Facial nerve paralysis- Has anyone experienced this?

Discussion in 'Dog Health Care' started by Saintgirl, Nov 8, 2009.

  1. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    Poor Hutch, our Saint, has facial nerve paralysis. He has lost muscle coordination on the left side of his face. I immediately thought that he had suffered from a stroke, but usually this is not the case. Most cases of this are idiopathic, but we do have to rule out the other causes. We will know more tomorrow evening after an apointment with his regular vet. So any good vibes that can be sent would be appreciated!!

    The poor fellow, he already is a drooly guy, but now his left side jowel is even worse and he has a constant drip coming from his mouth. He is unable to blink his left eye, so we have to place drops in to prevent corneal damage. And he only has expressive motion in his right ear, his left ear just hangs limp. He did suffer some trauma from a gallop straight into a tree that could be the cause. We will rule this out with x-rays. He had a case of the zoomies and looked behind to see if the other 2 dogs were still chasing him and he ran into the tree. If this is the case he may regain some motion once the inflamation resolves. We also have to rule out inner ear infections, tumors, etc. Right now this seems to be the only symptom. He is still active, eating well, etc.

    This is the first time that I have thought about his age, and how he is no longer a pup. He is only 6, but they have an average lifespan of 8-10. My poor boy, I can't imagine what I will do if it is anything too serious.
     
  2. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    Oh...the poor boy. I do hope it won't turn out to be anything too serious. A head injury could definitely cause neurological issues like this. Hopefully, the vet will be able to see if there's any swelling and if it can be alleviated. I'm not sure if it would show up on an x-ray. He may need some other kind of picture. I'll be sending you and him my best thoughts and wishes for a treatable condition. It does sound good that he's eating well and seems to feel okay. Keep us posted.
     
  3. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    Thanks Doberluv. We want to rule out trauma, even though it is unlikely. But because this did happen the day after his accident we want to rule it out. MRI's and CAT scans are an option but they want to rule out the other more likely causes. Tomorrow we start a complete blood and biochemistry profile and if they can detect any spots that would warrant an X-ray we will have this done.
     
  4. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    This has to cause you so much anxiety. I am so very sorry this is going on. I'll be thinking of you guys tomorrow and hope this will turn out okay. Vibes being sent.
     
  5. Baxter'smybaby

    Baxter'smybaby swimming upstream

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    poor guy-- I sure hope you will get some good news!
     
  6. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    Many vibes coming ..... feel for you both !
     
  7. Barb04

    Barb04 Love my pets Staff Member

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    I hope the vet gives you some encouraging news. Sending good vibes.
     
  8. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    Well, it seems like the nerve damage will be permanent. Now we have one Saint Bernard with an EXTRA droopy face (at least on one side). It is unlikely that trauma is the culprit. He is showing no signs of lamness or tenderness in any areas that could cause inflamation that would damage the facial nerves. His thyroid is of question though, we will know by the end of the week if this is the case. In rare instances the thyroid can cause FNP. All in all it seems that most likely it is an idiopathic case and he will be fine!!! Now I can sleep and not worry all night long! A little extra drool from my bear is fine as long as I can have him with me for a few more years at least.

    Thanks for the well wishes for Hutchie! He means the world to me.
     
  9. drmom777

    drmom777 Bloody but Unbowed

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    Do dogs get Bell's Palsy? That usually resolves slowly, in humans.
     
  10. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    FNP has been compared to Bell's Palsy in humans however in dogs it is very rare that the nerve damage reverses. My husband and I are going to continue massage and stimualtion to the damaged side of his face hoping that we will see a change, worse case scenerio nothing changes and Hutch gets a little extra special attention from us. If it is his thyroid there is a small chance he will recover. If it stays the same then he just has a little more character than before!
     
  11. Baxter'smybaby

    Baxter'smybaby swimming upstream

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    has he been tested for lyme disease? My husband developed bell's palsy when he had lyme. Thankfully it cleared up with anitbiotics used to treat the lyme. Just a thought/
     
  12. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    I will ask my vet about this. Bell's Palsy and FNP may be comparable but unfortunatley they are not the same. However we have had a big increase in the amount of Lyme's in the past year, so always worth asking about. Nearly all of the time the cause of FNP is idiopathic.
     
  13. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    So, the vet doesn't think it's a tumor or anything serious which is causing this? From your post, it sounds like pretty good news...that the underlying cause may not be anything to worry about. My best wishes to you guys. If it's only a matter of a little extra drool, he's well worth it.
     
  14. Bailey08

    Bailey08 New Member

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    Saintgirl, you're such a good dog mom. :)

    I'm glad your boy is going to be okay.
     
  15. Saintgirl

    Saintgirl New Member

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    Doberluv, my vet believes that if anything it will be related to the thyroid. She did say that we could do an MRI, but that she did not think it necessary because tumors are VERY RARELY the problem. Of course there are things that we should watch for that would indicate a need for an MRI, and you can be sure I'll be keeping watch over that. So until we see anything change we are going with the whole if it quacks like a duck, swims like a duck...

    Thanks Bailey08!
     
  16. Amanda885

    Amanda885 New Member

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    aw, poor guy! im so sorry to hear. I am glad he is going to be ok though..and you can't go wrong with some extra love, hehe. :)

    sending more positive vibes your way!
     

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