Saturday, September 28, 2013

Payton's PDE Story

Originally published June 7, 2012:

I have compiled a listing of all the posts dedicated to Payton’s fight against PDE. 

What is PDE?

This post was created from her blog page, My PDE Story.  I thought it would be best to make it a blog post that would show up as the most current to make it easy on everyone searching to find out more about PDE and discovering Pugnacious P for the first time.  Please take the time to browse the great PDE resources on the left sidebar of the blog and some new ones in the article we were honored to provide for the Milwaukee Pugfest organization (  

To those of you that are new to this blog and Payton’s story, I would encourage you to read through not only the links above but the entire blog to really get a feel for the wonderful life that Payton led despite having PDE.  She truly was a miracle, living with PDE for 5 ½ years to the age of 9.  My husband and I are so blessed to have had the privilege of caring for the most special pug.

Appropriately, for the first stop on my “Remembering Payton Tour”, I traveled to Texas to meet Dr. Kim Greer. 

It was so wonderful. She talked with me for an hour and a half. It's hard to express how much I still miss Payton, but my visit with Dr. Greer helped to give me some needed peace and closure. We shared our pug stories, and it became so clear how dedicated she is to this breed.  I am so happy that Payton is a part of her studies.  Dr. Greer told me that they will have to update the age range because of Payton, increasing it from 7 to 9, even though she was diagnosed at age 3 ½.  Personally, I think it's unlikely that pugs as old as 9 would come down with it, but with this disease, who knows.

We talked a little bit about the test Dr. Greer helped develop with UC Davis (  She warned me that there have been a few cases where a pug did get PDE even though the results showed the lowest risk (no copies of the identified markers). That’s why it’s important to realize the test is not a diagnostic tool.  The researchers have yet to identify all of the markers so the test can’t be 100% accurate yet.  And actually it's these "exception to the rule" pugs that would benefit the research the most so Dr. Greer can figure out the missing markers.  

The test is based on 3 markers that Dr. Greer found, and they have been independently confirmed. Another group thinks they found 2 more so she will be verifying them in the fall.  After doing so, Payton’s samples will be analyzed against [hopefully] more complete findings.  All of the markers seem to be related to the immune system. Dr. Greer thinks that PDE is triggered based on certain immune system responses. She was very interested to hear that 3 or 4 weeks prior to Payton being diagnosed with PDE she had her routine shots and had a bad reaction (which hadn't happen to her before that time).

So please, please make arrangements to donate your pug and/or encourage others to do so if PDE is suspected.  After passing, have their body refrigerated, NOT frozen, and contact Dr. Greer or another researcher for further instructions.  Dr. Greer’s contact info is linked from the left sidebar of the blog.  If you are interested in supporting pugs in ways other than rescue, monetary donations are always welcomed for PDE research too.  We have to do everything we can to help get to the bottom of this horrible disease!

As always, feel free to send us an email ( with any questions.

Christy (and angel Payton in spirit)