How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 32720
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Dr. Michael Salkin is online now

hi i have a german short haired pointer. he is 5 yrs old and

Customer Question

hi i have a german short haired pointer. he is 5 yrs old and has been very active dog.just lately he keeps getting out of breath quickly, and just falls to the ground he seems to be over heating so i have to hose himdown to cool him very worried my vet has checked him over the night it first happened and said he was fine, but it keeps happening
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 4 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin
I'm sorry to hear of this with Henry. His behavior is suggestive of myasthenia gravis - a skeletal muscle weakness due to a decrease of acetylcholine receptors at neuromuscular junctions. Acquired myashtenia gravis is fairly common and occurs in adult dogs with a bimodal age of onset with peaks at 3 and 10 years. German shorthair pointers are overrepresented for this disorder.

The acetylcholine receptor antibody test which is a serologic evaluation to detect antibodies directed against acetylcholine receptors is the gold standard for diagnosis of acquired myasthenia gravis. If confirmed, myasthenia gravis is treated with anticholinesterase drugs such as pyridostigmine. Immunosuppressive therapy is indicated when there is an inadequate response to anticholinesterase medications. Prednisone is the initial drug of choice in those cases.

The prognosis is good for patients without pharyngeal/esophageal weakness. Spontaneous remission occurs in almost 90% of affected dogs. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.