Thursday, August 1, 2013

Rookie Update!

Poor Rookie has been battling demodex since April. The poor dude just can't catch a break. We started out trying to treat it conservatively with herbs and lime-sulfur dips, but that only took the edge off and didn't help the main problem. Then towards the end of May we started him on an alternative route with Bovine Thymus Extract injections. We actually did see a marginal improvement with the injections but it still wasn't enough.

Yes he is still itchy, but that doesn't stop him from
stopping and smelling the dying hostas :)

Sadly, we have turned to Ivermectin. I was trying to do everything I could to stay away from harmful chemicals but in the end it's about his comfort. At the end of June we started the dosages; he did a week at 0.6 ml daily and then moved up to 1.3 ml daily. He will stay at that large dose for 90 days - we are 30 days into it.

Since he has started on Ivermectin, I've also added Milk Thistle to his diet. It's supposed to help protect the liver and long term use of Ivermectin can be harmful to the liver. I've also added in an immune modulator - DMG (N,N-Dimethylglycine). DMG is a metabolic enhancer that improves oxygen utilization, detoxification, cell protection, and immune system modulation. Hopefully, it does its job for Rookie and helps boost his failing immune system! We are also still doing all the same supplements we had before, so he gets quite the arsenal of 'pills' and 'powders' every feeding :).

Wait, you mean those extra things in my food aren't treats?!?
It has also been suggested to add in AFA Algae (blue-green algae) but I have not yet gone that route. I would like to see if what we currently have him on helps or not.

Right now he is losing most of his beautiful hair and he is still quite itchy. However, his staph infection has greatly receded and the pustules are all gone. His feet still have some edema but it has disappeared from his neck and face. I think his poor feet will always be a bit swollen :(. They don't know how to be anything else!

He still looks pretty good bald :).
We still have an uphill battle but we are at least making headway. I was hoping to stay away from the chemicals because that only treats the mites and doesn't do anything for the underlying problem (his immune system) that is causing the mites. And in fact it can be counterproductive because it actually lets the immune system not work as hard since it does some of its job. But he obviously needed some help. Unfortunately, demodex can be life-threatening so I can't just sit by and see if his immune system sometime eventually decides to work. Rookie has been handling it well though, he still wants to play and run around which lets me know he is still feeling frisky :). He also NEVER misses a meal, that boy loves his food!

Are you talking about feeding me??

Keep thinking good thoughts for Mr. Stinkyface! I think we are almost to the homestretch!!


  1. Hi Erin,
    I'm interested to see how Rookie is progressing. I have an 8-month Coon Hound / Blood Hound mix with what seems to be the very same predicament. I too am doing my best to stay away from steroids and antibiotics. Poor Watson has undergone every home remedy I've been able to find, and yet there's just no relief. I took him to a holistic vet a month or so ago, and he gave him some herbs to cool the blood, as well as DMG with diatomaceous earth. He gets 3 oz of aloe everyday as well as a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. And just when we think he's starting to get relief, he starts itching like crazy again.

    Anyhow, I'd be very interested to see how Rookie is doing.

    1. Hi Dawn! I'm sorry to hear about Watson, this is never fun to deal with :(. Hopefully, once you get his cleared up it won't come back since he's still a juvenile. I am planning a Rookie update for next week so please check back soon!!

      Have you tried adding in the lime-sulfur dips? They are great for helping the itchiness (however horrible on the stinkiness!!!).

    2. Hi Erin!
      No I haven't tried the lime-sulfur dips - I've just bathed him in sulfur based shampoos. I've just ordered a box of Dinovite - it should arrive today. From the reviews I've read, it sounds like a good thing to try. But like everything else, it'll take some time to start working. It's basically a nutrient supplement that adds back into the food what cooking and processing destroys. It also contains diatomaceous earth and bentonite clay, which are great for parasite control and detoxing.

      I'll stayed tuned for your update!!