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Chase Episode


Tracey
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UPDATE November 18:

 

The latest is our vet did a long consult with another cardiologist who reviewed all of Chase's records and concluded that the enlargement of his left atrium is significant enough to possibly have caused these episodes. She says the difference in size between his left atrium and aorta is nearly double. They want to start him on 20 mg of enalapril right away and then after a week bump him up to 40 mg and keep him on it in perpetuity. Next Wednesday they want to do another ecg, I guess to compare the two?

 

 

Update 11/16

 

A few minutes ago we were all hanging out on the couch, just like last time. Probably you are all now thinking 'stop hanging out on the couch, then!' Anyway, Chase got up and started to walk out of the room. I could hear the nails on one of his feet dragging as he walked, in a way that they never do. Chase headed upstairs and I could hear his nails dragging on the stairs as well. Because this definitely did not sound right I followed Chase upstairs to find him standing in our office, which is weird in itself since he NEVER just gets up and goes upstairs into our office. Anyway, his back right leg was all askew and he was just standing there trying to hold himself up. When I reached him his left leg started to get sort of noodle-y too. After a few seconds he sank into a sit. I had Jason call Chase over to him so we could see what was going on and by that time he seemed okay except for his outer right toe. It was all pointed in and there was no tone to it whatsoever. But after a minute more even that returned to normal and Chase seemed okay again. He never 'checked out' this time like he did in the other episode. It was just that his back legs and feet, particularly on the right, were not working correctly for a few minutes.

 

I just got off the phone with Dr. Matz. She just got the report from the Holter monitor back today and it found no irregular beats, although there was some notation about poor recording quality. She's calling them now to find out what they meant by that, since it was their equipment we used and if the recording quality was a problem it seems like it should be on them. She wasn't real happy about that comment. But assuming the data is good, it's great news that it did not detect any irregular beats whatsoever.

 

Which would lead us back to these episodes being neurological. At this point Dr. Matz wants us to keep an eye on him and see if he has any more events. It's been a little less than a month since the first one. If these episodes continue we then need to look at seizure meds or possibly doing an MRI.

 

For what it's worth, right now Chase seems perfectly fine. These episodes sure are worrying, though.

 

Update 11/4

Well, I took Chase to the vet again today and now for the next 24 hours he's all "holter"ed up. They had to shave part of his chest, attach five electrodes and put him in this vest that holds the monitor in a pouch on his back. Basically he's just supposed to do what he would normally do so they can see how his heart reacts over a longer period.

 

When we got back home (I took Chase by myself because Jason had a phone meeting) I told Jason we were going to have to have a little chat with our son. A little background... Chase is 92 pounds of beefcake who, in the two + years we've had him has NEVER ONCE made anything even resembling an attempt to get into our car on his own. Jason has to lift him in, or if I have to do it I lift his front feet in and then wheelbarrow his back half into the car. Meanwhile, Chase is 92 pounds of dead weight.

 

So after Chase was all electroded up tonight I thought maybe I should have some help getting Chase in the car so he didn't become disconnected. So Dr. Matz and her vet tech Karen came out with me to help get Chase in the car. I held the hatch open and just as Dr. Matz and Karen were getting ready to lift Chase in -- the little stinker jumped in on his own! >:( So for the past two years while we've been breaking our backs laboring under the delusion that Chase was somehow incapable of getting into the car under his own power, it turns out he was just lazy. Or unmotivated. I know I've mentioned Chase is a huge baby. He's a big scaredy cat at the vet and I think maybe he was so relieved to be going home he finally found a little bit of ambition. What a goof.

 

By the way, we're returning the monitor on Sunday when Dr. Matz is holding an open house at her new facility. I expect we'll have the results sometime next week then. I'll keep you posted.

 

 

Update - 10/31

 

The latest is we spoke to Dr. Matz yesterday and she spoke to a couple of cardiologists. She decided the Troponin test was not worth doing, but the second cardiologist she spoke with thinks we should do a 24 hour Holter Monitor test to find out if the arrhythmia Chase has is severe enough to have caused his seizure-like episode. And just how serious his arrhythmia is period.

 

For any of you who, like me, have no idea what a Holter monitor does, here is some language I've lifted from www.petcardiology.com:

 

"Holter monitoring is a valuable noninvasive tool for monitoring the cardiac rhythm over a prolonged period during normal daily activities. The advent of this diagnostic test has demonstrated that the incidence of serious arrhythmias is much greater than previously determined using routine electrocardiography. A resting electrocardiogram is typically recorded for several seconds to several minutes and is likely to miss or underestimate the underlying arrhythmia.

