Button's breathing

pinta

Post   » Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:48 pm


Whoops - misremembered. Princess went on heart meds when she stopped coming into the living room and Cartrophen when she started dragging her back legs (also had troubles jumping into the basket). Vet confirmed arthritis.

She has totally bounced back today. Had to be hunted down for her meds as she was running all over the living room and kitchen. Her sister Snowflake is also on heart meds and now cartrophen. There was a third sister who died of heart failure at the age of 3. That was enough to put us on red alert for the other two. Snowflake is also our tumor pig. She has a massive most likely benign tumour(or she'd be dead by now) in her tummy. Her age is very high risk to operate plus she has a weak heart and tumours are apparently a bitch to remove. So we monitor and feed her extra food (tumour taking up real estate in stomach area). She begs for Critical Care by standing in front of us and blocking our way until she gets a few hits. Ensures we don't move by firmly standing on our feet to hold us down.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Aug 16, 2019 9:24 pm


She is a very persistent, smart pig!

dribble

Post   » Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:42 pm


I’m so heartsick and frustrated by my inability to get the drugs Button needs that I am beside myself. Burgess spent another 20 minutes on the phone telling me why he’s willing to do every other treatment than the one I asked for. I spent the entire phone conversation nearly sobbing. “But why can’t I at least try it?” doesn’t even register. Saying “Look, I’ve been coming to you for 18 years. You know I pay attention to how my pigs react and can tell when anything is wrong!” does nothing to change his mind.

I didn’t sleep last night and I’m really angry and distraught. How can he not let me try an ACE inhibitor you ask? He says if there is no fluid in the lungs there cannot be heart disease. It’s a flat statement that he refuses to budge on. No fluid = no heart problem. I told him there are people with huge herds and decades of experience that absolutely have success with heart meds even when the pigs aren’t lethargic or have fluid in the lungs. His answer, of course, is that it’s not in journals so it doesn’t mean jack. But even if there was fluid he’d fricken say it was pneumonia and still shove antibiotics at me!

He said Button has something In his throat and ACE inhibitors cause higher blood to flow to areas which may cause his larynx to swell and cut off breathing. He told me to double the dose of metacam to try to reduce swelling. He insists that Button has an infection in his throat. I said if it had been there this long it should’ve gotten worse and he said not true, that it might be encapsulated and be just bad enough that he’s able to maintain. I asked why we should try a third antibiotics when SMZ and Baytril didn’t work and he said chloramphenicol treats anaerobic bacteria and the others don’t.

The closest I got to any heart treatment was him saying he would be willing to try injectible lasix if the metacam doesn’t work in a couple of days. Button does not need a diuretic!

I am going to make an appointment with the vet who is an hour and a half away from me. It’s going to means a lot of time off work but I’ve had it with this. It’s literally making me sick to see Button not get the opportunity to try something that might quickly make his life better.

Lisa12

Post   » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:07 pm


Hey,

I would just like to say. I understand you perfectly. I belive dr Burgess is very experienced and very good vet. I said i ve had it with our vets many times, but if this is the best option..i ll stick with it, doesnt matter how hard it is for me and it is. But it gets as far i did search for other vet too..i am gonna first try with them, again..i dont care what they think of me

Dont loose any sleep..cause you Will only be more distraught, more confused etc. Be confident, cause if you are not like i wasnt last time-i need x-ray i didnt get one. I drive for nothing...for just a check-flouroscopy.

When Iam angry i go to forrest and loose it there..it helps. And maybe go directlyat vet. Confident and direct. Like our vet said once, now we re gonna wait. And I was like if it was your pig we would wait, too? Or I said how can I know that you know what you are doing(before diagnosis)? Or I said directly as it gets-i cant loose pig, caus ei cant live without him. And once I even nearly cried there..do you get it, now if you want it like this.
But next time i was very very prepared what i am gonna say. Dont be over intelectual or diplomatic.

I just really understand you and wish your pig really the best..sending positive vibes..i had to respond, cause i know its so awful to be treated like that.:(. I really do.
And next timeyou go to vet..listen on YouTube. Axl Rose speech Oklahoma. ;) Dont letanybody get in your way. Ever. And bring somebody with you,
somebody who really doesnt care and went through a lot in life. I ll bring my brother to ours, cause his not bothered what some vet said at all. Wish you good luck!

pinta

Post   » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:20 pm


So glad you're seeing another vet. I've driven a pig to Squamish and to Abbotsford to see specialists so I know the long distance vet care. Bring a buddy with him and plenty of good eats and he'll want to take more road trips.

If there's fluid in the lungs that means they have untreated heart issues. Fluid is the end stage. Heart meds hold off the fluid in the lungs. Lasix is the last resort. Once you're into administering Lasix you have to compensate for the dehydratiion with fluid subcues.

Encapsulated infection sounds like an abscess. They get bigger until the finally come thru - If you're lucky they come out through the skin rather than under the skin spreading bacteria. It sounds like your vet would rather believe Buttons has a rare disease than a common chronic issue.

