Yukon Territory

Dawson City to Whitehorse, Yukon

12 September 2010 - Sunday

It was not a good morning for Tazz.  She was in significant pain.  And clearly very uncomfortable.  There were two episodes where she yelped and reacted in pain. 

Rather than spend the day in Dawson, we knew we had to make it to Whitehorse and see the emergency vet.  We were on the road in record time. I sat with Tazz in the back
of the truck's supercab, holding her head in my lap.  Therefore, no pictures.

Called the vet from Pelly Crossing while Steve filled the truck with diesel.  Tazz was up and about, exploring the area.  She played with a puppy for a bit too.  After talking with the vet, we were on the way again, eating lunch while on the move.

Arrived at the vet's office in Whitehorse at 5 p.m. The vet couldn't determine anything specific.  All of Tazz's blood work was normal.  Her vital signs were all normal.  She did not demonstrate any discomfort when the vet manipulated her neck or spine.  Tazz played with a ball while we waited for the test results.  The vet's notes indicate Tazz was mildly ataxic but able to chase and catch the squeak toy (her favorite).  No doubt, Tazz was in good spirits.  She almost seemed normal again.

We asked if we could overnight in the vet’s parking lot in case Tazz had another severe pain episode in the morning.  And that is what we did.

I was very tentative about the morning though.  The mornings were the worst for Tazz.  The vet gave us some drugs to administer in case Tazz had another pain episode -- basically valium in gel form to inject in her bum.  Doesn't that sound fun!

13 September 2010 - Monday

Tazz did okay in the morning.  She was more wobbly though.  After the vet checked her again and declared her okay but with possible neurological issues.  I queried about cryptococcal fungus, which is common on Vancouver Island.  The vet wasn't familiar with the fungus and indicated she would ask a colleague about it -- her colleague was from Vancouver Island too.  We decided to find a campground in Whitehorse and stay another day to ensure Tazz was stable.

Later in the afternoon Tazz had a great walk along the Yukon River with us.  She played and romped with lots of energy and enthusiasm.  She was uncoordinated though.

In the evening she wanted to walk and walk and walk.  By now we had fashioned a sling for her, to keep her upright.  Steve walked with the leash and I held our homemade sling, which wrapped under her tummy.  We must have made a fine sight!

While at the campground, I was logging onto the internet as much as possible in an attempt to learn something about what could be affecting Tazz.  I also described Tazz's condition on one of my favorite doggy & RV discussion groups, hoping someone could shed some light on this situation.  There was lots of support, plenty of speculation, but nothing seemed to fit the circumstance.  Not knowing was hard!

14 September 2010 - Tuesday

Tazz was more uncoordinated this a.m.  But she didn't have another episode of pain.  The vet phoned to recommend the blood test be done for Cryptococcal Disease as Tazz's symptoms were consistent with that affliction.  The blood work needed to be flown to Vancouver BC for testing; the results would be available in three days.

We also made contact with the Canada West Veterinary Hospital in Vancouver, which has neurologists on staff.  The Whitehorse vet recommended we make our way there, as Tazz obviously had neurological issues.  It was on our way home ... so we decided to leave the next morning and head for Vancouver.

Tazz wanted to walk and walk this evening.  She was still functioning well, just wobbly.  She wanted to hike on the trails and wasn't too enthused about heading back to camp.  This was so perplexing!

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