March 12, 2019:  The results of Noelle’s labs came back yesterday and she has tested positive for coccidiomycosis, also known as Valley Fever.  This comes from inhalation of a soil-borne fungus which normally affects the dog’s respiratory system however it is known to spread out into other body systems. Although rare, she presents with most clinical signs. In speaking with our vet, we will put her on an elevated dose of anti-fungal medication for an extended period of time which has proven to be most effective in these cases, then titer and check her blood work again, and adjust medication accordingly.

This disease can spread systemically and affect her bones and joints, which is probably the cause of her mobility problems.  This poor girl had been feeling so punk. It can also affect the eye, which is another issue she is having.

The anti-fungal medication can be tough on the liver, as can the NSAID she is taking for her pain. We are hoping that as she improves, she will no longer need the NSAIDS but while she is on both, we will need to do blood at the same intervals to make sure her liver functions are within normal limits.

This is a longer rehab as the elevated dose must be given for 4-5 months. Valley Fever is a life-threatening disease and she may have to be on medication the rest of her life. We won’t know until we see how she reacts to the medication, but we need have her stabilized before even considering placing her up for adoption. Relapses will happen if her therapy is not followed through to completion or shortened.

Noelle’s foster family is committed to seeing this through. Her demeanor improves exponentially when on NSAIDS, so that is good news!

If you would like to sponsor Noelle through her rehabilitation, please select the yellow DONATE NOW button on the right. Donations for her medications and continued care are greatly appreciated.



March 7, 2019:  The results of Noelle’s x-rays showed no change. The bronchial pattern noticed is not something we would see with chronic allergies or bronchitis. She still has a deep dry cough. Tests and treatment have ruled out bacterial and viral infection so our next step is to test for a fungal infection. 

February 10, 2019: A canine respiratory panel was completed which cleared Noelle of some nasty possibilities of the cause of her respiratory infection. She has now been placed on another round of antibiotics for three weeks, at which time we will do more x-rays.

February 4, 2019: The results of the fine needle aspirate performed indicate that the enlargement in her lymph nodes is not lymphoma, but reactionary to whatever is going on in her lungs, which is great news. Tuesday we took her back for a respiratory PCR panel and are currently awaiting results. Please keep Noelle in your thoughts!

Noelle’s Journey:

Sweet little Noelle came to us from the shelter right around the holidays, after recently having a litter of pups. Emaciated, she weighed only 46 lbs. Her golden spirit was dampened by the fact she was also pretty sick. Initially diagnosed with pneumonia, she has been on antibiotics for 6 weeks. Still unresolved, we are now investigating other possibilities for her respiratory illness. Her x-rays still show opacity in her lungs that can be attributed to a few things, and her lymph nodes are enlarged.

While she has come a long way in foster care, gaining 8 pounds since her arrival and interacting with her foster siblings, she still tires easily and has her down days.

Please keep Noelle in your thoughts as we try to determine the root cause of her illness. 

We will keep you posted!