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Sick Lab (Help)


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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Are you using hay or straw for bedding?
If so make sure theres not any mold dust.

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I wish I could remember the name of the disease but there is fungus that a dog can pick up from the floor of the woods. It comes from decaying trees and ground matter. Some areas in MN have it and others not. I think it comes and goes according to the weather and moisture conditions as well. The dogs pick it up in their nose from scenting.

Just run that by your vet since if they catch it before seizures set in, you have a good chance.
Some areas of the state have it and some do not from what I was told.
Hope that is not it but I was unaware of this condition until a relatives dog died and we hunt the same areas. His dog coughed for several weeks until it developed into seizures.
ccarlson

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Good idea to go to a second vet. Sometimes the first one might miss something. Did you have a test done for adenovirus cough, bordetella or parainfluenza? Has the dog been in contact with other dogs recently or boarded? I'm sure your vet probably asked you this, but in case he didn't, thought I'd ask. Not sure if this is allowed but I'll try it and risk getting spanked. There is a website called PetEducation.com that might be of some help to you. Good luck and let us know what you find out.

------------------
Erik

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By all means go to another vet. My dog had an ear infection for 4 years that at least 3 different vets looked at and none of them could fix it. I finally went to another vet (Stillwater Vet) and they had it cleared up in two weeks. I don't know where you live but if you are anywhere near the cities I would highly recomend Stillwater, they seem to really care about the dogs, and most of them have hunting dogs. Good Luck with the pooch!

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My 4 year old lab has come up Ill the past week and a half. I visited the vet last week and they put him on some antibiotics. He has a cough in his throat that she said was a viral throat infection that should clear up in a week. That was a week ago. He is getting worse. I have another appt at a differnt vet but I was wondering if any of you other dog owners out there have seen anything like this. It is the hunting season and I have already cancelled my opener trip for ducks to stay with him. Sounds kind of corny but I would sure hate to loose him. Thanks in advandce
Lab

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My lab has had the same ear problem too, now for well over a year, I have spent atleast $200 on the vet so far, and noticed again the other day she has that same brown crap starting up already, that indicated before she has an infection.


Setterguy, do you remember the med. stillwater gave your dog?
maybe I can tryan get it from my vet.
thanks

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Ok, made a call to see the name of that fungus condition that comes from the forest floor and settles in the dogs lungs.

It is called Blastomycosis. Run it by your vet to see if it is a possibility.

As I said earlier, it is a regional thing. This persons dog was infected in the Grand Rapids area.
ccarlson

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Dano- In my case the first three vets told me that it was a yeast infection in the ears and would give me some medicine to clear it up. It would go away for a couple weeks then come right back. Well finally the guy at Stillwater Vet did some tests and determined that yes they were yeast infections but the reason that they kept coming back is because the poor dog had an ulcer in each ear. He treated the ulcer and I haven't had a problem in over two years. I can't remember the name of the meds but I would ask your vet about the possibility of it being an ulcer. It really sucks that the poor dog had to walk around like that for that long, when all it would have taken is for one of those first three vets to just take a little more time diagnosing the problem instead of just treating the symptoms.

[This message has been edited by setterguy (edited 09-28-2003).]

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It could very well be Blasto. 5 years ago it killed several dogs up by Lake Vermillion. My dog lost an eye, was on anti's for 6 months. The pills are VERY expensive, I ended up getting my pills in Mexico. The pills in the states were like 8 dollars a piece. In Fort Frances they were 4.25 ea. In Mexico I paid 1.25 ea. At 4 pills a day for 6 months you do the math. It is cheaper to catch a plane to Tijuana and buy the meds down there.

Good Luck, I hope that is not what is wrong with your dog, it was not very much fun to care for her for the 6 months.

