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Last effort to save our pitbull. Help!!!

March 21st, 2005, 04:19 PM
:sad: I really need your help. Our pitbull, Jazz (only 7), has an illness where she has low blood platelets. I think the condition is called Thrombocytopenia. Her platelet level should be between 275,000-400,000. It got down to 11,000. The vet has put her on medication to get the count up, but it didn't work. After close to a month, the platelets only got up to 30,000. The vet said that isn't even enough to count. (In the mean time, the medication makes her starving all the time, poor girl.) The vet suggested chemo as a last option. She was injected last week and the blood tests just came back. We thought she was looking better, but she is down to 20,000. The vet suggests that we put her to sleep. She looks perfectly healthy now. The vet said we can just pick a day or wait for her to bleed internally (which doesn't seem very kind to Jazz). My heart is just breaking. Isn't there anything else we can try??? Do you know of any other successful treatment? Is there something else I could suggest to my vet?

We just lost our shar pei at Christmas (he was 15 - kidney failure). Jazz missed him and the vet thinks the stress from the loss caused this condition to flare up (she had a MILD case once before, but it cleared right up with medication).

This dog is so very special to me, as I am sure all your pets are to you. I am particularly close to her because I raised her from a puppy and she has been through some rough times with me. She wouldn't leave my side through three miscarriages (she knew something was wrong). She follows me everywhere and is clearly "my dog".

Thanks for any advice or help you can offer.

March 21st, 2005, 04:24 PM
I wish I could help you but I have no idea. All I can suggest is you pray and to take him to another vet for a second opinion. Not that I am saying your vet didn't do everything in his power but a second, third opinion is well worth it. Good luck and I hope the best. I truly hope you get the help you need. Try searching it on the internet also. You never know what you will find.

March 21st, 2005, 04:25 PM
Bosian,I have no advice to give,but I certainly feel for you and Jazz,such a very sad story....I am hoping for a miracle,but if not,whatever decision you make,it will be for the love of Jazz :love:

heeler's rock!
March 21st, 2005, 04:53 PM
Oh no! I am so sorry for the pain you and your family must be going through. :(

I have never heard of this condition before, so I am not able to offer you much help, but I hope someone on this board can offer you some guidance. Have you thought about maybe getting another dog? If the condition flared up from the loss of your sharpei, maybe a new companion would help you pup calm down long enough for the medication or chemo to work? I really hope and pray that your dog makes it through this.....:o

March 21st, 2005, 05:02 PM
Thanks for the suggestions. I have searched the internet extensively. It's what lead me here. I decided that if research wasn't helping much, I'd try dialog. I do think I'll take your advise on the second opinion. My vet is very good and I do trust her, but why not try to tap into all the expertise I can.

I appreciate all your kind words. It does help to know there are people out there that understand.

March 21st, 2005, 05:08 PM
We did get Jazz a buddy from a rescue group. Mr. Biggs is a wonderful dog - 18 months old, a South African Boerboel (like a mastiff). He was clearly abused, neglected, and mistreated. I don't know how anyone could hurt him. He is a sweetheart - so loving. :D Our only problem so far is that he thinks he is a lap dog. Jazz likes to clean his face, just like she did with the shar pei. Biggs isn't sure he likes it, but he lets her do it for a while. :)

March 21st, 2005, 05:29 PM
Welcome to the board Boisian, Im so sorry for your situation! I think everyone is right about the second opinion, might there be such a thing as a specialist for the disease your dog has? Is there a human equivalent to this disease, maybe more extensive research has been done for the human kind. Im probably just grasping at straws but its frustrating not to be able to suggest anything. we will all be hoping and praying for the best for Jazz and the rest of your family.

March 21st, 2005, 05:39 PM
I agree with getting a second opinion. I would suggest getting a referral to an internal medicine specialist. I've looked on the website of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine ( and I found only one in Idaho.

Oh, and if she is looking better, there's no rush to make that final decision. Numbers are only that, numbers... If you look at Jazz and you know that she's not suffering, take the time to get that second opinion. At worst, it will just confirm what your vet told you and you'll know you've tried everything.

Good luck and keep us up to date.


March 21st, 2005, 08:15 PM
I wonder if there is a transfusion they can do for this?? I don't know for sure, it's just a thought!

I really hope Jazz gets the help she needs!! Mesana had some great advice! "Nmbers are only that, numbers" I agree. If she looks great and feels great, no need to make a decision!

I wonder..........if Jazz misses her buddy, is it possible to get her another? Even to borrow a friend's dog to see if that might make a difference??

My thoughts and prayers are with you :grouphug:

March 21st, 2005, 08:36 PM
In answer to someone's question, yes people get this illness. My nephew was 5 years old and began bruising everywhere. He had bruising in areas where he had not hurt himself.
The doctors determined that he had TCP. His platelet level was very low and he was hospitalized immediately. He had to wear a helmet and was limited to bed rest until they were able to raise his levels. Fortunately they were able to and he did not have a relapse although many people have the problem for life.
The cause was never determined but there were a few theories. He had been ill on and off for a few months with normal childhood illnesses and had been taking Children's Motrin. Apparently this could have been a contributing factor. Another theory was that it was a virus that caused the problem. Whatever caused it he overcame it with treatment.
Has your vet not offered you any hope of him recovering? I don't know if this illness affects dogs the same way it does people. It may be a good idea to contact a veterinary hospital. They may be able to offer some hope.
Sorry I couldn't be of more help

Just for your information profits from Paul Newman's salad dressing, sauces etc.. benefit this illness.

