In this photo, you can see FBRN newcomer Coraline playing with FBRN old-timer Paulie Walnuts. They have more than just their brindle-pied coloring in common.
Both have serious heart defects.
about this time last year, Paulie Walnuts' foster mom became his forever
mom. She has experience monitoring his heart problems and she has an
excellent cardiac veterinary specialist for him. When we got the call
about Coraline, a very young puppy with pulmonic stenosis, our
volunteers swung into action; Coraline flew with a volunteer who works
as a flight attendant across a big swath of country, then made a short
road trip to her new home.
vet visit revealed that she has a set of serious problems, including
severe pulmonic stenosis, a condition that causes thickening of the
heart muscle as the heart works hard to push blood through a too-narrow
opening. She will have to take medication. She will have to limit her
playtime and excitement. She will probably not live as long as most
Frenchies, and there is a risk that she could succumb suddenly. She'll
be a hospice dog for several months until she has grown enough that the
doctors can better see the architecture of her heart and know whether
she is a candidate for a surgery that might help prolong her life.
and boxers suffer pulmonic stenosis (PS) fairly frequently, as do a few
other dog breeds, including Westies, labs, and Chihuahuas. It is often
discovered during an early vet visit, but many dogs with mild PS are
undiagnosed and have no symptoms. Dogs with moderate to severe PS may
experience exercise intolerance, fatigue, and fainting as some of the
symptoms of the condition. Some dogs can undergo corrective surgery
involving a balloon catheter to enlarge the narrow opening. In
Coraline's case, there may be further structural defects in the heart
and coronary artery that would take that option off the table. In a few
months when she has grown a bit, we'll do another echocardiogram to see
whether she is a candidate. If not, she'll remain in hospice care with
stenosis is not a death sentence for most dogs. It can often be mild,
requiring no medication or treatment, and moderate cases can be managed
with medications like Atenolol, a heart medication for people and dogs
that helps the heart pump efficiently, and they can benefit from daily
supplements of fish oil. Regularly scheduled check ups with a specialist
can help identify whether a dog with PS is maintaining or perhaps could
benefit from medication, a change in daily activity, or treatment.
keep a good thought for Coraline as she grows. Her future is uncertain,
but FBRN volunteers and our supporters know that our foster mom (and
Paulie Walnuts!) will work hard to be sure that every day will be a good
day for Coraline.
She may be but a mite but she's a mighty mite observes
The Frog Princess