Goldenstar Rockin Teddy Bear, CD
On April 21, 2011, Teddy went to the Rainbow Bridge…just 15 days shy of his 14th birthday. If you would want to read his story, it is below.
Sire: Laurell’s Jackson Review
Dam: Goldenstar Roxanne
Whelped: May 6, 1997
Teddy in his favorite position with his boots on! Rubbing his back and his face with those paws!!!
Even an old boy needs his beauty reat! Teddy at 13 1/2 years. Nov. 2010
Teddy at 8 years –what a ham!
Teddy – Will be 14 years on May 6, and has been deaf for about a year. Just seemed to happen, but doesn’t bother or stop him. He also has what I call his little brain shocks, when he gets this shrill that just comes over him for a second and sometimes his footing will give a little too. I’ve heard it referred to as Doggy Parkinson’s. We are up early due to early work schedules, so the dogs are use to getting up around 4:30 to 5 AM during the week. Teddy gets so excited because it’s time to eat. He will jump and bark and just literally acts like a young pup until he gets to eat. His hips are a bit arthritic, yet he still walks from 1 to 3 miles most days. His upper body is very strong and he weighs about 75 pounds and no fat.
September 14, 2010 – 4 AM heard feet scratching on the wood floor like he was trying to get his footing, and then all the sudden a loud thud. I jumped from bed to find Teddy spread eagle (he never lays with his back legs this way), on the floor and he was fighting. I’d never seen a dog have a seizure, but with his leg movements and thrashing and the head and noise, it had to be close and I knew time was of the essence. For some reason (even in the pitch dark), I felt for his tongue and it was kind of far back as I know how long their tongues can be. I immediately (only seconds had passed), I tried pulling his tongue out but he was fighting me and he could not breathe. I yelled for my husband who was on the floor in a flash and between the two of us and small towel we got a hold of the tongue and the instant we pulled it out, he took the biggest gasp of air and just totally calmed down. He had urinated. I actually thought he had died as he had gone from just sheer fight to calm and laying there. We petted him for a few minutes and then all the sudden he jumped up and was just like crazy. I was still sitting on the floor and he tried to crawl up my shoulder and was like a bull in a china cabinet. Kind of line, “WOW, thanks you saved me!”
From that morning I realized that he was having trouble on the floor, so I put down even more throw rugs, so that he could have footing. Everything was normal. He ran downstairs like normal and could not wait to eat and everything going forward was OK.
November 17, 2010 – 4:45 AM, had just gotten up and walked into the bathroom and Teddy as normal was jumping around and barking and acting so silly (all normal for early morning before eating). I don’t know what made me turn and look, but as I turned to the door, I could see Teddy was in distress, making this weird noise, his head was pointing up and his legs were failing him, and he hit the floor and again the tongue had fallen back and was cutting off his air. I could not get his tongue due to how he was in the door way, so Bobby got back as I screamed and within no time we had the tongue out and he was again taking that deep breath and calming down. He had urinated. He would lay there for just a few minutes and then wanted up and to go downstairs. We held him from running down the steps and everything was normal again.
January 11, 2011 – Normal morning up at 5 AM, all up and out to potty and then Katie, Teddy and Allie, were all standing head to head in the door way as I filled their food bowls. A small space as I had a crate set up about 2 feet inside the door opening. Within a minute I heard a growl of sorts and I turned to tell them to quit and settle and I noticed it was Teddy and again he was struggling with his head in the air and all the sudden he was on the ground and fighting again, not being able to breathe. I yelled for Bobby as he flew up the stairs and instantly got to working to get his tongue out. It always seems like forever, but we do seem to get it out pretty quickly and then he settles down. He had urinated although he had just been outside to potty. The same this time although a little bit more fight as we were in tight quarters. He came back to earth after pacing and walking around me in circles on a big rug for about 45 minutes. You could tell there was confusion and he was disorientated and he was trying to figure out where he was, yet he was so anxious to eat that we decided to go ahead and feed him. He’s so strong you could not hold him still, he had to more. He ate faster than normal, but still had to get his wits back.
Now I’m thinking more and more it’s the floor. The kitchen is tile, and the bedroom is wood, so it has to be the flooring with hips that are not as strong any more. Plus I feel as though he gets scared and when he does he throws that head in the air as if to lift his upper body to stop the fall and then the tongue falls back. We bought rubber bottomed boots for him today. And every evening before going to bed, I put them on his back feet, just for traction. I’ve also talked to my vet more than a few times. We figured out that he had a very slow resting heart rate of only 24 beats a minute. He walks all the time with us, so he is fit and healthy. Even standing at the vet’s office his heart rate was low.
January 29, 2011 – 12 midnight. We had been to bed about an hour and a half and I don’t know what I heard, but I jumped out of bed to find Teddy on the floor over by the dresser in an area that did not have the whole floor covered in rugs (he usually doesn’t go over there), and again he was fighting and in distress, I yelled for Bobby and he was right there and again we got the tongue out and a deep breath and total calm. Within a short period of time he wanted up and he was confused and disorientated for about 50 minutes and then back to normal. He had urinated and defecated this time too. Bobby slept on the cough the rest of the night with him and he did fine.
