Grace is my 9 year old female chihuahua and everyone who knows me knows that her and my other 3 chihuahuas are my children.
Recently Grace was having what looked like severe anxiety and panic attacks due to pain in her neck. She would tense her neck up and scream if you touched her neck. This was happening twice a day almost everyday for a month. After a recommendation from my regular vet to a neurologist in Maryland, I took her down there on Friday September 23rd.
The neurologist did some poking and prodding and could tell that there was some sort of spinal pain with Grace but the only 100% way to find out what it was and where it was, was by doing an MRI. The MRI cost over $4,500 but without it, I would have no answers for Grace's pain and she would continue to suffer every single day. I needed to be able to know what it was that hurt so I can properly treat her.
The MRI showed that Grace has Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) which is common in small dogs like Chihuahuas. IVDD is a condition where the cushioning discs between the vertebrae of the spinal column either bulge or burst (herniate) into the spinal cord space. In Grace's case, 3 of her discs ruptured, the C34, C45, and C56. This is why she is in so much pain when it flares up. So much pain that it actually causes her to go into a panicked state.
Some dogs have it further down their back and end up losing the ability to use their hind legs and become paralyzed. Luckily, Grace's is up higher and is treatable in a variety of ways, those of which I am still learning about as I research my options. One option is surgery, which obviously comes with many risks, but there are other options for pain management. Grace's quality of life is great. She literally JUST turned 9 and she is healthy in every other way.
My heart is breaking that money is even an issue for me. I already spend $2,000 a year on my other Chihuahua, Rocky, for his heart condition. He has Mitral Valve Disease but we have it way under control and he is thriving. Unfortunately, I thought I had atleast another year or two before I had dish out major money on another one of my dogs. So this was very unexpected.
I will be discussing my options with my regular vet (whom I trust with every fiber of my being) and in the next week I should have a better plan of action. My goal is to give Grace a normal pain free life. For now, she is on pain management with Gabapentin, Rimadyl, and Tramadol. Because there are risks with anti-inflammatory medications, I am looking into other options immediately. But in the meantime, Grace is not in pain and is enjoying life.
Please consider donating to Grace and I or atleast sharing with others.
Friday was such a difficult day! I went to Maryland alone so I was already overwhelmed. Of course when they were telling me that we should do an MRI I was already freaking out at the cost but I knew that the MRI would give me answers. As soon as they told me the amount I was devastated and my world began spinning. They casually mentioned that depending on the diagnosis there is surgery and I just nodded my head because all I could think of was SAVE HER!! Then they gave me a quote just so I had an idea. After seeing $11k I went to my car and cried. I couldn't even remember how to type or who to call. I was having a major panic attack! I knew that the MRI was necessary for me and for her. But then came the question of how to come up with more money than that for her treatment.
After the MRI, when it was time to take Grace home I lost it. I cried the entire ride back in the car.
I was not ready to see my poor shaved pup!
Please consider donating to Grace and I or at least sharing with others. I can not tell you how important this is to me. If there's only one favor you ever do for me in your lifetime, please let this be it. Thank you so much for even reading this!
HELP GRACE BY DONATING TO GOFUNDME HERE!
Another way you can support Grace is by using my affiliate link when you shop on Amazon. Simply bookmark this Amazon home page and use it anytime you get on amazon and order. Each month a portion of the sales will actually come to me. It's small but every little amount helps!