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Tsuki's Allergy Testing
  • What an experience! I went to Dr. Jeffers in Gaithersburg, MD . He was really gentle, kind and very knowledgeable (he literally had a book of his published papers in the waiting room!).

    Turns out she was not allergic to indoor allergens as I suspected, nearly all of them were weeds and trees, with the expection of one indoor mold. The vet sent us home with steroids, atopica, steroid cream and the desensitization injections... and a $578 vet bill, which gave my 22 y/o self a heart attack, thankfully my mom is helping me out.

    She reacted very badly after getting out of the sedation. While she normally has been pretty itchy since she went off the steroids to make sure the allergy test was valid, she was UNCONTROLLABLY itchy today after the test.

    She is never, never, ever vocal. I hadnt heard her whine til today when I put her in her crate as I prepared to return to work. She was just screaming and turning circles in her crate, all I could hear was the thrashing of her plastic e-collar on the bars. She wouldn't even take a treat from my hand.

    I knew something had to be pretty wrong when I tried to put one of my old tank tops on her to protect the test site. She pulled so hard on the collar to get away from me I thought she might hurt her neck. Normally if I touch her collar she sits, knowing Im just putting on a leash. She finally settled down for a minute when I went to the bathroom and I came out to find her paws speckled with blood. I rushed her out to the vet, I dont even think I put the soy milk away, haha. She's going to be observed until I can get her after work.

    This is so hard, guys ): After all this I hope she gets some relief! I hate watching her suffer.
    Post edited by sunyata at 2012-08-09 10:47:02
  • brandon_wbrandon_w
    Posts: 3433
    It is good that you now know what she is allergic too so that it can be treated properly. I hope the treatments start to work soon and her itchies slow down.
  • LeonbergerLeonberger
    Posts: 3580
    It's never easy to know that they are in distress, even more when it causes such an out of character reaction.
    Hopefully after this she will get the relief she deserves.
  • Janaki, I know how hard it can be. Especially when it seems the treatment/diagnosis is making her feel worse than she was before. But, now you've got a direction. Something concrete to work toward. And, you've got an expert who will be there to help you through it. Tsuiki is very lucky to have someone like you taking care of her. Keep it up!
  • Poor girl! Inhalation allergies are the worst. I am so glad you got her to the dermatology vet. I hope she will start feeling better soon after you get her on the Atopica. Her body is in a complete flair since she has just been put through over exposure to all the items her body is so sensitive to. I bet she she is itchy nuts. (April through Nov is a horrible allergy time for a dog like this if you live in Maryland.)

    Also did the vet by chance give her a steroid shot before you took her home? Some Shibas are super sensitive to steroids even at the lowest dose and they behave abnormally after given it orally or in injection. If the dog is panting and shaking or googly eyed and has some head twitching/bobbing it is the side effect of the steroids. ... Basically their focus while on the meds is such that, you won't get her attention very much if at all. The dog may be very grumpy or you may see other behavior changes such as extreme shyness. Sooo be aware, the dose may have to be cut back and keep an eye on her once you get her home giving in pill form ...... talk to your vet about it, if the symptoms are as described.

    I would work with one med at a time determine what she can tolerate. Steroids first. Next the Atopica... she will need to adjust to the Atopic and may develop the poops so keep some anti diarrheal caps (Loperamide Hydrochloride) on hand. You can get that over the coutner at CVS. Use only the lope. since it has no other additives. You may have to pre-prep the dog by giving the anti-diarrheal meds ( half of a 2 mg cap twice a day for 18 - 20 lb shiba) for several days before giving Atopica. (this is a tip that many vets don't know about). Trust me it will save you and the dog a lot of grief in the potty department preventing explosive poops. Once you start the Atopic meds you can keep her on the anti-diarrheal meds for about a week or two until her body adjusts to the cyclosporine. After that her stools should start going back to normal and you can cut back and take her off the Lope for the rest of the season.

    I am not sure how the Atopica and the allergy shots work together. Usually from what I understand the vets don't do both at the same time you choose allergy shots OR Atopica. I don't know your case but be
    sure to monitor it closely.....talk to your vet if you encounter any problems.

