I’ve noticed that Sean has bald patches on his skin, and it has suddenly got quite bad over the last two days. Today, my mum and I took him to our panel vet, Dr Vijay, for a diagnosis.
All set and ready to go. Sean was so very obedient.
To cut a long story short, Sean has severe demodex mange. It was first suspected to be sarcoptic mange, but the skin scrape confirmed that it is demodex. We saw tadpole like microorganisms in the scrape under the microscope. The good news is that at least we know exactly how to treat it, but the bad news is that the treatment of a high dosage of oral Ivermectin is VERY toxic. Based on Sean’s weight, he has to be given 0.8ml of the Ivermectin, and we will start with 0.2ml and gradually increase that to the full dosage over 5 days.
Initially, Dr Vijay said it could also be an allergy (food or detergent), and, if so, we would have to slowly eliminate the possible allergens through strict diet control.
Take a look at the pink patches on the face and the rest of the body.
This patch is quite bad.
The funny thing is that all the infected patches are on the left side of the body.
Left side of the face too.
Under the left chin as well.
Sean would have to be bathed using Malaseb for two weeks, and povidone iodine is to be applied on all his bald patches. Just for everyone’s information, Malaseb can also be replaced with any ordinary shampoo, followed by the dusting of Agnesia powder (it contains the same ingredient as Malaseb).
Upon examining the inside of his mouth, Dr Vijay noticed a large growth (tumour) on his gums. He said it could be two things: (1) a benign growth which can be surgically removed. (2) melanoma, a cancerous growth which is very bad news.
Later, when feeding Sean his first dose of the Ivermectin, Dr Vijay noticed another growth on his upper palate. He then said it looks very much like papilloma, which is a benign epithelial tumour. These tumours will be removed when Sean is neutered. There is no urgency to do it right now. That was quite a relief, the fact that both are probably benign tumours. Still, we can’t be sure at this point in time. Let’s just hope it’s benign.
But Dr Vijay cannot figure out why everything wrong seems to be only on the left side of his body. Even the large tumour in the mouth is on the left side. The vet is totally stumped.
Sean…why is everything on your left side only?
There is also eye discharge on the left eye. But only the left eye. There is a slim chance that it could be another symptom of the distemper flaring up, but based on Sean’s disposition (as fit as a fiddle and as happy as a lark), this is highly unlikely.
Sean was vaccinated today, not with the normal vaccine, but the Recombitek type, which is safer for distemper survivors.
He will receive a second vaccination after a month, after which he can then be neutered.
We told Dr Vijay about Tara, and he strongly suggests that Tara too be vaccinated and as soon as possible, spayed. At her age, spaying is important to prevent breast or ovarian cancers. Tara is also scratching quite a bit. I hope it’s not mange. There is a possibility that Sean has both demodex and sarcoptic mange, and sarcoptic is contagious. The oral Ivermectin will treat both.
We thought it would be safer to wait until both have regained their health for their spay-neuter, but Dr Vijay feels both ought to be ready now, for the procedures.
So, tomorrow will be Tara’s trip to the vet’s.
Get well soon, Sean.
P.S. The oral Ivermectin is highly unpalatable, and should Sean put up a struggle when being fed, here’s a tip from the vet – use ice-cream. Ice-cream is cold and it numbs the taste buds. Mix the Ivermectin with ice-cream and feed it to the dog! According to the vet, it works. We shall see if we need to resort to this trick.