Daisy has been poorly

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Mercedes
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Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

I've been so wrapped up with all the issues we've had with Daisy over the last few months I totally forgot to mention it on here.
As she is a shih tzu we've always been aware that her large eyes make her more vulnerable than other breeds regarding eye problems and last year she had an ulcer in her left eye. It was treated quickly and healed up within a week. A year on she had one in the other eye, once again it was treated and it healed up quickly. About a month or two later she got yet another ulcer so another trip to the vet!
With hindsight maybe we should have questioned why she had got 2 ulcers so quickly in succession or asked the vet to do more tests on her eyes, but I guess like a lot of dog owners we just assumed the vet knew more than us. This 3rd ulcer didn't seem to be healing as quickly as the previous ones so we took her back to the vet after a couple of days and we were immediately referred to the Queen Mother Vetinerary Hospital over in Potters Bar.
It became clear quite quickly that this ulcer was quite serious, to the point that the specialist who examined her said we shouldn't take her home as she was one sneeze away from her eyeball exploding, sounds gross I know.
That night they performed a graft on her eye as the bacteria in the ulcer was apparently 'melting' her eye. We picked her up the next day and she looked so sad with her 'collar of shame' on and her eye looked a total mess {cry}
Worse news was to follow when the specialist told us that on closer inspection of Daisy's 'good' eye they had diagnosed her with Progressive Retinal Atrophy and in time she will lose sight in both her eyes. She is only 6 so it was quite upsetting to find this out.
This was back in September and thankfully the eye graft was successful and unless you look closely you wouldn't even notice the scarring.
We now have a busy daily schedule of applying 4 different eye drops every day and we also bought a supplement called Ocu Glo that might slow down the blindness. For now her eyesight seems to be really good, so fingers crossed it will be some time before her sight goes.
I do however feel a bit let down by the vets. The consultant at the Veterinary hospital did a very quick test to check what Daisy's tear production was like and it was so low that it was quite clear she needed medication to get her tear production back to normal. I know of other owners of shih tzu's whose vets seems to do this test as part of their health check, but ours has never checked her tear production and it was the lack of tears which had most likely caused the ulcers :?
We aren't unduly worried about Daisy going blind as we know that dogs manage very well if they lose their sight, but it's a bit sad all the same {cry}
I'm going to try to add a couple of pics of her eye, I won't show the one from before her surgery just in case someone is eating their dinner. One is post surgery and the other is how it looks now :-D
ImageImage
Lyn
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wendy
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by wendy »

Oh poor little ,sweet Daisy.
PRA is hereditary, my friends Labrador had it for many years and lived well with his blindness. But very sad all the same.
Lets hope you can keep her eyes healthy for as long as possible for her.
{hug} {hug}
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Gwenoakes »

Hi, Mercedes )wav(
Sorry to hear about Daisy's troubles and I will keep everything crossed that her eyes stay healthy for as long as possible.
I cannot remember where you got Daisy from, but if it was a breeder, have you considered contacting them to let them know what has happened to allow them to stop breeding with this paticular line and hopefully reduce problems in the future?
I kinda get where you are at the vets not telling you/checking, but I think by putting this on this forum it will inform other owners of the problems that this breed may possibly be open to and hopefully help stop this nasty eye problem by more selective breeding.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

I actually did a great deal of research before picking Daisy. I went through the Shih Tzu Puppy Co ordinator and she put me onto the breeder we bought Daisy from. Her pedigree is very good, her father is a champion show dog, which makes it quite ironic that I spent so much time to make sure I bought from a good breeder but now have this issue to face in the future.
From what I understand PRA is a recessive gene and it's not something that can be tested for in the parents, least not with this breed as there haven't been enough cases of it. The Animal Hospital asked if we would agree to them taking Daisy's DNA as there is research being done into the disease in her breed, and obviously we agreed to that.
I contacted the Shih Tzu Club the minute I knew about Daisy's condition as it means that both her parents carry this gene and they should not be bred, also it might be a good idea for the owners of Daisy's siblings to be made aware in case they have inherited the disease. The woman who bred Daisy claims she has no recollection of how many puppies were in the litter, something I find highly unlikely considering she has bred Shih Tzus for years and still shows them at all the big dog shows and her and her husband are both show judges too!
I found the owner of the stud dog as she is a member of one of the Shih Tzu Facebook groups but she was adamant her dog is healthy and I am wrong. Her dog has sired over 20 puppies and I know for a fact that Daisy's sister is being shown but it's almost like as soon as you mention the names of the breeders to the Shih Club they close ranks.
On a positive note I have to say Daisy is the most wonderful dog ever, such a wonderful temperament and a joy to own, so in that sense I guess we have been blessed )t'
Lyn
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Gwenoakes »

If the breeder is breeding as part of or for a full living then she will have to keep records both for the tax man and vat if she is earning enough for 7 years, from what you have put it sounds like she might not be declaring her earnings from these pups, which is a whole new ball game.
I cannot see why any breeder would not want to be told about these things and also inform other owners that she has sold pups to. So she is calling the vets too then if she is saying you are wrong. Sounds somewhat fishy to me, Mercedes.
I always thought the horsey world was bad enough, but since Clare has been dealing with the doggy world with the canine hydrotherapy I have changed my mind somewhat.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

Gwenoakes wrote:If the breeder is breeding as part of or for a full living then she will have to keep records both for the tax man and vat if she is earning enough for 7 years, from what you have put it sounds like she might not be declaring her earnings from these pups, which is a whole new ball game.
I cannot see why any breeder would not want to be told about these things and also inform other owners that she has sold pups to. So she is calling the vets too then if she is saying you are wrong. Sounds somewhat fishy to me, Mercedes.
I always thought the horsey world was bad enough, but since Clare has been dealing with the doggy world with the canine hydrotherapy I have changed my mind somewhat.