March 21st, 2005, 08:51 PM
OK, what i did was typed in Thrombocytopenia in Canines to a search engine, and i got a site about Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia not sure if that is the same. From reading the webastie I found,Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia is the full name, sometimes referred to as just Thrombocytopenia

SOO, here's a website. There is links at the bottom "ITP in Animals" link gives you info on organizations. Read the story on that webstie as well, they gve the dog a transufsion to hlep the medications to work!

March 21st, 2005, 09:00 PM
I'm afraid I know nothing about this disease either. I'm sorry you and your family, and most of all, Jazz, are going through this. :grouphug: I can't think of anything worse than the helplessness you feel when your furbabies are ill. I also recommend the 2nd opinion.

March 21st, 2005, 10:41 PM
Here is alink to a very interesting site. It is not the best layed out site in the world...however the info available is very interesting.... I hope you find something to help with your dogs illness here...

March 22nd, 2005, 07:24 PM
I talked with my vet again today and discussed the other options for treatment I found on the internet. She thinks that Jazz might have bone marrow cancer :sad: :sad: :sad:

She referred me to a specialist. She said she is out of her field of expertise at this point. This woman has lots of initials behind her name - I hope that means she is good. :(

The appointment is for 9:00am tomorrow morning. Please send all angels and prayers this way. :love: I'll let you know what I find out tomorrow.

Thanks for all the support.

March 22nd, 2005, 08:47 PM
me and my baby are sending you the best wishes and our human and doggy prayers, and we just hope it's nothing serious and everything goes well, and paraying that in a little while your baby will get better. :sick:

March 23rd, 2005, 05:17 PM
:thumbs up The visit with the vet today gave me hope. This new vet is a small animal internal medicine specialist (I about fainted when she walked in - she is just a kid which I'm sure she would just love to hear me say). It's $100 just to walk into the front door - GEEZ!!!! She is VERY optimistic. She said she doesn't believe it is cancer because Jazz has had this issue in the past so she really believes her immune system is messed up. If it was cancer, it would have shown up for the first time. She said she has only had one dog that they couldn't cure from this condition and that dog was bleeding all over the place (and Jazz is no where near that stage). This Dr. is from Oklahoma and has seen a lot of these cases down there. We start Jazz on new meds today. The bad side effect is that it makes her urinate all the time so Jazz will be spending lots of time outside. Jazz is not going to like it, but it's only for a couple of weeks. If that doesn't work, then the vet has a different kind of chemo treatment she wants to try (only $30 a month which is tons cheaper than the other kind). If that doesn't work then she wants to try a treatment involving her bone marrow. If nothing else works, she wants to try removing her spleen (which our vet said was impossible since Jazz would bleed to death). This vet said she has removed the spleen of a dog with lower platelets than Jazz and it was successful. The dog was cured. I hope it doesn't come to that since I'm sure we are talking hundreds or thousands of dollars.

I feel much better since seeing her. She sounded so positive and she told me not to worry. She said it isn't time to worry yet. I'm so glad I went to get a second opinion from a specialist (I didn't even think we had one here). I'm trying not to get my hopes up too high, but this vet sounded so positive that we would be able to cure Jazz.

Thanks for all the prayers and good thoughts. I know that it worked!!!! :angel: I'll keep you posted on further results. We will retest in two weeks unless we notice Jazz isn't feeling well. Keep those thoughts and prayers coming.

heeler's rock!
March 23rd, 2005, 05:24 PM
Oh yay!!!! I'm soooo happy for you, Jazz, and your family!! I'm sending Jazz all my good vibes so she recovers from this disease!!! :thumbs up :angel: :angel: :angel: :love: :D

March 23rd, 2005, 06:13 PM
That's EXCELLENT news!!! I am so happy for you and Jazz! Vets can't perform miracles, but they can give it their all! I wish you the best of luck and success with Jazz's treatments!

How about getting a buddy for Jazz??

March 23rd, 2005, 06:20 PM
I posted an answer to the buddy question above. :) We rescued a South African Boerboel (he looks like a boxer on steroids) from a resue place here in Idaho. His name is Mr. Biggs. He is 18 months old and a little too much for Jazz right now (we need to keep Jazz away from any possible trauma), but they are making friends. He lets Jazz clean his face once in a while (which Jazz did with our shar pei that passed away).

Thanks for your good wishes :)

March 24th, 2005, 08:06 AM
Boisian,thank's for the hopeful news,that's wonderful....tons of positive vibes going across the border.
I suppose your troubles with Jazz hass your fulltime attention,but when he starts feeling better,could we see a picture of Jazz and Mr Biggs, the Boxer on steroids,please :thumbs up

March 24th, 2005, 08:23 AM
I wanna see the boxer on steroids!!!!! :D

March 24th, 2005, 10:40 AM
This is really great news! Please keep updating us!