Today I took Cassidy out when I got home from work and since she had piddled all over herself, I wiped her up with a baby wipe. While I was scrubbing at her backside, I noticed something odd and decided to go in for a closer inspection.
She has what looks like blisters right around her little pizzle. Great. All the care I've been taking to keep her clean and dry and to keep from getting urine scald were for NOTHING because she has it ANYWAY. I didn't think I was going to have to wipe her out in the fold of skin around there, but if I would have used my brain, I would have known.
Seriously, please... can my dog just get better now without something else fucking up? Please? I'd really love that, I would.
We took Cassidy to the vet yesterday and he decided to step her down on the predinisilone. We're down to one whole tablet twice a day instead of a tablet and a half. He kept her on the tramadol for now the way we've been giving that to her and we put her on twice a day doses of the meds to keep her bowels moving. We're on a full tab of prednisilone through the weekend and then stepping down to half a tab on Monday. Hopefully she won't backslide and we'll get her worked back down to stop the potty accidents. Then we get her backside cleaned up and cleared up and maybe then I can stop having issues.
I cleaned it and then slathered it down in neosporin. Tomorrow she'll get a bath and I will get up close and personal to see if the heads in these things are clumps of hair. If so, it's going to not be fun for her, I'm sure. It just has to be done.
My poor dog. Seriously. I'll post the picture under a cut in case someone has a weak stomach so they don't have to see it.
Cassidy apparently still needs the pills to help her poop. When we tried to drop her down to just one pill every day, she ended up bloating back up again, being miserable, having more potty accidents and not being able to walk as well. I put her back on the two doses daily and will talk to him on Tuesday.
I am not really looking forward to Tuesday. Each vet visit was always something I looked forward to because it meant he might see more improvement. Now I'm actually sort of dreading that he won't find any improvement. We'll start stepping her down on the steroids and she'll be stuck like this permanently. I don't know if she's in any more pain than before since we've kept her on the pain medications, so I don't know if she hurts. She doesn't seem to hurt in between doses of her pills like she had before, so that's a positive sign, but I'm not sure that she's going to be able to make a full recovery like we'd hoped. Doctor Rausch said the Dachshund he worked with before did something like this where he just didn't seem to be getting better, so they worked him down off the prednisilone and after a few weeks, he made a full recovery.
I'm... starting to not be so optimistic and hopeful. I think she's going as far as she can go now and I don't know what that means. I don't know if that means surgery, I don't know if that means a walker. I don't know if that means she just stays hobble-along and we work with her that way...
I think it's the not knowing that bothers me more than anything. I hate this up in the air nonsense.
My girlfriend says at this point they're probably looking at nerve damage and, given that she's been right every point in the past, I bet she's right on that as well. From what I've read, the chances of recovery are all greatly increased by seeking immediate medical attention, which we did with Cassidy. However, with everything going on so long, there is a possibility that we just missed the window since she didn't have enough steroids in the beginning.
There really could be any number of variables and, to be honest, I don't know how we could have done anything different. Mary said that her experiences were very similar and, in most cases, were right in the way the dog was treated. I don't doubt Doctor Rausch. He's good at what he does. It just helps to have her input before he tells me something that throws me for a serious loop. I like being as prepared as possible. I bounce everything off of Mary when I hear anything and she talks me through things. It's a nice thing to have, honestly.
So when I know more, there will be updates. I know it shouldn't make me sad to think that Cassidy won't ever be like she was before because there are so many other dogs in walkers who are able to lead full lives, but it really does. I would have liked for her to have regained use, even if I had the undercurrent that she wouldn't. It's kinda crushing to realize that she's not going to function normally, even though I am going to do my best to get her as close back to normal as possible.
We're going to see what massage can do for her. Maybe I'll have good luck.
I took a video this morning of Cassidy going through her morning routine once we got outside. I spared you all the bathroom business because, well, no one wants to see that. However, I have a choppy video of what we do each morning when she gets up.
Today she had a bath and I carpet cleaned the carpets. She was having problems telling when she had to pee, so our living room reeked of pee from the spots. Even cleaning them up, it still sinks in. I broke out the steam cleaner and went to town. Everything smells better, but it's still lingering. When the carpets dry, I'm going to get down on my hands and knees and sniff and see if it's all the carpet or just the spots, still. Then they'll get cleaned again, but it depends on how wide an area it is what I do. If it's spots, I'll soak them down and use the hose to pull up the cleaner after it has a chance to soak in for awhile. I'm anticipating that's what I'll have to do. I know she can't help it, but it's so FRUSTRATING. It's especially difficult when she won't stay on the piddle pads to catch dribbles.
At least she's getting better and having less accidents. We've learned that if you say "Do you have to potty?" that she piddles a little before she heads to the door like she's trying to check and see if, in fact, she does have to go. It's actually kind of comical until I have to clean up pee spots.
I have discovered the wonders of the Shamwow, Woolite Pet Oxygen cleaner and Bissell Pet Stain and Odor cleaner. OMG, they make a world of difference. I'm also a HUGE fan of Borax and baking soda for a deodorizer. I've also found a Spot Bot cleaner that you just drop onto the stain and let it clean the spot for you while you take the dog out or get them cleaned up. This thing would be such a lifesaver. Looks like I'll be saving up for one of these beauties.
I'll stop obsessing over the cleanup and show the video. She's walking SO GOOD now!!