Tuesday, October 4, 2016
Can we just rewind to last week?
The Momster gets the floor today. Sigh, my worst fear after leaving the dogs for three days happened. I was overjoyed when I picked Ciara and Lightning up yesterday afternoon. Ciara had a seizure-free stay (despite one small petit mal seizure in the car on the way to the boarding facility). I got glowing reports from the entire staff, from kennel workers, receptionists, groomer, and even two of the vets from the practice that we don't even use. (My own vet practice no longer offers boarding. ) The receptionists told me that the dogs had staff visiting with them almost all day long - amazing comments about how sweet and loving and gentle Ciara was and how devoted to her Lightning was. Wherever she went, they said Lightning was right there with her. I brought home two beautifully groomed and happy pups.
As this photo hints, the elation did not last through the night. The early evening hours went just fine. But within just a few minutes of my husband coming up to bed around 10:30, she had the first of four seizures in under an hour. The last two were only 10 minutes apart. She has never had any of her clusters come so close together. They are usually separated by 3 - 6 hours. So I knew this was not good. I called Blue Pearl ER services, which is also where her neurologist is located. They recommended I bring her in to have her vitals checked since the body temp can rise quite high and quite quickly when the seizures are too close together.
The veterinarian on night duty recommended leaving her for the night so they could monitor her. Her vitals were good but just as a precaution they wanted to put in a catheter line so they could administer emergency drugs if they needed to. I had given her some valium after her second seizure her, and it must have kicked in a bit as she made it to 4:00 a.m. before she had two more seizures. So then she got an IV injection of Keppra and Valium. I talked to night vet at 6:00 a.m. and Ciara was doing better. Dr. C., her neurologist called after he got in and checked her. The crisis had passed and we have another new treatment plan.
Ciara is home. She isstill pretty groggy from all the seizures and meds, but has perked up quite a bit since around noon. We are going to keep her on the zonisamide as her regular anti-seizure med and give her mega doses of Keppra only after she has a seizure and then every 8 hours until she is seizure-free for a 24 hour period. This may allow the Keppra to hit her seizures hard and still not become ineffective as they have in the past when she was taking them daily. Once again, this is another temporary fix as we no longer have any solid effective measures to try.
Poor Lightning was very upset all night when I took her to the ER and when I came home without her. He cried most of the night. To say the least, we are all exhausted today. He is so good to Ciara. He hasn't left her side all morning since she came home.
As you can imagine, I am beating myself up here for leaving her this weekend. Rationally I know that is not reasonable. But I know the boarding was 100% the cause of the outbreak. My son, daughter-in-law, and their only child visit us a couple of times a year, but we miss out on a lot of our grandson's life. He was playing in a basketball tournament this weekend, and we decided to go and watch him play and have some time with my son and family. The games went very well until the last quarter of the third game when our grandson collided with another player and broke a bone in his hand. Coach kept saying it was just a dislocated finger, but x-rays revealed the hand is broken and may require surgery. So overall not the best of weekends.
We don't leave the dogs very often, but I am always afraid for Ciara. It is a terrible feeling to be caught in this situation. How I wish I could banish these seizures forever.
Here's hoping the new plan lasts longer than the last one which collapsed after three weeks. I have no travel plans for now:(