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Old January 13th, 2009, 09:43 PM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Red face Demodectic mange

Hello to all! My name is Angie and my boyfriend and I recently adopted a Chihuahua mix named Gizmo from our local Humane Society. I also have a chihuahua named Shenzi and cat named Zazu. I've been waiting to find another dog before Gizmo to be a companion for both my others, since Shenzi is only 4 pounds and Zazu is 14. I figured something in between sizes would be good for both of them

Well, we met Gizmo who is about 7 lbs and fell in love. He has Demodectic mange and the HS told us they were treating him and if continued, he would make a full recovery by 6-8 months. He's about 14 months old, so still a puppy. We took him to my vet the day we got him and was told that his case was more serious than we were led to believe and could potentially be worse than just the mange, although the mange is bad enough. He has a generalized case and it is very serious and very painful. He's been put on Ivermectin, antibiotics and has a medicated shampoo. But every day he is bleeding from somewhere and we can't even pick him up. He can barely move, although he does eat and go out.

I was hoping that if anyone else had an experience like this, they could tell us how it worked out for them. We don't want to give up on this little guy, he is so sweet, but we can't afford a serious illness. We are willing to do all that we can, but we want to be fair to him. I hope to hear something positive. Thank you!!!
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Old January 14th, 2009, 12:07 AM
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What are you feeding him, Angie? Demodectic mange is basically an immune system disease--if you can boost his immune system, it will help him heal. And a good quality food with some omega-oil supplements would be a good start. Omega-6s are good for boosting the immune system. But clear any supplements with your vet, first--especially since the vet suspects there may be some other factor at work than just the mange.

I've never had to deal with a generalized case of mange. that someone else has more advice for you.

for a quick recovery for little Gizmo!
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Old January 14th, 2009, 05:59 PM
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Our Samira had demodex when she was place with us.

Hazel is absolutely correct that it is an immune system problem. High quality foods, immune system supplements and creating an environment of calm will do wonders for getting Gizmo back healthy again. We ended up using a supplement they use for dogs fighting cancer. It was expensive but well worth it.

We had a reaction to treating it with Ivermectin so we had to resort to the dips. It's a long process and just when it feels like you just can't keep doing it anymore, a ray of hope shines through.

Find a vet that you trust completely and follow the instructions for treatment absolutely to the T. We are coming up on 2 years without a flare-up.

We're sending out good vibes for a complete recovery!!

Cheers,
Lorene
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Old January 15th, 2009, 01:00 AM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Thank You

Thank you so much for your support. We are taking it one day at a time and he shows small improvements every day. We know it's going to be a long process. It helps to hear encouragment. Once we get him a little bit better, we are going to ask about immune system supplements. Thank you again!
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Old January 15th, 2009, 09:33 AM
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Any improvement is a good thing One day you'll look at him and realize you're seeing baby-fine hair sprout in some of the bald areas. At that point you'll know you're making some real headway!
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Old January 15th, 2009, 09:35 AM
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I have never had to deal with Mange but I am sending good thoughts your way!!!! Hope everthing works out!!!!
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Old January 15th, 2009, 02:52 PM
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I have seen some really nasty cases of demo. The worse case was on a friends Scotty, "Duncan", (Duncan No Nutz after we neutered him)
The poor guy was nothing but a bleeding scab.
We put him on cephalexin and Mitaban dips every two weeks. It took 3 months but he did get over it. He never had another outbreak once he was neutered.
If a dog has demo that is so bad they bleed and smell, more than likely they have a widespread skin infection too. Antibiotics and the dips are the best way to beat this and fast.
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Old January 18th, 2009, 03:12 AM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Talking I agree

Yes he's smelly but he's all ours! I think we are determined to kick this thing in the bud. I just wish I could take some of the pain away from him. We did get a mild pain killer, just to help, but we don't give it to him all that much. He seems to be healing, but we don't really know what that looks like. Just comparing it to the worst of it, my heart tells me he's going in the right direction. Thank you all again for the support. I'll try to keep you updated!
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Old January 18th, 2009, 07:20 AM
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Anon,thank you first of all for giving little Gizmo a chance,not all people would adopt a sick puppy
I know nothing much about Mange,but have seen some pups with it.
With your help and love,little Gizmo has a good chance of recovering
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Old January 18th, 2009, 10:01 AM
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The improvement always seems so slow, Anon--even in mild cases. Sometimes you think you're imagining it! But then one day, you'll think back on how he was and notice a definite improvement.

for Gizmo!
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Old January 19th, 2009, 11:18 PM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Smile Baby Steps

As always, thank you ALL for the wonderful support. I think it's helping!

