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Nicola
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:44 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Dylan has had a claw removed that was split in two. Unfortunately it's not healing and we're now on the third lot of antibiotics. The vet is sedating him next Tuesday to x-ray the toe, see how far the infection has spread, look for tumours, and possibly remove the toe if necessary. I want to make sure that all bases are covered so can anyone think of anything that I should ask or insist on? We're currently giving Dylan salt water footbaths (as instructed by the vet). I'm wondering about tea tree footbaths? Other than that we're just worrying.....
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Zizou
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:47 am Reply with quoteBack to top

What a shame. There's a lady on here whose dog has similar problems. When she sees this, I'm sure she will guide you. Hope Dylan is better soon.
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Ossie's Jill
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:57 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Tea tree is a good antiseptic but can be a little harsh so go gently in case it stings. Lavender oil is good for healing. I just wet a cotton wool ball with water from the kettle and put one drop of oil on the wet cotton wool and wipe the affected area - worth a try?


Last edited by Ossie's Jill on Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Zizou
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:12 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

My dogsitter swears by a Germolene spray you get in supermarkets and chemists. Another friend likes Sudocreme, but I think you'd have to apply it last thing for overnight. Maybe such things can keep you going until you get some Lavender oil?

I think I'll get Lavender oil to keep in. i had some but have run out.
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 5:41 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh I've just checked - I've got some lavender oil so I'll give that a try. Thanks for the suggestion.
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maxnick
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 5:49 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I know quite a lot of Bearded collie owners swear by Thornit for problems with toes etc, it also helps to deter mites.
You can also get some Hibiscrub from the vet, a liquid which you put on some cotton wool & wet it with water, then bathe the feet. It is a mild antiseptic.
I was told by my vet not to use tea tree (as I used it diluted in the past), & I have heard that it is not good for pets & can be toxic. Check with one of the search engines or ask your vet, but never use it undiluted.
Hope this helps.

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jenny
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 10:56 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Just a word of warning, what ever you apply make certain that if it is ingested by the animal concerned, that it will have no detrimental effect on them. The consequences of this could lead to costly treatment. A friend of mine is a veterinary nurse and some things that people have applied to their animals would leave you horrified. My advice would be to check with your vet first

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Ossie's Jill
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:22 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Absolutely Jenny, that's why a little Lavender is good!!
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dagmar
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Megan had her toenail removed, Our Vet took an x-ray before he removed the nail to check for infection in the bone

The following work for us

1. Keep the area clean I bathed Megan's foot twice a day with Hibiscrub( or if it got dirty)

2. Ask the vet for a barrier crème, to stop the new nail being damaged when you change dressings ( Megans new nail looked a bit like white mould)

3 The more air you can get to the wound the better , use a collar if you have to stop the dog from liking

4. Don't buy any rubber boots, they will slip on wet ground and hurt the nail
5. I bought baby socks and elastic bandage to keep the sock from slipping

The Nail took a long time to heal but it was worse it, good luck Razz
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GillCoates
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:10 am Reply with quoteBack to top

When my old boy had a problem with an unhealing wound after surgery with the vets and after numerous courses with antibiotics, I dressed the wound with Manuka honey (hospital version). Worked a treat. Vets wasn't happy I was using it but it worked for us.
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Brion's Mrs
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 10:30 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Hi. My sympathies for you and Dylan. Our Brion went through this sort of thing (indeed is now back in the foot wars a year later) last year and after three lots of antibiotics had to have the toe removed, which actually healed quite quickly and he has not missed at all. We are of the Hibiscrub camp, which you can get from the chemist, and it doesn't seem to do him any harm.
Last year the x-ray revealed disintegration of the bone in the toe so the vet removed it and kept the toe in formalin in case we wanted a biopsy (a bit gruesoome), which we decided we did and which revealed a malignancy, though we were relieved when our vet told us that the outlook should be good for his immediate future, although these tumours do have a nasty habit of returning on different feet at a later date. Just recently he developed a skin tumour on the same foot as last year (not too serious the vet said but should be removed, as it now has been) and another swollen painful toe on a front foot, where he also has grotty toenails (our vet says that Brion is a most unusual dog in having both a tendency to nailbed cancer and grotty toenails; she says she hasn't met this before. Let's hope you just have the grotty toenails!). That's just been x-rayed, without a conclusive result, so we're back on the antibiotics and Brion has had the toenail removed and we are all hoping that it is just a nail infection.
I can't really advise because it looks like Brion got a nail infection so we hadn't kept it clean enough (but in our defence this grotty toenail problem is there all the time and this particular naill had been a worry for the last year, with reg visits to the vet for checks and clips of it) but our vet strongly favours keeping the feet clipped, which makes it much easier to keep the nails clean and visible, and no covering because sweaty feet encourage bacteria, and hibiscrub. Brion makes a huge fuss about a lampshade, but that would of course stop licking. We made him put up with one for a couple of days after his op, but have it off now when we are with him, and he seems to have the message: any licking and it will go back on and is also I think so tired from not sleeping well with it, that he is now just crashed out. Depends on the dog, I think.
I do feel for you but hope you will be reassured by our experience that although worrying (and a bit expensive), feet infections and or nailbed infections do seem to be a well worn path for vets and I do hope that the x-ray will be really helpful for you. Personally if in doubt I'd take the toe off, especially if, like Brion's original one, it is on the outside of a back paw, which the dog doesn't miss too much.
Amanda
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 11:09 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks Amanda, that is both helpful and reassuring. At the moment we're bathing his foot (well all of them actually - Dylan has a big footbath and insists that if one foot is being cleaned they all are. I expect he's right) in salt water as per vet's instructions. I'll ask her about Hibiscrub on Tuesday. Perhaps it's something we should have in as a matter of course. The thing we're struggling with is the licking. Our vet gave us the largest collar she had but it's too small and won't go round Dylan's enormous neck. I tried altering it, but it seems that my engineering skills are not up to it and he ended up being able to get to the toe whilst wearing it! (he's very bendy). So at the moment we are on constant lick-watch (exhausting). I'm hoping that we make some progress on Tuesday and that we can all get some rest!

