After years of struggling with treating her skin, Roxie’s family had lost hope. They had been told their only option was to keep her on prednisone until they came to terms with putting her to sleep. When Roxie came to board with us, she was a shell of the dog she once was. I happened to be in a room with a client who used to work with a veterinary dermatologist. This client certainly had more confidence in me than I had in myself. “Fix that dog, Sims,” she said.
Her confidence emboldened me to sit down with her family before they left town. I could tell by their expressions they thought I was about to lecture them. Instead, I offered to turn her boarding stay into a week of intensive skin treatments, and all I asked for in return was their trust. They looked skeptical (with good reason), but gave me the go-ahead to try.
Roxie’s problems stemmed from severe allergies, which destroyed her skin’s natural barrier, made her miserably itchy, and allowed all kinds of microbes to take over.
The prednisone may have, at one time, helped relieve the itch. But it also wrecked Roxie’s immune system, so she had several types of infections, including mites, yeast, and bacteria. The infections were so severe, they were creating pothole-like wounds in her skin, which was covered in a thick layer of yellow scales. She flinched whenever I tried to pet her.
After a haircut, she was given baths and massages with medicated mousses, sprays, and lotions every day. Her ears were cleaned and treated. She was prescribed several antimicrobial medications. The goals were to control infection, strengthen her skin’s barrier, and calm down her allergic immune response.
At the end of the week, she was already eating better, had more energy (and attitude!) and I had become quite fond of her. I was sad to see her go, but so excited for her family to see how much she had improved.
Three months later, her hair is growing back, she has gained weight and energy, and she no longer flinches when you pet her. Her family got a second chance with their spunky little dog, and they are doing a fantastic job maintaining a regimen that keeps her skin issues under control.
Is your pet suffering from allergies? The symptoms don’t have to be as severe as Roxie’s for your pet to be uncomfortable or in pain. Call our office to get your pet’s allergies under control.