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May 17, 2013


I don’t much remember what life with Lilly was like before she got so sick with an adverse rabies vaccine reaction called meningoencephalomyelitis in January 2012. Taking care of her fills my days. Our world has gotten quite small, but we feel joy at even the tiniest “normal” thing — such as playing fetch. Here, friends, is a little video update.

Update on Bladder Infection #3

Lilly now has her THIRD straight bladder infection since she collapsed, had her first seizure in a year, and began peeing blood in January 2013. Each time it’s a different bacteria. It is, fundamentally, a side-effect of immune-suppression treatment for her inflammation. Daily steroids, in particular, are tough on the bladder … though I still question the role her “chemo” drug plays. (Next set of injections due next week.)

We have a message into our primary veterinarian, but I’ve seen a couple of signs this week that either the meds maybe aren’t working or maybe Lilly has a secondary infection as well.

Without being too graphic, those symptoms include:

  • Smelly urine
  • Total incontinence while standing

… both of which we’ve only seen in the past when an infection is raging.

Saturday marks 2 weeks (of 24 days planned) on amoxicillin, so we’ll see. We will culture everything again. I just don’t know how soon, yet.

Unlike when we treated the first terrible infection or the second MRSA infection, we have NOT seen any signs of these improvements (short-lived or otherwise):

  • Ability to pee on her own
  • Dry nights and dry diapers

I’m curious and concerned, but not panicked about Lilly’s TWO incidence of total loss of bladder control while standing this week (once Tuesday morning when she woke up and yesterday while playing … she let loose both ways).

Fear Not, Friends

It FINALLY feels like spring on Lilly’s mountain, so we’re trying to get outside more so that Lilly can be diaper free and relax in the warm weather.

best dog blog, champion of my heart, 2 dogs in green grass
Notice how Lilly’s rear legs look wonky when she is standing.

Without further ado, a video progress report on Lilly’s recovery from vaccine-induced brain and spinal cord inflammation:



About the Author Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related.

I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

  1. She looks like she’s enjoying her playing, even without wagging. She is adapting to her weakened back legs quite nicely in this vid. Thanks for being so vigilant and helping her through this tough time, when I know it’s taken so much out of you and Tom.

  2. Dogs, unlike us humans, stay totally in the moment That’s where Lilly is and that’s why she enjoys it so much! She has no worries about the morrow nor what happened yesterday… oh to be like that! Unfortunately, Roxanne, you carry the load. I worry about you more…

  3. It must be so heartening for you to see her playing like that. She looks like such a happy girl in spite of everything. You are doing great with her. I hope the other issues get resolved soon.
    I remember when our dog Shelby had cancer – lymphoma – how all-consuming it was. Unfortunately she only lived for a few months but for the most part it was a good few months, even though it was very difficult.

  4. wonderful to see this brave dog,,,but it brings me to tears,,,thank you for you love and for sharing her with us

  5. Her body may still be weak and wobbly, but her spirit is still there!! Enjoyed the video, thank you for sharing her with us.

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