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Random Issues With Zuri *****update #50: W/thyroid Results*****


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So Zuri has a lot of "little" things going on that are making me wonder if there isn't a larger problem. Or perhaps it's just coincidence. Or it could have been something like a food change that upset his immune system and things will resolve. Either way, I just wanted to get some input before meeting with my vet again. So here's the brief rundown:

 

Early May - Zuri had a dental and lump (benign) removal

He was slower to recover from anesthesia but otherwise everything was fine, but I noticed him drinking a lot more water and needing to go out more frequently (he was barking to be taken out at odd times). Suspected a UTI, but U/A was clear and urine was concentrated, and vet thought perhaps his bladder was just irritated. Put him on a Vetri-science supplement for bladder health for 10 days and then said we'd recheck. I felt I noticed immediate improvement, but when he went off of it, symptoms came back. I was doing a workshop that required long days away so I kept him on it a bit longer. He's been off of it now for over a week and seems to be doing okay.

 

Around that time, although possibly before, Zuri was shedding a ton. I assumed at first he was just blowing his coat, but it persisted for so long that I suspected something else was going on. It's standard coat blowing stuff, coat looks a bit dull, but mainly tons of little tufts of dead hair that you can pick out, especially around his hind end. Then I noticed a sore on his hind leg that I couldn't explain (no yard for him to have injured himself in unattended). So off to the vet we went. She did a scraping and saw bacteria under the microscope but didn't do a culture or anything, just put him on ABs that he finished yesterday. I saw improvement to his coat on the meds, but the last few days it seems like it's been getting worse again.

 

Also noticed he was sensitive about his left ear. Vet looked and said there's a big waxy ball o' gunk down in there. Prescribed daily ear washes for a week to get it out, which I've been doing, but I haven't seen anything come out and he's still occasionally sensitive about it.

 

He also has a new wound on the front of his other back leg. We were at Grapehounds this wkd so it's possible he got the scrape there, but I only noticed it (and his obsessive licking) when we go home on Monday and never noticed an incident where he would have gotten it. The appearance of it does seem to coincide with the reappearance of the hair loss, which I would easily attribute to him finishing his ABs except that it started a couple of days before the end of the course.

 

That about sums it up. The only other things I think that are worth mentioning are that he was on a different AB immediately after his dental because he had extractions and for the same reason, I had to feed him premade raw, which had ingredients he's not used to (although only vegetables) for about 2 weeks. I mention those only because I wonder if either could have upset his system and led to these issues.

 

So having said all of that, my vet mentioned that she wanted to check Zuri's thyroid if the ABs didn't resolve the skin issues. I'm not opposed to doing that, although he doesn't have other symptoms like lethargy, weight gain, etc. and the hair loss isn't exactly what I'd expect from a low thyroid. If we do do it, I'll just spring for the full MSU panel right off of the bat, so I guess I'm wondering whether to just do that, whether we should do another skin scraping and get a culture this time, or whether there are other things we should look at, and in what order. He obviously had b/w shortly before his dental and that all looked good. FWIW, he's had his thyroid checked in the past and it's been good, but that was years ago and I know dogs can develop hypothyroidism in old age.

 

Any thoughts? We're at the vet's fairly often for acupuncture and cold laser for Zuri's LS so it's no biggie to do tests one at a time rather than all at once to avoid multiple visits. So we could for instance, do another skin scraping/culture first, then if those are negative, do the thyroid panel. I guess I'm just trying to mainly get to the root of this, but also avoid spending money on unnecessary tests if possible. Thanks!

 

 

Edited by NeylasMom

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Sounds like a puzzle! Thyroid can have a wide variety of symptoms, so it could be that even if he doesn't have the typical ones. Definitely sounds like some low grade, multi-symptom "off". How's that for a diagnosis :lol

 

FWIW I have been feeding raw for 10 yrs, and I have had several dogs that didn't do well on the commercial raw mixes. And some that did fine, of course. I always blamed the veggies, but since I only use it as a supplement of special occasion, like after a dental, I never really investigated.