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I had a 1 1/2 year old yellow lab die from Blasto Mycosis. He picked it up in Central Minnesota. This is definitely not something to take lightly. You will want your vet to take an X-Ray of your dogs lungs, this is how the Vet Hospital finally found it after first diagnosing him with Limes. He had Limes disease only because his imune system had broken down to the point where it could not fight it off. I first noticed something was wrong because he was losing his appetite, and than became real lethargic with the same deep cough you are talking about. My lab had almost 70% of his lungs infected with the fungus by the time we had to put him down. It was a very tough time for me and my family, he was a great young hunter who never had the chance to hit his prime.

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First of all Thanks for the replys and the phone numbers. I have made some calls and I am scheduled to go back to the vet for x rays today. He has gotten much better the past 2 days. He got some of his energy back but the cough is still there without any improvement. The vet said it may be a disease called Blastomytosis. This is a mold they get from inhaling mold spores in the field or water. It is very serious and fatal in about 75% of dogs. I have made some calls and found out we can treat it and is much more succesful if started early on. I am off to the vet hopefully for some good news this time.
Thanks again
Lab

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Duckbuster
Do you remember what kind of meds they put your pup on. This is the best dog I have had by far and I am in for the haul with him if Blasto is the case. Obvioulsy I want to keep the cost as low as I can.

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Setterguy, thanks for the tip, thats the same crap my dogs been going through but just with one ear, it goes away a couple weeks, then I 'll check it and theres that same brown looking crap again.
If I have to bring her back, i will ask the vet about the ulcer thing. So far so good after the last ear med. she had, but its only been about a couple weeks, and i have my doubts

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I do not remember the name of the meds. But if it is the same stuff you will know when you go to the drug store. I would not fill the whole prescription until you find out the cost. Ask the vet about price on the pills. I filled a weeks supply, then got the rest from Mexico. It will take 5-6 months to get rid of this thing. Other than losing her eye my female lived another 5 years, she was 8 when she got sick.

GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!!!
KEEP US POSTED.

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Duckbuster
No open sores yet just the nasty hack. They pulled more blood yesterday and did some xrays. The vet said if it is not blasto it is something else because he has some bad stuff going on in his lungs. Didnt think it could be cancer with him only being 3 years old. Where did you get the pills at in Mexico? Do you need a prescription for them in Mexico?

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The vet will give a prescription like a doctor would give you. You just go and get it filled. I believe the pills are the same as a human would get if they had blasto. Tijuana, Mexico. I would think you could go anywhere just over the border down there.

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Labby have you gotten the results back yet? Curious to know how the fight is going?

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Got an appt for the U in the morning. Still no progress he has been on antibiotics 3 weeks and now Itraconazole (sporax for 10 days) No major changes either way. Hopefully the guys at teh U can get me some answers

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One other thing it could be is a seed growing in his lung. What happens is if a dog goes into grasses or weeds, especially foxtail they can enhale very tiny weed seeds in through their nose and into their lungs. The seed starts to grow in the lung and it gets pretty messy. I have a had a few friends have Springers get this seed and the vet can usually do surgery to get all the seed out and the dog will live. I am good friends with a vet and this is more common than you might think but it has to be diagnosed properly. A lot of vets haven't seen or heard of this and they can't diagnose it. For my money the best vet in the State is in Hutchinson, MN. His name is Virgil Voight. I have also had my dogs to the U to get their eyes and hips checked and I now the vets are excellent their to. Hopefully they can get something figured out for you.

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Millacs Guy
The disease you are talking about is called Nocardia. I did mention this tot he folks at the U and they thought that was unlikly by the looks of the xrays. They are pretty sure we are dealing with Blastomycosis. This is some nasty stuff but it looks like we got it early on. I have had him on the Itraconazole for 12 days now and he is starting to look better. This medication is pretty pricey at 30 bones a day but I have found some over the net in Mexico where I can drop the price down to 5 a day. The vet at teh U said this stuff is more common than I thought with alot of dogs being lost by not treating it right away. Hopefully he will come around so we can get out after some Ruddys in a couple of weeks.