 

24 hour Holter Monitoring is a good way to detect heart problems that other tests can't, in particular, Cardiomyopathy which is a disease of the heart muscle. Dogs and cats that seem fit and seemingly healthy, even with normal ECGs and echocardiograms, can suddenly collapse and die due to lethal arrhythmias."

 

I have found out that the need for this kind of testing is especially great in Boxers and Dobermans and as such, a lot of Boxer and Doberman breeders will loan these monitors out. Unfortunately, I haven't found any kind of loan program for Greyhounds or dogs in general and Dr. Matz said when she did this test last year it wound up costing about $400. I left a message with Dr. Matz asking her to look at the above-mentioned website, since it looks like you can get the testing done from them a lot cheaper and the machine supplied for free. Jason and I agree we need to get the testing done but anywhere we can economize on this would be a huge help.

 

Oh, and just to further explain, once the monitor is shipped in we would bring Chase in to the vet's office and they would get him all hooked up and then we'd take him back home for 24 hours during which he would do what he'd normally do, hooked up to the monitor. Some photos I have seen make it look like a vest they wear with electrodes underneath. So that's the latest. And Chase continues to seem fine, thank goodness.

 

Update 10/26 9:30 pm

 

Finally back home, fed the kids and in process of feeding myself.

 

First the good news; nothing super serious found.

 

Now the bad news; Chase does have mildly leaky mitral and tricuspid valves and nothing on the ultrasound or EKG explains why. Dr. Matz showed us the report from the EKG (ultrasound official report will be in tomorrow) and there was a recommendation of a couple of blood tests. One of the things they would test for typically only shows up with lyme disease and he tested negative for that, so she doesn't see any point in doing that test. The other test he suggested turns out is some sort of test usually only done on people to determine if they've had a heart attack. Dr. Matz had a call into him to find out why he's recommending this. She drew blood just in case and is waiting to hear back from the technician to find out more about the other test (I believe it started with a T but I have no idea what it was called).

 

Anyway, Chase does have this occasional arrhythmia but nothing that would explain his seizure-like event. She doesn't recommend doing an MRI or anything that extreme since it would require anesthesia. Basically she wants us to keep Chase on limited activity for another day or two while she finds out a bit more about the other blood tests and decides whether we need to do them or not.

 

So, Chase has had a nice dinner and is now sleeping on the couch. Dr. Matz told us he was a really good boy and Chase LOOOOOOOVES Dr. Matz. In fact, when the tech brought Chase into the examining room he was more excited to see Dr. Matz again than he was us. : :) It's okay; we're just happy to have him back home.

 

 

UPDATE 10/26

Our awesome vet called us about 8:30 Friday night and patiently answered all our questions. We just wanted to make sure this ultrasound was the next logical step and now feel that it is. I'm supposed to drop him off by 9 am this morning and pick him up sometime this afternoon.

 

Just to let you know, it may be sometime tonight before I can update. Additionally, the radiologist's report probably won't be until tomorrow, so I may not get the full scoop until Tuesday night or sometime Wednesday. In the meantime, lots of good thoughts for a "good looking heart" would be greatly appreciated!!!

 

 

 

UPDATE 10/23

 

Sorry to keep you all hanging. I got a message from the vet about 1:00 pm and have been trying to connect with her to discuss further. First of all his blood work looked "great" she said. Only thing, which isn't even a thing, was his red blood count was a little high, 62, but she said that was normal "for a Greyhound".

 

As for his heart, she said the EKG definitely captured the irregular beats and that they were atrial premature transmissions which means they originated at the top portion of his heart. She said they weren't frequent enough to be causing clinical disease but if he had had a run of them during his episode on Wednesday it could have been the cause of it. So she wants to go ahead with the ultrasound on Monday to get a better look at his heart. They have a radiologist coming in and this is all he does so Chase should be in good hands. We're supposed to drop him off around 10 on Monday morning and pick him up in the afternoon.

 

We still have some additional questions for Dr. Matz so we're waiting for a call back from her, but that's what we know right now. Thanks for all the continued good thoughts; keep them coming!

