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Old March 28th, 2019, 08:43 PM
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Dee-O-Gee Dee-O-Gee is offline
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Exclamation Sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome (SARDS) on the rise!

Our Mollie is going on 5 months of sudden blindness and while she is bouncing back to her regular self and normal routines (less her sight), I am flabbergasted with the increased spike of Sudden Acquired Retinal Degeneration Syndrome (SARDS).

In October, 2018 the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists (ACVO) had a conference where they discussed this unknown and incurable disease. A clip of this segment from their conference is here and was blown away with their studies!:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPQC...leTe6Tb0sBhc-8

Their key discussion on SARDS was the effects of Heart Worm medications along with Flea and Tick treatments. With Mollie's symptoms leading up to her diagnosis and the fact that she fit smack dab into this scenario, one must really take a hard look into whether or not, being a responsible pet owner and trying to protect our little ones from parasites through the aid of medications is really the best option. I'm starting to wonder myself.

Dr. Freya Mowat from the North Carolina State University has been conducting an online study/survey for over 2 years. If you do have a dog with SARDS, please take the 15 minutes to complete the survey online as Dr. Mowat will be closing it soon to gather up the statistic for final analysis and a publication of her results later this year. Link to the survey is here:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1F...k4Qog/viewform
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There are poisons that blind you, and poisons that open your eyes.” ― August Strindberg
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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 March 28th, 2019, 09:16 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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Oh, that's disturbing I think we're going to have to rethink our HW protocol. We stopped using Heartgard a while back because it didn't prevent them picking up other worms from the environment. We currently use a slightly higher dose of 1% ivermectin that prevents both the heartworms and the other worms. Maybe we'll go back to the low dose Heartgard with only a yearly or twice-yearly dose of the ivermectin to take care of the parasite load...at least until researchers can sort out cause-and-effect and make recommendations for alternative meds.

Thanks for posting the link, DOG! Hugs and pats for Mollie
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Old March 28th, 2019, 09:47 PM
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Oh Hazel! Looking back, I wish I could turn back the hands of time. Last Spring, Mollie weighed in 4 lbs over the 55 lbs threshold for both heart worm and topical flea meds so she was bumped up to the extra large dose, not having a clue about the ramifications. Meanwhile, I put her on a reduce calorie food to get her weight back down to her 50 lbs and believe she was being over medicated with a high volume of the Ivermectin combined with the Imidacloprid and Permethrin.
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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 March 28th, 2019, 10:02 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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I knew a guy who gave his Samyoed husky a bat with dog shampoo and got it in his dog eyes and it blinded the poor dog permanently😢
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Old March 29th, 2019, 10:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee-O-Gee View Post
Oh Hazel! Looking back, I wish I could turn back the hands of time. Last Spring, Mollie weighed in 4 lbs over the 55 lbs threshold for both heart worm and topical flea meds so she was bumped up to the extra large dose, not having a clue about the ramifications. Meanwhile, I put her on a reduce calorie food to get her weight back down to her 50 lbs and believe she was being over medicated with a high volume of the Ivermectin combined with the Imidacloprid and Permethrin.
You had no way of knowing. And besides, they still haven't proved the connection.

Our dogs might also be at higher risk because we dose them higher using the off-label method--though at a lesser dose than used to be recommended for that protocol. Hubby and I talked about it last night and I think we are going to go back to the Heartgard because it's a lower dose. We'll still need to use at least one yearly larger dose, though, because of the parasite load out here. But at least they'll be taking less ivermectin overall. Never hurts to be cautious at this point.

There really aren't too many alternatives for HW prevention now that this class of drugs is implicated.
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Last edited by hazelrunpack; March 29th, 2019 at 09:42 PM.
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Old March 29th, 2019, 10:02 AM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barkingdog View Post
I knew a guy who gave his Samyoed husky a bat with dog shampoo and got it in his dog eyes and it blinded the poor dog permanently😢
Holy catz! What sort of shampoo was it? Flea shampoo or something like that?
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Old March 29th, 2019, 09:52 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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I wish I could remember the name of the shampoo I believe it was for fleas I was always careful not to get into my dog eyes
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Old March 30th, 2019, 01:33 PM
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Dee-O-Gee Dee-O-Gee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazelrunpack View Post
Hubby and I talked about it last night and I think we are going to go back to the Heartgard because it's a lower dose. We'll still need to use at least one yearly larger dose, though, because of the parasite load out here. But at least they'll be taking less ivermectin overall. Never hurts to be cautious at this point.

There really aren't too many alternatives for HW prevention now that this class of drugs is implicated.
Happy to hear you and hubby discussed the dreaded HW dilemma. Mollie was taking the 272 μg dose of Ivermectin in Heartguard plus we were treating her with Avantix II for fleas & ticks. It was a nasty year last year for fleas & ticks. I think we're going to skip the HW meds this year and put her back on the lower weight dose for the flea meds.
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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 March 31st, 2019, 10:52 AM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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Is there much heartworm incidence in your area? The risks might still outweigh the dangers, especially since Mollie has already developed SARDS. It's just such a tough decision!
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"It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived!"

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  #10  
Old March 31st, 2019, 01:23 PM
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Dee-O-Gee Dee-O-Gee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hazelrunpack View Post
Is there much heartworm incidence in your area? The risks might still outweigh the dangers, especially since Mollie has already developed SARDS. It's just such a tough decision!
There were 152 cases of heart worm in Ontario last year reported by Veterinarians through this Pet Disease Reporting portal: http://www.petdiseasereport.com/content/prevmap.aspx

While I realize the onus would be on the Veterinarian industry to report through this portal and the numbers are probably higher then reported here, I have not heard of 1 case of heart worm in our region.

I will most definitely be speaking to our Vet when Mollie goes for her annual about any complications that could or would arise from her condition. That ACVO video kinda scared me because they spoke of dogs with SARDS autoimmune is now out of whack and precautions must be taken in giving them certain medications with their condition.
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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 March 31st, 2019, 04:31 PM
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hazelrunpack hazelrunpack is offline
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I wonder if you can still get the old-fashioned treatment. I forget what it was called, but we treated our labby many years ago (like 30 - 40 yrs ago) with the stuff. It was a daily med... Might be worth asking if the vet has heard of it? If I could remember the name, we could figure out if it's in the same class of drugs, if it has its own problems, and whether or not it's still available.
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