Saturday, December 8, 2012

I'm a Bleeder

Finally the bleeding has become less frequent on my missing claws and raw quicks from SLO . It seems I don't have an infection or other cause of  so much bleeding but am one of those greyhounds that is commonly referred to as a 'Bleeder'. It appears that due to inbreeding around 75% of greyhounds test positive for something called Von Willebrands disorder. This is thought to be Type 1, it says this on wikipedia about it:

Type 1 vWD (60-80% of all vWD cases) is a quantitative defect which is heterozygous for the defective gene. The production of von Willebrand factor vWF is decreased. Decreased levels of vWF are detected at 10-45% of normal, i.e. 10-45 IU.Many patients are asymptomatic or may have mild symptoms and not have clearly impaired clotting which might suggest a bleeding disorder. Oftentimes the discovery of vWD occurs incidentally to other medical procedures requiring a blood work-up. Most cases of Type 1 vWD are never diagnosed due to the asymptomatic or mild presentation of Type I and most people usually end up leading a normal life free of complications with many being unawarethat they have the disorder.Trouble may however arise in some patients in the form of bleeding following surgery (including dental procedures), noticeable easy bruising, or menorrhagia (heavy menstrual periods). There are also a minority of cases of Type 1 which may present with severe hemorrhagic symptoms.

This explains perfectly why us ex racers have such a reputation for bleeding and have problems even with minor scratches. When my claws were taken out, I was bleeding constantly for 12 hours...then intermittently all claws bled for 3 weeks. The vet Linden Basha (he is a lovely man who always gives me biccies) stopped my zinc supplements because that can cause anaemia and poor iron uptake and it didn't go well with the bleeding. Mummy and Daddy were also advised to stop bathing my feet, because that was setting it off, and it has meant my exposed quicks are now much drier and less raw.

I feel a little bit cross that so many ex racers have problems like me, from poor nutrition, stress but more importantly too much interbreeding. They didn't care what my life might be like after racing for one or two years, and it made no difference to them if I bled or got sick as long as they get their money's worth on running dogs into the ground. Yes, given the choice, we love to run and cannot resist chasing things. There is so much joy in running free as fast as the wind but now I cannot run at all. It is a horrible price to pay for a couple of races. And I didn't get any choice.

Anyway my treatment for SLO and managing my condition will be a lifelong thing but it is possible to go into remission with the right nutrients. Many dog owners are advised to take lots of fish oils as Omega 3 essential fatty acids are supposed to support a poor immune system. However, as greyhounds are a little sensitive to diet and can easily get diarrhoea our vet thought that the amount of omega 3 needed would result in taking in too much oil. Oils can be a problem too as they can lead to pancreatitis or gall stones. Also most fish oil  from tuna or salmon has a lot of environmental poisons and heavy metals. So we have been prescribed Viacutin which is all the essential fatty acids taken from plant sources, with a tiny bit of fish oil and highly concentrated. A tiny squirt for each meal is all that is needed. I quite like it and Mummy says that she had been covering my antibiotics with the oil so when mixed with food, I don't spit them out as they taste yummy now.

However, the downside to feeling a little better is that I can't stop trying to climb up the hierarchy again, challenging the pack leaders with little Royal duties they must carry out for me (immediately!) and I have started bullying Dizzy Rascal again. For 3 weeks I have done nothing but lie on the sofa or my bed and couldn't get up as my feet were too sore. Now I have been underneath everyone's feet while they eat breakfast, trying to scrim up the tiny crumbs. I have also been checking on the oven regularly and whining in front of it to try and get those humans to cook faster, and I have been begging at the table. I have also been whining for no particular reason they can see...although I keep trying to tell them that I want my favourite bed, and I want Dizzy to move from whichever bed I choose to lie on. And as I can't go on walks at the moment, but Dizzy can, I have been howling and screaming blue murder everytime that lowly hound gets to go out with MY Daddy on his own while I have to stay home.....oh yes, I am feeling a bit better and everybody better watch out. The Princess Is Back!!!


Errr.....Could somebody please find a way to medicate Lily so that she stops bossing me around? Could I claim its part of her SLO and get Linden our vet to get rid of it immediately?


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