I wonder what is going on

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Red
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I wonder what is going on

Postby Red » Thu Apr 16, 2009 11:23 pm

Tux spent a lot of time in the yard wednesday and late in the evening I noticed that there was some swelling on one side of his muzzle. It looked like a bee sting type of thing so I gave him some benadryl and decided to wait til this morning.When I came home from work that area was much more swollen and hard to the touch.I thought about a tooth related problem but the inside his mouth looks normal, no cuts or irritation of the gum. Being fearful Tux is usually taken to only two vets, both kind to him.One had two emergencies and the other was not in. I am thinking to take him to the emergency clinic tonight but I just called and the vet who is in...don't like him nor his manners around dogs.I keep supplies of Cephalexin so I started him on it in case there is an infection, which to me looks like a possibility since the skin is red and the area is warm. Not painful, the dog has no fever and is eating normally and is himself.
He is going to be seen tomorrow no matter what vet is available but I was wondering what could have happen.Any idea?

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msvette2u

Postby msvette2u » Thu Apr 16, 2009 11:29 pm

Do you have cheat grass (fox tails) in your area?
That's what it reminds me of :dunno:

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Red
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Postby Red » Thu Apr 16, 2009 11:34 pm

Yes, we have them but not in the yard.He came along with Tigger when I worked her with the sled on the trails behind the house on tuesday but I don't remember I have ever seen fox tails there, as it is more dirt and sand.I truly hope that is not what it is since it will have to be removed and poor Tux would gladly do without being poked with needles.

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Misskiwi67
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Postby Misskiwi67 » Thu Apr 16, 2009 11:55 pm

If he's happy and eating... it can wait until tomorrow. Tomorrow being friday, I wouldn't wait any longer. A morning appointment would be best in case he needs surgery or sedation to check his mouth and teeth well.

msvette2u

Postby msvette2u » Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:01 am

Those foxtails can travel - from the ear for instance, into other parts of the body.
It's amazing.
I had a Springer Spaniel while growing up and she develeped an abscess like a football on her face - it was a foxtail embedded in there, it took almost a week for it to pop out, so horrible.
Good luck at the vet. I hope it's not one, too.

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Red
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Postby Red » Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:10 am

Ugh, foxtail nightmares.Thanks.

msvette2u

Postby msvette2u » Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:14 am

Sorry :\ Maybe it's just a bee sting.
Happy Bee-sting dreams...more Benadryl, what, every 6hrs. or 8 hrs, is not going to hurt him, btw, just in case.

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FujiFig
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Postby FujiFig » Fri Apr 17, 2009 1:20 am

It could be an insect like a bot fly - there arent too many of them out this time of year but there are several kinds that lay eggs under the skin and cause it to harden. It happends when the dogs asleep - we've had them before - usually (if that's it), the vet (we do it ourselves with clean equipment that we have for the reptiles) will usually just lance it and clean it out.

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heartbullies
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Postby heartbullies » Fri Apr 17, 2009 1:37 am

ack. good luck at the vet's.

poor tux.

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DannyNyce
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Postby DannyNyce » Fri Apr 17, 2009 1:18 pm

what are foxtails?
...let us know how it went

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julie64
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Postby julie64 » Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:53 pm

How is Tux doing?

msvette2u

Postby msvette2u » Fri Apr 17, 2009 8:41 pm

http://sandiegodog.wordpress.com/2007/0 ... s-to-dogs/

Foxtails and explanation at above link.

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Postby PitBull-Lady » Fri Apr 17, 2009 8:42 pm

http://www.cccgdr.com/resources/foxtails.htm

Danger: Foxtails!

There are several species of Foxtail, a grassy weed usually found only in states west of the Mississippi River. Many folks out East have not heard of foxtail and are unaware of the danger they pose to dogs. Foxtail grows rapidly during the winter/spring rains and then dry out in the summer months. As foxtail grasses mature, a seed forms at the top of the stalk. The seed resembles a fox's tail, hence the name given to the grass.

When dog owners talk about "foxtails," they are actually speaking of the seed portion of the foxtail grass. Once foxtail grasses dry out, the seed detaches easily and sticks readily to clothing and fur. Foxtail seeds can enter a dog's body in a variety of ways and once they enter, they are like a fish hook: The seed only wants to move forward, not backward. It's most common for a foxtail seed to enter a dog's body through the skin, nose, ears, paws, and eyes. Cases have even been reported of foxtails being lodged in male dogs' urethras. One vet mentioned how a foxtail seed found in a dog's lung was believed to have entered initially through the dog's paw! Foxtail seeds are tenacious!