 

By the way, Chase is totally fine today. He's snuggled on the couch between me and Jason right now with his head on my leg. That's why his second name is Cuddles. :-*

 

UPDATE:

We're back. We had a full blood panel done and an EKG. Dr. Matz said to call tomorrow at 2 to get the results. She's scheduled Chase for an ultrasound of his heart on Monday when the radiologist will be there. She may cancel it if the results of tomorrow's test show it's not needed. At this point she's not sure if what's going on is neurological or cardiac-related. They detected an irregular heartbeat in addition to the type that Greyhounds tend to get. She said the heartbeat could be a result of what happened or it could be the cause. At this point, she thinks it would be better for Chase (less serious) if it was something neurologic. If it's heart-related she said it could have been due to a small clot being thrown. Anyway, we should hopefully know more tomorrow when the results come back. In the meantime, we're supposed to keep Chase calm and quiet which should be interesting. We were supposed to have a playdate with his brothers Vito and Roux this weekend but that's off for now and we have to leash walk him for potties. Right now he's home and sleeping comfortably. By the way, as expected, Chase was a HUGE baby. We could hear him screaming bloody murder and it turned out it was when they put the clamps on him for the EKG. Nothing that some hugs and biscuits couldn't fix, though. Thanks for the good wishes. They're much appreciated. I'll update when we know more.

----------------------------------------------------------

 

Chase was sitting on the couch hanging out when suddenly he looked up and looked rather worried. That's the best way to describe it. Then he got up and started lurching sideways across our living room. He couldn't get his back legs to work right and had no real control. He was kind of going around the room like a balloon that had the air let out of it. I got up and caught hold of him and he stopped and leaned against me, but he wasn't "there" if you know what I mean. Meanwhile, his head pulled to the left several times in a row and his eyes were quickly darting back and forth. This lasted about a minute or two until he finally "came back". After that, Jason checked his heart rate and it was up to 100 bpm. Chase then seemed frightened and ran upstairs before we could stop him. Jason went up and calmed him down while I got on the phone with the vet. Dr. Matz said it sounded like a seizure except that the head tilt and eye movements suggest something vestibular. She's going to meet us in her office in a bit.

 

Please send prayers.

Edited by Tracey

...............Chase (FTH Smooth Talker), Morgan (Cata), Reggie (Gable Caney), Rufus
(Reward RJ). Fosters check in, but they don't check out.
Forever loved -- Cosmo (System Br Mynoel), March 11, 2002 - October 8, 2009.
Miss Cosmo was a lady. And a lady always knows when to leave.

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Sending prayers for Chase :hope:hope

Tin and Michael and Lucas, Picasso, Hero, Oasis, Galina, Neizan, Enzo, Salvo and Noor the Galgos.
Remembering Bridge Angel Greyhounds: Tosca, Jamey, Master, Diego, and Ambi; plus Angel Galgos Jules, Marco and Baltasar.

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Lots of prayers for Chase from his very worried Mama Banjo and Brudder Stickman.

 

 

Adding a very worried Auntie Janet in Canada.

Casual Bling & Hope for Hounds
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Janet & the hounds Maggie and Allen Missing my baby girl Peanut, old soul Jake, quirky Jet, Mama Grandy and my old Diva Miz Foxy; my angel, my inspiration. You all brought so much into my light, and taught me so much about the power of love, you are with me always.
If you get the chance to sit it out or dance.......... I hope you dance! Missing our littlest girl.

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Guest caiteag
Lots of prayers for Chase from his very worried Mama Banjo and Brudder Stickman.

 

 

Adding a very worried Auntie Janet in Canada.

 

Adding another very worried Canadian Auntie to the list...

 

Sending prayers.

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Guest wmlcml6

Prayers for Chase and you. Maybe he overdid it playing with the crazy toy? I am grasping for an easy treatable fix. I'm so glad you were home when it happened so you could get him to the vet asap.

 

p.s. Thank you, Tracey, for the heads up.

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Thinking of Chase and you here too, Tracey.

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Susan, Jessie and Jordy NORTHERN SKY GREYHOUND ADOPTION ASSOCIATION

Jack, in my heart forever March 1999-Nov 21, 2008 My Dancing Queen Jilly with me always and forever Aug 12, 2003-Oct 15, 2010

Joshy I will love you always Aug 1, 2004-Feb 22,2013 Jonah my sweetheart May 2000 - Jan 2015

" You will never need to be alone again. I promise this. As your dog, I will sing this promise to you, and whisper it to you at night, every night, with my breath." Stanley Coren

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