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Old 11-08-2009, 03:21 PM
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Default Facial nerve paralysis- Has anyone experienced this?

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.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:04 PM
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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.
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Old 11-08-2009, 04:46 PM
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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.
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Old 11-08-2009, 07:30 PM
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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.
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Old 11-08-2009, 07:54 PM
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poor guy-- I sure hope you will get some good news!
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Old 11-08-2009, 08:03 PM
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Many vibes coming ..... feel for you both !
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Old 11-09-2009, 08:35 AM
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I hope the vet gives you some encouraging news. Sending good vibes.
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Old 11-09-2009, 05:36 PM
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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.
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Old 11-09-2009, 05:46 PM
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Do dogs get Bell's Palsy? That usually resolves slowly, in humans.
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Old 11-09-2009, 06:23 PM
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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!
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