally got a good video of what I see frequently in him when he works sheep, especially if it's highly stimulating situations (lambs, sheep breaking, working after watching me work other dogs). Other areas I notice it with him are when he sits and watched kids playing (especially with soccer balls) or when a bike or longboard comes into play. I understand that it has been HOT these last couple weeks, but I can work or have this dog out in the heat doing routine jobs for the same amount of time without incident, and the trigger seems to be stimulating situations. I have seen him starting to exhibit this type of staggering when he's working hard in hot weather at SAR, but I treat that as actual over heating rather than BCC.

 

Earlier in the day we played frisbee in the heat for easily 30 minutes with breaks in the shade here and there, I was letting him determine how much chasing he wanted to do (he's pretty good at self regulating in mundain situations) then he went with me to softball, where he sat in the shade with a friend during the game. Then we went to what I thought was the trigger events.

 

The background for this video:

1 hour of sitting in the shade watching my young cousin play soccer

15 minute walk to my friends house. Her fiance was riding his longboard and Chesney was VERY keyed up about it. (I can keep him under control but I can't turn his brain off of the fixation... It's controlled fixation) I did let him pull me twice on it totaling about 200 yards.

 

 

For the second video I got him in the water to cool off (right after I took the first video) this is how he acted (appox 5 minutes of cooling down)

 

 

Then we went to my friends house to sit for a few minutes and within 20 minutes he was not wobblie or acting "off" at all.

 

I'd be curious to know what those who are familiar with this think I am dealing with. Is it something I should be concerned about like heat stroke or is it BCC?

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This is what happens to Dexter when he has an episode. His whole hind end goes wobbly. I can see even very minor evidence of it on our evening walks when he has been playing the bitey-face-chase-me game with Tweed, which he really likes. He doesn't do it after playing ball or frisbee generally, even in hot weather. It's generally following an activity he is intense about, like agility or the aforementioned game.

 

RDM

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I have a friend whose young dog did this after working, no matter what the actual temperature. I always attributed it to excitement vs. actual overheating; that is, he grew out of it eventually, but when she first took him to sheep as a young dog, he exhibited these symptoms a lot. She got bloodwork done,et., and nothing abnormal was ever found. The vet did recommend giving him something like Nutrical before a work session, but I don't remember if that helped (he's nearly 11 now, so this was 10 years ago).

 

Anyway, I've always thought there was a mental component to BCC (compared to heat exhaustion) and your description of Chesney would bear that out.

 

It might be worth your while to contact the folks doing the BCC study to see if they could give you an additional information.

 

J.

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Anyway, I've always thought there was a mental component to BCC (compared to heat exhaustion)

 

With Kipp there definitely seems to be a mental component to overheating. Or at least I've assumed it was overheating - I've never taken his temperature so maybe I was off base in my assumption. It's only happened when he's mentally keyed up and exercising, never just with exercise alone. He gets wobbly and spacey much like in the video Danielle posted. I treated it like overheating (stick him in cool water and shade) After about 5 minutes of cooling off in the water and another 10-15 minutes of rest he's back to normal.

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Based on your description and video, I'd call this BCC.

 

The true heat stroke cases I've seen take much longer for the dogs to bounce back, that is, if they do survive. I'm talking hours to days recovery time vs. minutes like BCC. Has he ever had vomiting or diarrhea (especially with blood) during one of these episodes? Have you looked at his gums? With heat stroke, the gums are really, really bright red in color, not just a little darker shade of pink.

 

I'd probably not worry about trying to give Nutrical before work. The laboratory results from the UMN project reveal all bloodwork parameters to be within normal limits. That includes blood glucose. Nutrical is pretty sugary, but does provide some fats and vitamins. It probably wouldn't hurt if you feel like playing around with it, but I don't believe it's going to be the magical cure, unfortunately. I've known owners who have experimented with various supplements and feeding protocols, most of minimal to moderate success.

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I hated watching the video.

 

Have you tried pre and post working supplements? K-9 superfuel or the biscuits I can never remember the name of?

 

Yes, I agree there's a mental aspect but why let it get to this point? Wouldn't this issue be along the lines of "running hot" when speaking of working? Does this happen to him in cold climates as well? Or is heat exacerbating it?

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Based on your description and video, I'd call this BCC.

 

The true heat stroke cases I've seen take much longer for the dogs to bounce back, that is, if they do survive. I'm talking hours to days recovery time vs. minutes like BCC. Has he ever had vomiting or diarrhea (especially with blood) during one of these episodes? Have you looked at his gums? With heat stroke, the gums are really, really bright red in color, not just a little darker shade of pink.

 

His recovery is usually 20-30 minutes to normal behavior and function. I've never seen him with lasting effects like you would expect with heat emergencies. I have also never seen him vomit or have diarrhea during any of these episodes

 

I hated watching the video.

