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Relief at last for Scooby
30 November 2016
Scooby is an 8 year old West Highland White Terrier and his story began in the summer of 2015. His owners noticed that he had started to lick his paws – which was unusual for him as he hadn’t had a history of itchy skin problems before. Knowing that Westies are very prone to skin problems, Scooby’s owner took him along to his local vets, and they diagnosed a parasite infection called Demodex. This was treated successfully and Scooby returned to normal again.
However, signs of paw licking returned in the summer of 2016, and Scooby was once again diagnosed with the parasite infection. He resumed treatment and a good response was expected. Within a few weeks though, worrying scabby areas of skin started to develop over Scooby’s back, and his owner witnessed these lesions spreading down his chest and back in just a few days. By the time Scooby’s owner had been able to get him to his local vets, the lesions had started to ulcerate and develop into large open sores. Scooby was very depressed, painful and didn’t want to go for his walks. As his lesions had become so severe so quickly, Scooby was referred to see Willows Dermatology Specialist, Jon Hardy.
Scooby at presentation
Jon suspected a problem unrelated to the parasite, and felt that an immune system disease, a drug reaction or skin cancer might be possible causes. Scooby was anaesthetised and multiple skin biopsies were taken from the edges of Scooby’s lesions for analysis. This had to be done very carefully as Scooby’s skin was literally peeling off. Jon also sampled Scooby’s feet for the parasite but no mites were found.
The results of the biopsies confirmed Jon's suspicions of a drug reaction, so Scooby's parasite treatment was stopped immediately and he was started on powerful anti-inflammatory medication. We are very pleased to report that Scooby’s skin healed very well within a few weeks, and although he is still a bit bald, he is no longer painful and is back to enjoying walks again!
Scooby’s skin after 2 weeks
Scooby’s healed skin at 4 weeks
Scooby at the end of treatment
For further information on skin problems, please visit our Dermatology pet health information sheets.