May 15, 2013
This Chow Chow looked very much like a Sharpei when she was clipped bald. But she looked like a Chow Chow when her hair grows back. I saw the dog yesterday, around 2 months after treatment for skin diseases and passing blood in the urine. She had skin diseases for several months and was referred to me by my wife's ex-colleague Susan.
It is very difficult to get dog owners to return for a review of the skin diseases. After all, if the dog has recovered, why see the vet? It was pragmatism in Singaporeans.
Yet, the skin may not be fully recovered if the dog has some leftover skin diseases. In this case, the Chow Chow has no more "dandruff" and the hairs are sturdy and not falling off. Yet the dog had started scratching around the ears.
"The ears are full of wax," I showed the cotton bud tip sticky with yellow brown wax. The neck hair had bloomed. Wetness was due to the dripping of water when drinking from the water bowl. The owner brought a urine sample for testing as previously the dog's urine tested for struvite crystals, high pH of 9.0 and presence of blood and bacteria. I prescribed 12 S/D cans to dissolve the crystals but the owner did not return for more. "The dog vomits the S/D," the young adult daughter said. Yet on further questioning, the dog did eat at least 10 cans but started vomiting the 2 cans later. There were no phone calls to me for advice.
"Taking S/D to dissolve the struvite crystals prevent them becoming stones," I explained. "It must be taken for 1-3 months, not 10 days."
I did not want to do hard sell. I advised spaying and entropion surgery of the two eyes. The Chow Chow had been peering from 3/4-closed eyelids for the past 3 years and the entropion surgery would have resolved the problems.
"We don't want the dog to go under anaesthesia," the young adult daughter said. to me.
"With this continuous eyelid rolling inwards irritation, the cornea becomes infected and ulcerated. In later years, you have a blind dog as the cornea becomes black from pigmentation and the dog can't see. It is important that the Chow Chow has her eye surgery. As for the spay, if you don't want it, that is OK."
Ignorance of the safety of modern anaesthetics is a reason for no spay and no eye surgery. This can't be helped.