KF_in_Georgia Posted January 23, 2012 Share Posted January 23, 2012 My six and a half year old dog, Silver, was picked up by animal control in July as a stray. When they found her, she had a severe rash on one front leg. They did skin scrapings and found nothing. She was treated with Simplecef and prednisone; no improvement. I adopted her in August. SEGA's vet prescribed Cephelaxin and prednisone for the rash; no improvement. With my own vet, we tried antihistamines; we tried wait-and-see (hoping it was an environmental allergy that would improve when ragweed pollen counts dropped). We tried four weeks of doxycycline. And she was muzzled nearly 24 hours a day through all these months to keep her from chewing on her leg when it itched. (She had itching sometimes in other places, but the leg was the only part of her body that she was mutilating.) Then we did our own skin scraping. And because he saw some thinning hair on her foot, my vet scraped along a toe as well as on two places on her leg. He was really excited when he reported seeing what looked like half of a scabies mange mite from her foot. (He said it was that--or it was a funky hair follicle.) But for the first time he had what looked like a valid diagnosis--rather than a guess. He prescribed two doses of ivomec, administered two weeks apart. She got .7 ml of what he said is about 40 times what she'd get in a heartworm preventative. He said I needed to give her the dose when I could keep an eye on her all day to watch for a bad reaction (that is, don't give the dose at night and then go to bed; give the dose on my day off), then skip her heartworm meds the next month. She got the first dose on Tuesday the 10th, and she had no problems. She gets her second dose this Tuesday (the 24th). The vet said that if this worked, we'd need to treat eleven and a half year old Sam, as well. Sam has shown no symptoms--no scratching or chewing. He and Silver aren't "close" (an understatement; she's a snarky little girl), so it's quite possible she hasn't transferred the mites to him. And the vet said the mites don't live in bedding. But he said Sam could be carrying mites, and if we treated only Silver, Sam could pass the mites back to her. The good news is that it's worked: Silver tolerated the first dose very well and it has been effective. Scratching and chewing has almost completely stopped. She hasn't been muzzled--even during the day, when she's crated and I'm at work--for the last four days, and her leg looks wonderful. There's almost no visible difference between the formerly chewed leg and the other leg. The second dose in a couple of days should finish off the mites. The bad news is that it's worked--and now I'm supposed to treat Sam. Sam has spinal arthritis. He has lung cancer, diagnosed in November. That lung cancer appeared on x-ray to be a secondary cancer (several smaller spots, not one large tumor), and we haven't explored to see where the primary cancer might be (beyond doing x-rays on his back to make sure there wasn't osteo there). Sam takes methocarbamol and meloxicam for his spinal arthritis; he takes gabapentin for general pain. He feels well enough to eat everything in sight; he still does zoomies in the living room. But he coughs, and the coughing is getting more serious--longer coughing spells, although he's not coughing up blood and he's not having any spells where he can't get his breath. I don't want to give him the ivomec. Given his age and his health, I figure he's more likely to have a bad reaction to the ivomec than Silver is. (And I understand that she might yet develop a sensitivity to ivermectin.) I realize that Sam's time is limited. But I don't want to be the one who cuts his time short by giving him a drug that isn't going to do him the least bit of good. Is it possible that the Interceptor that Sam has faithfully taken every single month for nine and a half years has given him some immunity to the mites? So either I risk Sam by giving him two doses of ivomec to treat mites he doesn't appear to have...or I risk having Silver get reinfected and have to take a repeat treatment, thereby increasing her chances of a bad reaction to ivomec. What I think I ought to do is to have my vet do skin scrapings on Sam. Then, no mites = no treatment. Does that sound reasonable? Does anyone have another suggestion? Quote Kathy and Q (CRT Qadeer from Fuzzy's Cannon and CRT Bonnie) and Jane (WW's Aunt Jane from Trent Lee and Aunt M); photos to come. Missing Silver (5.19.2005-10.27.2016), Tigger (4.5.2007-3.18.2016), darling Sam (5.10.2000-8.8.2013), Jacey-Kasey (5.19.2003-8.22.2011), and Oreo (1997-3.30.2006) Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Join the conversation
You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.