Monday, 31 May 2010

RIP Spek zo Sorosa of Emmaclan

Spek zo Sorosa of Emmaclan was one of the first Slovaks to be imported into the UK in 1997. Spek sadly passed aged 13 in 2009.

"I’M AFRAID I have some rather sad news. Margaret Holmes tells me of the loss of their beloved Spek zo Sorosa of Emmaclan who was among the very first of the three Slovakian R/h Pointers brought to our shores from Slovakia in 1997 by Margaret and Kevin Bingham. Spek was 13 years old and such a wonderful ambassador for the breed and is, indeed, in every pedigree of our stock here in the UK.
Margaret and husband Colin are terribly upset. He was such a big person – his super temperament and personality were the reasons why she fell in love with the breed in the first place. She is pleased that these qualities and his legacy will live on through his progeny. He obviously leaves an enormous and irreplaceable hole in their lives and Spek will go down in the breed’s book of history.
The other stock from Slovakia were Santel and Supa zo Sorosa. Then Amie and Amaretto vom Kapffelsen came from Germany. These five dogs are the very foundation of all the stock in the UK."

RIP Emmaclan Anya at Ansona (Beth)

Emmaclan Anya at Ansona (Beth)
07/03/99 - 01/02/10

Sad to hear that Beth passed over to the bridge after a short illness aged 10. Beth was one of the first generation Slovakian Rough Haired Pointers born in the UK.

Beth's page at Ansona

Tribute written by Julie George-Ainscough from the SRHP breed club

"IT IS WITH sadness that I bring news of the death, following a short illness, of Emmaclan Anya at Ansona (Beth), owned and worked by Tricia Grimes. Beth was one of the first generation born to Margaret Holmes and Kevin Bingham’s imports here in the UK and became a super ambassador of the breed. She was a well respected working dog and indeed a very special dog for Tricia – I feel privileged to have worked alongside her with my Weimaraner.
Fortunately for the rest of us her wonderful qualities have been passed on through her progeny – enforcing the typical characteristics of this breed for our future pleasure.
It is with thanks to a handful of careful breeders who have endeavoured to place puppies into the correct environments which has permitted many of this stock to go on and make breed history, not just in the field of work here in the UK but back throughout Europe – also becoming world show champions."

Friday, 28 May 2010

Grey's initial orthopedic consultation

We spent 6 hours driving yesterday in the May sunshine. Grey was really excited at first as he must have thought we were going for a lovely off lead walk. Poor love. He eventually settled down into staring sadly out the back window with the occasional bark at passing motorbikes.

He was examined and found to have a possible issue with his left shoulder. They think it is slightly dislocating. They also think he is lame on his right leg. He wasn't easy to examine as he's become a skillful wriggler at these havy manipulations that end up provoking something to hurt. Unfortunately, nothing we can do to avoid this as it's only by finding out where and how it hurts that we can find out. So we had a couple of breaks. I calmed him down, did some Ttouch with him and managed to get him to lie on his side with me sitting next to him.

We've been booked in to come back next Weds for him to have extensive xrays and keyhole investigative surgery on his shoulder. He'll stay in overnight and we pick him up the following day.

Grey's Days now on twitter

About time we got with the social newtworking dogs. Grey's Days blog now comes with twitter.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Off to the ortho specialists tomorrow

We've got an appointment tomorrow to see an ortho specialist vet in Hertfordshire tomorrow morning. We were referred by our vet today. Today's consultation revealed that Grey's lympth glands are still up and they agreed his limp is bad. It will take us about 3 hours to get to the vets. He's off the metacam now and has been resting all day. I've not taken him out the front to stretch his legs at all. It's too exciting and he needs the rest. He's slept through.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Back to the vets tomorrow

I'm taking Grey back into the vets tomorrow. he may have to stay in and have xrays again. This is just so shitty and depressing for him. He's generally more insecure now while he's ill. I don't think he's feeling too happy in himself today. He stood and had a howl when some unusual noises came on the radio and growled at a sock on the floor that he'd left there earlier. His limp is worse today and I just hope we can find what is wrong with him.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Slovakian Rough Haired Pointer Breed Club Health Questionaire

The Slovakian Rough Haired Pointer Breed Club have amended their health page on their website. Details of the conditions previously detailed have been removed and replaced with a statement and link to a downloadable rtf document asking for information to be sent to the breed club health rep so the info can be sent to the Kennel Club.

Grey is still limping

Hmm. Not much to report other than Grey is still limping. We were supposed to be working up to offlead exercise, but he's not improving on his leadwalks. So we'll be calling the vets again tomorrow. Poor Grey. So fed up now.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Another young slovak with pain issues

We sadly heard of another young male slovak of 12 months with the same extreme pain symptoms as Grey, Gunner and Indy had. Crying in pain so much that had to be hospitalised. Jed has had extensive tests and the diagnosis is sterile meningitis. We hope that Jed gets better really soon and makes a speedy recovery. Details of his condition were posted on Dogsey Forum.