 

If things don't improve, I would guess more tests are the next thing.

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Sounds like a puzzle! Thyroid can have a wide variety of symptoms, so it could be that even if he doesn't have the typical ones. Definitely sounds like some low grade, multi-symptom "off". How's that for a diagnosis :lol

Sounds spot on. :lol

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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I think your vet's approach is a good one. Even if you find another infection with the culture, you have to wonder why he keeps getting skin infections. Thyroid is a candidate as a predisposer of skin infections -- oh, and ear gunk too.

Edited by greyhead
Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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I think your vet's approach is a good one. Even if you find another infection with the culture, you have to wonder why he keeps getting skin infections. Thyroid is a candidate as a predisposer of skin infections -- oh, and ear gunk too.

So would you do the thyroid panel and hold off on the skin culture(s) or do both?

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Thyroid test isn't going to tell you whether there is an infection or what antibiotic (or antifungal) to use.

 

 

 

ETA: If his recent bloodwork included a chemistry panel, many of those include a T4. If that was in normal range, there wouldn't be any point in doing a panel. I wouldn't spend the $$ on a panel based on the description of symptoms here -- sounds more to me like the dog *may* have an infection and/or some insect bites and *is probably* doing some seasonal shedding on top of it. We are in slightly different climates but odd shedding season here.

Edited by Batmom

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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I'd probably do the thyroid panel. I'm sure your vet wouldn't have suggested it if she thought that chasing individual infections with scrapings was going to be beneficial. But you could have that discussion with her more thoroughly before you decide. I don't know about MSU these days, but IIRC they (full panel without interpretation) didn't used to cost an arm and a leg.

 

Oops, Batmom posted while I was typing.

Edited by greyhead
Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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:lol

 

Won't *hurt* to do the panel, just money. MSU doesn't charge too much but there is shipping and handling and vet's markup on top of that, so it can get a bit pricey all told.

 

I would look at that skin even so.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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my Dane had No. Other. Thyroid symptoms but frequent staph infection. Her weight was good, her coat was gorgeous glossy black, she was bouncy and perky. I worked for the lab back then so I did my own labs and I always did the big panel. The T4 was off. My vet didn't believe it because she had No. Other. Symptoms and asked to send out to MSU which I was fine with. She was hypothyroid. Do the test. Worst case is it comes back normal and that's not the problem :)

Angie, Pewter, and Storm-puppy

Forever missing Misty-Mousie (9/9/99 - 10/5/15)
Fort Wayne, Indiana

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I would look at that skin even so.

Just culture? Bacterial and/or fungal? I've never had to deal with skin issues so I don't know what's standard, how much things cost, etc.

 

Zuri is a savings drainer. I resigned myself to that months ago so I don't think the $100-something it will cost me for a panel is that big of a deal as it's really sort of a drop in the bucket at this point. :lol I guess the more I think about it and read everyone's responses, even if the culture is positive, we won't have ruled out a thyroid problem as the underlying reason for the infection. And I don't want to keep putting Zuri on courses of ABs unnecessarily (he's already had 2 since May) so maybe we just need to do the culture and the panel and be done with it. :dunno

 

FWIW, I really don't think the shedding has anything to do with the weather. A sort of gut feeling/educated inference so do with it what you want, but that's my feeling. I also didn't mention that Zuri has been reactive in a few situations recently that seemed to revolve around his skin and ears so there's that too.

 

Will either get him in tomorrow or on Tuesday, I'll keep you guys posted. In the meantime, any additional feedback is welcome.