More conversation with the vet as she has been doing some research. Not much known about “Old dog disease”, as many don’t live long enough to get there. We would do blood work to rule out Cushing, thyroid issues, and just to make sure all was within good limits. We talked about Anipryl, but the results are not that great from what other vets had to say. All blood work is perfect…. He is totally healthy.
Over the past month or so, we have noticed that he will just stand up and bark. Usually we are not in the room and he will go to the couch, or just by the steps. Just a few barks and then if he sees us, he’s fine. So some separation anxiety there as he is a velcro dog.
With more vet conversation we decide to try some over the counter items first. On February 21, we started therapeutic amounts of fish oil (4-5 tablets daily), and Sam-E (800 mg a day) and DAP diffuser and collar with calming pheromones. I also put a crate in our room and with his boots on at night; I would put him in the crate with a fan on him to keep him in one place and calm in the morning.
Teddy would still get me up in the middle of the night usually 3 -4 to go out, so I would get up and take him holding his collar when he first comes out of the crate and down the steps. Most nights he would not come back up with me, so I left him on his pillow and he was content for a while and then I would hear him come up stairs and he would lay on his pillow by me and no issues. UNTIL…..
February 26, 2011 – 4 AM…I had taken him out and he was resting on his pillow. I had tried to get him to come up, but he would have no part of that. So I went up stairs and was on the landing, listening for his footsteps, I could hear one of the dogs digging away at a pillow, and as I walked back down to get them to stop, I see Teddy on the ground by the door thrashing about and fighting. I yelled for Bobby and tried to get his tongue but he was really fighting. Bobby got him and while trying to get his tongue Teddy clamped down on Bobby’s hand a couple of times. I grabbed both his upper and lower jaw with all my strength and I held it open while Bobby got his tongue out of the way and was blowing air into his nose and mouth. It seems it takes forever, but it doesn’t. He had just been out, but he did defecate this time. He started to calm and breathe and then he wanted up and for the next hour plus he circled and was anxious and was confused. Yet he wanted to eat.
That night I got another crate out and have it by his pillow on the first floor, so if he won’t come up stairs with me, he will go in to the crate. That first night he slept the rest of the evening in his crate, not a whimper, nothing. I had given him a few treats to walk in to it.
I have his food ready every night for the next morning as not to make him wait. He wears his boots on his back paws, and he is sleeping in a big crate, with room to stand and turn around. If he’s sleeping, it is sound, and I touch him gently to wake him as it startles him and then the brain shocks happens. I have to lift him up to get him standing after his hours of sleeping, and again can see the brain shocks as they can cause his legs to start sliding. He can usually recover, but I try to be standing there until I know he has his wits about him. We have a routine, I lift the pillow to get him to his feet, and then we stand there for a few minutes while I rub him to get the blood moving and then we walk to the door, he shakes and then outside he goes.
Now I just hope the meds start to kick in and that the episodes become fewer and fewer and that we can start sleeping without so much worry. It’s hard to have an Ol’ dog that can’t hear and that still loves life, yet something is happening neurologically.
Feb 28, seems the brain shocks have increased and I am seeing a little more momentary lack of coordination. He doesn’t fall just the legs will give way a bit. They are more frequent. I took him for his normal mile walk and he was really moving and doing great and all the sudden a back leg just kind of gives way. He recovers. Then about a ¼ miles later, he stumbles and he hits his head on the pavement, yet recovers to hardly miss a step. It happened so fast the instant I took my eyes off him.
Talked to the vet on the 1st of March and we decided to put him on a low dosage of Prednisone. 10mg, once a day in the morning. If there are some inflammatory issues going on, this could help.
Week of March 1 – 6, week started with many brain shocks happening real often and with definite weakness with them as legs might crumble. Have him on Prednisone now and as the week moves on the shocks seem to be less and less stumbles. Walking daily, and seems to be not stumbling or having brain shocks. The prednisone is really working. It’s magic! By Saturday he is waling great and fast, no stumbles and he would even bark at me when I left the room. Teddy is even following me upstairs..running up the stairs and laying on the floor and doing his dance. Wow he is amazing! His energy level has really increased and he is wanting to play with Allie and Katie. He has not had any brain shocks in days. By the 8th, he seems so normal. He is not sleeping as much and not as deep and sound. No brain shocks for a couple of days; he wakes so easily and jumps up ready to go. He knows that the crate means treats and he is running to go into it. The change is unbelievable. By the 15th with Teddy doing so great, we decided to lower the prednisone to 1 (5mg) as day as he is really anxious. He doesn’t want to rest when I am moving around.