Foxtail seeds are relatively small, so detecting them once they enter a dog's body can be difficult. Vets usually rely on telltale symptoms. Foxtail seeds in the ears, nose, and eyes are very serious and can ultimately be life-threatening if they are not treated promptly.

If a foxtail seed has been inhaled and lodged in the nasal cavity, the dog will sneeze repeatedly and violently, often banging their nose on the floor with each sneeze in a futile attempt to dislodge the seed. It is often possible to sedate the animal, locate the seed with an otoscope, and remove it using special forceps.

If a foxtail seed is lodged in the paw or under the coat, a lump will usually form that is painful to touch. Depending on how deep the foxtail seed has travelled, they can usually be surgically removed.

When a foxtail seed get into a dog's eye, they will usually paw at the eye and the eye will water. Even if you can see a foxtail laying under the eyelid, don't try to remove it yourself! There's a good chance that you may not get it all. Keep your dog from pawing at their eye and get to a vet immediately, preferably a veterinary opthomologist.

If your dog gets a foxtail in their ear, they will usually shake their head violently from side to side. If you suspect a foxtail, get your dog to a vet immediately. The best way to handle foxtail problems is to prevent them!

Avoid foxtail infested areas.
Thoroughly brush and inspect your dog's coat if it has been romping through tall, mature grass. Run your hands over their coat and look for foxtails. Dogs with long hair are particularly susceptable to foxtail seeds.

Look into your dog's ears. If your dog has floppy ears, lift each ear and inspect.
If you believe your dog has a foxtail seed lodged somewhere in its body, get to a vet IMMEDIATELY. The longer you wait, the deeper the foxtail may travel, the more damage it may do, and the more difficult it may be to treat.



More on Foxtails

Foxtail"seedlings" are physically built to burrow. While some animals do not have difficulty with the plant (horses can eat them with no side effects), and people seem to be able to remove them easily, dogs appear to have the most severe reactions to them.

The outsides of the "seedlings" contain a bacterium with enzymes used to break down vegetation. This bacterium also allows the seedling to burrow into a dog along the tunnels of pus created by the enzyme. In fact, pus and foxtails go hand in hand.

A foxtail can literally go anywhere in the dog. For example, they have been found inside the brain, anal glands, eyes, ears, jowls, feet, spinal cord, lungs, and vagina. We will focus on the symptoms, first aid treatment, and veterinary treatment for foxtails in the more common areas of the ears, eyes, nose, mouth, feet, vagina, and a general wound.

Ears: The symptoms are clear: a head tilt or head shaking is the immediate response of a dog that has a foxtail in its ear. Later, the symptoms look like an ear infection. The larger the dog, the less noticeable the symptoms so monitor your dog carefully. Vizslas, due to their height and hanging ears, are less likely to get foxtails during normal every day activity than shorter and/or pricked-ear dogs. However, our dogs can and do get foxtails in their ears. First aid response is to put drops of oil into the affected ear to soften the foxtail. This softening helps prevent the foxtail from moving forward and may allow the dog to shake it out. Unless you see the foxtail shaken out, do not assume it has been removed. Take the dog to a vet for removal of the foxtail. The vet will most likely conduct an otoscopic exam and a simple retrieval.

Eyes: Symptoms for foxtails in the eyes are a gummy discharge and a squint, or an eye glued shut. In parts of California, for example, if an eye is glued shut, it is generally considered a foxtail and treated as such. First aid response is to calm the dog. If the foxtail is in sight and you can control your dog, use a blunt tweezer to pull out the foxtail. Foxtails cannot be flushed from the eye with water or eye-wash, nor can they be removed by applying ointment. Get your dog to the vet. Once at the vet, the dog will usually need to be placed under a general anesthesia, especially if your dog cannot remain calm while being handled. After a topical ointment is applied, the vet will remove the foxtail. A calm dog can have a foxtail removed from its eye without the anesthesia, but most cannot.

Nose: For a foxtail in the nose, the obvious symptoms are spasmodic and serial sneezing. If blood comes from the nose as a consequence of sneezing, you are almost assured it is a foxtail. First aid treatment is to drop (not squirt) some oil into the nose. Mineral oil is best but baby or vegetable oil can be used. The oil will soften the foxtail, so hopefully, it will not continue to burrow. The oil is for the dog’s comfort as well as to help stop the foxtail from poking the sensitive nasal passages. But again, get your dog to a vet quickly. Once at the vet, the dog will be anesthetized, its nose scoped, and the foxtail found and removed.

