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Update On Cricket


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It's been two weeks since Cricket hit a horribly low point -- a day when I actually thought she was heading downhill without any hope. Luckily for her, the neurologist had refused to refill her antibiotic he had prescribed for a week after the chemotherapy (he said it wasn't his specialty any more :blink: even though I pointed out that her white blood cell count was at its lowest after the chemo) so the runny nose returned and she was crossing her legs walking and was basically a mess. I called my local vet to see if they would refill the antibiotic so Cricket wouldn't be miserable but I mentioned that I didn't feel very hopeful about Cricket's situation. The vet read over all her files (Since I was switching to this vet when all of this happened 14 months ago, they really hadn't seen much of her since she went from the e-vet to the affiliated specialty hospital.) and called me back and suggested that maybe we try two antibiotics in tandem and see what happened. Her thinking is that the chemo didn't really work, our area is tick infested and the spinal inflammation could be immune-mediated due to TBD that wasn't completely eradicated. She also pointed out that despite all the tests that she still hadn't been diagnosed with anything specific other than spinal cord inflammation. I have been haunted by this possibility and felt as if the neurologist too readily dismissed this as a potential reason for her troubles. After the chemotherapy and another $1300 bill (including a discounted MRI/spinal tap), he had sent me home with a written discharge note that said if she didn't improve significantly in a week that I should consider the quality of her life.

 

So we started her on Doxycycline and restarted the Baytril...two days later she was standing and walking a little. She has lost a tremendous amount of muscle due to the prednisone and lack of movement -- she sat in a crate for three days at the specialty hospital and hasn't been able to move much since then. I brought her to the specialty vet a little over a week ago for the swim therapy only to be told by them that she was too tired to swim. :angryfire (but not too tired for them to take my $160.) Her neurologist saw her then and I explained about the dual antibiotics, and despite this he suggested that I call him to schedule more chemo for her. I got the impression that he wasn't entertaining any new theories about her health. Yet it was okay for me to consider the quality of life issues....

 

Anyway, my local vet suggested a swim therapy place only 10 minutes from my house and they had an opening last Friday. (much more reasonably priced btw). Cricket swam for eight minutes and we have her booked for tomorrow and the following week. Over the long weekend, we took her to her favorite walking place with Aero and Roo and she walked the first day (with a harness) for about 10-15 minutes. Yesterday she walked for 20 minutes, including climbing a big hill (steep enough for winter sledding). Her gait still isn't perfect and she easily loses her balance, but we're finally seeing some progress in the right direction. Today when I got Aero and Roo ready for a walk, she stood up and walked to the front door because she wanted to come too. Unfortunately unless I have a helper, it's too hard to hang onto her harness, Aero's leash and juggle Roo at the same time. So I had to take her separately.

 

Cricket has such guts and determination. After all she's gone through, she still loves life and wants to try. I have my fingers crossed. It's only been two weeks on the dual antibiotics and I've seen a lot of positive progress. Her runny nose is clear, her eyes are bright and her spirit is strong. The prognosis isn't without some concern, but it certainly seems a lot more positive than it was two weeks ago when I was told to consider the quality of her life.

 

So keep up the GT prayers!

 

 

Aero: http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?d=kees+uncatchable; our bridge angel (1/04/02-8/2/07) Snickers; our bridge angel (1/04/02-2/29/08) Cricket; Kanga Roo: oops girl 5/26/07; Doctor Thunder http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?z=P_31Oj&a...&birthland=
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Hey Aerosmom,

 

So glad to get an update on Cricket, sounds like she is doing much better, it's great that you are persistent with her care and seeking alternate solutions, unfortunately vets even the "specialists" are only humans and they take guesses at this stuff, if one thing doesn't work, they try something else, meanwhile our fur babies suffer w/all the meds they are trying. If Sara hadn't had such a miraculous recovery wth MVR in Woburn, I would not continue chemo, she will have her last treatment (10th month of this) the week before Christmas! I pray that it (GME) does not return. I think swim therapy is awesome and Cricket probably loves it, she sounds like a greyt gal with wonderful spirit, most humans would complain about all the pain and suffering she has gone through. Keep fighting for her, she's fighting too, as one of my friends said to me " she is not about to give up the great life you have given her". she loves you. Many prayers for you and Cricket from one who has been down this path.

