Since Bronte came home I’ve been worried because she seemed very ouchy and was reluctant to eat. All kinds of bad scenarios, from hips to spine to infection, were playing out in my brain.
We just got back from the vet with a diagnosis: One of the highest Lyme titres they’ve seen (the techs were all exclaiming because the Lyme dot on the snap test came up dark purple before the control dot even began to color in – they’d never seen that before) and anaplasmosis.
The good news is that her hips and spine are perfect. The bad news is that she’s in a lot of pain and feels like crap. And it’s likely that she’s had a subclinical infection for a while that flared when she was stressed from caring for the puppies, so it’s been going on for months. Acute infections, like Bramble had, are pretty easy to cure. When anaplasmosis becomes chronic, it can move into the joints and, more important, the bone marrow. So we had blood sent out to check her platelet count and we’ll be pushing doxycycline for a month and then re-checking the blood.
She’s going to be fine, and this should not have affected the puppies at all. We’ll know in a few months whether this is something we’ve knocked out or whether we’ll have to manage it a little more actively over the longer term.
My vet is convinced that the ticks are developing a resistance to Frontline, because the positive rates are so high even on dogs who are meticulously maintained. I don’t know what we’re going to do in the future – we’ve obviously hit a technological bottleneck where we can’t prevent it and curing it is not a hundred percent either.
For obvious reasons, she’s going to stay with me for the forseeable future, at least until we get the infection(s) under control. We’ll keep you updated.