Subcutaneous fluid therapy
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  • First off, I'd like to thank everyone on this forum for all the health information I've been able to research in the past - without it I'd be a nervous wreck.

    Just started my older girl's first round of home fluid therapy. Last week she spent a few days at the vet with an I.V. to flush her out and get her liver enzyme count back down to (almost) normal.
    My question is; has anyone been through or is going through this treatment with their B's? And has it proven helpful in aiding liver/kidney health?

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  • SubQ fluids is a life saver!!! It kept my old girl Maggii going for 1 1/2 years when her kidneys failed! It is MOST helpful

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  • Out of curiosity, how many times a week and how much was given? Vet recommended 3 times a week with 300mls.

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  • It depends on the condition of the dog. With Maggii, we were doing every day, then every other day, after a while, I could tell when she needed fluids. But remember she was in renal failure… so it wasn't trying to get her back to normal, because at her advanced age, that was not going to happen.

    So I would go with your Vets recommendations.

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  • Tanza, thank you for the info. Even the vet commented that she was the healthiest looking "sick" dog she's seen - appetite and energy level for a 15+ y.o..

    Great looking "B's" you have there.

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  • @Tri:

    Tanza, thank you for the info. Even the vet commented that she was the healthiest looking "sick" dog she's seen - appetite and energy level for a 15+ y.o..

    Great looking "B's" you have there.

    Thanks and good luck with your girl… it is tough when they get to be elders

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  • Sayblee needed it daily, a living nightmare as she screamed even when we used lidocaine to numb. Nothing helped, took 2 of us. But it absolutely can make the difference.

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    My sister's Collie did well on fluids and I gave it at home while my sister was on vacation. It was easier to give than I expected but I am not sure if it would be easy for one of my Basenjis. So far none of my elderly Bs have needed it.

    Jennifer

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  • It really is not very difficult. I would just use the grooming table (with the grooming noose). Hang the IV bag on noose hook, secure Basenji in the grooming noose. Once the first prick of the needle is over, mostly they stand pretty will. Be sure that they have peed before as the fluids will start to seep in pretty quick depending.

    Also, that fluid is cold. I always made sure they had a nice warm coat/sweater for when we were done. I would in the colder weather put it in the dryer so it was nice and warm

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    Good luck with your old girl! And good for you for going with the subQs. They can be the difference between a sick dog making it and not. I recently had a very close call with my Fanconi-affected senior B. I took him in twice a day for subQs and they helped save his life. He took it pretty well. They warmed blankets and kept those over him while the fluid was going in. The sweater/coat idea is a good one, too. His teeth would chatter like crazy. That has never happened before, even when he played in the snow, so that fluid has to be cold!

    If my little B goes into renal failure– something I hope never happens to any B-- I will have to learn how to give the fluids at home. Twice a day, at close to $30/each would be hard to swing on an ongoing, daily basis.

    Are you seeing improvement in your B's liver values? And what values were high?

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  • Ask your vet about warming the IV fluids. I am a nurse and we have a fluid warmer to keep our IV fluids at about 96 to 106 degrees. Back in the old days, we would put the bags in a microwave for a few minutes, but we had to be sure they didn't get too hot. Seems that with some caution, you would be able to at least take the chill off the fluids to make it more comfortable. Put the IV bag in a basin of warm water for a half hour before giving it, maybe. It takes some pre-planning but is worth it.

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    My vet warmed Spencer's fluids in the microwave, but not a lot– just barely warm. They didn't have a fluid warmer. That's good to know about the recommended temperature. I think it would make a big difference in the dog's comfort level!

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  • Thanks to everyone for the info. Trixie actually had her first at-home treatment on Sunday. She's a really good patient (except for nail trims). Currently using a heating pad for warming, microwaves are out since the bag has a metal ring. I'll have to dig through the records for the values later.

    O.K., looking over the most recent test:
    BUN = 84mg/dL (down from 104)
    CREA = 3.9mg/dL (down from 5.1)

    These were taken after her 2 day stay with a continuous I.V. drip. Still on the high side, but luckily she still has her normal appetite and energy level. She is also on the Hill's k/d diet.

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