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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If there's inflamed / reddened / itchy / weepy / sore areas, then I would culture. If it's just hair coming out in little tufts as opposed to individual hairs, not so sure. At one stage of shedding, that's exactly what most of my dogs do -- lose hair in little clumps. One of mine is doing it right now -- it's still part of shedding season here.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Guest Houston1219

Msu thyroid panel at my vet (keep in mind metro Detroit vet!) is something like $140 dollars. I'm beginning too wonder just how much the shipping/mark up is! is it cheaper if we just go there? Lol

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Can't help with diagnoses, but will tell you that Riley has been shedding like crazy in recent weeks. So let's hope its an unrelated observation.

 

Hope you can get to the bottom of the symptoms, and most importantly, that Zuri is feeling better soon!

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And Zuri woke me up barking this morning because he needed to pee badly. :(

 

If there's inflamed / reddened / itchy / weepy / sore areas, then I would culture. If it's just hair coming out in little tufts as opposed to individual hairs, not so sure. At one stage of shedding, that's exactly what most of my dogs do -- lose hair in little clumps. One of mine is doing it right now -- it's still part of shedding season here.

Finding a sore was one of the things that prompted me to have my vet do the scraping in the first place, but that one was on his thigh and he didn't seem to pay much attention to it as I only noticed it once it was scabbed over. This second one that he's got now is on the front of his back leg. I was going to post a photo of it, but unfortunately he licked it so much this morning that it started bleeding so it's now wrapped again. :( Neither have been weepy or inflamed, just open, unexplained wounds.

Msu thyroid panel at my vet (keep in mind metro Detroit vet!) is something like $140 dollars. I'm beginning too wonder just how much the shipping/mark up is! is it cheaper if we just go there? Lol

That's about what I remember paying. Probably $40 of that was the shipping and "packing fees". :rolleyes:

 

I just made an appt for Tuesday. Getting him in today was going to be tough and Tuesday works better with keeping on his acupuncture/cold laser schedule so I'll keep an eye on things until then and then see what she says. Anyone have suggestions for keeping him away from his back leg that don't involve a head collar? Having trouble keeping a wrap on the leg that doesn't slide down, although I need to pick up more bandaging stuff. I think if I pad it better I can keep it in place. :goodluck

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Guest Houston1219

Someone on here I believe posted a great tutorial with pictures how to use a towel and some duct tape. It was pretty impressive! Can't remember what it was called though...

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Thyroid test isn't going to tell you whether there is an infection or what antibiotic (or antifungal) to use.

 

 

 

ETA: If his recent bloodwork included a chemistry panel, many of those include a T4. If that was in normal range, there wouldn't be any point in doing a panel. I wouldn't spend the $$ on a panel based on the description of symptoms here -- sounds more to me like the dog *may* have an infection and/or some insect bites and *is probably* doing some seasonal shedding on top of it. We are in slightly different climates but odd shedding season here.

agree 100%.

yes, the weather is strange, but the days are getting shorter and one or two cool nights- LAKE SENECA- will kick start shedding. look, scrape, pick for fleas(those buggers do know how to hide) and then when all else fails....spend the $$ on a bloodwork.

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Guest itsallgreyt

Didn't see any mention anywhere of checking for diabetes,,,, drinking more water + increased urination + increase in infections are classic symptoms.

Edited by itsallgreyt
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Didn't see any mention anywhere of checking for diabetes,,,, drinking more water + increased urination + increase in infections are classic symptoms.

Thank you so much for making this suggestion. Now that you brought it up, I remembered that his glucose was high on his U/A that we did a few weeks ago. :( At the time the vet wasn't overly concerned as she said you can have a false reading, but that we'd recheck it if things didn't resolve. It sounds like fresh bloodwork (including a T4) and another urinalysis are in order for our visit on Tuesday. Great, now I am worried. :( :(

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Guest itsallgreyt

Thank you so much for making this suggestion. Now that you brought it up, I remembered that his glucose was high on his U/A that we did a few weeks ago. :( At the time the vet wasn't overly concerned as she said you can have a false reading, but that we'd recheck it if things didn't resolve. It sounds like fresh bloodwork (including a T4) and another urinalysis are in order for our visit on Tuesday. Great, now I am worried. :( :(

 

Hey... diabetes is treatable! I'm always thankful when its something that turns out to be treatable!!

