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Needing a home for my medical mystery shar pei. *please read, very long*

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Member Since
01/28/2013
 
 
Barked: Mon Jan 28, '13 7:42pm PST 
I dont even know where to start, or if this is the place TO start, but this WILL be very long, but I need help to rehome my baby before he is euthanized.

I have previously approached shar pei rescues (they couldnt take him). I will not even try to lie about his situation, or our issues with him. First and fore most he is an AMAZING dog, very protective of his family, but ONLY inside the home, he looovess people all other times. love being with us, and in the middle of the family life.

His story is kind of crazy, we saw him in a free ad, he looked beautiful, his name was "bruno" We went to visit him that night, he was missing a lot of fur, his skin was black and his eyes were very infected and he was terrified of people. We knew he was going to be trouble, they said they were adopting him out first come first serve, we took him. We didnt want him to be thrown away when people found out how difficult he'd be (low and behold we had NO idea either) He had never been inside a house, never on a leash, never in a car (Besides when they brought him home at 8weeks, he was 16 months when we took him) he had never been to a vet, so he was not vaccinated, or neutered. He had never had a bath either. cry The very next day we took him to the vet, had him vaccinated and examined, he had a significant amount of scarring on his eyes which explains the skiddish behavior...he couldnt see!! We scheduled the eye surgery he had to have in order to pull his eyelids right, and his neuter, as well as a biopsy of his skin because of the poor condition (he had that issue most Pei's have with the eyelids inverting).

A week after his surgery, our neighbors German Shepherd, not only BROKE through our wood fencing but attacked our dog (we named him Jack, by the way) and pulled him through the fence. I was there when it happened and panicked none of my neighbors were home so I got in the middle, yes bad idea. I used a piece of wood from the fence to hit the Shepherd until he released my dog, I was bit twice by the shepherd, was able to scoop up my dog, called my vet and told him my dog was tore up. This dog SHREDDED him, his back and eyes were tore back open where all the sutures were and his throat was mangled (I have pictures if anyone would want to see but they are somewhat graphic) My vet agreed to work on him for free, and only wanted payment if the neighbors had to end up paying (which they did) My vet called the next day and told me he had gotten the biopsy back, as well as examined the wounds and said nothing had healed from the surgery the week before, and that he had cutaneous mucinosis he just had so much mucin his body was not able to heal. it coincidentally saved him from the attack because there was so much mucin it prevented too much blood loss. BUT he told me he needed to be put to sleep because he would not heal. I asked to be given time to come say goodbye, as we were readying to leave my vet called back and said he got a hold of a dermatologist who gave him some advice to heal him, said if I was willing to put in the time that he would perform surgery on Jack and insert tubes in all his wounds for draining and healing, it also required a list of medications. I obviously was more than willing. The vet said there was no guarantee he would heal, but wanted to help cause he had never met such a loving Pei. After 2 months, maybe a bit longer he started to heal! It was a long process, lots of blood, and mess and sleeping with a naked dirty dog on me in the kitchen. But he healed! He healed so well and all his fur grew back, you wouldnt know he was missing a complete section of rolls on his shoulders.

Did I mention he house trained himself? So anyway, after this ordeal he has been my shadow, my baby really . Could really care less about my husband and children but loved me. Even after this event with the Shepherd he still loved other dogs (I fostered dogs for a local rescue, he got along with every single one, from the ridgeback mix, to the chihuahuas he played with them all!) We started noticing, as his fur grew back that he was having issues with "hot spots" chewing and chewing. At first we were told allergies, he was prescribed benedryl and prednisone. It worked, until the prednisone wore off. This was every resonpse we heard from different vets, its allergies. We switched to a holsitic dog food, tried limited ingredient dog food. Even tried cooking him food for a bit. Nothing helped, expcet for the prednisone. We even had him on Atopica for 4 months before quitting cause it made no difference if he wasnt on some sort of steroid as well. But his liver enxymes are elevated, we cant keep putting him on prednisone.

