Meet Dexter! I am pleased to share with you my wonderful, best friend Dexter! Dexter came into my life in the winter of 2009 from a wonderful breeder who is devoted to the well-being & health of her Cavaliers.
Ever since Dexter has been a part of my life, he has been a part of others as well. Everywhere we go, we meet people & he puts a smile on their face.
In October of 2010 we became a registered Delta Society Pet Partner Therapy Team! We visit a variety of places including nursing homes, schools & special needs classes at our local elementary school.
On August 2012 we renewed our therapy dog team registration through Therapy Dogs Incorporated! We will continue to offer our good will around the area to those in need of a smile.
Unfortunately on September 13, 2012 Dexter was diagnosed with Syringomyelia.
Syringomyelia is a neurological disease that progresses & varies in severity. There is no cure, only various treatments to aid in comfort & less episodes. Symptoms vary from head scratching, face rubbing, general pain, weakness in limbs, lip licking, seeking cool places, excessive body rubbing on floor or furniture, nerve damage, stiffness in the back and/or limbs & their body forming into a C shape.
Here is the video that lead us to our neurological appointment at Ohio State University. Dexter had 3 MRIs & spinal tap & blood work to confirm their suspicions.
Above is the video from August 25, 2012. I read to try to roll him over on his back & also to put ice on his back. I tried both.
Treatment options include trying to manage with drug therapies. This is what we are currently trying. At this posting (9/19/2012) he seems to be doing quite well on his drug therapy. We hope this improvement will continue.
Our other treatment option is surgery. Surgery would be opening the foramen magnum by removing a portion of the occipital bone and typically the first vertebrae. This would allow the cerebrospinal fluid to flow normally to reduce pain.
There is no cure for this disease, and it will progress.
As you can imagine this has been a difficult time in our lives. Dexter is my "heart dog" as us dog lovers say. Meaning, the dog we love the most! Yes, Dexter, I love you best of all!
Thank You: The costof his diagnosis was in the $3000 range & Dexter's friends & followers came to our rescue with donations & well wishes. I will always be truly grateful for generosity. I would not have been able to act as quickly with his diagnosis & treatment plan if it wasn't for your help.
The Future: Once Dexter has been on his treatment with success for a month, we will look at continuing our therapy dog services to our community. This disease can lead to sensitivity & pain when touched, so we will have to ensure Dexter continues to be pain free when touched. Dexter & I will also participate in any research on the disease that we can, including The Syringomyelia Cavalier Collection Scheme-donating Dexter's tissue when he goes to the rainbow bridge.