Nicola
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Brion's Mrs
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 9:07 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Just thought of a few more things on the things to ask theme. Your vet will prob do it automatically but ours checked Brion's lymph glands when she found disintegrated bone showing up on the x-ray. The point as I understand it is that should Dylan have a nailbed tumour, which we all hope he hasn't, it is apparently slow growing in its initial form, which is in the foot. However, it eventually meta somethings (changes) into a very nasty form which affects the lymph glands and dog's inner organs, and it certainly gave us peace of mind to be told that Brion's lymph glands were fine, and also that the margins of the operation were sufficiently wide (this was decided by the biopsy of the amputated toe).
Our vet says that it is really hard to tell the difference between early stage nailbed tumours and nail infections, since both cause disintegration of the bone. I would ask your vet for her view on this because this is why, in my obviously unprofessional opinion based only on the one case, Brion, I would opt to amputate the tip of the toe if there is any doubt .
(I have to add on this that poor Brion's bone had disintegrated to quite a major extent - even I could see from the x-ray that he had no bone up to the first joint, which apparently was why the poor dog was clearly in a lot of pain, and had had to struggle on through three lots of antibiotics, but our vet was still not totally sure that it was a tumour when she operated. She said that in his case there was little option because he was clearly in such pain from the bone disintegration, leaving the nail floating free. Yuk! As I've said when we had a biopsy done, it turned out that she had definitely made the right call, and the cause was cancer. By the way, it is apparently not possible to just do a biopsy because it necessitates removing as much of the toe as if the tip were being amputated.
This time round the decision has been much less clear cut because there is no obvious bone disintegration visible on the x-ray and, again as I said, Brion has a long history of toe nail problems on that foot, which clearly haven't been caused by a tumour since they have gone on for so long and there isn't significant bone disintegration. Yet when our vet had him laid out on the operating table she at first rang us to say that she would like to remove the toe (actually the end of the toe) just in case. Then she changed her mind, reckoning that she was being over hasty and Brion would find the loss of this particular toe tip, on top of the one already missing on the same side but at the back, would affect his balance.
I bore you with all this just in case it helps in your conversation with your vet pre-sedation because once Dylan is under you only have a brief phone call's time to decide.)
Don't worry. HOpe he stops licking, now that is a pain!
Amanda
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Brion's Mrs
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 9:43 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I do go on, I know, but seem to have such a rambling mind that I think of things only when I've said them, if you know what I mean.
We have found that the buster collar, though a pain, is quite essential for feet. Brion is not a great licker and is quite remarkably stoical and calm so long as he is close to one of us but our vet worries about operating on feet because she doesn't like to leave dressings on for any longer than a few days because of the risk of the dog walking in wet and also just having sweaty feet and so breeding bacteria. I bet the great Amazon would have a giant size one if need be.
Fortunately one forgets problems once they have gone but I do now remember that it was qiuite a business looking after Brion's amputated toe post op. He had it removed just above the second joint on the outside of a back foot, as I said, so had no need to put weight on it but we did have quite a long time of covering his foot with drip bags when he went out, and eventually settled for a collection of old socks of our sons', which were held on by large rubber bands whenever he went out, just to stop dirt from getting in the wound, since our vet removed the dressing v quickly. I think we only used the buster collar for a few days, but then as I said Brion is not a licker. ...
The wound definitely did take quite a time to totally heal.
BUT IT DID! AND ONE FORGETS!!
Amanda
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:10 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks for all that information Amanda - ramble on as much as you like it's really helpful. I always feel better the more information I have and it's great to know what to ask.

