News, updates, and happenings with the Kragnes family: Phil, our Seeing Eye Dogs, and (me) Rebecca.

Of the things I expected to learn today, I can’t say that learning the difference between vomiting and regurgitating was one of them. But there is a difference. Zane has been bringing up his food the last few weeks and days with more and more frequency. It happened twice at the Malt Shop last night, several times this morning, and in the vet lobby this afternoon. We were startled to discover he’d lost 3.5 pounds since he was at the vet two and a half weeks ago for his physical. The vet explained that distinct, loud sounds of vomiting brings up substances from the stomach. Regurgitating is when the dog very quietly lets loose the food which has been stopped in his Esophagus. Zane was right next to me at the Malt Shop, and I didn’t hear him do anything. He’s also been very good at hiding it here at home. Mega-Esophagus is a condition in which the muscles of the esophagus can’t perform the job of squeezing the food into the stomach. It is a neuro-muscular condition tied to auto immune disease.

The vet gave Zane an anti-nausea shot, and the vet says if it is regurgitation, it will happen anyway. Blood work has also been sent to screen for infections or thyroid problems. If this problem is related to them, it is treatable. If not, Zane may have to retire soon. He can have a quality life as a pet, as long as his people are willing to liquefy his food and feed him on a higher surface. I can’t worry about whether Zane is going to bring up food in public, and that is why if it is this regurgitation, he will need to retire. It’s not often that I pray for an infection or a thyroid issue, but either would be a best scenario. He has a little less energy than normal, but his tail still wags. He eats and drinks with gusto, but he just can’t seem to keep it down. His work to and from the buses was pretty good all things considered. We’ll learn more about the blood work tomorrow, and if everything is normal there’s one more test which may be performed to ensure that’s what it is. He eats a bit of food with some dye in it. Then they x-ray the esophagus and stomach after a couple of minutes to track where the food is. If it’s still in the esophagus, we have our answer. If the blood work is normal though this may be a moot point. Stay tune for tomorrow’s episode of when Rebecca’s Stomach Turns. The tear ducts have been doing over-time, and I have a couple people who have said they want to be considered when Zane retires. They probably aren’t counting on a dog who may throw up more if not fed in a precise way.


Comments on: "In Suspense About Whether Zane Will Continue Working With Me" (3)

  1. Our prayers are with you. Kathie and Luna Katherine Schneider, Ph.D. Senior Psychologist, Emerita Counseling Service University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Author of To the Left of Inspiration: Adventures in Living with Disabilities and a children’s book Your Treasure Hunt: Disabilities and Finding Your Gold Blog:

  2. Jeanie Vejil said:

    Poor Zane and poor you.

    Trudy had to be treated for bringing up part of her morning feeding as late as two hours prior to being fed her dinner, but hers wasn’t even a wretching sound, just like she birrped and up came some undigested food, maybe a third of her morning meal. I thought it was a fluke, so fed her her dinner on time, and bless her heart, up came part of her dinner that night four hours after she’d eaten. It was a Friday, and I was able to have her seen that Saturday morning. Her problem was caused by lots of windy weather and blowing rain, which blows baby dead squirrels, etc., out of trees, and even though she’s not one to pick up stuff from the grass, of course they get it on their feet and then wash there feet once they’re back inside. It took about ten days for this to hit her after our storms, and there were two other dogs in the office that morning who had the same thing. The other two dogs had progressed further though so that their intestinal tracts were involved, so in addition to a B12 shot, which helps the stomach lining to heal faster, a tablet twice a day to also help her tummy feel better, plus an antibiotic twice a day for ten days, the other two dogs also had to have a–oh shoot—I can’t think of wwhat it’s called, oh, a probiotic.

    She finished her antibiotic on a Tuesday night, and for the next two days, she was really lack luster, difficult to wake her up, etc., and she’s one who loves to go out wherever, even at her age of almost 11. I got her in on that Friday afternoon, and this time, it wasn’t her tummy. It was some inflammation, not really arthritis, but she got a pain shot that was also a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory, plus an anti-inflammatory tablet twice a day. She finished the medication a few days ago, and I’m just to watch her and see if she seems to be getting uncomfortable again, and then we’ll see how often she may need the pill form of the medication.

    I wish that Zane’s difficulty could be as easy to fix as hers was, but sometimes that’s just not the case, bless his heart. He’s been a good little worker for you from what I’ve gathered, and I hope that the news won’t be bad. Keep us posted.

    Jeanie and Trudy

  3. Hi,

    So sorry to hear about Zane. You’ll do what’s best for him and that’s what makes you who you are. Hang in there.



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