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Monday, March 27, 2017

A Glimpse of Shyla

A good friend asked me yesterday about how Shyla is. I replied that the best word to describe her demeanor is "depressed".

On every leash walk or run, she lags behind us. During the day, she chooses to nap at the other end of the house from us. When Shyla is normal, she likes to be on a dog bed close to us.

We started off Sunday with the same routine as every day since Shyla started phenobarb. Shyla went running on-leash with the Runner, and R went mountain biking with me. The reason why Shyla hasn't been with me is that it's impossible to ride a bike in the woods with a dog on-leash.

R and I had fun in the morning sun, playing the "toss the treat" game.

He gets very excited about this game and then begins drooling, which can look rather dramatic as he wildly tries to catch the treat.
He has been such a source of joy to me through this phase when Shyla has been "absent".

When R and I arrived home, I asked about Shyla's run. She lagged but she became incredibly enthusiastic when they crossed the route that R and I had taken. Upon hearing that, I wondered if a short mountain bike ride with me might raise her spirits.

No doubt about it - our little ride made Shyla wild with exuberance. At the start, I saw her heading toward a log as she ran toward me and got a photo of her arrow-like leap over it to get to me.
The problem was that her leap was one of the only coordinated things that she did during our little ride. I saw lots of stumbles on small rocks and high speed "slide-outs" on curves that she took too fast. The good news was that I didn't see any signs of her getting confused about her location relative to me. I didn't feel worried that she was about to get lost.

And, this afternoon, she's hanging out close to us, as if her funk is lifting. I see more of Shyla's spirit sparkling in her eyes than I have in weeks. It's going to be a difficult decision as to whether to repeat today's experiment in the coming days.

Tomorrow, we get her blood test results, finding out how her liver is responding and whether the phenobarb is at a "therapeutic level" in her blood. I think that I'll ask about whether we can consider a lower dose. We're now on Day 17, and she's not close to normal in terms of coordination. However, she's had no seizures - so it might be working.

Life is such a windy path - and I wish that I could see around the next curve!


  1. Hari OM
    Oh I think Shyla is definitely on her way back... POTP for the blood review. YAM xx

  2. Maybe she was feeling down about being "replaced" by R on the morning rides. Or maybe it's just that she feels weird; a lot of animals withdraw instinctively when they don't feel well. Whatever the reason, I'm glad she got some joy out of riding with you.

  3. Paws crossed! It must have been so good to have her with you again.

  4. We're so glad to hear Shyla is slowly coming back. Our paws are crossed that the blood tests have favorable results.

  5. Paws and fingers are crossed for positive blood test results! Great photos of you both♥

  6. I hope they can get her on the right dose, so she can get back to her normal shiny self.

  7. I hope that curve will reveal Shyla back to normal soon

  8. Come on beautiful Shyla, you can do it.

  9. The right mix is hard to find as you don't want seizures but you do want her to have a normal life and the best life she can. Hope the vet can reduce the dosage.

  10. I'm sure being able to get to do one of her favorite activities lifted Shyla's spirits so much. It's so hard sometimes to balance safety and health issues all with keeping our dogs happy. Hopefully you can get some answers from the vet that will help. Thinking of you!
    Jan, Wag 'n Woof Pets

  11. She will continue to adjust with her coordination just like Elsa did. Clearly she missed romping with you but hopefully she'll be able to rejoin the adventures soon. All the best with your Epi-Warrior.

  12. one leap is a good start to better days, She has some of that sparkle there, just a bit hidden from our view, Hope over the next few days things will level out better with those meds, and she is not so down.

  13. Considering how tight your bond is between Shyla and you, there is no doubt that not being with you on your rides has been hard for both of you. So glad you had some time together. Praying that levels are good or maybe even a little high so she come down. Thinking of you.

  14. Shyla probably feels as if you were punishing her--not taking her with you. Hope there are some more short trips on the horizon for BOTH of you.

  15. LOVE the photos!! I continue to cheer you both on from our timezone and hope for the very best of news for Shyla around the corner!

    --My apologies for not getting back to you about your kind offer of the vibration collar for our boy Bo. For the moment, I've put that on hold. But I'm still very much interested in doing nose-work with Bo. So much so, that to help get us started I've enrolled in a beginner-nose-class that starts next week. It was only about $100 for 8 classes, so even if "we" fail miserably, we've not lost too many dog-biscuits! Stay tuned!

  16. Shyla may be missing her special time out running with you, but safety must come first, we so understand. Hopefully you will get some answers with her visit tomorrow.

  17. Hopefully Shyla is on the way back to you!
    Mr Bailey, Hazel & Mabel

  18. We cross our paws that Shyla will be back!!!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

  19. Yay for Shyla! I hope she is able to go on more bike rides! Poor girl!

  20. OMD, R is a cracker after my own heart. That fav! Lotsa love to your girl.

  21. To Shyla: Keep at your healing process and Mom, be as patient as you can be!

    Jo and Stella

  22. love, love, love Shyla and R !


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