 

And by the way, Jen, we know each other! I volunteered for GW for a few years, also live in MD - Camp Springs area, near Andrews AFB. :)) I still have Jake (white & fawn grey) the 'lickey dog' - lol.

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Guest OPointyDog

Another possibility to consider is Cushing's Disease. My understanding is that it's rare in greyhounds, but our grey x GSD had the adrenal form. Symptoms include increased drinking and urination and shedding/dull coat, and it can also suppress the immune system, which can lead to other infections. It's difficult to test for, but you may want to discuss it with your vet.

 

Good luck - here's hoping it's nothing!

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Hey... diabetes is treatable! I'm always thankful when its something that turns out to be treatable!!

 

And by the way, Jen, we know each other! I volunteered for GW for a few years, also live in MD - Camp Springs area, near Andrews AFB. :)) I still have Jake (white & fawn grey) the 'lickey dog' - lol.

Oh, hey, welcome to GT! And yeah, treatable is good, but I'd prefer hypothyroidism treatable, not diabetes treatable. :P I also commented to a friend the other day that Zuri's eyes are looking really cloudy. So now I've convinced myself he's got cataracts from his diabetes. :rolleyes:

 

ETA: It's Lisa, right? :hope (because my memory is for crap!)

 

Another possibility to consider is Cushing's Disease. My understanding is that it's rare in greyhounds, but our grey x GSD had the adrenal form. Symptoms include increased drinking and urination and shedding/dull coat, and it can also suppress the immune system, which can lead to other infections. It's difficult to test for, but you may want to discuss it with your vet.

 

Good luck - here's hoping it's nothing!

Thanks, I appreciate it! This is exactly what I was hoping for - I want to discuss any and all possibilities with my vet when we see her.

Edited by NeylasMom

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Guest itsallgreyt

Oh, hey, welcome to GT! And yeah, treatable is good, but I'd prefer hypothyroidism treatable, not diabetes treatable. :P I also commented to a friend the other day that Zuri's eyes are looking really cloudy. So now I've convinced myself he's got cataracts from his diabetes. :rolleyes:

 

ETA: It's Lisa, right? :hope (because my memory is for crap!)

 

Thanks, I appreciate it! This is exactly what I was hoping for - I want to discuss any and all possibilities with my vet when we see her.

 

Thanks. I'm a bit late joining the party here on GT. And yes, its Lisa. I always remember you whenever I describe Jake as a 'lickey dog' - haha! You were the first person I ever heard say that and I often still use that description for him. :)

 

Yes, agreed, hypothyroidism treatable would be preferable to diabetes treatable. I was just trying to find a bright side! Good luck and keep us posted!

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Ha, I don't remember saying that, but I'm amused because Zuri is a "lickey dog" too. :lol

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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How was the cholestrol? Often that's a red flag to pursue thyroid testing--also any recent food changes and are you using a flea and tick product?? You mentioned the glucose was high in the u//a results--you meant the chemistry results correct?? If so that can be completely normal ghs glu run on the high normal side all the time--should see glu in the urine.

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How was the cholestrol? Often that's a red flag to pursue thyroid testing--also any recent food changes and are you using a flea and tick product?? You mentioned the glucose was high in the u//a results--you meant the chemistry results correct?? If so that can be completely normal ghs glu run on the high normal side all the time--should see glu in the urine.

We use Frontline Plus, have his entire life and I don't think I've applied it since before his dental. See my OP for the comments about feeding premade raw post-dental but he's been back on his usual raw diet for over 2 months now.

 

And no, the glucose was in the urine. :( The bloodwork was a little earlier, probably March or April as part of his annual exam and then we were able to just consider that his pre-dental b/w (dental was May 9). The U/A was after his dental.

 

I'm going to call and have both sets of results faxed over to me today. I'll post them as soon as I have them. Thanks!

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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