This amazing little newsletter has been my constant companion for years and I highly recommend a $39.00 annual subscription. I have shared articles about health conditions, training problems, food and toy recommendations with many of my friends and family. And one time I shared it with a neurological vet when my beloved Sierra had an episode of Idiopathic or Old Dog Vestibular Disease. Sierra was about 12 years old at the time of this incident.
Here’s what happened: I arrived home from a trip at 1am and Sierra ran excitedly towards me and then collapsed into a wall. I took her outside and she couldn’t stand upright to pee – she kept falling over. I panicked and took her to an emergency vet around 2am, with nothing to show for it when we got home. They thought she might have had a stroke – which was what I thought as well. Something was niggling around in my brain though but I couldn’t quite figure out what it was. She was slightly better on Sunday, but she kept walking into the wall (she was leaning to the left) and she held her head at a tilt too. Suddenly it hit me……one of the other therapy dogs at PCH, Hobbs, had been out for a few weeks because of a medical condition with symptoms similar to the ones I was witnessing with Sierra. I recalled there was an article on Idiopathic or Old Dog Vestibular Disease in the Whole Dog Journal, so I pulled out my big white notebook where I keep most of my back copies and sure enough -there it is! I am reading through it and it described the exact symptoms Sierra was experiencing and also how it generally resolved. I was so relieved it appeared, on the surface, this was likely Sierra’s problem. Nevertheless, I took her to the Neurological Vet on Monday and he spent quite a bit of time with her. All of her symptoms were almost completely gone by then, with only a slight tilt to her head. And as the article predicted, the vet assured me Sierra would be back to normal within a week. Interestingly, he wanted to know how I was so sure it was Idiopathic or Old Dog Vestibular Disease and also how I aware of the disease. I told him about the Whole Dog Journal article, which I conveniently brought with me and he asked for a copy.
Thankfully, Sierra completely recovered and was back to her old self within a few more days.