Xena came to Doberman Underground in February of 2017. We knew when we accepted Xena that her liver numbers were elevated. There are numerous reasons that liver numbers can be elevated in dogs. And most are easy fixes.
Unfortunately, Xena was not an easy fix. Xena was born defective. Her liver has a shunt. That means the vessel that would normally supply blood to her liver has no blood flow. So her body grew some smaller blood vessels in an attempt to compensate. Sadly, her body didn’t do a very good job with that. Our vet referred us to send Xena to a specialist in Columbus, Ohio, who told us that her time on this earth with us would be short…10 months they said.
As you can imagine, that just didn’t sit well with us. Xena is beautiful, she has a wonderful temperament, and we were not ready to see her go. We reviewed our options and called our holistic vet, who was not fazed by Xena’s fiasco of liver blood flow. She started Xena on a regimen of injectable glutathione. This saved her life. Xena is now thriving. She eats prescription dog food for her liver as well as a homemade diet of steamed vegetables with “gentle” proteins such as cottage cheese, raw egg, or yogurt. The dairy products and vegetables were also a recommendation from the holistic vet.
Xena has far exceeded her expiration date. She occasionally produces odd growths that have to be removed. She had one on her ankle that another specialist insisted was cancer and would require us to remove her leg or she would die. We did NOT follow that recommendation. Then she to an infection on her toe that did have to be removed. And another tail on her nub that had to come off. She definitely is not low maintenance!
So why does Xena need to be a permanent foster? Xena was originally a hospice foster. Our goal was to keep her happy until she wasn’t and then let her leave the world gently.
Xena still needs to be monitored carefully. The smallest changes in her appetite or demeanor are watched and she is taken to the vet immediately.