As you can see his issues, and vet bills have been high, to say the least. Its wearing my husband down as I believe the cost has gone over $3000 now. (he will be 5 this year, btw in July) My husband wants him euthanized and has threatened to have him put down if we cant find a solution, that was 3 vet visits and $700 ago. I contacted a rescue and they mentioned systemic yeast infection. I tried at home treatment, it worked wonderfully for about 3 months...hes just recently regressed back to the chewing. Because my husband has refused to help with medical expenses for him anymore, I got a Job doing daycare in my home. Unfortunetly we had a bit of a *Surprise* pregnancy, and I cannot work anymore due to complications that i have during pregnancy. I have no choice but to find my dear sweet Jack a new home, hopefully. It is not just my husband recommending euthansia, two other vets have as well. The last said outside of allergy injections (which I really feel, his issues are NOT allergy, I do believe he has swollen hock possibly (impossible to get a vet to listen to me about it because of his skin conditions, they always get preoccupied with "fixing" that first)) there is nothing more they can do for him. Another vet just told me it costs too much to keep him semi healthy/comfortable, and he should be put down.

I CANNOT in good conscious put this dog to sleep, he may have a face only a mother can love, but he is a beautiful spirited dog and I would love to see him live out the rest of his years with someone that has the resources to help him with whatever issues he has. We cannot afford specialists so we are screwed into using local vets (which seem pretty unknowing of Shar Peis). I would really love input if others think it'd be best to put him down too, and I am just too blinded to see it, I just cant see that alternative

I live in Central California and am very willing to travel (a reasonable distance that is, I have three children) the state to find him a home.

If you read through that, THANK YOU!! and if you'd like pictures and are seriously interested, PLEASE let me know, He really needs a fantastic home! I am sure I am missing some information in here, so feel free to ask questions! Thank you again for reading!!
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Shiver Me- Timbers- "Charlie"

My Little Dog, a- heartbeat at my- feet.<3
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 7:12am PST 
I don't have much advice and unfortunately, cannot provide a home for your sweetheart, however, I did want to give you a hug and thank you for trying to hard to make a good life for him and keep him healthy.

I do have to ask though... If nothing can be found in terms of what's wrong... What will his quality of life be like? If you cannot find him a home that has the resources to seek proper specialists, or the funds to do so... It may be the kindest thing, to let him go in your arms, with the one person who always cared to help him. I'm not saying don't try to find him someone that can help - do try! But if all else fails, taking a look at his quality of life and seeing him through to the very end may be the kindest thing for this poor boy.. I am very, very sorry if my response offends you and I'm so sorry you're going through this.

Have Shar Pei Fever and Amyloidoisis been looked into? Just ideas from reading up on Shar Pei's.. Or perhaps a Vitamin B-12 deficiency if you're really sure it's not allergies? Have you tried raw feeding?

I'm sorry that your husband will no longer help you.. hug
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Member Since
01/28/2013
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 7:52am PST 
Thank you for responding!! No offense, Its something I have heard quite a few times, actually. It so hard to gauge quality of life, KWIM? He seems happy he loves being rubbed on (albeit that is a new development he didnt like being pet for a while due to the discomfort it caused him. it may revert as his symptoms come back) he plays very well with our other rescue (a 17mo boxer mix). He does have moments when he seems very uncomfortable, but its not all the time. I just really dont know, the only times I've had to make the decision to let a pet go is when they were terminal. I've never dealt with this really before, so its hard. This is really a last ditch effort really before the inevidable. So many people have said that no one will take him, I mean really who wants an expensive ugly dog? *gigggles* But seriously, its just hard I guess.

He has fevered twice (maybe a third time but I didnt catch it cause I was previously unaware of what to look for, it was shortly after we got him) and with the fevers came tremors and uncontrolled diarrhea which is NOT like him, he can hold his self for a VERY long time if he has to so accidents in the house are very odd, and obviously very rare. When I mentioned it to the three different vets that I have frequented, all of them brushed it off because of his skin. It often looks red, and inflammed especially around his back legs (which is why I personally think he also has swollen hock) Hes had two complete blood panels in the last year, both only showed elevated liver enzymes. His very first blood panel showed an issue with thyroid, the thyroid meds caused issues so he was removed from them and monitored and the apparent thyroid problem never came back, they have always stayed at normal levels. He's had skin scrapings, and biopsies done to look for skin disorders. No vet has ever mentioned Amyloidosis, Ive suspected it. But again vets get SO stuck on the allergy issue that they dont even listen to me. and his blood doesnt really show. Though he has never had a urinalysis besides his initial complete work up when we first got him.