    Good luck
    Snf

    PS: roll the tabs into some items like peanut butter, sweet potoatoe, pumpkin or cheese or even butter and most dogs will eat the pills out of your hand. Make it a fun food if you are going to medicate everyday. No point in struggling to get your pup to eat it up.
  • tsukitsunetsukitsune
    Posts: 6468
    oh boy - poor Tsuki! I got uncomfortable for her just reading it! But everyone is right - this might seem like the worst right now but at least you have a professional working with you to correct the problems and the damage and you have something to work towards now. I hope she starts feeling better soon! And that you get some relief!

    Hang in there Tsuki and Janaki!
  • Patrice, thanks for the heads up! I believe the vet did give her the steroid shot, when I brought her back the second time today after the insane itching. Im definitely going to call to make sure she's pulling through ok. She's been on steroids (low dose, compared to the shot, definitely) with no bad reaction, so I hope everything pans out well.

    She did have diarrhea coming out of the sedation ): Thanks for all this really specific info (even down to the dosage :)) - its going to save us from another stress.

    Yes the vet did recommend I start all three at once - the allergy shot, steroids (to reduce her agony immediately) as well as the Atopica because it will take some time to take effect. I might give her a few days before starting the Atopica. This has been a stressful day!
  • Make sure she gets plenty of water being that she was sedated and is on the steroids meds. She will pee more often to be sure, so she will need to stay well hydrated. If you have to, add water to her kibble to make a broth that way she gets more in her even if she won't drink directly.

    Wait until she is over sedation for a couple of days before diarrhea tabs and Atopica. Sedation will sometimes cause bowel problems so ease back into things before starting with new regime.

    You probably won't see results from the Atopica for two weeks or more, it takes awhile on the meds for the body to adjust to it.

    Again if you have questions or concerns be sure to speak to the vet. Sometimes they get in a rush and forget to mention some of the little things....
    Snf
    Post edited by StaticNfuzz at 2008-10-14 15:41:11
  • Oh bother...poor baby. I hope she'll be relieved of it soon.

    All the best to you and her.
    - Corina A. Gonzalez | Lynxiene (Belgian Malinois), Shoushuu, Kotomi & Shuran (Shikoku Ken). | Along with a Clan of cats!
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8425
    Poor Tsuki. I hope that this is the beginning of the end of her itching and suffering. How did she fare at the vet's yesterday? Hopefully they were able to get the itching under somewhat control. My thoughts are with you both. And sending good vibes from my two pups! :)
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • BradA1878BradA1878
    Posts: 2240
    Sounds like you found a good allergist. I'm sorry things are not great for Tsuki yet, but hopefully this is the road to recovery.
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4784
    Wow, poor girl. Beebe has a lot to look forward to. Are both of Tsuki's sides shaved for the allergy testing?"Common sense isn't so common"
  • Ahh best of luck to Beebe! Tsuki just had one 4" x 8" site shaved under her front leg - its not big at all. That size is pretty standard as per my research. Really make sure Beebe is not reacting to the allergy test before you take her home, as I mentioned, Tsuki was so itchy she could even sit for a second - it was the most torturous thing I've ever witnessed.
    Post edited by scientiste at 2008-10-17 10:18:23
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 4784
    Wow, I'm going to ask for the dermatologist to try and just do it on the leg then. I hate the idea of her whole side being shaved and then being driven mad with itching. Do you have to do a food trial also?"Common sense isn't so common"
  • well im not sure that you can just ask the doctor to do just the leg. its a lot of injections (the test we had done was 60). Its best to let them do whats necessary, vanities aside.

    Doc didnt recommend a food trial, the symptoms werent indicative of a food allergy.
  • Hey, was just reading this thread as I'm thinking of getting Tali tested for allergies, although to the naked eye, she doesn't seem to be suffering severely to anything. Just sneezy and a bit itchy when I had her on a certain food before I switched it to grain free although I never narrowed it down to what exactly she might be reacting to.

    Is it possible to get this test done for the sake of knowing what she's allergic to and if she's not that severe, not get shots that she has to take for the rest of her dog life? Like if it is a food here or there, can't I just eliminate those foods? And so I'm also reading steroids are no good for dogs. This is a new vet I'm seeing, anything I should be prepared for or ask about specifically related to this allergy skin test?

    Thanks for any advice. :D

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