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Discussion Starter #121
Thanks so much Soleil - I am glad you found out what was causing Charlie's problems - gastric upsets seem to be linked to so many things. It is very certain now that Poppy has liver failure, we are just uncertain as to the cause, but she is responding well to treatment. She is now on the hepatic diet, and is happy and comfortable - so much so that I am allowing myself to hope she will come through this with a good quality of life.

I wish you were close enough for me to pass on the 24 cans of RC gastrointestinal diet now sitting unused and unneeded in the cupboard...!
 

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My vet was kind enough to buy back the unopened cans of special dietary food they had sold me. I hope your vet will also.

Can you explain the hepatic diet?
So glad she is happy and comfortable. Whew!
 

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Discussion Starter #123
I bought the gastro food on the internet - it's not a problem, as I am sure one of the local rescues will be happy to have any I don't need. I haven't quite wrapped my head around the hepatic one - it is recommended by my vet, and as I am not comfortable feeding just chicken and rice long term, and have not been able yet to turn my mind to researching if there are better diets, I have taken it as the easy option for now. It is very high in calories so doesn't overload the stomach, low in fat, and supposedly contains easily processed, low purine proteins plus various useful extras. Poppy is getting a little more protein as all her various tablets come wrapped in chicken breast - the words "Medicine time" now bring all four animals running, and I have to be careful to make sure Poppy gets the loaded bit!
 

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Oh dear...I'm sorry about this news Fjm. Liver disease seems to be fairly common and it can be caused by all kinds of things...even genetic. My Dobe had a lot of tests...biopsies, ultra sounds, blood transfusions, you name it. He had a too small liver for one thing. He had 2 kinds of liver disease; one being copper storage disease where the liver can't get rid of the copper in the diet sufficiently and it builds to toxic levels. The other was regular old active chronic hepatitis. He was sick...like your Poppy. Vomiting, diarrhea after he'd eat. I started feeding chicken and rice at that time before his Dx. Then after consulting a nutritionist, I learned that rice was no good for liver disease. The manganese and magnesium is hard for the liver to metabolize or get rid of. Maybe that was on account of the copper storage problem...I'm not sure. Anyhow, that and his prescriptions helped him a lot for a good year or so. It doesn't cure anything but he felt better....until he got stomach cancer. And yes, the prednisone. Ugh. Good and bad stuff. Then my Lab had liver disease...caused seizures in her. And she went along for a while okay.

So hopefully, Poppy can get situated a little bit and go along on an even keel and it would be wonderful if she can over come this. It is frightening news though and I'm so sorry you're dealing with this. (((hugs)))

And no doubt, the shelter will love having the donation.
 
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I have spoken to the vet. The latest test results are so astronomically off the scale (think 50 - 100 times normal) that he says they indicate very significant liver failure - he thinks much of the improvement over the weekend is down to the steroid she had on Friday. At the moment the results are too high for him to want to risk an anaesthetic, so we are holding on the biopsy. He is prescribing a steroid, and says to continue as we are for now. Appointment made for Wednesday, for more bloods and discussion. We are very far from out of the woods, and the prognosis is, to say the least, very guarded. IF we can find and treat the root cause and IF, despite the extremely high test results, her liver is not so damaged it cannot regenerate she may recover, but they are two very big ifs.

So for now I will take each day as it comes, and make every one as filled with nice, happy, comforting things for her as I can. Please keep us in your thoughts, PF friends.
I’m so sorry, I haven’t gotten an alert until today. Darn technology.
My thoughts and prayers are with you, Poppy and Sophie.
You are dealing with unbearable, but taking it day at a time. Wish I could put my arms around you and lend you my shoulder. Please, keep writing and share your pain. You are not alone.
As for Poppy not knowing, what you do, it’s a blessing in disguise. Whatever can be done to keep her free of pain, keeping her happy with little things, now means a lot.
Try to rest when they are sleeping. You need all your strength.
Big hug
 

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Discussion Starter #126
Thank you Mick. The vet is now hopeful she will recover - not 100%, but enough to maintain the very good quality of life she has at present, but there are no guarantees. For now I am following vet instructions to the letter, and then filling her days with lots of happy moments. She has another appointment in 10 days or so, the results from those tests may show us whether things are getting better or worse.

And thanks for the virtual shoulder to lean on - I have been relying on family and friends and PF very much these last weeks, and the kindness has really helped.
 

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LOL about the Pavlovian response to ‘medicine time.’ I, too, use that word with the same reaction! So glad to hear the hopeful news this morning.
 

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I’m so glad that Poppy is responding well to the new treatment so you both have more time together. Hugs and wet kisses to you and all your pets.
 
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The vet is now hopeful she will recover - not 100%, but enough to maintain the very good quality of life she has at present, but there are no guarantees. For now I am following vet instructions to the letter, and then filling her days with lots of happy moments.
Wow, this is absolutely the best news I have heard from anywhere today! ???:love:
Hoping the vet is wrong and it's even better than expected!
 

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Discussion Starter #130
Today she did two Proper Poos, bounced around playing Hunt the Treat, and has been so bright and happy it is hard to believe there is anything wrong. I am allowing myself to feel a little more confident she may come through this - it is still too soon to know whether her liver will recover, but for the moment she is doing well.
 

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LOL about the Pavlovian response to ‘medicine time.’ I, too, use that word with the same reaction! So glad to hear the hopeful news this morning.
We had a diabetic dog who required insulin twice a day. A call for "needle time" brought all the dogs running for a treat :)
 

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fjm I really don't talk too much about about having chronically ill pets. Between Walter's pancreas issues and megacolon along with Beatrice's chronic kidney and terminal cancer.
Keeping an upbeat demeanor helps them and you, sometimes it's hard to keep yourself in a good place, but I agree it's no time to mourn yet as your furry friend is still very much with you.
Wish you and Poppy well on this difficult journey
 

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Discussion Starter #135
Poppy has been doing well, but today refused her lunch of canned hepatic food. Poppy never refuses food, and at the moment she is on steroids, which make her even hungrier than usual. She did eat some chicken and rice, but it is a worrying sign. I phoned her vet, who said to try to keep her on the hepatic diet, to offer her chicken and rice if she refuses that, and to call in for an anti-nausea medicine if she does not improve in 24 hours. He said we are already throwing everything possible into getting her right, so he doesn't want to make any other changes at the moment...

So keep sending hopeful thoughts, please folks.
 

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Healing thoughts your way. Did the tests ever reveal the cause of her liver disease, or are you still waiting for results? I hope whatever it is can be managed longterm while still allowing her a good quality of life.
 
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