Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Lyme Disease Update

I was thinking of titling this post "Lyme disease update and we fired our vet" but I decided they needed to be two different posts because i have a LOT to say about our breakup with our old vet.  Expect that post soon.

For now I will update you on the lyme disease.  You may wonder why it has taken this long for an update, but really we had no idea what was going on for a while.  Bottom line- Copley is on the mend.  He had Lyme and possibly an unknown co-infection with some other sort of tick borne disease.  Co infections are common with TBDs and since we didn't know what to test for in the beginning we may never know exactly what Copley was/is dealing with. 

As you may have read in my last Lyme post we ran a test that came back with a mild (or perhaps moderate) positive for Lyme antibodies.  Depending on what vet you talk to this positive was either low or moderate and either was caused by or could not possibly have been caused by the lyme vaccine.  As you can see confusion about TBDs seems to run rampant through the veterinary community and that may be particularly true when you live in a place without ticks.  We ran a second test that came back also low and/or inconclusive.  We also ran a CBC that clearly showed Copley was fighting some sort of chronic or low level infection.  With this information, or at least some of it, we decided to treat with antibiotics.  At this point I must say our vet was not entirely convinced Copley had a tick borne disease (oh how I will elaborate on that in the vet post), but I managed to convince them to give me the antibiotics.  The antibiotics really gave me a bit of hope for our sad little guy.  For the first two weeks he really improved a lot.  It was like there was a new Copley in there!  After a while the antibiotics started to get him down (as a high does for 28 days would) and he seemed worn out.  Between the doxycycline working, his migrating joint pain, the Lyme titer and his bloodwork showing the immune response to a infection we are now moving forward with an official diagnosis from the new vet of Lyme.  I am happy to say that now a month or so past them we seem to have a happy dog on our hands!

Now the question is where do we go from here?  Well for starters I am enjoying the happy new Copley we have going on.  Don't get me wrong- he is still possibly the most lazy dog on the face of the earth, but when he wants to he is a lot happier to be up and playing.  If it wasn't summer I am sure he would enjoy getting out and hiking again too!  The second thing we are doing is getting him on the mend with a holistic vet.  The vet we chose is open to using all methods to best treat a dog so from now forward we will be using the best both western medicine and herbal/holistic medicine has to offer.  He is on a variety of supplements and herbal supports to help his immune system mend from the assault that was this tick borne disease.  In October he will have another full round of blood tests so we can see where he is at.  Hopefully his titer for the Lyme will have decreased and his blood-work will be a little more normal.  If he starts looking worse again we will test sooner but hopefully everything is on the mend here.

The mystery of where he got the Lyme is still unsolved- but for now we will just be happy we figured out what he had!


  1. Poor baby! I'm glad he's getting better
    Nola's Mom

  2. I've given you an award! http://dachshundnola.blogspot.com/2012/06/fires-awards-and-chicken-names.html