I actually ordered a comfy cone last night so that we have it when Dylan gets home tomorrow. It's like the elizabethan collars but soft and quilted. It got good reviews and from the measurements should actually fit so I ordered it. If we don't like it we'll try the buster next. The vet said that Dylan could go for a very short walk each day (Dyls loves his walks and was clearly suffering from cabin fever) as long as he wore a boot. So we got a soft boot which is working really well. Our poor credit card - who knew a claw would turn out to be so expensive. At the moment I'm stopping him licking by sitting on the bed with him. I now know why I took voluntary redundancy - to be a Briard's nurse!
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:54 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Well Dylan has had his toe removed. The infection was bad apparently and had gone quite a way up. The vet checked his lymph nodes and said they are ok. He also had a chest x-ray. This showed some spots on his lungs which is worrying as that could indicate cancer. On the other hand our vet said that it's normal to see dark spots on the lungs of an older dog and if Dylan hadn't had problems with his toe she would be telling us all was fine. So the toe is being sent for a biopsy. If it's clear then great. If the toe is cancerous then the lung x-rays will be sent for analysis. All in all our vet says she thinks it's a bad infection, but obviously we want to be sure. So we just have to wait which is hard.

The vet also said that Dylan had been really good. He hates the vets and used to kick up a huge fuss, but has recently got better (but we still muzzle him just in case). Adrian (Husband) stayed with him until he was sedated - he says it's a bit weird sitting having a cup of tea in a darkened room - so Dylan didn't get any sense of what was going on. It will be interesting to see what he's like when we take him in to have his dressing removed on Thursday.

Dyan seems fine, but still sleepy today. He's got a great big blue bandage on his foot which doesn't seem to bother him. Although weak last night he managed to force down a few chipolatas (or several) which my sister had cooked for him as a post-op present. It's amazing the restorative power of a chipolata.
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Ossie's Jill
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2013 12:18 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Fingers crossed for Dylan, hope his recovery continues OK and the biopsy results are good. How old is he?
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2013 1:31 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Dylan's 8 next month. He's obviously feeling much better as he's at the window barking at passers by.
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:24 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks for the update. glad he's feeling himself, prob glad not to have a painful toe any more. Soon he'll prob be wanting a walk, like Brion who's most indignant not to be being walked at the moment in his toenail-less state.
Chipolatas, mmm.
Amanda
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2013 3:40 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Nicola, I am glad the op went well, let's hope for a speedy toe recovery & no licking.
Hope the results will be ok, keeping everything crossed for Dylan. Big hugs all round.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2013 6:24 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Glad to hear that Dylan is on the mend. Fingers and paws crossed that the biopsy results are good.

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Brenda Wilkinson
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2013 9:38 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Glad he's on the mend.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2013 6:22 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Great news Nicola, so glad Dylan's on the mend, and sausages are always good for a poorly dog.
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Nicola
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 2:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

We've had the biopsy results today. As the vets said 'not the best, not the worst'. They did find cancer in the toe (I did ask which one, but we were speaking on the phone and our vet is softly spoken so I couldn't catch what she said - I'll ask again when we're face to face). It is a malignant kind of cancer, but they think they got it all. Jo (our vet) says that she doesn't believe that this type spreads to the lungs, but that she's going to double check with the pathologist. She's also going to ask the pathologist if there's anything else we should look for (the pathologist is away today - typical). In the meantime Jo is sending me a diagram of the lymph nodes so that we can keep an eye on them and she will also check Dylan every six weeks herself. All in all it was a bit of a scary phone call but Jo says she believes it's a 'favourable prognosis'.

As for Dylan his foot is healing nicely and he's licking it a lot less. He's also back to his lively bumptious self and back to going for walks (short) thank goodness.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:49 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

It might not be the best news, but it sounds fairly positive. Hoping Dylan has many more cancer-free years with you!
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 4:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Sorry to hear that it wasn't all clear but hopefully they got it all & it won't spread. It sounds like you have a good vet.
Glad Dylan is doing ok though, & the toe is healing nicely. I am sure he will be around for a long time. Give him a big hug from me. xx

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Nicola
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:20 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Further good news. The pathologist has confirmed that it's rare for this type of cancer to spread to the lungs and that even if it were to spread to the local lymph node it could be removed. So hopefully that's an end to it, but we're on lymph node watch just in case.

Dylan's back to normal and doesn't appear to miss his toe.

Thanks so much for all your advice and good wishes.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Glad to hear the good news. Dylan deserves an extra big hug for being so brave Smile

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gail
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

So glad this is good news for Dylan, he's such a brave boy.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:39 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Glad to hear that it's good news and that Dylan has recovered so well. Hugs to all of you.

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Nicola
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 6:19 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Well here we go again. Another poorly toe. Dylan is having all his feet and his chest x-rayed on monday and possibly having the toe removed. Keep your fingers and paws crossed for him.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 7:44 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh, I am sorry. Amanda
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 10:35 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

We all have our fingers and paws crossed. Big hugs to Dylan.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 1:04 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh, I am sorry to hear your worries continue. Hope all goes well, that it turns out to be not as bad as you feared and that they sort out whatever is wrong really quickly. Everything crossed here.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 11, 2013 1:47 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Everything is crossed here. It's a shame you have this worry. Crying or Very sad
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