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Serious Health Problems Caused by Sentinel

December 15th, 2007, 04:46 AM
Dear all,

I know how much you all love your dogs so I wanted to share this story which is actually a serious warning.

My little 3-year old Pom has always been in great health, with all sorts of love, walks, play, vet visits, and good quality holistic and homemade food. I noticed from the beginning though, that she had some problems with Sentinel. She seemed to not feel very well for about a week after taking the pill. Spring 2006 I noticed she seemed to start some mild allergies, but I didn't realize at the time that this coincided with the beginning of the Sentinel season too! She licked at her paws, but that was about it (or it was all that I noticed). This year however, she started getting a dark discharge from her vulva (and she doesn't have a uterus), along with crusty lesions around that same area and abdomen, and now they are also around the anus. The poor thing was pulling herself on the carpet (like when the anal glands are full) and crying and the various vets we consulted said it was allergies and wanted to administer everything from cortisone to antibiotics. I didn't see the need for antibiotics but agreed to a topical cortisone liquid which did help the lesions, but a few months went by without much sleep for us (it was worse at night) so eventually we visited a homeopathic vet in Montreal. Within 30 seconds he had a diagnosis - the lesions were all in sebaceous areas and he said this was all quite typical of a bad reaction to Sentinel, supposedly the worse of all the heartworm preventatives. Needless to say, she will NEVER take these again in any form or variety. I will ensure that she comes inside when the mosquitos start at night and I will use a natural repellent on her which is used on horses but very safe for any animal (the company is called Absorbine, I think). She has been taking the homeopathic meds to clean her liver for about 6 weeks now, and she is better but the lesions are taking their time to heal and still bother her, but less.

This all prompted me to do some research on Sentinel and the like, and I really wanted to warn you all about the terrible and life-threatening effects of these. You would be surprised at how many other problems are linked to their usage. I am a balanced person who would never refuse antibiotic treatment or anti-inflammatories for my dog if it were truly necessary, like when she was bitten by a dog earlier this year and she was in pain and at risk for infection (but it seems these aggravated the problems that the Sentinel was causing). However, I encourage all of you to do your research and really make an informed decision as per what kind of heartworm meds, if any, that you will administer to your dog. A dog that is mostly indoors has a incredibly slim chance of getting bit by a heartworm-carrying mosquito who had to have just come from another infected animal. In this case a natural repellent could be enough. Of course, if you live in the country, in a mosquito-infested area, or if your dogs live mostly outside in the summer then please try to find the less damaging of the heartworm meds.

Also, don't be afraid to consult a well-respected homeopathic vet if you don't like or accept what your regular vet is telling you. My husband thought the man would be a quack but he was a regular vet for 40 years and knows his business; the results we saw just in the first week of homeopathic treatment - she regained her zest for life - was proof enough for us. Since then there has been improvement but 3 years of damaging her liver will take some time to cure. At least we are all sleeping at night now!

On a similar note, while researching the heartworm issue I also came across the fact (many times) that numerous problems can also be related to vaccinations. While some vaccinations (especially rabies) are necessary, we tend to vaccinate our animals when they are too young, and the annual boosters are not necessary and just overwhelm their immune systems. I encourage all dog lovers to do some research and make more informed decisions when it comes to health of their companion. If I would have been more informed, I would have known right away that I should have stopped giving her Sentinel when I saw how terrible she felt the few days after taking it. The vet at the time told me "yes, some dogs have some mild reactions to it but it's not a big deal".........The deal became very big.

December 15th, 2007, 04:22 PM
I am sorry to hear about your little girl. :sad: Good for you for getting to the source of the problem. Glad she is starting to get better and hope she recovers fully with time. :fingerscr :goodvibes: :goodvibes:

My vet rotates vaccinations so each one gets repeated once every three years. I am still trying to research this more and may start just getting titers done instead. I am so glad we do not have a heartworm problem in our area right now. :o

December 15th, 2007, 11:50 PM
BabyJessy, so sorry to hear Jessy's been having problems...I'm very glad you went to a homeopath - I have seen good results so far w/Duffy's too.

Thank you for posting this info for everyone to read, someone may have a dog who is having similiar symptoms after flea or worm treatment & this may help to guide them in the right direction for help. :thumbs up

:goodvibes: :grouphug: for you & Jessy

December 16th, 2007, 12:28 AM
I'm so sorry for your problems. I agree that homeopathic vets can be an amazing resource :thumbs up. Unfortunately companies do a great job of "softening" the effects and many people don't realize that these products are actually pesticides and should be definately used in moderation (when feasible). I will also definately be titre testing for my dogs before vaccinating again.

Good luck for continued improvements with Jessy :grouphug:.