Meet Bailey the German shepherd

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Google Maps location for Willunga Vet  Services

Willunga Vet Services
37 Main Rd
Willunga
SA 5172

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Phone:
8556 2075
Fax:
8556 2654

Aldinga Vet Services
16 Heathersay Ave
Aldinga Beach
SA 5173

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Phone:
8556 5498

Bailey is a 4-year-old German Shepherd whose owner noted approximately 5 weeks before we saw him that he had developed a sore on the nose. This had then spread further up the nose and then to the earflaps. The lips and around the eyes were also becoming affected. Bailey had been dispensed some antibiotics previous to his visit to us but the skin had continued to get worse. When we first saw him, his skin had become quite severely crusted and was weepy and irritating him badly and he had lost a lot of the pigmentation on the nose.

The location and appearance of this problem can be consistent with a number of different conditions with the diagnosis of Discoid Lupus Erythematosis (DLE) being the most likely. To rule out a few other possibilities, we did some skin scrapes in the clinic to check for mites (negative), examined Bailey with a Woods lamp to check for ringworm (negative) and then, under anaesthetic, took a number of biopsies from the skin and lips. The results of the biopsy confirmed our suspicion of DLE.

Discoid Lupus Erythematosis (DLE) is a type of immune mediated dermatitis - meaning that an abnormal immune reaction is occurring in the skin. In most cases it affects the nose only but in some cases like Bailey, it can affect the ear flaps, lips and around the eyes.

There are a number of different treatments that can be used for DLE, depending on the severity and the location of the problem. Some dogs may only need the application of ointments, but like Bailey, some dogs that have more areas affected may require tablet medications - there are a variety of treatment protocols. In most dogs some form of treatment is required life long.

Bailey was started on some cortisone medication, some Vitamin E capsules and a cream was also applied. Over a few weeks the condition slowly settled. We hope that eventually we can control his condition using just ointments/creams and vitamin tablets but he may require ongoing or intermittent cortisone medication.

Dogs with DLE can become much more sensitive to the sun and in summer may need to have sunscreens applied (use Pet sunscreens and non-zinc based sunscreens). Alternatively, try to minimise the amount of sun exposure your pet experiences.


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