21/52 – :'(
In what should have been a routine physical exam, Candor has been diagnosed with (among other things) Dirofilaria immitis, more commonly known as heart worms.
Even worse, it seems he's been living with them for a long time... because they are all over his system. And the prophylactic anthelmintic therapy he got last year was a very dangerous thing to do to a dog with heart worms, and could easily have killed him.
But we didn't know.
We would have had him examined much earlier, if only we had known that his previous examinations apparently aren't worth much.
We got Candor from our local animal shelter, who in turn got him from a bulgarian animal rescue organization. Before he left Bulgaria, he had – allegedly – received a physical exam, and no heart worms or babesiosis had been discovered... or at least it says so in the documents we got.
Well, it turns out, he has both.
Either this 'examination' wasn't all too thorough, or he contracted both diseases shortly before leaving Bulgaria.
Be that as it may... both are serious diseases. Luckily, we have a very competent vet. Candor will be getting some more x-ray and ultrasonics tomorrow, and then, over the next weeks, a custom tailored treatment.
It's not going to be easy, because killing heart worms puts a lot of strain on the body. But he'll make it. And we'll help him through, any way we can.