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I have had a few dogs and llamas with major problems and couldn't get quality answers from local vets (even though my brother in law is one). Whenever I have something major I go to that place in Eden Prairie, Affiliated Emergency Vet service, 952-942-8272. They have the equipment and are much faster and cheaper than the U of MN (but, they aren't cheap!). I had 2 clinics and the U say my brittainy (my all time favorite grouse hunter) had cushings disease, until the EP place actually listened to us and we found out it was a brain stem tumor (funny that 2 other dogs in there had the same thing and were eating the same food). A cat scan at the Uof M confirmed it. Another springer ate a bunch of crap and the vet said she would be ok, just a little something in her throat. We brought her to EP and they pulled out enough stuff to fill a baggy, said she would have been dead in a couple days. You know, we have a responsibility to care for these creatures as good as we can. What other animal is as dedicated to us? Plus, there is no other animal on earth that understands the language of another animal as well as dogs understand us. Well, my parrot knows what she says about 1/2 the time, but she is so irritating when she won't shut up she doesn't count.

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Labby I would not advise hunting the dog this fall. I disease is in the lungs by working the dog you are not letting the healing process to take place. Look at the big picture, let him/her heal so you can have 8-10 more years of enjoyment. Mine got sick in August that year, I know its tough not to have the dog by your side in the woods but it's the right thing to do. I was told it takes 5-6 months to clearly get this out of there system. 4 pills a day, 2 in the morning & 2 at night. I told you they were expensive, amazing hey. Isn't it mind boggling how our country sells this pill for 8-10 each but the EXACT same thing in mexico is 1.25 each!!!!

Good luck with your fight and remember, Pay now or pay later I think you would rather pay now. It's obvious that you truely care for this animal.

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Duckbuster
How long was it until the coughing seemed to get better. I know it takes at least 4 months to rid it from his lungs completly. Some days he seems better then he is bad the next. He eats well some days then he wont eat for the next 2. This is hamburger and trimmings he wont even look at dry food. The other day I had him in the truck for a ride with my 11 year old son looking for some birds. We spotted a bird in a ditch so we got out and walked it and left him in the truck (nearly killed him) My son shot the bird and it fell in the corn. We couldnt find it so I let the dog out. 30 seconds later he flushed another rooster right over my head. I shot that on and he made teh retrieve on the first bird. He was looking good so we walked down the road a couple hundred yards. He flushed 8 more birds 6 hens 2 roosters and we filled out within 20 minutes of hunting. After working the birds he acted like he was healed up. I think the excitment got him going but I have not hunted him since and I dont plan on doing so. He is just not right. I just hate going and not having him with. We had 2 trips to SD planned and I doubt I will be going to these. OH well I guess there is next year.

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Good luck Labby! I can feel your pain, the last 10 years I've had two labs around 'just in case' one gets hurt, now I'm down to one, hate to think what would happen if she got hurt, two trips to SoDak planned, lots of birds in MN. Ouch. Shes six, was thinking of waiting two more years before getting another, shes right in her prime and has plenty of get up and go, but you never know. Might be time to get a pup in the spring... Been trying to convince myself that IF she did get hurt then I could always bowhunt more, but then what about SoDak??! Give up 10 days of hunting pheasants and drinking beer and talking smart?? Yikes!

Good luck to you!

[This message has been edited by BLACKJACK (edited 10-16-2003).]

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Labby our's never had the coughing issue. It was the lost of an eye and open sores, couple on her paws and 2 on her back. She seemed very lethargic but your right they never lose the desire to hunt. I had to take her to the shack each weekend I went but generally left her in the cabin when I went grousin. It killed both of us. Patience is the key word, keep it in the back of your mind at all times. Next fall you will shoot twice as many birds with him by your side!!!!

Keep us posted on the progress.

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  • 4 weeks later...
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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

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