Jake2, January, 2001
Jake's rescuer describes the 3 year old chocolate Lab as "the sweetest dog". Jake is very calm and gentle and gets along great with other dogs, people and cats.
Jake was a stray and ended up in the city dog pound. A volunteer with Warwick Volunteer Services for Animals picked him up and he was placed in foster care. Jake had severe ear infections with both ear canals blocked and was losing his facial hair. The vet did a culture of Jake's ears and put him on oral antibiotics and ear ointment until the lab tests would come back. He suspected Jake might have mange but further testing ruled out that possibility. Another reason for the hair loss might be Lupus and Jake's rescuer contacted LABMED asking if we may be able to fund the biopsy.
During the time LABMED was discussing the application, Jake took a turn for the worse. His foster parents had misunderstood the vet's instructions and instead of substituting a newly prescribed medication for the one Jake was presently taking, they stopped giving him medication - they also stopped using his ear ointment because one ear was getting better. Jake's feet started swelling badly and he would neither play nor eat. Jake had a few bad days but started to improve quickly once he received the proper medicine. The vet needed to do some bloodwork before he would attempt the biopsy; the results turned out satisfactory so the biopsy was scheduled. LABMED agreed to fund the diagnostics so Jake's rescuer could find out what was wrong.
Jake did not have Lupus but a different immune disorder called Pemphigus - a condition where the immune system attacks the skin. It can have several forms: one tends to only attack the muco-cutaneous junctions, places where mucus membranes meet normal skin, such as lips, foot pads; another attacks the skin of the head and feet, and another is generalized. The usual way to treat it is life-long doses of prednisone at immune suppressive doses.
Jake's rescuer hopes that he will have a good response to the medication and that his days of being in pain will be over.
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