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Newf Friends Newfoundland Dog Rescue is a volunteer run, foster home based rescue group for Newfoundland Dogs in need in Ontario, Canada.
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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Ella, week 2

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Ella had her first follow-up vet visit on Saturday, Oct 3.

Good news is she has more than doubled in size. She's 7.6 lbs now, and her body condition is much improved. The vet was very impressed with how active, bright and playful she is. Her heart rate is improved, no longer racing. She's just "better" overall.

Her stump is much less infected and is healing well -- the vet was pleased with how much better it is, she was not expecting that much improvement. The swelling really has gone down tremendously, and the sore on the end has reduced in size greatly, with healthy tissue closing up over it.

We talked about the possibility of a prosthetic limb and have ruled it out due to the condition of the stump. It just won't work since there are no bones there that are salvageable to attach it to. Ella's best bet is amputation at the shoulder. Now that the swelling has reduced she was able to assess the deformity of the bones better and believes the amputation will be a simple one, without having to take any of the shoulder bone out -- this is good news.

Now the bad news. Her UTI has improved, but is not gone. Red and white cells are better than the last sample, however she now has loads of struvite crystals, due to battling infections for weeks. This puts her at a very high risk of bladder stones. Since e-coli is the suspected culprit the vet is concerned that it may be resistant to the antibiotics -- Ella is so small the vet does not want to use a catheter to get a sample so this has not been confirmed, but e-coli is 95% likely given her history at the BYB and how filthy she was when we rescued her. The big problem with a resistant strain of e-coli is that the other antibiotics that are appropriate for this infection are not safe to administer to a young, growing puppy like Ella -- apparently they damage cartilage. So we are in a bit of a pickle. We are trying another course of the Clavamox, increased dose again due to her growth, and will see if things improve.

She is still too sick to be vaccinated so that is on hold for a while. We didn't do more blood-work, since it's almost guaranteed her protein levels are still off due to the infection. We will do blood-work once her UTI is clear, then if all is well, we will go ahead with amputation. The vet hopes to be able to proceed with surgery within a month -- just have to get her healthy and strong before then.