View Full Version : Rosie's scratching

2nd January 2009, 08:19 PM

I posted a few weeks ago about Rosie scratching. I changed her to Royal Canine CKC and she is on wellbeloved treats. She's still at it but in great form...we've been to the vet,no ear mites,treating for other parasites to be sure. End of it all is that we are going back this week for spinal xrays and blood tests:(, we may have to go down the MRI route if nothing shows up,am worried about this SM,my vet has already seen a case of it.

Thanks for help

Devika aka Rosie's mammy

2nd January 2009, 08:50 PM
I'm sorry this continues to be a concernfor you. :flwr:

Why are they doing spinal xrays though? Do they think something in the spine could be causing the scratching? It just seems like a possibly unnecessary step though perhaps they are just being thorough and getting all possible test results in.

I would think it would be more typical to test for allergies (or explain why they aren't), and I'd also want to know what they think either an xray or blood result might show that could be related to scratching. If not much, and they are just kind of doing them, then I'd skip those tests and those extra costs and simply ask for a neurologist referral for a clinical exam in the first instance.

2nd January 2009, 09:10 PM
How much scratching is rosie actually doing?

2nd January 2009, 09:18 PM
I couldn't comment unless you could describe the frequency.

Merlin scratches as soon as I put his harness on, but i think its all the hairs that irritate him - he doesn't scratch while out walking....

3rd January 2009, 10:34 PM
Don't be so negative.Indy scratches sometimes too, for days,and then stops suddenly as it started.Sometimes it's grass,dust,heat,shampoo... I changed flea protection to Advocate,it did miracle!:rah: After Frontline and Advantix he was scratching more than after flea bite.Try it.Also try apple vinegar bath before anything(one teaspoon in 10 l).It kills fungus.... If skin is damaged, darker,it might be bacterial infection....Be sure this is not the issue.

4th January 2009, 04:15 PM
I have used Advocate before and continue to,its good. She is having allergy tests and hope that is all it is. She is not even two yet. Will keep you updated.I presume the spinal xray is just them bring thorough. Thank god for pet insurance.

4th January 2009, 09:48 PM
I'd still ask why they are doing it. An xray will NOT show whether SM exists -- it cannot pick up syrinxes, which are a soft tissue feature that will only show on MRI. I would not put a dog through additional procedures -- especially as this will likely require a general anaesthesia -- simple because insurance covers it. Also even the nicest practices have a habit of doing everything if they know insurance covers i -- that means they get paid for trying lots of procedures.

I would want a specific reason.

Indy if you have a dog that scratches for days on end then stops and starts again, and this dog has not been MRId, I don't think I'd be so quick to assume other likely reasons unless something has taken care of the problem pretty conclusively. On and off vigorous scratching can be quite typical for SM -- for example, many dogs scratch more when the weather is changeable (and many don't scratch at all). Over the past 3 years my SM dog with the worst syrinxes, Leo, has gone through periods of hardly scratching at all, then it comes back.

If a dog is scratching a lot, and it is recurrent, and with no clear explanation, I'd be considering an MRI or a neurology consult.

Getting the dog onto the correct meds can in some cases slow and even actually halt progression and reverse some problems -- I have now had this confirmed by two separate neurologists about the possible effect of CSF reductions drugs like frusemide/cimetidine/omaprazole. If a dog is not put on these there seems to be a greater chance of faster progression. So really -- I urge anyone concerned about potential symptoms to investigate thoroughly, not leave them to supposition that they are probably due to something else. A dog may live a longer, more pain free life as the result of early intervention. :thmbsup: