Are you happy?
Because my little buddy is okay…
Last weekend, he had immediate onset of symptoms that imitated a stroke.
(sorry for bad quality picture – it was enlarged from a cell phone pic)
His head was tilting to the far right – even more than the usual “beagle tilt” and he could not, would not raise it. The picture above shows him after the tilt has improved slightly.
He also could not walk without falling over or dramatically veering off to his right side. He would either fall over on to his side or run into walls.
Fortunately, he did not appear to be in any pain.
He took his trip to the vet like a man. Sort of. He doesn’t like needles and wanted me to make them stop…
And then tried giving me the stink eye…
After blood tests came back negative for tumors and/or cancer, it was confirmed that he suffers from vestibular disease. While nobody wants their dog to suffer from anything, this was the best scenario.
Vestibular disease is the result of nerves connecting the inner ear to the brain becoming irritated but idiopathic in the sense that it is not known what causes this to happen.
The good news is that it is not fatal and can be treated with a lot of TLC. The bad news is that it will most likely happen again and symptoms can increase in severity where he could require emergency sedation to comfort him.
Right now, he just gets to lay around and do whatever he wants – just like an ordinary day in the life of Scout!
If any of you have suffered from vertigo or intense motion sickness, that is what dogs go through with this disorder. Episodes last up to two weeks with gradual improvement over that span.
In addition to the head tilt and instability, other symptoms include:
- fast circling in one direction or uncontrolled barrel rolling on the floor
- lack of appetite
- the eyes jerk back and forth or in a circular direction
He has not shown any of the other symptoms yet. With regard to loss of appetite…
uh, he is a beagle. I don’t think anything could affect his appetite! He eats in his sleep!
I thought I’d share in case you experience something like this with your dog. Call the vet, but don’t panic.
In celebration of the good news in our household, I want to share a video by Pharrell. Yes, it is his Happy – but he has made another version just for dogs!
So enjoy and have a super weekend!