Our dog is a drug addict!

As you may remember from last summer/fall, Lucy had a bit of a health scare.  She was ultimately given a tentative diagnosis of Masticatory Myositis, after exams, bloodwork, and a biopsy which involved shaving her head.

As you can see, the fur on her head is FINALLY starting to look back to normal, not that she wasn’t adorable, even bald (click here for a reminder of how she looked bald). 

But even after months of Prednisone, starting with 2 pills/day, then 1 pill/day, and eventually 1/2 pill daily, she ran out again on Saturday.  She’d been doing great, and not crying or showing any indication of discomfort, so we figured instead of refilling right away, we’d wait a few days to see how she did without.  Today, I’m home from work because Roni is sick (and I feel a little under the weather myself, but not as bad), and I noticed that after I fed Lucy her breakfast, she didn’t eat it right away.  2-3 hours later, around 10:30 this morning, I noticed her bowl was still full.  Huh?!?  That’s not beagle-ish behavior at all.  Normally, Lucy eats anything placed in her bowl within minutes.  But not today.  Which made me wonder if her jaw might be hurting from being off the Prednisone for a few days.  So I called the vet, and she said we should bring Lucy in for another exam.  Before we left the house, Roni gave her a crunchy treat, and she spit it out a few times before she ate it, which is also very unlike her usual behavior.

During her exam, she seemed OK, but even though she didn’t cry when the vet opened her mouth, she was clearly reluctant and resistant to it.  Even more than she normally would be, because let’s face it, it’s a weird experience for a Dr. to forcibly open anyone’s mouth, even a dog.  Everything else seemed normal, but because Lucy had skipped breakfast, the vet did recommend re-starting the Prednisone, but reducing the dose to 1/2 pill every other day for a few weeks, then every 3 days for a few weeks, then every 4 days, etc. until we figure out how often she needs them, or until she doesn’t need them at all.

Sounds a little like a 12-step program, but for dogs, right?  I’m suspicious that she just missed taking the pills because we always wrapped them in cheese to make sure she’d swallow them.  And of course, after her vet exam, she happily crunched down 2 or 3 treats that the vet gave her, and as soon as we got home, she promptly polished off her previously ignored breakfast.

That said, here she is, hopefully staring at me while I cut all the pills in her new refill in half, so we don’t have to do it as we go.  Maybe she’s not a drug addict, so much as a doggy con artist?  What do you think?


One response to this post.

  1. Awwww, your poor puppy!! I had a beagle, Murphy, (he passed away in 2009, it still feels like yesterday), who also took Prednisone for the pain he had from his Lymphoma Cancer. He didn’t get addicted to it, thankfully, and I eventually switched him to alternative medicines for the remainder of his life. I really hope Lucy breaks her seemed addiction, and feels better! I hate health issues with the little babies, they are so upsetting!


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