May 23, 2009

Mia Hits a Rough Spot

FRIDAY: I'll be honest; I'm more than a little worried about Mia. But first, the good news. I'm proud to say that her blood pressure remains normal, as do her heart rate and pulse. Her vet said a week ago that she is not in congestive heart failure. It's all about slowing the progress of the disease. Still, despite keeping her heart rate at good levels with the supplements she's receiving, there's no way to fix the heart murmur and regurgitation of blood. Which brings me to the bad news. Mia's heart, as her vet described it, is "gigantic." There's pressure against her trachea (windpipe) and, as a result, the trachea has collapsed. She now has another upper respiratory infection. She's on an antibiotic because nothing else would touch it. She's also on a prescription syrup, which takes about 10 to 15 days to be effective. Those things finally appear to be helping at least some. Collapsed trachea is common in small breeds, including Chihuahuas, so it's tough to say whether this would have happened anyway, without the mitral valve prolapse. I also put her on Limu juice to boost her immune system. And I added a pinch of garlic to her supplements, because it's a natural bronchodilator. At this stage, I'm noticing just baby steps. She coughs whenever she moves, then calms down after about 10 minutes. So, I got a prescription for oxygen. I give it to her through an infant face mask. I only got it two days ago. Just this morning, when she had a bad coughing spell (mornings are the worst), I put the mask up to her and she was able to breathe much easier. She looked up at me as if to say, "Now I get it; this thing makes me feel better." It was if she understood. Before I got the oxygen, I had to blow air into her a few times, because she had a touch time getting air. The oxygen now provides her relief. She's not lethargic, and she has an appetite, although this morning it took some coaxing. She eats only Primal raw food diet, morning and evening. She perks up almost immediately after eating. She wags her tail, still chases after birds and loves to go on walks around the block at night, although most of the time I carry her--until she gets past this infection. She enjoys the wind blowing in her face. So, that's the latest. I'm hoping for the best and am making sure she's hydrated, especially in the Vegas heat. I continue giving her supplements for her heart. Send lots of healing light Mia's way! SATURDAY MORNING: For the first time in a couple of weeks, I picked up Mia and she didn't cough. Any movement usually causes her to cough. So, I do feel she's making headway--finally! She likes to put her head on my shoulder, and I held her for the longest time, and she didn't cough. This is a BIG baby step! Photo, of Mia with Ali MacGraw last November, by Clay Myers


  1. Read your post today. Up and down I see. She is so lucky to be loved by you though. You are a wonderful "momma". Ginger is starting to show more of the facial muscle loss ~ just feels weird to pet her there or kiss her check area. Thanks for the update! Pam

  2. Thanks, Pam. I'm taking it day by day, trying to get her past this upper respiratory infection. It's very scary. Ginger might be older than we thought. "Course, Chihuahuas can gray prematurely, so maybe the facial muscle loss is part of that. Give her a kiss for me!