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Roberta & Michael with Furkids- Flower (Shasta Flowers 6/7/06) & Rascal the kitty - Missing our sweet angels - Max(M's Mad Max) 10/12/02 - 12/3/15, Sara (Sara Raves 6/30/01 - 4/13/12) Queenie & Pandora the kitties - gone but never forgotten

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Winslow says he bets that Cricket looks good in a Bikini.

 

Cricket got a funny look on her face when she read this over my shoulder and asked us to charge the camera battery for her. :colgate She has been following Winslow's progress and thinks he's quite something.

 

Edited to add: She actually swims without a bikini just a flotation device but she seems eager to try on my bikini or my daughter's. :P Pictures of both swim therapy and the bikini at home might be in order.

Edited by Aerosmom
Aero: http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?d=kees+uncatchable; our bridge angel (1/04/02-8/2/07) Snickers; our bridge angel (1/04/02-2/29/08) Cricket; Kanga Roo: oops girl 5/26/07; Doctor Thunder http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?z=P_31Oj&a...&birthland=
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We don't have a bikini picture yet, but here's Miss Cricket at swim therapy. She swam and did other PT stuff to help strengthen her muscles and regain nerve control. She's regaining bowel/bladder control too, which makes me very happy. I'm noticing her steps are much more sure. Until her next swim therapy session next week, we're going to work on regular walks and also some maneuvers around cones (for balance/cornering) and walking over short "jumps" (six inches -- not really a jump but to help her regain a sense of her back legs.)

 

She did great swimming -- used her back legs too. I think she still looks confused about why she's in there but she works hard paddling toward me. This is only the second swimming session and she's really so much more sturdy and deliberate when she walks now.

 

So, although Winslow will have to wait for the bikini picture, here's Cricket at swim therapy:

 

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Here she is taking a quick breather:

 

RooinearlyOctober570.jpg

 

She's such a brave girl. :wub::wub:

 

 

Aero: http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?d=kees+uncatchable; our bridge angel (1/04/02-8/2/07) Snickers; our bridge angel (1/04/02-2/29/08) Cricket; Kanga Roo: oops girl 5/26/07; Doctor Thunder http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?z=P_31Oj&a...&birthland=
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Hi Diane,

 

I think Winslow is in love.

He says Cricket is a real cutie! He says she's a real 'pin up girl' in that life jacket! Says she looks real pretty in that blue necklace.. Wants to know if she wants to go out for a swim sometime?...

 

Also says 'Howdy' to his nephew, Aero. (Trying to get points any way he can!-- next he'll be sending flowers and candy)

 

Gotta go... I see the "Burpdog Holiday" screen coming up on the laptop. Hope he doesn't have my credit card.

 

"No Winslow, Daddy does NOT eat Burpdog Biscuits.."

 

Yikes.

 

 

Winslowcricket.jpg

Diane & The Senior Gang

Burpdog Biscuits

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I think the feelings are mutual -- Cricket is in awe of Winslow -- handsome, smart and artistic. :wub::wub: In her words: He is HOT! (and not just because he doesn't have to wear a coat :lol )

 

I will work on the bikini pic for him. Cricket is very flattered and asked me to brush her fur and put on her new collar for him.

 

Aero says hi back. He'll put in a good word with his sis for him.

Aero: http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?d=kees+uncatchable; our bridge angel (1/04/02-8/2/07) Snickers; our bridge angel (1/04/02-2/29/08) Cricket; Kanga Roo: oops girl 5/26/07; Doctor Thunder http://www.greyhound-data.com/d?z=P_31Oj&a...&birthland=
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