In my post called Happy Thanksgiving… I wrote of the difficulty I was having trying to reach Dr. Plechner, the veterinarian who developed the Plechner Protocol for dogs stricken with sudden blindness also known as SARDS or Sudden Acquired Retinal Degeneration Syndrome. The young lady who runs his Facebook page, Blind Dogs Cure for SARDS by Dr. Plechner, had not only blocked me but removed Sasha’s progress videos I had uploaded as well as my posts. I also found myself blocked from his personal Facebook page which told me she had access to his account. All because one Sunday she posted that he was admitted to the hospital and several of his California patients wrote that they were going to visit him that afternoon. He had actually been discharged from the hospital and not wanting to see people make an uneccessary trip, I posted that information which for some unknown reason set her off. He was ill at the time and I assumed that once he had recovered we would resolve the issue. Was I wrong!
At the time he was living and practicing in California but when he became ill he retired and eventually moved back to his home state of Idaho. I was assured by someone who is in Dr. Plechner’s loop that the woman who runs his Facebook page, Myriam Miranda of Naples, Florida, did not have access to his personal email but considering the control she’d already demonstrated, I had reservations. I’ll admit I waited awhile before even attempting to email him because I was angry. I simply could not understand how he could allow her to arbitrarily do this to someone whos dog’s treatment he was consulting on. Especially since he and I had formed an exceptionally good relationship and emailed each other almost daily. Because of my location my goal was to bring his work to the attention of an esteemed teaching veterinary schoo/hospital. To go from that to dead silence and having a barrier thrown up for no rational reason was frustrating. Most of all it was unfair to Sasha for she had undergone many blood tests, a complete change in diet and a complicated medication regime in an attempt to restore some or all of her vision. And it was working! Plus she was on the cusp of regaining some near vision when this woman interfered.
In the latter part of November Sasha began vomiting which I wrote about in Sasha’s Tummy… I love her medical team in Maine but it would have been nice to speak with Dr. Plechner, to ask if he had encountered this problem with other dogs being treated for SARDS. I finally bit the bullet and emailed him but days passed with no response. Sasha’s stomach issues seemed to resolve with medication and I thought we had successfully passed the hurdle ~ until this past week. One of her followers had commented on my Happy Thanksgiving post that he was disturbed as a dog owner that someone would do this to a person whose dog was undergoing treatment. He said he was going to find the Facebook page but I said let it go, not worth it etc. The other day he commented on the Happy Thanksgiving post to say he’d located the Facebook page, wrote a comment which was subsequently deleted and him blocked. He pasted the comment he made so I could see and it was essentially benign except he asked for clarification as to whose page it was, why would “Miranda” take it upon herself to block someone because she misunderstood what they wrote or because they questioned her. I was dumbfounded and still haven’t responded (sorry Andy). I emailed Dr. Plechner one more time but again, no response. I then contacted the person whom I previously wrote was in the loop as this individual has always been extremely helpful and genuinely kind. This time however he simply gave me names of several veterinarians who use Dr. Plechner’s Protocol. That’s the last thing Sasha needs ~ to bring a virtual stranger into her care plan. She has excellent vets who follow his protocol to a T. They just aren’t as experienced with SARDS as he is so therefore can’t be absolutely sure if the steroids are causing her stomach issues. Then last week it happened again in the morning before she left for her scheduled veterinary appointment. I spent nearly $500 between her usual acupuncture/laser therapy plus diagnostic blood work and x-rays. Dr. Stuer prescribed some medication and I prayed it would work but then just a few days later it happened again. I spoke with him and she’s going on another round of the medication (Carafare) that I dissolve in a small amount of water then give by oral syringe. We’re also going to cut the daily amount of steroids she receives in half because we both feel they are contributing to her gastric distress.
Sasha is such a good girl, always takes her daily mountain of pills split into three rounds over the course of the day yet doesn’t resist. She is one of the sweetest, most mellow dogs I have been blessed to be owned by. I thought of all she’s been through; the FCE (spinal stroke) that ended her participation in Schutzhund, the perianal fistula disease, stem cell therapy and now the Plechner Protocol. I’ve thought about it, ground my teeth during my sleep, and shed many tears this past week. Today I made my decision; Sasha needs to be weaned off the protocol. Long term steroid use can have an adverse effect on one’s body, particularly their organs and I’m just not willing to take a chance with her health. I’d rather she remain blind than to go into organ failure. As much as I trust her veterinary team I refuse to gamble with her health by keeping her on a treatment when I can’t even speak to the doctor who essentially discovered and fine tuned it. And why? Because some woman in Florida decides who can post on the page and who can’t? Based on absolutely no normal or intelligent rationale? I took a cue from Andy and looked at her YouTube videos as well as her LinkedIn. .She can’t even pronounce Dr. Plechner’s name or the syndrome yet she has the audacity to get between my dog and a veterinarian who was helping her? I took a huge leap of faith with Dr. Plechner because of the controversy surrounding his protocol. I literally spent 8-10 hours a day on my laptop reading everything I could find, both the good and the not so good. Only to be cut off at the pass by a woman just as Sasha was making real progress.
Would she have eventually regained her near vision? I don’t know because Myriam Miranda calls the shots. And know what? That is NOT acceptable to me. Sasha is worth far more to me than the Myriam Miranda’s of the world. As for Dr. Plechner? I have zero respect for him now because any professional medical practitioner who allows an inexperienced, non-medical person to play God with dogs whose cases he is consulting on can jump on the boat and go straight to hell with her.
I have said from the beginning of Sasha’s Journey and her subsequent blindness that I would love her whether she had a return of vision or not and that has never changed. We are like two peas in a pod; she has a bad left leg, so do I. She has a visual impairment, so do I. She sleeps half off the bed, so do I.
Now if I could just get her snow boots from the shoemaker before spring I’d be happy. The cold snow really bothers her foot now that she has arthritis in her toes so I need the snow boots.
What can I say other than welcome to Maine where it’s winter five months of the year!
I’m not a savvy blogger so unsure of menus and widgets. Please click to see Sasha’s You Tube channel which chronicles her journey from onset until present day. If you like it, please subscribe.
💜Next up ~ tapering off her meds💜