Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dog Update, or My Husband is a Genius

Today Kyle said, out of the blue, "What about scabies?" when we were talking about the dogs' woes. His grandfather and aunt and uncle are all vets, so he's absorbed a lot of their knowledge by osmosis, I think:) Unfortunately, none of them live even remotely near us. Still, it's funny he just now thought of scabies/mange as a possibility for Mojo's condition...and logically she could have infected the goldens. I honestly didn't know anything about it, though. The vet never mentioned it as a possibility, and besides they did a skin scraping to check for stuff like that. I also assumed mange was something dogs got from living in filthy, squalid conditions, or outside all the time. Look, I admit I'm not Merry Maids, but I like to keep our home clean, especially because no matter what you try to do, with 3 dogs it's always an uphill battle:) Squaler? Phhhffffttt. I googled anyway.

Holy Moly. The symptoms for sarcoptic mange (or scabies) match Mojo's symptoms PERFECTLY. The first site I looked at even said it is often missed in skin scrapings. The mites burrow under the skin and are microscopic so we wouldn't see any kind of bug. They cannot live on humans and generally don't bother people.

If you're interested, here are the few sites I've read so far. I plan to do a lot more research.

My favorite, because it lays things out very simply and describes my poor girl to a T. Her lymph nodes are even swollen.

Check this out, from the last link:

"Sarcoptic mange is a somewhat common infection and many cases have often been misdiagnosed as severe atopy (inhalant allergy). Any time we see a dog who does not have a prior history of allergies and develops severe itching, or if the itching is not seasonal but year-round, we have to suspect canine scabies."

I'm also absolutely fuming that the vet never mentioned this. According to the last link, only 20% of sarcoptic mange cases are diagnosed with a skin scraping. WHY wasn't this considered?? She has been to the vet many, many times in the last 2 months....

Look, I'm not saying I know for sure this is what Mojo has. I'm sure vets get annoyed when people think they know more than they do because the Internet tells them so and so.'s probably a good thing Kyle will be taking her in to the vet tomorrow instead of me (I have to go out of town for work). My poor dog has been suffering for so long, possibly totally needlessly, and I don't know how tactful I could be towards them right now. I've been worrying about her and thinking she's got some horrible deadly inflammation for months now.

Regardless, even though I'm pissed, I'm also so so so SO relieved. I'm trying not to get my hopes up, in case this isn't what she has, but it's hard not to. IF this is what she has, it's easily taken care of with injections or dips. Please keep your fingers crossed for us and my old girl tomorrow.

Very best case scenario-Mojo has mange and has passed it off to the goldens, although (so far) they have it to a lesser degree. Dogs all get a few injections or dips, and everyone is right as rain. Kyle will have earned some MAJOR Cool Points.

Oh, and we find a new vet. Definitely.


  1. Wow that sure does sound like what your pups are suffering from! Guess husbands are useful after all. :-) I understand vets can sometimes miss things, but scabies isn't exactly rare. Hope the furrballs get better soon!

  2. Hmm..Mason had demodex which is the skin mites that cause skin reactions when he was a puppy. He was almost all bald poor guy. I remember the treatments were pills and some ointment that smelled like nail polish remover. There are some bad reactions but we were ok. I thought it was more prone to younger dogs though.....alas I'm not a vet. Good luck though!!

  3. Gosh, I hope that's what it least then you will know how to treat it! Fingers are crossed!!

  4. My beagle had the same thing Kristen's dog had, though he just chewed off the hair on his hip before we caught it. That type is pretty much exclusive to puppies (apparently they get it from their moms).

    Adult mange is a whole different thing, according to my vet. Can't believe yours didn't catch it.

  5. Yeah, there's a couple different types I guess, and she had the adult kind. Honestly, I'm so relieved, I'm not even mad anymore. Though I still think a switch in vets may be in order....

    Thanks everyone!!!