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Thread: zack's wiped out again

  1. #1
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    Default zack's wiped out again

    since saturday, Zack got better and better. This morning, i really was seeing him as being back to 100%. He was bringing me the ball to throw, going outside, ate his kibble this morning, nice poo , and when we went out to go to the vet, walking to the mail box, he was just prancing, head and tail held high, and his cute little front paws stepping high in the air, just seeming to feel good to be alive. The vet said right off the bat that it was pyoderma, as the other vet said, and she said she didn't like the medication he had been given, Clavamox, for skin infection, she liked something else better, i asked what, she said Cefadrop, sounds like a cephalosporin maybe, i haven't looked it up yet, but i said i'd take that one since she is the skin specialist. because i wanted liquid rather than tablets, it was very expensive, $60 more than the tablets. i just want to make it as easy on him as i can. and on me.

    she found a flea on him, and saw flea dirt, which wasn't there yesterday, i dont' know if she didn't believe me that it wasn't there before, but she said her theory was that he had been bitten by fleas, and the skin infection developed from that. She said he absolutely does not have a flea allergy, which was good to hear, i didn't think he did, but things are far from clear. She also said not to worry at all about the lesions scarring and hair loss, she said they were superficial, it's not deep pyoderma. i was relieved about that.

    So...we talked about Advantage and Frontline, and i was already committed to having Advantage put on him. I asked if it would be contraindicated because of the lesions. She scared me because she hesitated before answering. Then she said as long as there weren't any lesions on the back of his neck. I pointed out one on the back of his neck. they're all over him. she said it was ok, as long as the stuff wasn't put right on the lesions. I'm not sure it didn't go right on lesions since his hair is so long, i can't see where they all are, and she didn't check. she put it on, and i got one for the cat too.

    He was still fine all the way home. He went in the backyard, he was playful. But about 10 minutes after we got home, he started doing that scratching/body rubbing thing again, and furiously digging into the pillows. He did it once on Tuesday night too but i gave him benadryl and he continued to seem like his normal self. But today, right after that, he became very lethargic and prostrated again. He has slept all afternoon. This is just not like him. I can just hear the vet saying (as the one did on Sunday) "It's the heat." It is NOT the heat. Something is wrong. He showed no interest in a treat. I could not interest him in playing. He wanted to lay on me, or lay anywhere, and he is just sleeping, and i am afraid he's like he was last week again.

    The only thing that happened to him was the Advantage. It may not have been caused by the Advantage, but i was already so reluctant to put pesticide on my dog, and now, it's still wet looking and when he was laying on me, a strong chemical smell was coming from him. Not so strong that if he was running around i would smell it, but because he was laying righ on me, a few inches from my face, i smelled something and i thought "What's that?" and then i remembered he has the Advantage on him. I'm afraid he's poisoned. i think he was poisoned last week, but i don't know by what. None of the vets really address his systemic symptoms.

    Now, i am not sure whether i'm going to switch him to the ultra expensive medication ($93). I don't want to add something else. He was doing OK on the Clavamox for one day. If i give him the new one, then that will be yet another powerful drug in him. I just want him to feel good and hold his tail high and prance again. i'm really sad and worried now.

    i hope it's not the Advantage, but i also don't like not knowing what it could be. He did go in the backyard right before he started scratching. It definitely could be something out there. I was watching him the whole time, i was watering the garden, and he was in areas where i'm sure there must be fleas. I'll keep him away from there until the Advantage takes effect.

    I wanted to treat the yard with an IGR but i can't find out where to buy it. I can order it online but didn't want to wait. I asked the vet and she said not to treat the yard or the house. She said to just rely on the Advantage. She did mention Malathion and said while it's a strong chemical, the sun burns it off really fast. but there's no way. anyway, i think when she said not to treat the house and yard, she was considering that more chemicals might be harmful. i dont' really know why she said it, just guessing.

    i just want him to be ok and want to know what i can do for him, all i can do is just let him sleep and wait it out, i guess.

    my objectives in going to the skin specialist vet today were, one, to ask about what could be done to prevent scarring, and two, to ask about whether it was ok to put Advantage on with the lesions. And anything else she might add from her expertise because it's a skin thing. so, all of that was accomplished. but now he's acting sick while before he was acting well.

    maybe i'm overreacting? maybe he just needs to sleep and it'll be ok in a day or two or three? i don't know, i'm at a loss for what to do.

