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So my dogs went to the vet on july 5th to get rabies vaccines because the city was pressing me to register my dogs. They were given the rabies vaccinations and my 10 year old male Ziggy, was also given a "strong steroid" for his allergies. The steroid administered was a Depo Medrol injection of 20mg. The vet commented that she thought Ziggy was no more than 7 years old because he was so healthy and fit. He hadn't had a rabies shot since his first one at the age of 12 months. Within 48 hrs I noticed Ziggy's breathing was very labored. He was breathing short and fast. His heart rate seemed to be elevated. His breathing woke me from a dead sleep. It has been several days now and his breathing has not improved at all.
He returned to the vet this morning for blood work. I am awaiting results from the lab. The vet said he did not have a fever, his lungs sounded good, and his heart was fine. I am uncertain how she knows his heart is fine without the lab results and without any imaging? I do realize Ziggy is !0, but he exercises daily and is extremely active. He loves to play fetch and we do so for an hour daily. So he runs for at least an hour per day and after his hour of running he doesn't even breathe as hard as he is right now just resting. There is definitely something wrong with my best friend and I don't know what to do. We played fetch in the morning on the day he got these shots and he was just fine as usual.
A google search of: "adult dog labored breathing after rabies vaccine" showed Anaphylaxis which one symptom is difficulty breathing. I also searched for side effects of the steroid that he had (the Depo Medrol) and it resulted in Hypokalemia of which one symptom is breathing difficulty due to paralysis in the respiratory muscles. Basically this is caused by a low potassium level in the blood which I guess can be caused by this steroid.
I am so upset. Ziggy is my best friend in the whole world and Im so worried about him. I don't know how to handle this. I have to keep him resting because when he gets up even to go urinate his breathing becomes so much more labored that I'm scared he will have a heart attack or something. If anyone has anything to share or advice please I am desperate. Thank you for allowing me to share my situation.
Hi. My suggestion is to see a Chinese or holistic vet doctor as soon as possible. I’m feeling like your poor puppy has been reacting to toxins from the rabies and even the steroid shot. If you don’t have money put up a go fund me and try to get this taken care of super quick. Good luck to you and your pet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Fighter559, how is Ziggy doing? Have been thinking about him and sending happy thoughts.

Ziggy has made some great progress. He barely finished the antibiotic treatment a few days ago. I had planned to come back and update the post. My boy's breathing is still slightly labored but he is able to play fetch again. Early in the morning when the air is cool and the temperature is at its lowest point of the day, he does quite well running and fetching. He is in good spirit and fetch makes him so happy. We are taking it easy and every 5 fetches we take a break to catch his breath. This is because I do notice that his breathing will be quite faster than my female Cali's breathing. Cali is a big girl who weights about 30 pounds more than Ziggy does. She was always the first to start breathing heavy when exercising as she is a little overweight but also she is a larger dog than Ziggy is. We are looking for Cali to drop 10 pounds though to protect her hips and joints.

Overall I noticed the difference in Ziggy's condition within the first couple days of using the doxy. Now if he runs in the heat of the afternoon he does have slightly labored breathing. However prior to the doxy he was having very concerning labored breathing even in a resting state. I hope he will continue to improve. If there is anything else I should do to help his lungs and or his heart please advise. I was never able to obtain a copy of the blood work from the vet. I am certain that they never drew blood at all. They admitted to not checking his blood pressure, heart rate or oxygen saturation level. They charged me for a "wellness checkup sick pet" and verbally I was told they would completely check him out. How could you not check the blood pressure and heart rate of a dog that is having a hard time breathing? They just wanted more money I guess. I will be very careful with selection of vets in the future.

I wish to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for all the support you have offered me and the kind words in my time of despair. As a newbie to the forum you guys made me feel welcome here which helped me keep it together for my baby. I dont think I would have used the doxy without the interaction from you guys. I was to afraid to do anything. Ziggy thanks you guys as well.

At present I am researching new food for both dogs. They do eat kibble which I know is bad. I cant find any brands of dog food that hasn't had serious recalls, lawsuits, deaths, etc. I am trying to reduce Ziggy's food allergies. I will appropriately make a new post to address the food allergies and choice of foods etc. Feel free to comment when I do as I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
THANK YOU KINDLY!!
 

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What food are you using?
Good rule of thumb, if you can get it at a grocery store or vet, don't.
Look for brands such as Stella and Chewys, Orijin, Arcana, etc. If you don't have a good pet supply store around, Chewy.com is a great place to start.
Also, when feeding kibble, add water.
Look into commercial raw diets as well, raw is best, but some dogs won't eat it.
OC Raw Dog makes a good one that is the least expensive I've seen.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
What food are you using?
Good rule of thumb, if you can get it at a grocery store or vet, don't.
Look for brands such as Stella and Chewys, Orijin, Arcana, etc. If you don't have a good pet supply store around, Chewy.com is a great place to start.
Also, when feeding kibble, add water.
Look into commercial raw diets as well, raw is best, but some dogs won't eat it.
OC Raw Dog makes a good one that is the least expensive I've seen.
I've always bought their food from the feed supply store and have tried several brands over the past few years. I am currently feeding NutriSource but my dogs don't like it very much.
 

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I'm gonna take that back, just a little.
Evolve and Fresh Pet are both good foods you can get at the grocery store.
Fresh Pet is gently cooked, so if raw isn't for you, this is the next best thing.
 
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