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Archive for February, 2009

Saying goodbye to Dakota

Marylands Brown Boy Dakota 5/2000 – 2/2009

It all started just before Christmas. Our dog Dakota  who was 8 got a few infections back to back.  It started with an anal gland infection which cleared up after two rounds of antibiotics. He then stopped eating and drinking.  We noticed he was drooling and looked and he had a nasty sore in his mouth.  The vet said it was an ulcer and proceeded to put him on a strong antiobiotic.  He went down hill from there.

Dakota laid down and wouldn’t move.  He would not eat or drink.  After two days we took him to the vet (we would have done it sooner but it was a weekend).  He was having a reaction to the medicine.  We asked for blood work but the vet said it was best to get this antibiotic out of his system.  He switched to a new antibiotic and everything  cleared, he was acting better, but still would not eat.

A week later of random eating and not eating, and being done with his meds, we decided to take him back for a follow up. The blood test showed a high calcium level aka hypercalcemia.  We ran a slew of test and Dakota spent two long days at the vets getting fluids.

The tests came back positive for lymphoma.  Our choices were to do steroids for a few days or chemo. The   rate of recovery with lymphoma is 3-12 months with chemo.  We decided to let Dakota go that day.  He joined his sister  who had been waiting for him for 7 months.  We are sad to let him go but with a short recovery and the possible side effects of chemo, we felt it was a good decision.  Had he not had the calcium problem we may have made a different decision.

Dakota was an active Chesapeake Bay Retriever who would have been 9 in May.  He had his CD and CGC.  He also had several JH legs and NAHRA legs. We never finished those due my having babies.  He was an intense retriever with a lot of love to give. Its the first time we have not owned a Chesapeake.  Its sad everytime we walk through the door and miss that welcoming bark (which tended to scare the world, but we knew he was just saying hi).  He taught me so much about training and dogs and I am proud to have had him in my life.