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Slow moving and lathargic...

October 30th, 2006, 04:04 PM
Hi! First time on this site ~ it seems there are many, many loving and caring pet parents that frequent here, so I'm asking for some help and opinions! :pray:

My baby, Sydney, just turned 6 years old. (She's a Maltese.) She has had a rough summer. She went from being a fun, loving, playful dog to what would appear to be an old lady literally overnight. She had good days and bad days. The vet diagnosed her with a luxating patella, but thought it didn't seem serious, at the time. He gave her some pain meds and sent her on her way. I gave her the meds, but noticed very little change. I took her back to the vet and got the same diagnosis again. He said to ride it out a bit longer, and he would do x-rays if it didn't get better.

She seemed to become more active about midway thru the summer, so I let it go. Then, at the beginning of this month, she did the whole change-overnight-thing again. I took her to the vet ~ a new vet this time. He confirmed the luxating patella...but he, too, poo-poo'ed it. He said I should exercise her more. (I had been avoiding a lot of exercise with her because I thought that would aggravate her knee.) Well, we didn't get a chance to go for walks because of bad weather, and a week later she was vomiting and urinating in the house. We once again went to the vet where it was determined that she had a fever of 102. He said she probably had a urine infection and gave her antibiotics. I also insisted that a full blood panel be done. Those results all came back normal.

This brings me to this week...Sydney is having an awful time putting any weight on either of her back legs; she won't get on and off the couch or bed by herself; she won't go up and down stairs; she's always thirsty; she hasn't eaten any dog food (she will eat 'treats') for 3 days (she does not get table food.) All in all...she appears to be weak.

I plan to take her to the question to my new friends is this: what do I need to prompt the vet to further look into? What questions should I be asking? Is all of this weakness and loss of appetite simply from the luxating patella? Does anyone else have a pet that had similar symptoms? Any suggestions for at-home therapy? It's all so confusing...she looks at me like she can't understand why I can't figure out how to help her. :confused:

I appreciate any and all input. I just want my fun, loving Sydney-girl back.
Thanks in advance!

Sydney's Mom

October 30th, 2006, 06:04 PM
Find an orthopedic vet and go see them. Sounds like your vet office is not really looking in to things enough. If a dog is in severe pain, it will have loss of apetite, no desire to do anything , etc... it could be more than just a luxating patella as we've had many with it here who do not react that way.

October 31st, 2006, 03:32 PM
Thanks for the advise BMDLuver! I will definitely look in my area for an ortho vet.

When I got home from work (after I posted the first memo yesterday), I discovered that Sydney had vomited and pooped in the house. Her stool (very loose) had some blood in it.

I took her to the vet this afternoon and she has been diagnosed with Pancreatitis. The classic symptoms are appetite loss, vomiting, diarrhea, painful abdomen, and fever; she has every one of these. Her fever was 103 this afternoon and her abdomen was very tight. She cried when he pushed on it. She got a couple of shots it the office (pain reliever and antibiotic) and sent her home with 2 antibiotics for 10 days each.

I guess I'll wait and see what the next 10 days bring. :fingerscr
He thinks that the onset of what seemed to me to be signs of bad knees or joints is just from the fact that her abdomen hurts so badly.

I am still going to check into the ortho vet to see what he or she thinks. I KNOW she has pain in her bones or joints as's frustrating. :shrug:

Thanks again!

October 31st, 2006, 03:47 PM
Sorry to hear that Sydney is sick :sad: :pray: Hopefully, now that the pancreatitis has been diagnosed and she's getting treated for it, she'll get back to her old self :fingerscr Good luck, sydsmom--be sure you keep us posted! And when she's feeling better, give Sydney a hug and a pat.