Scout's story

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smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:43 pm

Our dog Scout turned 12 in May & other than taking meds for his thyroid he has always been in great heath. Scout had his 1st seizure in April & the vet just told us to keep an eye on him. His first seizure occured in April and then he had 2 more about 3 weeks apart. The last one we think was proceeded by another the same day while we were not at home. Our vet said we should start him on meds & potassium bromide was selected because Scout already had elevated liver values. We opted to do the load over 5 days rather than all in 1 day. On Day 4, he couldn't get up on his own & we thought maybe he had overdosed. We took him to the vet & they checked his Kbr level. While we waited for the results, they had us switch him to his maintenance dose of 750 mg once day. It's been a little over 3 weeks since he's been on the meds & he is still suffering the side effects. The worse are that he generally needs help getting up, help staying up while he peeps & poops, trouble walking and sleeping all the time. We had hoped these side effects would have started to improve by now, but there's been no change. Yesterday, we asked the vet if we could lower the dose and he said his previous bloodwork was at 1.0 and he couldn't' go below that level and still be in the therapeutic range. He did take more blood last night to see if it was still 1.0. Not sure what we should do at this point. We are opened to any & all suggestions at this point. We just want our old Scout back!

Chris Douglas
Posts: 254
Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:50 pm

Re: Scout's story

Post by Chris Douglas » Wed Sep 04, 2013 11:48 pm

hi smittysgirl,

just wanted to welcome you and scout and say sorry you had to join ... I'm sure there will be all kinds of helpful advice from other members as this is a great place full of wonderful people and tons of info. ... sorry I don't have any experience with this particular med. but am wishing your and scout the very best ...

many blessings to you and yours,
Chris and Molly
Chris & Molly
Brittany 27 lbs female DOB Mar.2008,
Pb 32.4 mg(1/2 grain) BID
regular Keppra 2/250mg BID
Valium tab's 5 mg orally/rectally as needed
Melatonin 5mg SID


1st seizure 8/20/12
last seizure 12/14/13

Rainbow Bridge 12/28/13

smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:18 pm

Thank you for the welcome & kind words:)

I had been desperate trying to find information when I came across this discussion board. It's heart breaking reading some of the posts. I feel fortunate that Scout is doing as well as he is at this point. I just want to explore all options & make the best decisions regarding his care. I don't want to take him off the kBr & risk his seizures becoming more frequent or severe, but I hate these side effects. It's been 3 weeks now & I worry that his muscles will start to atrophy with so little activity.

I was hoping someone with experience with an older dog and / or the use of kBr standalone might have some insight.

Cecilia & Scout

Gentle Jacob's mom
Posts: 925
Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:52 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by Gentle Jacob's mom » Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:32 pm

Hi Cecilia,
When Jake needed to be put on a second drug it was decided that Kbr wasn't a good drug for Jake. He'd already shown some signs of sensitivity to things so we put him on Keppra. Keppra can be a little tricky in that some experience what is called a "honeymoon period" where it will work really well for awhile, and then suddenly it doesn't, so there has to be an increase in mgs. We went through that with Jake a few years ago. He's still on it, and doing well. I know a few people locally that had the same issues with their dogs as Scout is having on Kbr and one lowered the Kbr and added Keppra and the other switched completely to Keppra. Both dogs are doing very well. Some dogs just can't handle Kbr. I really empathize with what you're gong through. Jake was overmedicated back in June. It was horrible. I hope you find the right dosing very soon.

Take Care,
Lynne

smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Thu Sep 05, 2013 7:57 pm

Thanks for the info, Lynne.

I plan to talk to the vet tomorrow to see if the results of Scout's bloodwork have come back. If his kBr level is still at 1.0 so that the kBr dose can't be reduced, I will discuss taking him off the kBr & replacing it with the Keppra. Scout was having a rough time tonight, tripping & falling. I feel really bad seeing him go through all of this; the seizures every 3 weeks seem like they would be easier for him to handle right now.

Cecilia & Scout

smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Mon Sep 09, 2013 6:23 am

Just wanted to provide an update on Scout ...
After consulting with our vet, we decided to stop the kBr because of the side effects. The vet said it was okay to stop cold turkey, so we did not give Scout any meds on Friday. I don't know why, but his energy level seemed to pick up immediately as well as his ability to get up our 2 porch steps & not to fall peeing & pooping.
On Saturday, the vet called with Scout's latest blood serum level, 1.8. So, it had increased from 1.0 to 1.8 after being on a maintenance dose of 750mg for 3 weeks. Based on the lab results, the vet suggested that we try reducing the dose to 250mg for a week and then raise it up to 500mg and see the impact on his side effects & seizures.
So, we gave him the 250mg dose Saturday & Sunday. He seemed to be getting around a lot better but wanting to go out a lot more & restless. Unfortunately, last night he had a seizure around 10:30 and then another milder one around 3 this morning. It had been 5 weeks & 5 days since his last seizure. Fortunately, he has recovered quickly from these last 2. We're not sure what to do at this point with his meds. I have a call into the vet to see if we should increase the dose to 500mg or back to 750mg until we can get him on an alternative such as Keppra.
My sister, a nurse, thinks we should consider putting him down, but my husband & I are unwilling to give up on finding a way to keep Scout seizure free without losing his quality of life. We don't even know why he's having them.
Any suggestions, advice or thoughts based on your experiences would be greatly appreciated.