Gizmo's wounds do seem to be healing faster, even though new ones still appear. His skin is flaking more which we are hoping is a sign of healing. I think he even smells better He has his next vet appt on Wednesday, so we are hoping for some good news. He is warming up to us more and more and that makes me have more hope. Every day is an adventure and I look forward to each improvement. Thank you again!
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Old January 19th, 2009, 11:20 PM
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Good for Gizmo!!!

for a great vet appt on Wednesday!
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Old January 21st, 2009, 12:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anon1023 View Post
He's about 14 months old, so still a puppy. We took him to my vet the day we got him and was told that his case was more serious than we were led to believe and could potentially be worse than just the mange, although the mange is bad enough. He has a generalized case and it is very serious and very painful. He's been put on Ivermectin, antibiotics and has a medicated shampoo. But every day he is bleeding from somewhere and we can't even pick him up. He can barely move, although he does eat and go out.
Most cases will positively respond to ivermectin. The medicated shampoo and the antibiotics treat the secondary symptoms. If the clinical signs are worsening and not improving then rechecking with your veterinarian is important. There are several options. Typically the canine dose is 300-600 mcg/kg PO q24h x 60 days past negative skin scrape. Thus is the pet is on the low end of the dose, then a slow and progressive increase from 300mcg toward 600mcg/kg might be helpful (ASK YOUR VET. DO NOT INCREASE THE IVERMECTIN YOURSELF - your pet might already be at the higher dose).

There are also other medications that treat demodex: Interceptor(Milbemycin), Amitraz (Mitaban), etc... Sometimes one pet will respond better to one demodectic medication than another. Again - ask your veterinarian. FWIW - Ivermectin is typically the first choice medication and what I typically will start with (assuming the pet is not a collie, etc...)

Sometimes the primary demodectic infection is resolving but the secondary bacterial infection is taking over. Thus repeating the skin scrape, impression smear cytology and culture might be useful testing to rule out a severe secondary antibiotic resistant bacterial infection. (or even a fungal infection).

Also as already stated, this is a disease of the immune system. For this reason, the cases of adult onset demodecosis aggressive diagnostic testing is recommended to rule out underlying diseases that affect the immune system. Thus it is not implausible for juvenile demodecosis that is severe and/or non-responsive to medications, might have underlying disease. Thus basis work up of blood tests, urinalysis and radiographs (plus or minus some other tests - ultrasound, bile acids, etc...) might be very useful.

Also, in any difficult demodecosis case - a dermatologist consult and evaluation is always recommended. However due to your initial statement, I figured you were looking for some other options. I hope this helps.
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Old January 21st, 2009, 06:32 PM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Thumbs up Bummer, but we will fight!

Well, Gizzy Gizmo had his check-up today and, unfortunately, we didn't get good news. He hasn't shown the improvement we thought he was making. We have to bring him back in 2 weeks and probably have a bunch of more tests. (Luckily, we have some financial support that is helping us (stress-wise) immensly.) We just got the Ivermectin up to the dose he needs today, so we are hoping that it can really start to kick in. We also got a stronger antibiotic.

We are crossing our fingers and we are determined to beat this. He's too sweet and fought too long for us to give up on him now.

Thank you for all your support and information. Updates coming soon!
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Old January 21st, 2009, 09:27 PM
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I wish you'd gotten better news, anon!

that the dosage change does the trick!
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Old January 27th, 2009, 02:08 AM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Talking I think we are heading in the right direction!

