Friday, July 15, 2011

Bumps and Bites

I noticed over the weekend that Maisie had two little spots on her right ear that appeared to be missing fur. It didn't seem to be bothering her, so I didn't think much of it...figured maybe it was from rolling in the gravel at the dog park on Saturday.  But yesterday I realized that the tiny bald patches were still there and it felt like there was a wee bump underneath each one.  Plus Maisie flinched when I touched her ear (but she also flinched when I touched the other ear, though a bit less...she just doesn't like having her ears touched).

When my previous dog Kaya was about ten, she had something called vestibular syndrome, which in many ways mimics the appearance of a stroke.  Initially, she couldn't walk and her head was tilted to one side (that had a residual effect and for the rest of her life, one ear remained up and the other down).  To help her recover, I began taking her to Integrative Pet Care, a holistic wellness and rehabilitation center.  Her treatment there kept a spring in her geriatric step even after her symptoms resolved, so we continued going.

Kaya was 12 when our IPC vet found a little bump on her side.  It felt to me like a small pimple or something, but we aspirated it just to be safe.  To my horror, the results came back positive...it was a mast cell tumor, a common type of canine skin cancer.  We were incredibly lucky that it had been discovered in the earliest stage.  Kaya had surgery and (although the recovery process was a bit more difficult because of her age) she went on to live another four years with me.  The cancer never returned, thank G-d.

But what I went through with Kaya has made me uber-paranoid about any skin bumps on my dog, so I decided yesterday to take Maisie to the vet to get her ear checked out.  He did a skin scrape to rule out mange mites and it was negative.  In his opinion, it was either bug bites or an allergic reaction to something.  $87 later (possibly the lowest vet bill I've ever paid), we were sent home.  I was instructed to put Neosporin on the affected area twice a day, especially since it looked much more raw after the scraping (and as you can see here, it got kinda greasy from the ointment).

The vet also first said to give Maisie a Benadryl twice a day.  When I explained that this would result in a fairly comatose dog 24/7, we compromised and decided to give her just one per day, at night.  That means this is the dopey face I'll be seeing for at least the next several evenings:

But at least Maisie is OK, and it didn't cost a fortune to find that out either!

Hope everyone has a nice weekend, it's supposed to be HOT again here in Chicago...

If you have not yet "liked" our Facebook page, please do!  I update it frequently with new Maisie pics not included on the blog and currently, I'm asking for dog pics that could cheer a girl up...go post your dog's pic, I'd love to see your pooch!

12 comments:

Mel B said...

It's always a scary situation when something happens to our furry loved ones.

Paws crossed that Maisie heals quickly and that this was just a bug bite or allergic reaction. :]

chancythegardner said...

Oh, sweet Maisie we are sorry to hear about the boo-boo on your ear. We will say prayers it heals very fast. We are thankful it was nothing more serious. Hugs and nose kisses

Kate@TwentySixToLife said...

Aw, poor Maisie. Both Nemo and Mel have had mast cell tumors so I completely understand how you watch out for that stuff. Also, I had a dog before that suffered from grass allergies so the vet told us to give her benadryl twice a day too. I was concerned that it would mean she was perpetually drowsy too, but the vet told us that that would only last a couple days and then she'd get used to the meds and that side effect would wear off. In our case that seemed to be true - maybe Maisie would be the same way? Regardless, I hope the benadryl and neosporin help!

Froggy said...

I LOVE IPC. I have been taking Pug there for hydrotherapy and physical therapy for the past 8 weeks tomorrow is actually our last session. The staff and facility is just amazing. When you mentioned taking Maisie to the vet my automatic thought was $500 I am so impressed by $87 I don't think I have ever left the vet with a bill under $100. I am glad it's nothing serious and I am the same way with my two. My cat died very suddenly of kidney failure so now when I think something is wrong I automatically freak out.

Froggy said...

I forgot to mention Pug takes 1/2 a benedryl in the am and pm for his allergies but it doesnt make that much of a difference in his energy level....sometimes, especially on walks I wish it did!

~Bren~ said...

Poor lil girl! I hope she feels better soon! :)

Pauley, the Mr. or the Mrs. said...

Glad to hear that Maisie is going to be fine. Our Annie had a cancerous tumor removed from her leg & we have had 3 cats with cancer. We are super paranoid about lumps & bumps. It is always better to be safe than sorry. Our beloved Ginger had severe allergies & took Benadryl (among other things) for several years. The first couple of days it made her drowsy, but then after that you could not even tell :)

loveandaleash said...

whew, glad to know she's doing ok. kudos to you to being cautious about your beloved's health.

K-Koira said...

Koira gets bumps like that all the time. They don't actually get bald, but they look like it, since her hair is so short that if it stands on end (like a bug bite or hives makes it do) it looks like it has less hair.

Glad Maisie is doing good though, and that its not something super scary. And, hope that she doesn't build up a tolerance to the Benadryl like my allergic pup has.

Two Grad Students and a Pittie said...

so happy Maisie is okay - better be safe than sorry!

www.twogradstudentsandapittie.blogspot.com

keith said...

I'm very very happy to know she is ok!!!

T2 - My life with pit bulls said...

I wish Benadryl had that effect at our house! Pretty much every one of us (human and canine) can pop Benadryl like it's candy with no sleepy side effects. I hope Maisie is feeling better soon!