If you have been to some local events in the area, you might have seen a little furball running around the dance floor, wanting to join the party. That little furball is my babygirl, Shakira. I've had her since August 2016 when I bought her from Friendly Pet Center in Greensboro, NC. The first time I saw her I was told she was returned by her previous owner, with that alone prompt me to take her home with me. When I purchased her I was told she is well and healthy, without disclosing her full medical history.
During her 2nd visit to the vet we found out she's been having mild symptoms for Liver Shunt. More info on the actual condition below.
This morning, Shakira started having episodes of mild seizures due to her condition and is currenly being treated for her symptoms at Carolina Veterinary Specialist in Winston Salem, NC. I'm hoping and praying that will get her back to stable condition.
Unfortunately, this is just a temporary fix. A more permanent and long lasting solution is to have her liver shunt surgically fix.
As we all know, medical cost comes at an exponential cost and I'm asking for any ounce of donation you may be able to give to bring my baby girl back to good health so we can see her back on the dance floor again soon!
Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart.
Info taken from Healthy Pets Mercola website;
As most of you are aware, the liver is an amazing organ. It performs a whole host of important functions in the body, among them:
The liver acts as a giant filter that removes blood borne toxins
It synthesizes and distributes proteins for use by the body
It stores sugar in the form of glycogen
So the liver is a phenomenal organ which requires a consistent flow of blood to and through it to do its job effectively.
The presence of a liver shunt in your pet means the blood flow to and through the liver is compromised.
There are two primary types of liver shunts:
Intra-hepatic (inside the liver)
Extra-hepatic (outside the liver)
Liver shunts are typically a problem of dogs, though cats can also have the condition.
How Liver Shunts Develop
A liver shunt called the ductus venosus is actually a natural development while a puppy is growing inside the mother's uterus. Interestingly, during gestation, puppies' livers aren't functional. The mother's liver carries the detoxification burden for her body and her litter while in utero.
Toward the end of gestation, the ductus venosus is supposed to close, insuring the puppy's liver is functional at birth. If the shunt doesn't seal itself off before birth, the puppy is born with an open shunt called the patent ductus venosus which is an intra-hepatic shunt.
An extra-hepatic liver shunt is a genetic anomaly in which the blood flow to the liver is rerouted by an abnormal blood vessel outside the organ.
This type of shunt also develops in utero. Even though the ductus venosus closes as it should prior to birth, the shunt outside the liver remains open, compromising blood flow to and through the dog's liver.
Signs Your Dog Might Have a Liver Shunt
Symptoms of the presence of a liver shunt are also symptoms of a poorly or non-functioning liver.
The liver's job is to distribute protein so the puppy can grow, and also to detoxify the blood. A puppy with a shunt will show signs of toxicosis from central nervous system depression. Symptoms can include:
In very serious cases, toxins in the blood cross the blood-brain barrier resulting in seizures and other significant central nervous system crises.
Another sign of the presence of a liver shunt is failure to thrive. A puppy that isn't thriving will have lack of physical growth, poor muscle tone, a tendency to sleep a lot, and will generally appear lethargic and underdeveloped compared to his littermates.