Last time I spoke to her Gwen she had 13 Shih Tzu's, although I am sure some are just older dogs no long being shown that she keeps. I have no idea what kind of money she makes from them as I think she tends to breed for showing rather than selling, but all the same she should care more about inherited conditions they are passing down to other generations. When I look carefully at Daisy's pedigree I notice some 'in line' breeding in that her grandfather is the same on both sides, apparently that is quite common with dog breeding I am told, but what would I know. So it's possible that one dog has the gene and has passed it down to both the dam and sire. I'll post a link to her pedigree, maybe someone else can make sense of it :?

http://www.theshihtzuclub.co.uk/db/show ... E=3&GENS=6" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;"
Lyn
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Gwenoakes »

Wendy may be able to look at the pedigree, Mercedes and if she cannot fathom it out I have a friend who judges at Crufts who I am sure would cast her eye over it, although it may not be till after Xmas.
Another thought is Lexi's breeder who has always been very helpful throughout the probs we had with Lexi. I am sure she would not mind having a peep too. Leave it with me as I am no techno person, so will have to wait for daughter to come and help me send it to her, if that is ok with you. Just let me know.
Just remembered something else too, in the 70's we had some friends who bred whippets who would not entertain registering them even though the pups were highly sought after as parents were high up in the winning stakes. She actually registered a cat saying it was a dog and got all the paperwork through.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by wendy »

I have had a look. But know nothing about Shih Tzu's.
I have had a look and the 'breeder' hasn't a website from what I can tell.
Santosha are fairly well known and have won BOB at Cruft's a number of times. So they have gone to a winning dog as a stud.
PRA doesn't rear it's ugly head until the dog is around 6/7 years old. Which sadly by then the parents could have produced a number of pups. But it is irresponsible of any one to deny it when it obviously has been proved by the vet college. Also not good for the breed and the particular dogs
It would be nice if they made it known that these particular dogs do have the recessive gene and their lines should not be bred together. But I doubt it. Dog breeding is a big money thing sadly.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Gwenoakes »

Hi Mercedes Just had a reply from the breeder of Lexi and she says that having Grandparents on both sides of a pedigree is what they used to do, but is now considered to be bad practice and inbreeding which can result in health issues.
Not sure when this practice was altered though.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

Gwenoakes wrote:Hi Mercedes Just had a reply from the breeder of Lexi and she says that having Grandparents on both sides of a pedigree is what they used to do, but is now considered to be bad practice and inbreeding which can result in health issues.
Not sure when this practice was altered though.


That's interesting Gwen, I'll have to look at the pedigrees of her more recent dogs she is showing to see if she is still doing that {warn}
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Spreckly »

Hello Mercedes, good to see you posting again, but a great shame that Daisy has this problem. I've nothing to add, know nothing about her breed, only about shelties. I hope you are coping with the situation.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

Spreckly wrote:Hello Mercedes, good to see you posting again, but a great shame that Daisy has this problem. I've nothing to add, know nothing about her breed, only about shelties. I hope you are coping with the situation.


Thanks Spreckly, we are coping okay with Daisy all things considered. We do have pet insurance but it's only covered about a third of the cost of her treatment, but we are okay paying for all the drops and supplements ourselves if it saves her eye. Our own vet was going to charge us £1,000 to remove her eye but we both felt as she is still quite young, it would be better to do whatever we could to save it.

We seem to the the family with eye problems this year. My mum was diagnosed with wet macular degeneration in one eye at the beginning of the year, so we are constantly going back and forth to the hospital for her to have scans and injections. I was diagnosed with a chronic detached retina and have been back and forth to the eye unit so many times I think I could find my way there blindfolded now {rofwl}
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Spreckly »

Our eyes are so precious, aren't they. Sorry to read about your Mum, and your own eye problems. I have dry macular in both eyes.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Gwenoakes »

How is Daisy getting on, Mercedes? Good I hope.
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Re: Daisy has been poorly

Post by Mercedes »

Gwenoakes wrote:How is Daisy getting on, Mercedes? Good I hope.


Bit late in replying, sorry about that Gwen, hadn't seen your post. Well it's over a year since she had her surgery and touch wood she seems to be fine thanks. Her graft still looks okay, last time we took her for a check up in April her tear production was normal, we need to take her back soon to get another prescription and a check up. Don't think the PRA is affecting her yet, we keep a close watch on her eyesight at night as that is when it will first be noticeable, but she seems fine )t'
Lyn
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