  2. #2
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    Sorry to hear that Zack back tracked a bit. You are definitely stressed by the situation; none of us likes our babies to be sick!! The contrast between having him seem happy/healthy earlier then suddenly going back to old behaviors probably is what's causing your greatest frustration right now.

    I'd give it a day, let yourself relax so that you dont stress zack out with your own stress. He's had a lot of vet visits lately, and throughout his life; perhaps the stress of all that has an impact on him.

    You also dont like chemicals, and I know putting the flea/tick preventative on him wasnt something you really wanted to do. It will stay wet as the skin absorbs the oils. that's how the meds work for an entire month. The glands absorb the oil, and then release the oils gradually. You can brush him and you might not see the wet spot any more.

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    Dang...Judy and we thought that he was getting better...the only thing that bother me bout wat u just said was that the vet wants to change his medication from wat one vet put him on to the med that she likes better..i just hope that Zack doesn't get hooked on all these meds...but i was glad too hear he was prancing...take care
    Aaron, King and the rest of family
    living in NY

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moviedust
    ...The contrast between having him seem happy/healthy earlier then suddenly going back to old behaviors probably is what's causing your greatest frustration right now.
    You nailed it there. and anticipating having him get like he was last week, very depressing prospect.

    I'd give it a day, let yourself relax so that you dont stress zack out with your own stress. He's had a lot of vet visits lately, and throughout his life; perhaps the stress of all that has an impact on him.
    Yours is the voice of wisdom, it's too soon to know whether it's the same thing, or whether it will last 3 1/2 days like before.

    You also dont like chemicals, and I know putting the flea/tick preventative on him wasnt something you really wanted to do. It will stay wet as the skin absorbs the oils. that's how the meds work for an entire month. The glands absorb the oil, and then release the oils gradually. You can brush him and you might not see the wet spot any more.
    on another thread, i posted a link to an article i came across while sitting here with zack laying on me uncharacteristically dead to the world, it was a very anti-insecticide for pets article, from the respected Whole Dog Journal, and it scared me over the edge. I went and washed it off him as best i could. One thing that was creeping me out was the smell--there was a chemical odor coming from the back of his neck. Also, on the Advantage website, it says that it should be put between the shoulder blades of dogs and on the back of the neck of cats. My vet (or vet tech, i can't even remember which) put it on the back of his neck. I guess that's OK. but he has skin lesions pretty much right next to that poison-saturated hair, and that bothered me more than a little. the poisoned hair was right over that lesion above his ear.

    I love petting his neck, kissing him, putting my face in his fur and stuff, and as i read that article, i couldn't imagine doing that, not without washing it off. I don't understand how it can not be toxic to people who touch the pet, if it's being released into their skin all the time. I'm not saying it necessarily is, but i dont' understand how that can work. it seems like i'd have to wash with soap after i put my hand into his fur. Not that it would make a person sick just like that, but i am concerned about the accumulation of exposures over time.

    The article mentioned a vet who reported on a client who said they smelled the insecticide on their dogs' breath minutes after it was applied to them. Right after we got home from the vet today, i had smelled something unfamiliar on his breath and i thought "could it be the pesticide?" and then i thought, "Nah.." and then there it was in that article. The article was trying to make the point that contrary to what the drug companies advertise, it's systemically absorbed.

    Since i washed it off, it seems like the fleas have been attacking. not sure what i'm going to do about the fleas. Maybe once Zack is healthy, the skin lesions gone, him not on antibiotics, and not just barely getting over something, I'd try Advantage again. I don't know why he acted so different by about 40 minutes after it went on him. I didn't expect it. He just became so lethargic and clingy, and depressed or unhappy looking, he's just not like that. The other time i put Advantage on him, that didn't happen. At least i don't think so. There were a lot of other things going on then.

    Before i bathed Zack tonight, he was up and around and possibly not lethargic anymore, or less, but i had read the article and it had me convinced i should wash it off. After his bath, Zack was typically very frisky and playful too. Now he's out cold again.