Scout's mom, Cecilia.

Gentle Jacob's mom
Posts: 925
Joined: Thu Mar 04, 2010 10:52 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by Gentle Jacob's mom » Mon Sep 09, 2013 7:28 am

Hi Cecilia,
I'm sorry to hear that Scout had seizures over the weekend. Unfortunately the first months of figuring out dosing can be very hard. A lot of epi dog owners have said that the side effects from Kbr are bad, and it can take a couple of months, but once the right dose is found some have success with keeping seizures under control. Meaning no more than one a month. Has your vet suggested using rectal valium after a seizure to keep a second from happening? Jake is on Pb and Keppra. When he has a seizure we give him 60 mgs of rectal valium right away, and then when he can handle it, we give him and extra 64.8 of Pb and Clorazepate. He was prone to clusters a couple of years ago and it took a little while to figure it all out but that seems to work for him for now. The hardest part of this besides watching our beautiful dogs go through this, is finding the right dosing and combinations because every dog is different and what works for one dog may not work at all for another. I know this is so frustrating, but I wouldn't give up either. Work as closely as you can with your vet, and ask as many questions as you need to. That's why they get paid the big bucks. (A former vet actually told me that.)

Keep us posted.
Lynne

smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:21 am

Thank you Lynne for your support & suggestions.

I talked to our vet a little bit ago & we are going to raise his kBr up to 500mg and see how he does with that dose. If he has another seizure or the side effects are still too much, the vet is going to start him on Keppra too.
The vet said we would need to see a neurologist to find out what's causing the seizures.
I will definitely follow up with the vet about getting the valium shot to have on hand. This is the first time he had another seizure so quickly & I'm sitting here worrying he's going to have another one now.

Ugh!

smittysgirl
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:40 am

Re: Scout's story

Post by smittysgirl » Sun Sep 29, 2013 9:57 pm

All,

Our beloved Scout passed away early Saturday morning. He had been doing well on the reduced dosage of PBr, except for one seizure a week ago Saturday, which he recovered from quickly. This Friday, he was fine in the early morning but vomited up bile late morning & then again late in the afternoon. He was also hanging his head and very lethargic. At first we weren't sure if he had suffered another seizure but his symptoms were different. Later in the evening after no improvement we called our vet and made an appointment for 1st thing on Saturday. When I went to bed at 1 he was sleeping on the floor in the family room; when my husband awoke at 5;30, he was dead. The vet said that whatever was causing the seizures may have been what killed

We were blessed to have Scout 12 wonderful years & memories to last a lifetime.

R.I.P Scout.

P.S. We have quite a bit of pBr left. Is there anywhere or anyone we could donate it to?

Chris Douglas
Posts: 254
Joined: Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:50 pm

Re: Scout's story

Post by Chris Douglas » Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:33 pm

aaaww smittysgirl ... I can't tell you how sorry I am to hear about scout ... my heart goes out to you and yours ... hugggzzzz .. ♥♥♥♥

Chris and Molly
Chris & Molly
Brittany 27 lbs female DOB Mar.2008,
Pb 32.4 mg(1/2 grain) BID
regular Keppra 2/250mg BID
Valium tab's 5 mg orally/rectally as needed
Melatonin 5mg SID


1st seizure 8/20/12
last seizure 12/14/13

Rainbow Bridge 12/28/13

Kipsmom
Posts: 61
Joined: Tue Mar 26, 2013 8:59 pm

Re: Scout's story

Post by Kipsmom » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:32 pm

Oh, I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Having just lost my little buddy a few weeks ago, I know how devastating it is...I think I cried every day for the first three weeks. It really helped to look back at pictures and videos from when times were better. I've had dogs before, but the loss seemed more difficult this time, probably because of this illness, and all the time and energy we put into trying to make our epi-dogs' lives better. My thoughts are with you.

I took all of his meds and gave them to the vet. They told me they could use them for people who couldn't afford the meds for their dogs. Maybe you can do the same.

Hang in there, and remember the good times. Our dogs are such a part of the family, aren't they? Lots of hugs to you!!
Ellen and Kip
Corgi/Lab/Shepherd mix - 50 lb
750 mg KBr QD
200 mg Zonisamide BID
1250 mg Levetiracetam (Keppra) TID
1st seizure 11/15/2012
In doggie heaven 8/20/13 :-(

cesullivan
Posts: 140
Joined: Tue Nov 15, 2011 1:32 pm

Re: Scout's story

Post by cesullivan » Fri Oct 04, 2013 1:28 pm

Sorry for you loss :(
Cali 4YO female Lab/Chow mix
Cluster Grand Mals
Last Seizure: June 10, 13
Pheno 64MG 2x/day
Kbrovet 1,650MG 1x/day

Foster Dog Jim 3ishYO Lab
Pheno 140MG 2x/day
KBrovet 1,000MG 2x/day
Keppra XR 500MG 2x/day
Zonisamide 200MG 2x/day

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