Mouth: Dogs can get foxtails in their mouth. The symptoms of a foxtail stuck in the gums or back of the throat include gagging, difficulty swallowing when eating, etc. If swallowed, foxtails can be passed. However, if it gets caught in periodontal pockets, the tongue, in between teeth or in the back of the throat, it can cause problems. You can tell if this has occurred, not only from the above symptoms, but also because the dog may have a "dead body" odor coming from the mouth. The vet will anesthetize the dog, then locate and remove the foxtail.

Interdigital: Symptoms are continuous licking of the foot or pad, or the appearance of a bubbly swelling between the toes. First check the dog. If you think there is a foxtail, you can soak the foot in warm water 10 to 15 minutes one or two times a day for three days. This will assist in the creation of an abscess in the area that will eventually burst. Once it bursts, you can remove the foxtail by milking the abscess and backing out the foxtail. Once the foxtail is removed, keep soaking the foot, but now add an antiseptic (like betadine) to the water (about one tablespoon per cup of water). What should be clear by now is that for foxtails, "pus marks the spot," so always look for a bubble of pus on the foot. Sometimes the bubble shows up and disappears, then shows up somewhere else on the dog’s leg. From our experience this indicates a roving foxtail and the best bet is to get your dog to the vet.

Vagina: This area is hard to spot symptoms at for they are not as obvious as in other areas. Look for a swollen area in the groin and constant licking of the vaginal area. There is no first aid treatment. Take the dog to a vet immediately.

Any foxtail that enters a dog through the ears, eyes, nose, mouth, feet, or vagina ,if ignored, has the potential to travel (burrowing along the tunnels of pus created by the seedling’s bacteria) anywhere in the dog’s body. Don’t ignore any of the outermost symptoms, as internal symptoms are usually not visible. Severe injury and even death can occur if the foxtail reaches the dog’s brain, spinal cord, heart or lungs.

Wounds: At one field trail I was at, a dog had cut itself severely on barbed wire. The cut was a long one and nearly ran the length of the dog’s leg. As the dog and owner came in from the field, one could see not only the blood but could also tell the dog had debris in the wound. The owner did not understand the dangers of foxtails and did not have a first aid kit to assist the dog. Kay Ingle, who was standing next to me, instantly grabbed sterile water and tweezers from her first aid kit and started carefully pulling and washing out foxtails from the wound. After doing what she could, she instructed the owner to leave the trail and get the dog to the local vet, which he did.

In Dr. Amezcua’s 14 years of experience in the greater San Francisco and Peninsula area, less that one percent of the dogs that had foxtails have died; in her case only two dogs. In both cases, the dogs died due to the foxtail getting into the lungs. Unfortunately, there are no symptoms to recognize when the foxtail is in the lungs. The lungs can fill with pus and lead to to death.

Although generally foxtails do not lead to death, they can cause severe injury. After any event in areas with foxtails, it is wise to carefully inspect your dog. It is also wise to immediately treat any dog that shows the above symptoms and get it to a vet. You might also want to add blunt tweezers, mineral oil, and an eye dropper to your growing first aid kit for field trial dogs.

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Red
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Postby Red » Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:59 pm

Thanks for the feedback and asking about Tux.The "nice" folks in my room decided not to show up for work today so I had to open and wait till someone could cover my shift.We saw a vet we could get an appointment with today but she did nothing for him.We waited 3 hours since they wanted to work him after the other dogs and then the vet remember to ask what meds he is on (I put it his paperwork, hellooo!!) and decided she did not want to sedate him with him taking Reconcile daily.Because she needed to check his mouth and teeth all the way she wanted to sedate him but she was afraid of unsafe drugs interaction.He has an appointment tomorrow morning as soon as they open with another vet who is far away but reliable so I'll update when I can.I have noticed a gland (I think that is what it is) that feels enlarged on his throat only so perhaps it is not a foxtail or tooth.He is eating like a pig as usual, still no fever and he is a pain in the rear...so he is pretty much still himself.

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Postby patty » Sat Apr 18, 2009 10:54 am

Thinking of you and Tux.

Hope your visit to the vet today is positive and helpful.

Keep us updated!


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