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Freddies story (Auto Immune Polyarthritis)

Started by freddyteddy, October 22, 2014, 10:01:00 PM

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Freddie is a bearded collie who was always fit and healthy and never at the vets. Last year he suddenly went very lethargic, didn't want to stand and could hardly walk. I took him to the vets and because his prostate was enlarged they initially thought it was a water infection. He had antibiotics and and a pain killer and within a couple of hours he was back to his normal self. We went on holiday a couple of days late and he seemed to get the same symptoms so we took him to the vet on holiday.They said basically the same thing...the thought it was to do with his waterworks and gave more antibiotics . Anyway he was up and down like this for another week and then he suddenly became really lethargic just laying on the floor with an awful look about him. He had gone downhill over a few hours.
I took him back to the vets and they admitted him straight away into intensive care and the specialist vets(luckily our vets is a large referral vets). They told me they couldn't promise me anything .They tested for Lymes disease(Because I knew he had a bad tick bite  a few weeks earlier) and his his white cell count was astronomically high and he also had a high calcium count . He was very ill and they starting testing for leukemia and cancer because it was pointing that way.
Anyway the tests came back and the vet rang and told me he had auto immune polyarthritis which was confirmed by joint taps . Freddie was put in intensive care as he was so ill where he stayed for the next week or so. I never thought he would come home again
He came home after a week and he was very week. We fed him lots of chicken and salmon because he had lost about 5 kilos in weight . He was on immune suppressants and predisone (And gastro protectants). Once he was stronger we started taking him  little regular walks which he enjoyed.
He was always hungry so we watched what we fed him and put him on senior dog food for less active dogs. His coat went a bit thin in parts but wasn't as bad as we thought it would go.
He continued to improve and get better and didn't seem to have any bad effects with the steroids. He only ever urinated in the house once whilst on the steroids which was brilliant. He did however put quite a bit of weight on .
The steroids dose was decreased gradually over time and he was taken off them completely in May and so far so good. He had a blood test this week as our vet is very interested in the illness he had and we have been told it is fine
I know that they can relapse and we have been lucky. I would say that Freddie is pretty much as fit and healthy as he was before he took ill ...he is just very slightly slower and I have to remember that he is a year older now and 8 he would be anyway . He is also still a bit overweight
I wanted to tell his story so you know that there is sometimes light at the end of the tunnel and they can get better


Hi and thank you for writing Freddie's story.  It is very useful to other people who may find themselves in a similar position.

I'm so pleased Freddie is doing so well.  Thank goodness you had a good vet.



Hi- can you let me know how long Freddie was on steroids for?

Lovely to hear he is doing well. X


 I have come back to look at this site as there seems to be quite a few dogs with autoimmune diseases at the minute who owners are looking for help .... Just to answer the question posted above as I have only just seen it and it might help others ..... Freddie started on the steroids in the September and the reduction in steroids was followed slowly as shown on this site. He took his last tablet the following May and never needed to take any more for the IMPA. He pretty much was as he was before the steroids  and the IMPA


That is brilliant news.   Thank you for the update on Freddie and for posting such encouraging news.  It certainly helps others in a similar situation.