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  #1  
Old January 1st, 2019, 12:58 PM
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Question Immune-mediated Retinitis vs SARDS

Has any members experienced, first hand Immune-mediated Retinitis (IMR) OR Sudden Acquired Retinal Degeneration (SARDS) in your dogs vision?

Our Mollie was fortunate to see an Ophthalmologist recently and after having a chromatic pupil light reflex (cPLR) Test, there is a possibility that she may (and we hope) have IMR. Sheís currently being treated with oral anti-inflammatory therapy and if caught early, it could correct some of her vision. The alternative is SARDS which is considered a silent syndrome where there is no treatment or cure to date.

Her symptoms started about Mid-October and the first anomaly was excessive drooling, depression and excessive urination. The excessive urination ended up in a UTI which we took her back to the Vet for antibiotics. At that time, I also requested we have a Complete Blood Count and Clinical Chemistry testing done. The results from the blood work all turned up fairly healthy results for a 9 year old dog.

By the end of November, I started noticing her bumping into things, not barking at squirrels when we walked and overall seeing difficulties. Back to the Vet we went and addressed this concern and he set up a little obstacle course in the examination room and down the hall. Needless to say, she failed the test and knocked over every obstacle. He immediately referred us to the Ophthalmologist and we are very pleased with the examination and her thoroughness. At this point, Iím just confused and worried if we would have diagnosed this impairment sooner with the medications Mollie was just prescribed that it wouldnít have been to the extent of total blindness she is currently facing?

It seems that the number of SARDS cases have grown over the last 20 years and one has to wonder what has been (or is) causing a larger statistic of SARDS cases. So hoping this isnít going to be Mollieís diagnosis.
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Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
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Old January 1st, 2019, 08:32 PM
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Keeping Ms Mollie in our prayers!

We haven't had experience with either condition, so no advice to offer, but please don't beat yourself up about the timing. You've been doing all you could to get her diagnosed--not your fault if it's taking longer than you'd hoped, and there's no way to know if earlier intervention would have led to a different outcome, anyway.

that she gets some improvement from the meds for IMR. Hang in there!
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Old January 2nd, 2019, 06:59 AM
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I haven't heard of either of these but I will keep my ears open. I'm sorry it's your Mollie who has brought this to my attention. I hope it's the lessor evil for her.
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Old January 2nd, 2019, 08:34 PM
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Thanks Hazel and Longblades. No changes in her behaviour today. IF it is the lesser of the two evils, the Vet said we could possibly see improvements within 5 to 7 days after the start of the medication therapy and she wants us to call her within the next 2 weeks either way.
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Old January 7th, 2019, 03:52 PM
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Any changes, DOG?
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Old January 7th, 2019, 08:26 PM
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Any changes, DOG?
No changes in her sight yet Hazel but I'm going to remain optimistic until the Ophthalmologist says otherwise.

She overall seems to remain happy but has slowed down significantly. The other night when I let her out, she came about 10 feet away from a bunny just grazing in the grass. Bunny never moved but Mollie never spotted the bunny nor did she sense it being there either.
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Old January 7th, 2019, 10:50 PM
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Best wishes for Mollie
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Old January 8th, 2019, 10:59 AM
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Still keeping her in my prayers.

Bratty bunny, though! We have to plot revenge on his audacity...
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Old January 10th, 2019, 08:46 PM
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Best wishes for Mollie
Thank you Growler! Still praying for a miracle but she's been doing very well and seems to be getting use to her loss.

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Originally Posted by hazelrunpack View Post
Still keeping her in my prayers.

Bratty bunny, though! We have to plot revenge on his audacity...
LOL! The bunny was back again last night and neither one of the could care about each other. Sadly; Mollie doesn't seem to have her amazing sense of smell either cause 6 month's ago, she would of gone ape with the scent of that Whaskery Whabbit!
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Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
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Old January 10th, 2019, 08:59 PM
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Dang! Was hoping for a little more improvement. But she's coping okay with her sensory loss?

Give her a few tender kissies from me, pls.
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Old January 10th, 2019, 09:08 PM
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Dang! Was hoping for a little more improvement. But she's coping okay with her sensory loss?

Give her a few tender kissies from me, pls.
Nah, no improvement with her sight. We're going back to the Ophthalmologist on January 30th for a follow up. In the meantime, I had an old sensory treat ball stashed away in a closet for many years (since Bailey) that I cleaned out a couple nights ago. It's been air drying since and thought I would put some treats inside where she could roll it around and sniff out the treats. Hopefully this ball will help with her sense of smell at least.
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Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
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Old January 10th, 2019, 09:19 PM
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Oh, that's a good idea! How is her hearing? You could try one of those balls with the jingle bell inside. That's what we used with Cass when her sight failed. It worked really well for a couple years until her hearing failed, too...
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Old January 10th, 2019, 09:41 PM
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Oh, that's a good idea! How is her hearing? You could try one of those balls with the jingle bell inside. That's what we used with Cass when her sight failed. It worked really well for a couple years until her hearing failed, too...
Sadly; we have a few toy's that have bells in them and a ball when it rolls, it squeaks but she's not interested in them at all! I bought her a hard rubber bone like toy at Christmas that dispensed treats but she got totally fixated with getting the treats out that she chewed the ends of the toy and I had to throw it out! This sensory ball is a hard plastic like melamine ball that she can't chew so we'll give that a go.

