Bella is back to having some pretty rough days maybe more so recently with the colder weather coming. I'm still hopeful that she can improve and I'm not going to give up trying to find something that will make her more comfortable. She has some back up stem cells and and I'll proceed with that again when enough time has passed for her to be able to use it again. Currently, I've been reading about another alternative called DLPA and want to ask Dr. Jack if she'd recommend that. It sounds pretty safe and my only concern would be whether or not it would be safe to take with her other medications.
My granddaughter came over for Halloween and Bella made it up the stairs so she could be around her. She's doing a little better the past couple days.
For the past week or so, Bella is having a harder time getting around again. She has again started to hesitate before crossing the threshold to go outside and she isn't venturing out as much as she was. I'm not sure if she was overdoing it for a while, and is paying for it now, or if she's just regressing. I'll have to talk to Dr. Jack about when she could do another injection. Right now I just want to wait and observe and see if she'll go back to doing better. There was definitely marked improvement for a while and I was hoping it might last longer, but maybe it will improve again. I'm not sure what to think right now.
At this point I'm convinced that this therapy has improved Bella's ability to get around. She is visibly more comfortable, faster, and instead of whimpering with every step, she's walking without crying in pain all the time. She will still whimper a little when she first gets up after having been laying for quite a while, but even then, she's getting up faster and not whimpering as much. About a week ago, I had let her out and left her out. Normally, she will go to the bathroom and then come right back to the door to get back in. So I went to let her back in and she wasn't there - she was over by the fence in our yard and she hadn't gone that far in a long time. She saw me and walked over to me without crying at all. It was truly amazing! And then she did something similar, going to a different area in the yard, even further away, a couple days later. She hasn't come upstairs yet - but I bet when my 1 year old granddaughter comes over next time - she will. In the spring of 2011 she could make it around that circle walk at Sytek Park, but then gradually got to where she couldn't make it that far. I haven't tried taking her on a longer walk yet, she's just been in our back yard, which is pretty big. I'm hoping to get her out for a walk this weekend.
I've been really busy but wanted to take a few minutes to let you know that Bella is continuing to improve! She's faster and whining less, and she's venturing further out in to the yard and sometimes not making a peep while she's walking. That in itself is pretty impressive, because the poor girl was whining with every step for quite a while. She still shows some stiffness when she's been laying for a while and tries to get up, but overall she's definitely getting around much better. Didn't come up the stairs yet, but I guess it only has been a couple weeks!
On Friday it seemed to me that Bella was moving faster as she walked. It is usual for her to whine when she is walking because she's in pain. She is still whining, but it's not all the time and it's not as high-pitched. She's definitely moving faster and not hesitating as much when she crosses the threshold to go outside. She is also rising faster from laying down and there have been times that she's not whimpering at all when she's walking outside. Given the colder weather and rain we've been getting, that's quite remarkable.
We have a walk-in basement and that's where Bella's bed is. She is welcome to come upstairs. When she does, she gets to sleep on the couch and she loves that. But it's been months since she's attempted the 12 stairs to get up to the living room. When my granddaughter is here she gets to the bottom of the stairs and then we've carried her up. She can't stand staying downstairs when the baby's here. We have always carried her down, even when she was doing better because the steps are kind of narrow.
It will be a big day for Bella if she can get to the point of coming up the stairs again by herself. She is definitely getting around better the past few days and that is not my imagination! Pete (my other half) agrees. It is unusual for her to have so many good days in a row, so something's telling me this stem cell stuff is beginning to help her. The statistics say it generally takes a couple weeks to a few months to start seeing results and I'm anxious to see how she'll be in a couple weeks given she seems to be feeling better already!
Well, that was fast! Bella's fat was sent away on Monday afternoon and I received a call this morning that her stem cells were here. I took her in at 4:30P and her stem cells were injected via a catheter in her left front leg. Bella didn't seem uncomfortable during the procedure and we were on our way a little after 5P. I was able to be in the room with her. Jess and Dr. Greenfield assisted Dr. Jack.
Bella has had an overall good day in terms of her agility and visible pain. Monday after her procedure she had a hard time for a while and it was more difficult for her to get around, but by last night she was a lot better.
She didn't whimper as loud and didn't hesitate as she usually does, before crossing the threshold of the sliding glass door tonight when I let her out. She does have good days and better days and bad days. The bad ones have been more frequent for several months now. Today was definitely good. My heart wants to say that those stem cells are already doing her some good, but my head knows time will tell.
Yesterday, my beloved dog, Bella, began the first step in getting stem cell therapy for her arthritis. Bella is a 6 year old black lab and cocker spaniel mix born with dwarfism which she inherited from her mother. All of the dogs in the litter had this affliction, but Bella's was the worst. For the first few years she got around pretty well, very energetic, friendly, and loving. The past few years we have been trying to manage her increasing pain. It has been increasingly difficult for her to walk much and she whimpers from the pain, even though she is on pain medication.
The procedure she had yesterday was to remove some fat from her body to be sent to Vet-Stem They will extract the stem cells from the fat and return them to Bella's vet, Dr. Jack, from Alpena Veterinary Clinic. It could be here as early as tomorrow or Thursday. Hopefully Bella is on her way to a new lease on life!