Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jake's Issues

Ever since we moved to our new house Jake has had very itchy ears. It's so sad to see him with his itchy ears. He would try walking across the floor and have to stop every couple of steps to scratch his ears. It got to the point that he would scratch at his ears so badly that he would actually draw blood. Also at the same time, his skin was itchy also. As sad as this was, it developed the funniest quirk. He started to scratch his butt on everything he could find. His favorite spots to do this was on the railing of our bed and in the car on the back of the seat. At the same time, he would raise his head way into the air and bark and lick the air. Hilarious!

At first I honestly thought that he was having some kind of allergic reaction to something in our new yard. Then I thought maybe he had a little bit of an ear infection (those big floppy ears make him prone to them). I went through periods where I would give him a little bit of allergy medication. Sometimes it seemed to help and sometimes it didn't. It all seemed very confusing. Finally a couple of weeks ago I took him to the vet to try and decide what was really wrong. Tom thought he had mites, but I had my doubts. The vet gave us medication for the itchiness as well as steroids for the swelling in his ear canals. They couldn't verify completely weather he had an ear infection because his ears were so swollen for him scratching them. They did take a skin culture and were pretty sure he didn't have mites but the only way to be 100% sure is to do a biopsy. We decided to hold off to do that until we could verify it wasn't anything else. The vet also said if there are any allergic reactions it could be absolutely anything (including anything we were feeding him).

That night I tried to think of anything I changed with him in the past few months. I came up with a couple of options. I changed the snacks I was giving him as well as the laundry detergent we were using. I decided to change back to our original laundry detergent and snacks just to either solve that problem or rule it out. After the first night of medication there was an obvious improvement in him. Now we are through with the itchy medication and only have a couple of more days of the steroids but he is a completely new puppy. He's back to the happy relaxed puppy he was before. I'm pretty sure he was allergic to the laundry detergent. I guess time will tell, but I completely anticipate his happiness continuing because I changed laundry detergent.


Tara said...

Austin broke out in a rash once when we changed our laundry detergent. So that makes sense. Glad he is doing better.

Miriam said...

Hopefully it's as easy as that!