I can't guarantee it's heart but I'm pretty sure it's something that should be ruled out before trying all that other stuff.

pinta

Post   » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:27 pm


Just gotta say when dealing with vets if they don't know you really well they will write you off as a crazy person if you make a scene and cry in their office. Best to be armed with facts, reference material and calmness when discussing treatment options. And for the vets who are power trippers, suck up like hell.

dribble

Post   » Sat Aug 17, 2019 9:48 pm


I was using a cell phone sitting on a curb on a busy, noisy street, and he doesn’t listen anyway, so he wouldn’t have heard me cry. I always suck up because I’m an IT person not a talented, experienced, dedicated, incredibly hard working veterinarian. Having said that, throwing antibiotics at anything that’s unclear isn’t always the answer.

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:13 pm


Ok, riddle me this. Why did I increasing metacam make his breathing worse?

While Button was on a lower dose of metacam and the nebulizer treatment his breathing was noisy and awful. When I doubled the dose as prescribed he sounded scary bad. With every breath his nostrils flared wide and he made choking sounds. It was scary.

So today I decided to give him no metacam and he’s currently still breathing harder than a healthy pig but he is virtually silent. I made him move around a couple of times to make sure he wasn’t just super relaxed and still, no nostril flaring and very little noise even when eating.

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sef1268
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:24 pm


Well, that's interesting. Metacam should help with any inflammation, if there were any. I did a Google search just out of curiosity to see if CHF might be worsened by NSAID use, and found this several references similar to this one:
In heart failure, the kidney is exquisitely dependent upon vasodilating prostaglandins to maintain renal perfusion and salt and water balance. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) decrease prostaglandin synthesis and, thus, may precipitate fluid retention in patients with heart failure.
It seems like too much of a coincidence that Metacam use, and especially a higher dose (which was what?), exacerbated his breathing issues.

Did you say that you were going to make an appointment with another vet for a second opinion?

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 18, 2019 9:04 pm


That’s very interesting! Thank you for searching that for me!!

Button weighs 1,300g
The metacam is 1.5mg/ml
He was on 0.20ml per day and it was increased for one day to 0.40ml

Yes, I’m going to make an appt with another vet but all of the exotics vets appear to be booked out for weeks. In Button’s case I’ve been doing “emergency drop-offs” where they squeeze in a pig between appointments. I hate doing it but sometimes they simply can’t wait two weeks to be seen. A new vet won’t let me do that (I’ve tried when this vet was closed and I had a pig in crisis).

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:02 pm


Sef1268 I feel like Button and I owe you so much for finding that information. What the research tells me is that NSAIDs are absolutely contraindicated in people (pigs) with heart failure. My giving him a little meloxicam for two days and Button sounding worse, then doubling the dose and Button sounding like he’s choking and suffocating says exactly one thing to me: Heart issues! I have to go to the vet with other pigs tomorrow morning and guess what data I’m going to bring. Awesome. :)

dribble

Post   » Fri Aug 23, 2019 9:33 pm


Button has been on chloramphenicol, reglan and acidophilus for three days and is sounding significantly better. I’m thinking Dr. Burgess may well have gotten it right. It’s too soon to tell but it is the longest stretch Button has gone without sounding like he’s choking or struggling to breathe. We are supplementing his diet with Critical Care to make sure his weight maintains, but so far no diarrhea. His activity level is really good. Crossing fingers for success we continue the antibiotics.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Aug 23, 2019 10:35 pm


That is very encouraging! These days it seems chloramphenicol is not much prescribed but it certainly has a place!

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sef1268
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Fri Aug 23, 2019 10:44 pm


That is encouraging indeed! Hoping for continued improvement for the little guy.

pinta

Post   » Sat Aug 24, 2019 3:31 am


Good news. Is he still on enalapril?

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 25, 2019 12:07 pm


Yes, a small dose every other day for two weeks.

Button’s issue is really frustrating. After sounding great for several days he now sounds as awful as he used to before I started any of the treatments.

Is it possible he’s got an upper palate problem? It sounds so much (now) like it’s in his head or upper throat. I’ve had a lot of time sitting here handfeeding him, listening and watching him eat. I wondered if it’s possible he has a malformed or hole in the top of his mouth that causes air to flow wrong.

Grasping at straws...

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sef1268
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:16 pm


How does he seem otherwise? Is he active, inquisitive and eating/drinking/pooping normally?

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:36 pm


No, the chlor is messing with him. He will move around but he’s not at all interested in hay. I’m hand feeding and watching his weight.

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sef1268
Supporter in 2019

Post   » Sun Aug 25, 2019 4:43 pm


It's pretty heavy duty. I'd call Burgess again tomorrow and tell him that the symptoms are back, and that the antibiotic is affecting his appetite.

I still think the symptoms sound similar to what we saw with Lewis, who had a narrowed nasal passage.

dribble

Post   » Sun Aug 25, 2019 5:35 pm


I will talk with him Monday about switching to Flagyl. When I asked about it on Friday the person who Relayed his message said we could switch to it as long as it is combined with ... a name I didn’t recognize. Started with an M. He won’t use Flagyl alone.

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