superczar
Donnie was a German Shepherd boy ; 3 years and 7 months , 37kgs and in otherwise perfect health.

The first sign that something is wrong came on the 10th of November (Friday).
We were playing in the yard late evening and he suddenly started bleeding from his nose.
I held his head up high to control the bleeds and called the vet who asked if he is showing any signs of distress.
He seemed to be fine otherwise so he asked to come to him in the morning.

The night was uneventful . There was another episode of bleeding at the vet's in the morning which he controlled with adrenaline topical and took a blood sample.
The blood test came positive for Anaplasma Platys and a low platelet count (47K) (which at that time came as a relief as I was suspecting the worst - Anaplasma prognosis is usually very good)
He was prescribed Doxycycline and Prednisolone for the next 2 weeks with a followup the week after.

He responded well and the bleeding all but stopped by the next day. He continued to be his playful normal self all through this.
The entire week was uneventful - I had to practically shout at him all week to stop him from running away with his ball so that he can get some rest instead.

In fact he was so normal through the week that we even decided to throw a BBQ party on the next Saturday (25th) for him .
He had a great time through it all - the only sign something was still wrong was that he slept off on the porch bed around 2 AM while I was still awake cleaning up. He would normally stay up with me till I went to bed but I attributed it to fatigue on account of the medicines.

Next afternoon (Sunday), he had a sudden episode of heavy nose bleeding.
Soon after, he started having bloody diarrhea.
I called the vet but he was off that day and asked me to apply adrenaline and attributed the Melena to blood he may have swallowed.

While that stopped the bleeding, he however had a difficult night as he was having trouble breathing from his nose and had to breathe through his mouth.

Somehow he was fine again in the morning and was his usual happy self hogging down boiled chicken and rice

Anyway we took him to the vet after his meal - By the time we got there, his bleeding started again and showed no signs of abating
At the vet's place, he gave him some injection to control the bleeding ( I am not sure what, I was sinking by that time)
Within minutes, he vomited out a lot of blood with all the food from the morning.

The vet put him on an IV (saline) with several other injections (again not sure what) and took a blood sample
He asked us to keep him rested after the IV was done.
However, by the time we got home, he had lost bowel control and could not even walk.
I carried him up the stairs and kept him in my arms but his breathing just got shallower and he passed away within an hour in my arms.


I was in a daze and kept blaming myself for not having done enough on Sunday.
A week later I finally gathered the courage to ask the vet for the blood report (that was taken a few hours before he left me) 

To my surprise, the blood report was almost perfectly clear.
The platelet counts were up and at 147K!
Hematocrit was marginally low and WBC counts slightly high with mild anemia .
No infections/parasites on the pap smear either!
All this while I have been attributing this to a virulent case of tick fever . And now I don't even know what happened to him.

He was otherwise a perfectly healthy and active dog - Other than maybe a few episode of runny stools over the last three years , he was absolutely perfect in health.
Behaviorally, he was the nicest and happiest dog I have ever known and we were so looking forward to seeing my 4 month human boy growing up with him.
I am unable to get closure on this and I just wish there was something more I could do.
It's been a month and some .. But every single day, something or the other reminds me of him that really wrenches  my insides and brings on a wave of physical and emotional pain.
The other girl in the pic is heartbroken.. What breaks my heart even more is the fact that she is actually trying to behave more like him with us even though she had always been a very different personality (he was very much a velcro guy vs the independent minded Indian Pariah)..she even tried to do the same greeting ritual as him now

I know it does not change anything but if someone could help me understand what happened to him , it may just enable me to move on

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Chinadoll
I just wanted to say how sorry I am for your loss. Donnie is a beautiful boy, I love the pictures. I really can't help with any ideas as to what may have happened, I wish I could. Maybe someone else on this forum with more knowledge could help. It sounds to me like you did everything you could to find out what was wrong, I know you feel guilty sometimes but you shouldn't. You tried so hard. I wish there was more I could say to help. I do believe their spirit and soul lives on and we are reunited one day. I believe Donnie knows how much you loved him and how hard you try to help. Be kind to yourself when you can. Blessings.
Charlie
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Erwitt
I'm so sorry about your loss... He looks like a wonderful dog, and he was so young to leave...

I can't help you with the diagnosis either, but I know for my own experience that seeing your beloved dog and not knowing what is the problem is very painful. My big boy Jacko passed away one month and a half ago, after almost two months really ill. And during the first weeks we didn't know for sure which was his disease. A cancer in his lungs was the main possibility, but we couldn't make him a biopsy because it was very risky, so we stayed several days without knowing it for sure. We only could give him some medicines praying to see any improvement, but none of them worked.

Finally he also started to suffer from his paws, and the radiographs seemed to show a metastasis, so the cancer was almost confirmed. But the doubt was always there.

Probably you'll never know why Donnie passed away, but if it can help you to overcome your loss, you could visit any other vet in order to get some qualified opinion.

In any case, you don't have to punish yourself. You made all you could... These sh*ts just happen. And I know, it's something very easy to say but very difficult to do, and I also punish myself for not having do more for the wellness of Jacko. But we have to try it, that's the only way to keep going ahead.

Kind regards, and I hope that the new year will be better for all of us.

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PeppermintPatty
Oh dear. This was so hard to read. A marvelous little angel was brought into your life, and suddenly he was gone. Did you have Donnie as a puppy? 

The pain is unbearable, this I know. I am so sorry for your loss.
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Korrasdad
I’m so sorry you have to go through this. A month ago I had a similar loss of my 5.5 year old Korra. She went from normal to gone in about 10 days, and there are no answers to what happened. I still haven’t dealt with it. Every day is still hard and I’m having trouble finding joy in anything. Give yourself lots of time and patience.
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superczar
PeppermintPatty wrote:
Oh dear. This was so hard to read. A marvelous little angel was brought into your life, and suddenly he was gone. Did you have Donnie as a puppy? 

The pain is unbearable, this I know. I am so sorry for your loss.


Yes, he came to us as a 8 week puppy in March '14
He was more than an angel to me...  I was a reckless and self centered individual in his early 30s living life still like a college freshman.
Bringing him up and his presence in my life prepared me in more ways than one to have a human baby who is 5 months  old now.
My biggest regret is he won't have him around as he grows... Donnie was a perfect gentleman with kids and every kid who visited us loved him ..
He was perhaps the angel who came in my life for just this


Korrasdad wrote:

I’m so sorry you have to go through this. A month ago I had a similar loss of my 5.5 year old Korra. She went from normal to gone in about 10 days, and there are no answers to what happened. I still haven’t dealt with it. Every day is still hard and I’m having trouble finding joy in anything. Give yourself lots of time and patience.


I spoke to a vet who said it was possibly a hemangiosarcoma ... a minor burst could have caused the initial symptoms while a major tumor burst would have caused the final symptoms
i hope you find closure soon ..
Speaking for myself, I think the only way for me to fill the void is to bring another puppy into my life..as bittersweet as the experience will turn out to be... but I am waiting for my family to be ready for the same

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