March 19, 2011 – 4:00 AM, episode number 6 happened in his crate. I had gotten up to go let the kids out to potty and Teddy was standing in his crate so I let him out too. All was well, so I put him back in his crate and the girls in the kitchen. I got upstairs and just turned on the landing when I heard something, maybe the crate, or a thud, I don’t remember, but I turned and went back downstairs and Teddy was having a seizure. I instantly grabbed the glove, opened the door and yelled for Bobby. I got his tongue out very quickly and he calmed down and relaxed. It was the first time I had gotten his tongue out by myself and the gloves were the reason. They have great grip and with him biting your hand and fighting, I could hold on. He came around quickly and got up and was really confused for about an hour. He would pace and circle and he wanted to eat. He had a little diarrhea today, but nothing else lingering. He would not come upstairs to go to be later this night, so this started his sleeping in the crate on the first floor. Less panting and noise for me, and a good night sleep hopefully for everyone. I did worry more, as I had thought the crate was his safe place. It wasn’t anymore.
On March 27, I went back to two prednisone on even days and one on odd days. Teddy is like a bull in the morning wanting to eat. His excitement level is unreal. As soon as he eats he settles down. Have notice that in the evenings he gets wound up and hyper between 6 and 8 PM. Almost like Sundowners with humans. Then he would calm down and rest. To help with the evening excitement, I started feeding him one cup of food in the evening. Boy he loves that!!! He knows when it’s time too as he gets so excited. He’s like a 5 year old.
Teddy is doing fantastic. Lori calls him the miracle dog, I am just so pleased. He is totally normal. No brain shocks, he walks daily and will pull you as he is on a mission. He plays, he’s a goof at times, and I am just so glad that he is doing well. That Prednisone is a wonderful drug. The thought is that there is a lesion on his brain and that the prednisone helps with the inflammation. Either way…it’s working!
April 19, 2011 –4:15 PM, episode number 7. It was a beautiful day, and working from home, I took Teddy and Katie for a walk at lunch. He did great, although I did notice that when he went to potty his back left paw was turned under. He didn’t seem to notice, but I did so I fixed it. He walked great. I had noticed when getting ice cubes he would have a small brain shock, and his legs might give way, but again he always recovered. Lori had even come by on Monday and had gotten to see just how great he was doing. He was a nut that day too, wanting to play with Lucy. A little after 4 PM, Teddy really wanted to eat, so I went ahead and gave him his cup of food. Then decided that another short walk would be good for him and Katie. Got their leashes on, and was holding the door open as Teddy walked down the three steps, I noticed that he kind of stumbled, but as I turned to tell Katie to come on (she has stopped in her tracks inside the door, I have to wonder if she sensed something), I heard that growl sound that I had heard before when he had a seizure, as I turned back to him, I knew what was happening…he was having a seizure, the very first one in daylight and not in the middle of the night. I instantly was on the ground and working to get his tongue out. I had it, but not well enough as he was still fighting and biting and struggling. I had to make the conscience decision to let go and run into the house to get my glove. I did that in less than 2 seconds and was back and had his tongue out. He calmed down and relaxed although he lost his bladder and bowels. His legs/paws seemed to twitch more, but I wasn’t sure as all other seizures had been in the dark early in the morning. This one was on the driveway outside the door. After a minute or so, he jumped up and was ready to move. I always said he was like a bull in a china cabinet as his strength and desire to move was huge! He started walking, and circling and all the things he did before due to the confusion. He wanted in the house so we went in and he tried to jump on the counter wanting food. So I gave him some more just to settle him down. It didn’t, as normal for the next 45 – 60 minutes he would continuously move, in circles, darting, and just confused movement. Then he would settle down and be normal. He lay down on his big pillow and slept. All was well, as he had recovered again. We had dog training that evening so we went and were only gone about 1.5 hours. When we got home, Bobby found Teddy still in the very same place, sound asleep. He touched him to get him to get up and go out but he did not really move, so he touched him again, and he put his arms around him to help him up. When he did, Teddy’s legs went out from under him and he was laying spread eagle between the two rooms. He came and got me and we picked him up and put him on a big pillow. I laid looking in to his eyes and they looked almost black, as if he was no longer in there. I tried to give him water and he would not lift his head. He would not move any part of his body, not even his tail which always was wagging. So I took some dog pillows and made a bed right next to him and I rubbed his head and kept my hand on his heart all night long. Three times he moved his head to my pillow, but it was an effort. Mostly he just laid there with his eyes closed, resting, very peaceful. I prayed all night that if he was not to get better that the Good Lord would take him. I counted his breaths and I felt his heart. I was losing my big boy and I knew it.
Thursday, April 21, 2011 – Teddy never moved, he would not take water, nothing. To see him lay there with only his breathing movement, was the hardest thing for me. He looked like his mother Roxie when she was so sick near the end. I knew what I had to do. I have a rule, if a big dog cannot get up and walk, they have no quality of life and you have to let them go. I called Lori and her and Dr. Wellnitz came to the house. At 8:25 AM Teddy passed over to the Rainbow Bridge. He went quickly as he was semi comatose. He felt no pain, so his passing was easy for him. It was not for us. We miss him every single day. There is not a place I don’t look that I don’t see him laying there. His pillows, Katie has taken to laying on them. Rightly so as Teddy was her Daddy. …..
15 days shy of his 14th birthday; Teddy joined his mama Roxie, his girlfriend Maggie, his sister Jody and all the others that we have loved at the Rainbow Bridge. He is free and happy and healthy once again.
I love you Teddy…my big boy, my Swappa Bear!