adventures of beck

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Very Odd

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers (CBR) are large dogs, brownish, with a lab-like face. They have a curly back, and occasionally look a little like a labradoodle. CBR's are squarer though. They were originally developed to assist fisherman (shockingly, in the Chesapeake Bay) by diving into ICY waters to retrieve nets and fisherman who had gone overboard, much like labradors. CBR's have a somewhat naturally oily coat that repels water like a duck, and have, much like labs, a deep affection for water. They also have a characteristic smell that dog lovers would categorize as "interesting" and non-dog-lovers might term "weird and gross." In any case, they are loving kind dogs. The one that was on our exam table today was also nervous. Very very nervous. He continually looked for his owner with his bright, nervous eyes as Doc stepped back from him, remarking "poor dog," just as I walked up. "Why?" I asked. Doc pointed out some nasty rashy lesions on the dog's rear legs, by his belly. Doc was thinking it was probably allergies, and went to explain to the owner that allergy testing would be around $300, and would he be willing to spend the money (I imagine that's not a very fun conversation.) A tech and I stayed back with the dog remarking on his rash and attempting to soothe his nervous. The dog began panting very quickly, becoming more and more agitated. He began drooling. Drooling red bloody drool. What? The dog appeared to be bleeding from his nose. No, his mouth. Not it was his tongue. Maybe the roof of his mouth? Gums? We searched and searched, but there was no sores, no cuts, no punctures, no abrasions. Where was the blood coming from? A few minutes elapsed, and the source seemed to disappear. We mopped up the bloody foam and tried to figure it out. Of course, all I could think of was things like hemmorhagic fevers...ebola for instance. The tech's best guess was an autoimmune disorder, which may or may not also encompass the dog's rashy symptoms as well. Doc came back with good news: the man wanted to run the allergy tests. We drew a lot of blood and Doc decided to run both panels, allergy and autoimmune. I'll be interested to see what happens.


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