Shadow - Much Loved and Very Happy!
It's always lovely to hear from Lancashire Heeler owners with happy ending stories. This one brought a tear to my eye on several counts and Janet has kindly allowed me to publish it. Knowing your dog is the first rule of getting anything right. When Shadow's behaviour changed Janet just knew that something was wrong and set out to find out what. Firstly, learning and understanding about the Lancashire Heeler Breed, it's traits and the (thankfully few!) health issues that can affect them. Secondly understanding her own dog and what was clearly not typical behaviour of him. Shadow came to Janet as a rescue dog - I would say that this placement was meant to be.
Shadow - A PLL success story - Janet Walsh
I am the very proud mummy of 10 year old Shadow, a rescued Heeler from Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary.
When we adopted him we were told he had been scratched in the eye by a cat, and that was why his eye looked a little strange. He looked like he had what looked similar to a glaucoma eye.
After reading about PLL on this website we realised that my baby boy could be more poorly than we first thought and also in a lot of pain. [A vets visit and opthalmic advice given covering a range of options] This is when we made the very easy but also heart-breaking decision to have his eye removed.
The four years following this was like having a completely different dog. His true personality and spirit appeared as if from nowhere.
Unfortunately we recently noticed a change in Shadow's other eye and immediately took him to our vets. After around 6 months of trying to save his eye, we again had to make the decision to remove his other eye, as his spirit had gone, and he wouldn't even get out of his bed.
Once again after much worrying about how my baby would cope, we needn't have worried! The very day after his eye was removed, he was back to his old tricks, and ragging his toys about.
Shadow is now living life to the full, and is coping amazingly. I've never known such a pampered pooch!!
The pictures below show Shadow enjoying life once more on a recent holiday. Happy and pain free.
Behavioural change is a key indicator of canine health problems. Know your dog. Some get distant when in pain, some seek solace from their owner. Aggression is not uncommon when a dog is under stress or in pain. If you are at all concerned about a change in behaviour of your pet consult your vet for advice.
There is now a DNA test available to determine whether a dog is genetically clear, affected or a carrier of PLL. Responsible breeders will always carry out this test unless the parents have already tested genetically clear. From July 2011 the Kennel Club have made it a mandatory requirement of accredited breeders to carry out this test. PLL can also be triggered by trauma. Being vigilant protects your Heeler by early diagnosis of this and other eye problems. We recommend regular clinical eye testing in the interest of your dogs health. Read more about eye health and the Lancashire Heeler