Her hearing seems to be fine. She listens and re-acts to our foot tapping and I also carry a thread of jingle bells in my coat pocket when we're outside. If she wanders too far or wanting to call her in, I'll jingle the thread of bells and she'll follow the sound and come.
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Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
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Old January 11th, 2019, 11:46 AM
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You're such a good mommy!!
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Old January 14th, 2019, 08:45 PM
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I saw a small part of the video you posted on FB. Was that a treat-dispensing ball? She's such a sweetie!
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Old January 14th, 2019, 09:26 PM
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I saw a small part of the video you posted on FB. Was that a treat-dispensing ball? She's such a sweetie!
Yes it is! I have had that ball since Bailey (our Golden Retriever). Never used it for Gryphon cause he would of chewed it to pieces but dragged it out of storage, cleaned it and let Mollie have at it. She had a “ball” with it! It also really helped with her sensing the treats that were dispersed all over the floors but she managed to find them all with her nose.
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Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
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Old January 15th, 2019, 11:57 AM
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Oh, that's awesome!! I wish I could play video cuz I'd really like to see that!
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Old January 15th, 2019, 07:40 PM
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Oh, that's awesome!! I wish I could play video cuz I'd really like to see that!
I'll see if I can upload it onto my youtube page and post the link.

We called the ophthalmologist yesterday to let her know that there hasn't been any improvements with the anti-inflammatory therapy. We're still taking her to her next appointment at the end of the month but I suspect it will be to confirm that she has SARDS.
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Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
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Old January 15th, 2019, 07:52 PM
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Still praying for better news, though.

I probably won't be able to play it on youtube, either, but it's worth a shot! Our connection is supposed to be 3 Mbps DSL, but these days, we're lucky if we get dial up speeds
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Old January 15th, 2019, 08:00 PM
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Well here's a you tube link to the video. She really is having great fun with this ball despite her lack of vision and slight loss of smell. The ball has helped with her sense of smell in trying to locate the treats spewed all over the floor though. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avbu...ature=youtu.be
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Dogs have Masters--Cats have Staff

Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
Mollie: 6/2/2009 (English Setter)
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Old January 15th, 2019, 08:35 PM
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Yay! I can actually play it! Good Girl, Mollie!! DOG!
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Old January 16th, 2019, 08:32 PM
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Yay! I can actually play it! Good Girl, Mollie!! DOG!

Hubby was having a nap yesterday and the ball is a little too loud rolling on the hardwood floors so I took some training treats and tossed them around a couple rooms for her to sniff and find. She had fun doing that too and seems to be helping with her sense of smelling.
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Dogs have Masters--Cats have Staff

Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
Mollie: 6/2/2009 (English Setter)
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Old January 16th, 2019, 09:06 PM
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Good Job Mollie! Good practice for the brain to keep her engaged & ward off depression.
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Old January 24th, 2019, 08:45 PM
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Good Job Mollie! Good practice for the brain to keep her engaged & ward off depression.
The ball has been great for her along with tossing a handful of training treats on the floors every night when the ball becomes too loud. It really has helped with warding off depression and is something different in her routine that she looks forward to now.

We have her follow up Ophthalmologist appointment coming up next week so we'll see if there is any positive activity in her retinas or if her eyes have flat lined with SARDS.
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A dog wags his tail with his heart
Dogs have Masters--Cats have Staff

Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
Mollie: 6/2/2009 (English Setter)
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Old February 18th, 2019, 04:10 PM
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Well after a snow storm cancelled Mollie's follow up appointment a couple weeks ago, we had her rescheduled appointment today and it was confirmed that she has SARDS.

While SARDS is not a painful disease for her, the loss of her vision is permanent with no known treatments. One thing the Ophthalmologist did suggest is that we give her a vision supplement called Ocu-Glo as it will aid in keeping her corneas' healthy.

Overall, Mollie seems to have bounced back as far as being happy and her overall health is great for a 9 year old girl. She just recently started to pull some of her squeaky toys out of her toy basket which she hasn't done in over 4 months so that's one step forward.
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A dog wags his tail with his heart
Dogs have Masters--Cats have Staff

Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
Mollie: 6/2/2009 (English Setter)
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Old February 18th, 2019, 05:33 PM
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So sorry about the diagnosis. I know it wasn't what you wanted for your girl But it's awesome that she's adjusting and wants to play more. It's amazing to me how resilient they are! Give her some tender hugs and a big kiss from me, pls!
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  #27  
Old February 20th, 2019, 09:17 PM
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Thanks Hazel! We kinda went into the appointment knowing the prognosis. The Ophthalmologist recommended we give her a vision supplement called Ocu-Glo. While it won't bring back Mollie's vision, it will help keep her eyes healthy in the way they already are and would aid in prolonging any further complications such as cataracts or eye diseases.
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Dogs have Masters--Cats have Staff

Rest in Peace Bailey: 12/10/95-1/9/09 (Golden Retriever)
Rest in Peace Kitty: 7/1/2000 - 10/7/2013
Rest in Peace Gryphon (sounds like Griffin): 10/15/2004 - 11/18/2017 (English Springer Spaniel)
Bella: 3/09/2005 LHD Cat adopted by/from Child
Mollie: 6/2/2009 (English Setter)
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