As long as we are talking about dogs…: Update

My mother’s 16 year old dog, Nubi, was diagnosed today with Cushing’s Disease.  He is too old to handle the side effects of treatment, so it comes down to careful monitoring, careful diet, steady calm routine, regular exercise, and a little luck.

Nubi now gets his own calendar, with happy and sad faces for his mood, record of water drinking, bowel movements, difficult breathing episodes, staring into corner episodes, etc. How exciting. I need more wall space for all of the calendars I maintain.

Nubi has many nicknames. His “real” name is Anubi, because his ears make him look like Anubis. His regular names are Nubi, Nuber, Nuberdoober, NuberDog, Dubious Nubious, Sausage Dog, and Hey You.

Update: The little guy isn’t doing very well this morning. I got two breathing episodes calmed down, but the little dude is still moving kind of slow and doing lots of staring into the corner.


25 responses to “As long as we are talking about dogs…: Update

  1. Old dogs are the best dogs. Lots of good wishes for health and happy days to NuberDoober.

  2. Cracklin' Charlie

    He is very cute.
    What does Nubi have for dinner? I have recently started cooking my doggies’ food. I am looking for some recipes.

    • It varies. Rice, pumpkin, applesauce, peas, bananas, oatmeal, eggs, magic yeast, nutritional yeast, milk thistle, chicken, chicken broth, plus some healthy canned and dry dog food that my vet want me to dump in favor of more chicken and rice. He has intermittent colitis, which requires a gentle bland diet.

      • Corn and soy are big culprits of intestinal upset and skin lesions in dogs. There are some better choices than chicken in the commercial dog food. I forget the name, but you can get some high quality food that is venison, buffalo, or salmon. Science diet used to be the standard of quality dog food years ago, but the company has been sold many times. Every time it is sold, they degrade the recipe to improve their profit margin. It isn’t nearly as good as it once was. Our vet has gone the raw food route with her dogs. They are gorgeous golden retrievers that are used for hunting competition. You have to ease them into it, but it is much healthier for them.

        Best wishes for bat dog. He is terminally cute, and I think putting a Barbie on that little stud muffin was just wrong. LOL

        • The chicken is not commercial dog food. It is real chicken. I’ve been adding some commercial dog food to his food to keep from having to make his entire meals from scratch (I’m currently using Evanger’s Senior and Chicken Soup Senior), but the vet doesn’t like the inconsistency in commercial food plus a few of the ingredients, so it’s back to mostly scratch. When his colitis flares up, he’s supposed to have just chicken and white rice for a week, then he can go back to fruit, veg, rice, and protein source, plus his supplements. Our vet office has hired a couple of young vets the last couple of years, and they’ve had some specialized training. The vet who diagnosed Sister Perils FLUTI had worked under a vet whose specialty was FLUTI research. Changing her diet caused a significant improvement in her behavior. So I have a lot of confidence in my vet office and their recommendations. Senior dogs do best on a fairly low protein diet. As my vet said, dogs are not carnivores, they are omnivores. Trying to digest too much protein puts a strain on aging organs.

        • He was so busy playing in the river that day that he didn’t even notice Barbie. I don’t think he had ever been in a river before. He was 11 when Mom adopted him.

    • Nubi had chicken and rice and pumpkin and applesauce this morning. He ate his breakfast okay, even though it looks like swallowing bothers him. I took him for a walk at Sequoia Park (his very favorite place) because I figure if his quality of life is going to decrease he should get to do some of his favorite things.

  3. I am comfort auntie. He is mom’s dog, but he considers mom to be his pet. If he needs real comfort, he comes to me. I am the giver of food and comfort rather than treats and belly tickles.

  4. I recommend that you do some googling about Cushings in canines. This is a good place to start.

    If he has developed an excessive coat, shaving him will do wonders for him.

  5. LakeLucilleLoon

    He’s just so cute! I know that you’ve sought out every treatment available and possibly his advanced age might preclude any of those shots that are available. My Mom lost her pup last year and he had two weekly shots for Cushings for the last three years of his life and he passed at nearly 15. Sometimes it’s okay just to keep them happy and let nature take its course. 16 is a ripe old age for a pup and he obviously is well cared for and happy. Isn’t it funny all the nicknames we have for our dogs and cats? Each one of mine have at least 5 nicknames that we use and they know all of them. Take care and enjoy your time with the Noobs.

    • The weekly shot carries significant risks, especially to really old dogs who are already compromised. The side effects can be very serious. Dogs who get Cushing’s in middle age or their early senior years are better candidates. The vet doesn’t want to risk it with little Nuberskull. I’m sorry for your Mom’s loss. And yes, the names just multiply. Perils Cat has multiple names: Fizzbin (her real name), Fizzie, Busy Fizzie, Fizzerbuns, Fizzbolio, Fizz Fizz. Sister Perils has multiple names: Topaz (her real name) Toe Spaz, The Spaz, You Little Jerk, Naughty Girl, Brat, Fraidy Cat, Spazmo.

  6. Poor little man! I hope he improves by tomorrow.

  7. How’s the little Nubbers doing today?

    • He’s much better today. Last night he even barked. He hadn’t barked in almost 3 days. Today I didn’t have to give him any benadryl. So it looks like the breathing issue is done for the moment (until the next time it happens, but now I know how to deal with it), so I can start dealing with the Cushings.

  8. My 6 yr old poodle nearly died last year from some type of liver disease. I had blood work done and a few other tests but just couldn’t afford all the other tests and work they wanted to do in order to diagnose the cause of his liver failure. I made a decision to not pursue it with the Vet. I went online and researched liver diseases, causes, prognosis and possible diets to help heal him. And I found a wealth of info. “Harry” began to show improvement with my special diet after about 3 to 4 weeks. Today he is happy and healthy once more. His weight dropped to 8 lbs when he was at his worst and he is now back up to 17 lbs. Just thought I’d pass that onto you because there are alternatives when you can’t afford the care – I didn’t want to lose him and it was an awful time for both of us. I cried a few times but never gave up. Dogs are amazing friends, teachers, and therapists. I’m so lucky.

    • I’m glad your Harry made it. Since Nubi is too old to deal with the side effects of the most effective meds, he will be getting alternative treatment through diet and supplements. I’m picking up some colloidal silver today when i go into town.

  9. Here’s another good site. I’m a big believer in the healing power of probiotics.

  10. Our sweet doggie has been on a compounded version of trilostane for about 2 years. She’s doing really well. We get it from diamondback pharmacy, our vet calls it in. Its about $35/month compared to $130 for the brand name.
    She was about 7 when diagnosed so maybe that is why she’s done so well. I didn’t know the staring was a symptom. Poor Nubi.

    • I’m glad your doggie is doing well on meds. And Yes, Nubi is 16, which is why the vet doesn’t want to give him the meds. And I’m glad to have the staring explained, because it puzzled me. He once had a crazy long stare standing over his food bowl and I thought he had a TIA. My dog, who died a few years ago from seizures, had silent seizures several times the year before he died.

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