    So now i'm off to read the other Whole Dog Journal article i posted, which is about nontoxic flea control. back to the drawing board. While i was sitting here, i saw two fleas on me. First time this year.

  5. #5
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    Update: zack really seems better now. He slept some more after his bath and now for a while has been wanting to play. we have played fetch with a couple of different balls. Now he's gnawing on a carrot stick, i can now go to sleep peacefully tonight.

    Increasingly his lesions are healing, the scabs are falling off.

    we all three are getting fleas on us tonight, it's starting. i killed one on my arm. So, i'm not sure what i'm going to do about that yet.

    Although i paid $93 for the new antibiotic, because Zack's skin infection appears to be healing well, i'm going to continue the Clavamox, so as not to add a new drug to the mix. when i said i would take the new one, that was when he was acting so healthy and normal, before he fell out when we got home.

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    I'm so sorry Judy, I don't know what to say. Poor Zack...he seems to have such a rough time.

    It's really hard when even the vets disagree over what's best...we always think they know everything, but I guess they have their own opinions like we do.

    I'm glad he's a bit better and hope you manage to get some sleep. Thanks for teh WDJ links, will go and have a look
    Nicki and the Cavalier Clan Our photos www.scotlandimagery.com
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    Judy, I am glad he is more with it now - is it worth looking at a natural product for the fleas, or for the vet to issued a smaller dosage or something... for you to put on and not them.

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    Poor Zack, give him a big hug and kisses from me. Have you thought about trying a crystal in his water bowl - Nicki uses it so she'll tell you baout it - for the fleas?

    I'll post more later but hubby is dragging me out now and nagging me to get off the computer xxxxxx

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    Judy, I'd consider two things. One is to try very hard not to focus so entirely on whether things are wrong with Zack. Your own anxiety can contribute to problems even to the extent that they will learn that acting lethargic gets a huge amount of attention from you, stop eating, get the runs etc. He needs some space just to be a dog, and dogs do have health ups and downs from time to time. I'd just keep him on a plain diet and not treat him with lots of different things and also not overly worry whether one thing might have led to this behaviour or that. If the advantage nothered him this is surely not going to last more than a day or two. Honestly, just see if giving him some actual *inattention* doesn't help a bit. It can be very overwhelming for any animal to have someone very worried about you constantly, especially as an animal can pick up on that so easily, and also to have too much focus all the time. For a dog this can be extremely alarming and cause a high level of anxiety. So try to back off a bit from him and just let him get on with things and see how he does, without any extra treatments, foods, etc.

    DO NOT put Advantage on open wounds!! I am sure it says this somewhere on the packaging but in general you'd never want to put chemicals into any open wounds, broken skin etc. I am sure his spots will just heal and disappear.

    The vet is giving you very good advice and you have to relax and let time pass and let him heal. Try not to second-guess the vet -- they know their job and they are doing the proper order of treatment. There's absolutely no benefit to you or to Zack to be worrying about every micro-element of his behaviour and treatment. Dogs like people have off days too and mostly at that time, they just want to be left alone to rest and recover. Why not just leave things a few days and see how he does?

    The second thing is, if problems continue THEN consider specialists. I think the vet has emphasisesd though that she feels none of these things are unusual. Fleas are common espeially in warm weather. Dogs sometimes get bumps if they have an allergic reaction. Many things cause itchiness. And heat will cause a dog to be much quieter. Also Zack is much older now -- he will NOT be as lively or playful as he has been. I have a feeling you are simply seeing some adult behaviour as he is at precisely at the age when those behaviours can change significantly -- mixed with some summer lathargy mixed with some minor discomfort from a skin reaction that is *nothing to worry about*.
    Karlin
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    Hi Judy,

    So glad to hear Zack is better again.

    I would rather use the flea drops (Frontline, etc.) that try to treat a whole house and yard. Plus my dogs can go anywhere and not pick up fleas when they are protected.

    I once saw an animal that was flea bitten and allergic to fleas - so much worse looking than what you've been through. I think you're doing the right thing, protecting Zack with proven medications.
    Cathy Moon
    India(tri-F) Geordie(blen-M)Chocolate(b&t-F)Charlie(at the bridge)

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