So why are these young slovaks coming down with such extreme symptoms? We have four reported cases of a pain condition. Two have been found to be discospondilitis (Gunner and Indy), one sterile meningitis (Jed), and Grey is the unknown. There is also a friend who has a 3 year old bitch (Eva) who also had meningitis and had to be isolated for 9 months from the age of 6 months.

Update on Grey: He's on the second day of a 25KG dose of Metacam. He's still limping and had a little yelp when going down some stairs. He's been kept in today and we'll speak to the vets tomorrow. We're just hoping that we can find out what the heck is wrong with him and get him fixed.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Grey is limping again

Bit of a shock really. He had made a good recovery. Was weaned off the Metacam and has been out off lead for the last three days or so. He started limping last night and was much worse today. So we called the vets and have been told to put him back on Metacam for a 25KG dose for two days. I've spoken with Gunner's owner and she said this is how things went for Gunner last year. Although Gunner went months without a diagnosis of an infection and was on painkillers which meant his infection spread further. So we could be dealing with a soft tissue from straining himself after the illness or it could be the return of the infection.

He's ok in himself. Just resting. I was just about to post a video of him helping in the garden as well. Which I will still do, as it made me laugh so much and was lovely to see him after the last month.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Why do dogs mark up?

I've been talking to friends about dogs marking up. So I took a video of Grey marking up when he was first let off lead.

Grey marks up a lot. He's often not challenging anyone or another dog. Unless he's challenging me!

Back in action

Happy, funny running boy Grey after 1 month of house arrest.

I had thought he might be more of a bugger to get back. But actually his month attached has improved things. We're working on more proactive lead training than I did before. His recall is good (not perfect by all means!).

Welcome back hairy boy!

Friday, 7 May 2010

Working on headcollar desensitization

While we're still at home... Yup! Still under house arrest here. Although he seems really well, we're decreasing the Metacam 5kg dose every two days and he's totally off the Tramadol painkiller. So we've been doing a little headcollar desesitization training to try and turn the headcollar a less scary experience for Grey.

Session 1

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Sad news - Gunner has been diagnosed with epilepsy

We're heartbroken for Grey's brother Gunner (Stormdancer Swell) and his owner. The day before Grey went in for his MRI, Gunner had an MRI too. He's been diagnosed with Idiopathic Epilepsy. This is really devastating for his owner. He's started on medication which has side effects. He's very drowsy and has peed in the house at night. But without medication he was having fits every couple of weeks. If left to have repeated fits he could end up with lesions in the brain and eventual damage. The last two were in a single morning, the day after his MRI. The fits last from3-5 minutes. His back legs collapse and he goes down.

Epilepsy could be like a ticking time bomb for the UK slovaks. It can show up from 6 months to 6 years. The other slovak we know that is fitting but who hasn't been tested yet is of the same parentage as Grey and Gunner, but he's 5 years old. The UK slovaks are very closely bred with a small number of studs and breeding bitches, themselves from lines that are very closely bred. I would say the time has come for responsible action to be taken.

I'm trying to find out if there are links with the pain issue and epilepsy or if it is just a separate issue that we may have to face. Ideally I'd like to speak to someone in Slovakia for advice to hear if they have had experience of epilepsy in their lines.

Here is a link to Grey's pedigree. You can see that the dogs Hajasov Dvor appear again and again.

Someone kindly posted some useful links on canine epilepsy. If there is a plus side to this story, we're not looking at thousands of dogs that are potentially affected. We may have a chance for a case study because of the small number of dogs and also of the breeding stock.

Update: Grey still has ongoing pain issues

I've been meaning to post back following Grey's trip to The Animal Health Trust last Weds. I truly hoped that we'd be in a different position by this weekend. Unfortunately, despite getting thoroughly examined at AHT and coming out with clear MRI scan results, he had a further set back this last Friday when he started yelping in pain again when pressure was on his neck. So he was then put on Metacam along with everything else and we have to speak to the vet on Tuesday to see what we do next.

The Animal Health Trust were absolutely fantastic. That place is like the set of ER or Gray's Anatomy for animals! He had a full spinal MRI and spinal tap. They found nothing wrong with him. We may have caught an infection early and are now dealing with the residual pain from inflammation. We heard from someone else who got a slovak pup that was a litter two weeks older than Grey and Gunner. I remember peeking over at them to have a look. The owner said her dog had had a bad spinal infection the same as Gunner and had to have specialist treatment for months. This is the same litter that someone I met who had a pup called Freya who was rehomed at the 2008 slovak fun day. I remember the owner having lots of problems with Freya having the runs too.

More news from the vet on Tuesday. For the moment, we still don't go running. He rests.

Impulse Control Training 2

We ran through another session of the Impulse Control training that we'd started the day before. He was markedly better. I thought he was really good to be able to walk over the food without lunging for it. We've also practiced it outside in the park too.