11th Hour Diagnosis Saves Collie From Euthanization

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Tick-borne paralysis is rare, but possible. ______________________
Tick-borne paralysis is rare, but possible.



Ollie the collie is one lucky dog.  And the Fates are one lucky family.

When Ollie presented with extremely worrisome symptoms, the vets at the Dove Lewis Animal Hospital in Portland, Oregon, were mystified by the sudden onset of paralysis.

“He couldn’t stand, he couldn’t walk, he couldn’t urinate, couldn’t defecate,” Dr. Adam Stone said in and interview with Nora Hart of Portland station KPTV. The problem could have been caused by a number of issues. “Anything from cancer to trauma, or a fracture of a vertebra or a spinal fracture. Any one of these could have caused similar signs.”

After a thorough check and no real conclusions to what was causing the problem the family, the doctor said, finally decided they had reached their limit, and it was time to help Ollie pass.

As the dog was being prepped for euthanization, however, an attentive intern noticed a tick embedded in the skin just behind Ollie’s ear.

“It was just pure grace that the people found something and decided to check it out further,” said Ollie’s owner, Falline Fate.

Ticks possess a neurotoxin in their saliva that prevents nerve transition to the muscles. It takes time to build up in the body and cause paralysis like what was observed in Ollie.

The tick was removed and the euthanization stayed. Miraculously, Ollie was up and walking — back to normal — in just 10 hours.

Ollie’s veterinarian said that paralysis from ticks is pretty rare, but it can happen.