I did try raw, well im not sure if it was considered raw? I cooked him food, a bland-ish diet of sorts when we were thinking it was allergies we did the whole rice and then add a meat type thing to determine the cause, nothing changed. he was also on vitamin supplements. Its just odd that he doesnt respond to anything but steroids a big part of me thinks that its largely due to the fact that he was a high needs dog thrown outside and ignored and it just did its damage. Hes still partially blind from the damage done to his eyes so he gets wary of unfamiliar shadows. (when we got him, we lived by mexico boarder, it was regularly over 110 degrees in the summer)

He also has had two brief stints where he lost weight, for no reason. He stays at about 45 lbs, and at one point dropped to 33. We put him on a calorie supplement and soft food and he gained it back. I dont know, I just really dont know.

I grew up on a farm, dealt with animal death ALOT (We raised our own meat even) and I just cant wrap my head around seeing him go. Even through the rescues and shelters i've volunteered at (I even have a "non profit" of sorts that sponsors shelter pets, and we've dealt with losing our sponsored dogs) death is so common. Its just hard I guess when its your own pet, its hard when the decision isnt so obvious I guess.

Sorry got winded again!

Edited by author Tue Jan 29, '13 7:53am PST

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Kolbe

Where can I run- today?
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 11:11am PST 
You could try a raw diet to see if you can pinpoint something if it's food-related, but as far as environmental goes I'm at a loss at any other suggestions. I'm sorry to hear of this poor guy's problems. Thanks for helping him out.
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Member Since
01/28/2013
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 5:01pm PST 
We tried an elimination diet already, and nothing surfaced.
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UCH Onyx TT,- CGC

Do you even- lift?
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 5:50pm PST 
You said you tried a cooked diet. Some dogs are allergic to a protein cooked, but will be fine with that same protein raw. Might be worth trying a raw, grain-free diet and see if it helps. Many people have reported huge improvement with their dogs' allergies after switching to raw. If you're interested, there are some great resources on the raw forum.

Other than that, I don't have any ideas. Good luck hug
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Member Since
01/28/2013
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 6:44pm PST 
If its allergies, wouldnt they have resolved while on allergy medication? hes been on Atopica, and another prescribed allergy med (cant remember the name) and it made no different, nor did benedryl. I TRULY do not believe he has allergies. It doesnt really mean much, but none of the vets thought it was food, they thought it was airborne/environmental.
[notify]
Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 9:15pm PST 
For situations like this, you need to be a really good advocate. Particularly with your husband's responses creating a very real fault line.

Are either of the rescues you contacted Homeward Bound/Chinese Shar Pei Rescue or Pei People? These are the two groups to focus on. They are breed club affiliated and receive funding. If you have, post on their Facebook pleading for help and also contact breed club chairperson Rev. Alan Klessig @ abramsrev@aol.com if you need to for guidance. Neither of these sites I visited seem to have surrender instructions. This is an exceptional case of people doing everything, but are reaching the end of their line. You also could contact actual animal sanctuaries, who often have the funding to cope with exceptional cases. I hope that helps!
[notify]
Harley (past- foster dog)

Did someone say- 'walk'??
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 29, '13 10:10pm PST 
I would also suggest contacting Dr Jeff Vidt and see if he has any info or medical advice: http://www.drjwv.com/

He is a vet who has a lot of knowledge of Shar Pei. I don't know if he still works with them but he used to work with a Pei rescue group so maybe they can help you although it is in the Midwest so not near your area.
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Member Since
01/28/2013
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 30, '13 8:03am PST 
I do believe it was pei people who I contacted, there was one other. I camt remember bu they specifically stated they do not take owmer surrenders. Pei people is who mentioned the yeast infection. I may try to comtact them again and let them know what is going on, I was emailing with one of them back and forth for a bit. Thank you for the other suggestions, I'm going to look into them!
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