Gizmo update. We have been giving him his full dose of ivermectin and the stronger antibiotic for almost a week now. His skin looks so much better and we can actually pick him up without hurting him. He still has a long way to go, but we can actually see improvement! He was sleeping on his side for the first time since he came home!!!
He was wagging his tail while it was hanging down because he had sores at the base and couldn't lift it. Well, he's wagging at least horizontally and standing on his back legs for treats! He gets so excited for those!
We are so happy that he seems to be in less pain and just happier in general. I think he has finally settled down and realized that he is in a loving home. Hopefully, this will also help his physical health. Thank you again for your support!
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Old January 27th, 2009, 06:53 AM
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Anon,that is really good news,every little improvement is a giant step towards recovery....
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Old January 27th, 2009, 12:22 PM
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That's excellent news, Anon!! Feeling settled and loved will definitely help his recovery!! I'm so happy he's improving.
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Old February 1st, 2009, 12:11 AM
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Talking Yay!

Well, I think Gizmo is a whole new dog. With a lot less hair! Yes, he is losing all of his hair and probably won't have ANY before this is over but, boy is he a happy guy! Since he's more enthusiastic about food, I've finally gotten to putting his pill in sliced cheese so I don't have to shove it down his throat anymore. The love meter rises!!! His next appointment is Wednesday and we are crossing our fingers for better news. I don't know how we can get anything other. His sores are mostly cleared up, he still has a few. Now he's just anxious to get the itchy scabs off. We are so thrilled with his progress. It lets us know we made the right decisions about not giving up.
Thank you all for your wonderful support. I hope I can pay it forward with some hope for others. Thank you!
Angie, Derek, Gizmo, Shenzi and Zazu
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Old February 1st, 2009, 12:25 AM
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I'll be thinking of you guys on Wednesday, then! for an excellent report!

I'm glad his owies are clearing up--now if he'd just get his hair back
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Old February 1st, 2009, 01:41 AM
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YAY for Gizmo and hope he continues to improve.
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Old February 1st, 2009, 08:28 AM
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That's great news,a happy pup is for sure a good sign
hoping for good test-results
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Old February 7th, 2009, 09:39 PM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Talking Yay!!

I suppose, as you can tell in the title, Gizmo's wednesday check-up went GREAT! The vet told us we made his day. Gizmo still has some mites, but we knew that it may take several months for that to totally clear. As of now, he's so full of energy! It's hard to believe he's the same dog! He has almost no hair, but we took him on our first outing to PetSmart and we ran down the aisles! Ran! It was great. He looked like the puppy he still is. We then took him to my parent's who have 4 little dogs (including 2 chihuahuas) and all he wanted to do was play with everyone. We are so proud of our little guy.
Thank you so much for all your support and good wishes. We know he is going to be good as new really soon!!!
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Old February 7th, 2009, 09:54 PM
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What a great report!!! Sounds like the little guy is developing a lot of character!
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Old February 8th, 2009, 01:14 AM
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YAY for Gizmo ....glad to hear of his great improvement and hope it continues.

Now, we would love if you would post pics of him. Shenzi and Zazu in the photo forum.
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Old February 8th, 2009, 07:45 AM
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That's great news!!!
Gizmo must be a wonderful little guy and we have yet to see a pic:sad:Please!!!
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Old February 8th, 2009, 02:18 PM
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I'll third that request for pics.
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Old February 8th, 2009, 06:46 PM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Thank you!!! These pics are very big, I apologize. I'm still trying to figure out how this works! But you can get a great idea of Gizmo's before and "after" cuz he wears that shirt all the time right now! Shenzi's at the bottom. If anyone has any advice on attaching pics, I would appreciate that too! ha ha!
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Old February 8th, 2009, 07:33 PM
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omd, what sweet little guys you have! And that Gizmo is just a heart-stealer He looks so dapper in his shirt!

Now all we need to be properly introduced is a picture of Zazu!
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Old February 9th, 2009, 01:06 AM
Anon1023 Anon1023 is offline
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Ok, heeeeeere's Zazu!! He's my silly boy.
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