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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Update on my Girl, Justice Marie the Rottweiler

Several of you have asked me recently how Justice Marie, my 8+ year old Rottweiler is doing.  Back in late spring-early summer, she developed a neck issue that caused her to yelp when she would get up from a laying-on-her-side position.  I took her to our regular vet who said it could be a slipped disc, a ruptured disc, require surgery, etc. and she wanted to put Justice under anesthesia to take x-rays.  She quoted me a minimum of $250.00 and as we all know, the x-rays would not have had any benefit for Justice at all - it would have been solely for the vet's information.   I wasn't against taking x-rays, but I was against putting her under to do it so we tried a couple of weeks of Prevacox to treat the pain in hopes the condition would get better on its own.  It did, but then she developed a hitch or a gimp (not really a full blown limp) on her front left leg.  A couple of different people told me that the leg issue could be related to the neck issue.

After much thinking, pondering, internet surfing, etc. it occurred to me that perhaps she would benefit from a Chiropractor.  My regular vet was no help in that regard and certainly did not encourage me to try that which left me a little dazed.  So I set out to find one on my own.  In the Kansas City, MO area, I found two - one was a people chiropractor that had additional training for animals and the other one was a veterinarian that had additional training for the treatment of animals - in my case dogs.  After having a lengthy conversation with her on the telephone (when was the last time a vet had a lengthy conversation with you on the telephone BEFORE you had become a patient?) I took Justice to her for evaluation and treatment.  I figured I had $250.00 to spend on treatments which would most likely benefit Justice and she only charges $37.00 for each adjustment.

This picture was taken during a four-day trip that we took the first of August to the Lake of the Ozarks area in Missouri.  The dogs had great fun swimming in the Osage River.  Justice is not fond of the water but the other two had great fun in it.  What Justice does like, though, is biscuits and Joe was able to coax her out into pretty deep water using the food.  More than a few times, her rear-end floated upward and she was swimming without even knowing it.  The important thing was that she didn't panic and seemed to enjoy being out in the water with us.  I didn't take any pictures of that because I didn't want to get my iPhone that close to the water - I fell on my keester into the water more than once that trip.

Well, improvement didn't come overnight, but it did come.  I started out by taking Justice in once a week for about a month, then we dropped back to every two weeks.  It has now been a month since her last adjustment and she is moving just fine with no apparent pain of any kind.  But, I am taking her in for another one later this week.  I think it is important to keep having her adjusted on a regular basis.  I see no reason for her to start showing symptoms if I can avoid them in the first place.  Besides, it is time to do blood work to monitor her high cholesterol and her thyroid levels.

Now, I want you all to know about this vet.  Her name is Billie Deam, DVM, she is located in north Kansas City and her phone number is 816-746-1333.  She is now my "regular vet".  The first day that Dr. Deam examined Justice, Justice weighed 99 pounds - way too much even for a Rottweiler.  The weight was hard on her joints which was making any leg or neck issue she had worse, and we were in a non-ending cycle.  Believe me folks when I say that I don't feed Justice all that much.  During Dr. Deam's care of Justice, she has determined that Justice is hypo-thyroid and we have started her on thyroid medicine.  She has lost nine pounds in the last two months without passing on one little dog biscuit.  My other vet had the information in Justice's file that she should have (in my opinion) made the diagnosis - but all she ever did was hound me about her weight.

Also, during Dr. Deam's care of Justice she asked me about Adequan.  I had never heard of it.  Apparently, it is a glucosamine-type of drug (Justice has been on daily glucosamine/chondroitin/MSM since the day I got her) that was developed for horses to protect their joints.  It was so effective that it is now formulated for dogs.  It is given as an injection and Dr. Deam gave her the first one about eight weeks ago at a cost of $78.00 (which I felt was worth it if it would help protect Justice's joints).  I buy the Adequan online from, Dr. Deam provides a prescription and they are at a cost of $20.00 per injection.  I also took my bed apart and am now sleeping on the mattress on the floor so that Justice doesn't have to jump down so far to get out of bed.  I guess I would sleep in the dirt with her if she would benefit from it.

Dr. Deam has been an angel to us.  Her prices are so reasonable, her assistance is above and beyond, and she has actually done Justice some good.  She is open to alternative treatments, takes a common sense approach to treating an animal and I think she was heaven sent.

And, this is Justice last night after our walk while they were watching me fix their dinner.  The second picture is all three of them.  Aren't they gorgeous?  I can tell you one thing - the three of them account for a lot of dog! 

That's Justice Marie in front, Sophia Suzanne next and Jebadiah Boone in the back.  This is how they line up almost every night while I fix their supper after they've had their long walks. I took all of these pictures with my fairly new iPhone.  Just today figured out how to get them off my phone into my computer.

For those of you who were wondering, you now know that all three are doing very well, Justice especially so given her joint and neck issues.


A Half-Baked Notion said...

Thank goodness for folks like Dr. Deam! What a breath of fresh air to receive that level of care and professionalism... and what a weight off your mind to know that all your efforts to help Justice have finally borne fruit!

Yes, it is unfortunate that the easiest route is not always the best. Not every "expert" we encounter is worthy of that title. But the biggest lesson for me is that you did not blindly accept a "routine treatment". You searched for what you rightly felt was out there: someone who would see your pet as the important friend she is, and absolutely entitled to the best care. Good for you, Jean, for following your heart!

The Crazier Sister said...

We have a vet like your new dr. I don't WHAT we'll do when he retires (which we've told him isn't allowed!) It's amazing how these "fur children" become so intwined in our lives. I'm glad you found such an excellent doc and I'm glad Justice is so much better!

Marti C. said...

So glad for both of you that she is feeling better! What a blessing your new vet is! Too bad not all of them care like that!

Julie said...

I'm just thrilled that JM is doing better!

Katherine at Terra Beadworks said...

I am so happy you found a vet who cares and doesn't charge a fortune. I would love to have another Rottweiler. My guy was a sweetheart and I miss him every day. I love how you put your mattress on the floor....what we would not do for our beloved pets!

betty said...

A lot of chiropractors are now into animal care as well. I also read a blog about a limping horse and the owner took her to a chiropractor. After several sessions, around a couple of weeks, her horse was cured and she can now ride on it anytime.

Anonymous said...

I am so happy for Justice Marie, and truly, I thought all three looked wonderful when I recently saw them. Our pets are precious, there's no doubt about it, and I know you would crawl if you had to to the ends of the earth for yours. Great work on researching to find the best care.

Natalie -- NKP Designs said...

I love how they line up to eat. So glad Justice Marie is doing so well. You found a good vet AND a chiropractor too? That's rare! Congrats!

potterygirl1 said...

So glad she is doing well and what a sweet pic of all 3 sweeties♥

PipnMolly said...

Your dogs are very fortunate to have you as their best friend and health advocate. Not so many would 'sleep in the dirt' if they had to or go the extra mile in searching for the correct diagnosis against their usual vet. Kudos

Sharon Driscoll said...

How absolutely wonderful to hear that news Jean. We put a ramp on our deck so the older baby didn't have to try manuever the steps anymore. Maybe you could work something out like that for the bed so she doesn't have jump and her Mom doesn't have to be on the floor. But I know what you mean - I don't know who gets more of the or Trudy.

Spirited Earth said...

you are a really good pet mom..doing your research and taking a chance on a treatment out side the box to help your baby.
so happy to hear your dog is improving.