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  1. #1
    Registered User Avsha531's Avatar
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    Help needed, please!

    Hey everyone, I know this is super long. I would really appreciate if people can read this and give me any feedback.

    My girlfriend has two bearded dragons, Bitsy and Balerion. They are both around 7-8 months old. She got them at a reptile expo in February when they were around 3-4 months old.We both did a lot of research to make sure we had all the husbandry info perfect. When we got them they both appeared very active and healthy. In fact, we thought Bitsy was by far more active, hungry, jumpy, alert, etc.

    Bitsy got sick around 2.5 months ago. She wasn't eating well, growing, shedding etc. We knew something was wrong because Balerion was developing just fine, while Bitsy started acting sluggish and depressed, and not bopping around like healthy dragons should.

    We went to a vet 2 months ago and he found a small growth type thing under the skin on the side of her face, by the jaw near the ear. Vet thought it might be pus and an infecton and we started oral antibiotics. That didn't help.
    Her arms and fingers started to swell up too. We then did an x-ray and blood work and started her on injection antibiotics.
    X-ray came back clear other than seeing the swelling on her face and arms. Blood work came back showing that her kidneys weren't breaking down the uric acid and it was staying in her body causing all the swelling.

    We did everything the vet said to do and it kept getting worse.

    Recently her body/spine has started to appear curved and crooked. She hasn't shed or grown at all since this started.

    She is perky and alert though, more so than 2 month ago, however definitely frail. She does have a hard time moving around and did fall off her rock on her back a couple of times and couldn't get up. She can only eat her roaches if we tilt the bowl to her face so she doesn't have to exert herself, and more often than not we are feeding her Care food through a syringe.

    We went to the vet again today and he said she may be in pain, but he can't say for certain. He said she's tolerating it well for now which is why she's still perky, but that could change at any time. He said its getting worse and another bump is forming on the other side of her face. Her legs are swollen now too. It also may be why she's crooked. He said that it is likely kidney disease, but can't say definitively. The bloodwork definitely suggests that something is off with her kidney function.

    So now the options are to put her down, keep her until she goes on her own (which we wouldn't want to do if she's in pain), or go ahead with getting treatment. The vet doesn't recommend this. He feels she's so young and can't grow and doesn't feel like treatment would do her any good.

    Does anyone have experience with this? Before we make a decision, we would love some feedback from people who know bearded dragons well or from anyone who has been through this. I guess we would like to feel like we've done as much research as I can before deciding such a difficult thing.

    Thank you so much for reading this. Any help or suggestions are appreciated. My girlfriend really loves these babies and it's been heartbreaking for her and me.

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  3. #2
    Registered User C.Marie's Avatar
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    I am so sorry for the situation your little beautiful bearded dragon, I have no advice to give but wanted to express my sympathies, you have done more and tried more than most would no matter what happens remember that, will say a pray for her and you guys tonight, best wishes always and healing hugs from across the miles, I know someone with the experience and knowledge will chime in anytime.
    Last edited by C.Marie; 06-11-2018 at 11:27 PM.
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  5. #3
    Registered User Bogertophis's Avatar
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    I really can't help you much either...I've only had one bearded dragon, a rescue whose life I saved (he was horribly constipated & nearly starved to death).
    You are obviously caring owners faced with a very tough choice. Under the circumstances and given the best information from the vet, I think I'd opt for
    euthanasia to alleviate her apparent suffering. Again, I'm not familiar with this in beardies & I don't think it's common either, but just going by what the
    vet has said. Bearded dragons are SO cute, so personable...the way they snuggle up to us and all, so I know how hard this is for you, but if the vet doesn't
    feel that treatment will help, I think it's kinder to let her go. I'm so sorry...but what she's going through sounds painful no matter how stoic she is.

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  7. #4
    BPnet Veteran Craiga 01453's Avatar
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    No experience with beasties, so won't offer advice there.

    I did want to stop by and say I'm thinking of you, friend. Best of luck to you, your girl and your beardie. You're in my thoughts
    ...life is beautiful...

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  9. #5
    Registered User hilabeans's Avatar
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    Oh wow, this sound so awful and heartbreaking. I have no personal experience with this either, I'm sorry. Have you reached out to her breeder? Perhaps this is something they've seen in their line?

    All I can say is watch her closely, if her quality of life is a struggle then I would heed the vet's advice and have her euthanized.

    Ugh, so sorry my friend...judging by everything you've done I think you can rest assured you did your best for her. Thoughts are with you.

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  11. #6
    BPnet Senior Member dakski's Avatar
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    Re: Help needed, please!

    Hang in there brother. I am thinking of all of you.

    Please keep us in the loop.

    I know it's a bad situation, but I know you will do whatever is best for for Bitsy, even if that means pain for you in the short-term.

    I had a Beardie, George, for over ten years. At about 9 1/2 he got mouth rot, which cleared up quickly with proper treatment. However, a few months later, he got pancreatitis and it got to the point where he was in pain and spasming every time he ate.

    I could have done a surgery which would have bought him 6-12 months, if he survived, but I didn't want to put him through that. Between my kidney transplant and subsequent surgery, and other surgeries, I wasn't going to do that to him unless it bought him real time.

    I ultimately made the decision to take his pain away and put him down. It was heartbreaking. I cried like a baby.

    However, I find solace in the fact that I know I gave him a good life and took good care of him. I also did was he needed in the end, as much as it hurt me.

    I feel I rambled a little bit, but I want you to know I've been there.

    Keep in mind Bitsy will not hold it against you if you choose to put her down. It will take her pain away and she knows you did everything you could for her.

    Whatever you decide, hold your head high and do not second guess yourself.

    Good luck and my thoughts are with you, Bitsy, and your girl.

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  13. #7
    Registered User Avsha531's Avatar
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    Re: Help needed, please!

    Thank you all for your support and your kind words and thoughts, it really means a lot to me. I'm going to wait a few more days for hopefully more people to see this and chime in before we move forward with anything, and I will most certainly keep you all updated.
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  15. #8
    BPnet Veteran tttaylorrr's Avatar
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    just wanting to add that i'm sending positive vibes. ~

    i hope the lil one is able to recover.
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  17. #9
    Registered User hilabeans's Avatar
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    Just throwing this out there OP, and you may have totally done this already, but be sure and post in a beardie specific forum too. I am a member of beardeddragonforum.com and it is a pretty active and very supportive group. You may get far more attention to your post there. They seem to have "seen it all" and will be very helpful to you. There may be some FB groups too with more activity, although i'm not a member of any.

    Please do keep us posted here too, though. Best wishes!
    Last edited by hilabeans; 06-12-2018 at 02:32 PM.

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  19. #10
    Registered User Avsha531's Avatar
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    Re: Help needed, please!

    Thanks hilabeans, my girlfriend is a member of that forum and actually posted it there yesterday. Neither of us have Facebook, but we're gonna try to use a friends account to post. Thanks so much!
    Quote Originally Posted by hilabeans View Post
    Just throwing this out there OP, and you may have totally done this already, but be sure and post in a beardie specific forum too. I am a member of beardeddragonforum.com and it is a pretty active and very supportive group. You may get far more attention to your post there. They seem to have "seen it all" and will be very helpful to you. There may be some FB groups too with more activity, although i'm not a member of any.

    Please do keep us posted here too, though. Best wishes!
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