 

Have you tried pre and post working supplements? K-9 superfuel or the biscuits I can never remember the name of?

 

Yes, I agree there's a mental aspect but why let it get to this point? Wouldn't this issue be along the lines of "running hot" when speaking of working? Does this happen to him in cold climates as well? Or is heat exacerbating it?

 

I hate seeing him like this too. It's a little scary to see your dog wobbling like that. I use K9 energy edge post working on hard days regardless of him getting wobbly or not, if I do see him start acting off I'll give him some mid work on a water break, I notice it helping him on the recovery side of things, but have not seen it help as a preventative.

 

The heat definitely exacerbates it and I try to stop him before it gets to this point, but a lot of the time he isn't acting like he's overly hot and until he stops and relaxes for a minute or two, then it hits him. If you watch his panting in the video he isn't panting like he's over heated, he's just panting like any other normal dog would be panting based on the activities we were doing prior to his episode.

 

If I take him for a bike ride or run with the longboard on a winter day and he gets keyed up, it takes longer for him to get wobbly but I have seen him wobble on a cool winter day usually when we get home and I'm packing everything up.

 

It's like he comes down off a high and the adrenaline subsides and he gets the wobbles.

 

And for the record I don't usually have him walk back and forth like that when he's like this, I prolonged him getting in the water so I could have a video of what he's like for when I describe him to people. ;)

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Have you tried pre and post working supplements? K-9 superfuel or the biscuits I can never remember the name of?

Assuming it is BCC, as Emily indicated, supliments won't have much impact. During the clinical study very extensive testing was performed on healthy and affected dogs and no difference was found.

 

At rest:

physical, orthopedic and neurologic examinations

cardiac evaluations (radiographs, ECG and echocardiography)

muscle biopsies and electromyography

clinicopathologic testing (CBC, serum biochemical profile, creatine kinase, arterial blood gas tension, acid-base status, serum cortisol, plasma lactate and plasma)

 

Post-exercise:

rectal temperature and hematologic, biochemical, blood gas and acid-base values and electrocardiograms

 

 

 

From what I can tell, the best way to deal with affected dogs is to work on the excitement/stress level during the work and closely monitor their mental state (excitment/stress) during work sessions. Make the work routine; lower the excitement factor for these dogs.

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The background for this video:

1 hour of sitting in the shade watching my young cousin play soccer

15 minute walk to my friends house. Her fiance was riding his longboard and Chesney was VERY keyed up about it. (I can keep him under control but I can't turn his brain off of the fixation... It's controlled fixation) I did let him pull me twice on it totaling about 200 yards.

I think it's worth repeating this. This is not a dog who was worked to the point of exhaustion. It's a dog who was well rested, but mentally keyed up from watching kids play soccr and then seeing Danielle's friend ride his longboard. I think coming up with some way to help Chesney calm his mind is going to be the only answer.

 

J.

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I think coming up with some way to help Chesney calm his mind is going to be the only answer.

 

J.

 

Hmm, I hope Danielle didn't misunderstand my post. However, who ever comes up with a way to calm/settle their mind will be viewed as brilliant imo. My best dog can get to this point if allowed whereas my strongest willed dog *never* gets hot mentally or physically.

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Karen, let's work on it. When we make the discovery, we can patent it and get rich. Oh, I guess someone already discovered valium. :lol:

 

Seriously, though, we need to come up with something as catchy for dogs as Parelli is/was for horses. We can suck all sorts of people in and become rich and famous! ;)

 

J.

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Thanks again for the replies everyone. It's a tough situation with Chesney, I take him everywhere with me that he's able to go so he is exposed to lots of situations and there are only a handful of "triggers" or obsessions with him. He's always been a fixated kind of dog, but I've managed it to where people view him as normal and a really good dog, whose focused on ques from me, but I know the real Chesney :lol:

 

Don't forget, many of these dogs are working even whey they are sitting still. They can be a very focused arm-chair quarterback, always working.

 

Mark, I like this comment. If I'm sitting downstairs and Chesney sneaks off to go upstairs and watch the cats, if I call him to come back down (once I notice he's missing from the party) he comes back panting like he's been running around when all he's done is laid upstairs staring at the cats. I think your comment describes Chesney spot on.

 

He's always been like this, over focused. When he was a pup and I was starting to work him on stock, he couldn't be able to watch the stock before he worked because he would literally sit and vibrate watching, working himself up mentally. Trials for him now are like this, he gets banished to the truck.

 

Julie and Karen, if you guys need help or a trial subject let us know ;) And Karen, I didn't take your post wrong, it's hard for me to watch videos like Chesney's too.

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Just a reminder, the BCC study still needs samples, especially from older dogs who do NOT display signs of BCC. They are particularly interested in stock dogs over the age of 8 who have not shown signs of BCC. They need 10 or so more control dogs before they can start the genetic study.

 

If you're interested in submitting samples to this very worthwhile study, click here for more information.

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