Janet, Rikky's Mom
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: North Carolina
Submit Photo: 14
Photo Nominations 1 Time in 1 Post
Prayers needed for Rikky's Healing
I haven't posted here in a long while. We have undergone a move this year and in January our Havanese Rikky started having problems which just esculated. My husband has encouraged me to post about our experience with Rikky. Prayerfully, noone will ever have to go through this.
Rikky was a very active little guy until January at the age of one year. He started holding up and limping on his right front leg. We immediately took him to the vet. Xrays and bloodwork were done and a patella check. Nothing was found and he didn't seem to experience pain. We were given antibiotics. The problem got worse. He finally stopped running, jumping, etc. The vet continued with medications. In March we moved and continued Rikky's care with a new vet. New xrays were taken. Again, nothing was found on exam and Rikky didn't experience any pain. By this time, he could hardly walk on his front leg and then his back left leg started to give out on him. He was diagnosed with "growing pains" and given pain meds. He would have some intermittent good days but was never back to his "young self". In May, he started experiencing pain and would cry out when anyone came around him or would lift him. Back to the vet for more xrays. Still nothing was found. On June 10th Rikky was so bad that he could hardly stand on his back legs and would cry in pain until I gave him pain meds. These even stopped working by that Sunday when we checked him in at Carolina Vet. Specialists as an emergency patient. Our regular vet finally gave a referral for him when she saw what condition he was in. It was also suggested that if we didn't want to proceed, we could have him put down. There was no way my husband or I would have done this without giving him all the chances that were available. Monday through Tuesday of last week Rikky underwent a spinal tap, MRI and surgery to remove a mass which at that time he thought was an abcess. After the surgery, the neurologist feared it was cancer. After having the longest week of my life, the results came back yesterday and the results were negative for cancer. Rikky, however, had a bone malformation which also could have been caused by an infection. The report called it hypertrophy of one of the short ligaments of the vertebral column which caused compression on his spinal cord and spinal nerves. However, they said it was very rare to see this occur where it did in a young dog and suggested the underlying cause could have been an infection. I still have alot of questions for the neurologist when we see him next to fully understand how this can happen.
We were able to bring Rikky home yesterday after a week in the hospital. The neurologist feels good about the chances of complete recovery but he is a very sick havanese at this time. The surgery was very invasive and it will take a long while for his spinal column and muscles to heal. He is on 4 different meds and sleeps most of the time. He will be on very restricted activity for at least 4 weeks and may have to have physical therapy. He can barely stand on his back legs. I carry him out for potty breaks.
I wish now that we had insisted on a referral to a specialist before he became so ill. He would have still had to under the tests and surgery, but his condition wouldn't have progressed to all the pain he had to endure. I don't know if he will ever get back to his normal self. Right now, I just pray for his healing and thank God he is still with us. His condition is fragile but he is at home where he feels more comfortable and his his loved ones around.
"Forever in our Hearts"
Rikky & Beau
Rainbow Bridge 2011