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Prescribed Prednisone and Cephalexin...

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Prescribed Prednisone and Cephalexin...
  • I took Star into the Vet to get this skin rash thing evaluated.  I didn't like the Vet from the moment he walked in the room. They gave her two injections, some prescription spray for me to spray on the area of this rash, and Prednisone and Cephalexin pills.. Immediately after I started her on the pills, I noticed she was drinking a lot more water than usual.. I then went online to read about these drugs for dogs. Yesterday she urinated on the carpet while looking right at me (she's never done that in the house)  I don't believe I should keep her on these drugs.  But I have also read that you can't just stop giving them and that they need to be "weened" off them.

    Has anyone here had this experience? How am I to ween her off these pills? I will find an alternative to treat her small skin irritation, as I simply don't trust drugs for myself, let alone my dog these days...

    Mike

     

  • Pred is also a human prescribed steriod. I trust it but that doesn't mean I like it. My husky is on it right now. It is helping her problem however she's very irritable.

    You do need to wean dogs off this stuff - humans have to do this as well. For Dakota, she was prescribed 1 pill twice a day for 3 days, then one pill once a day for 5 days, then 1 pill every other day until gone. 

  • I've had it before too, they're usually tiny pills and very bitter.. My dog is 40 lbs and he prescribed her 20mg pills. Twice a day for 10 days, then once per day for the remaining 10.  That seems like an awful lot. I've never had to take Pred more than 5 days or so and I recall my pills being smaller than hers.  This is in addition to these other Cephalexin pills too..
  • That does seem like a long time. Just for a rash? Is it an isolated rash? Allergic reaction? 

  • Pirate was on pred for an immune disorder (loong story). BUT it does make them very, very 'not themselves'. What I learned from our months on pred -

    1. Potty breaks. LOTS OF EM. When he was on the highest doses we went outside *literally* every 15 minutes. He's small so I put a potty pad down at night (and trust me, this was an INDIGNITY to poor Pirate - 'Mom, your sposta potty OUTSIDE!? Wha is this?' - but I was already getting up at 10pm, 12am, 2am, and 4am so honestly I needed to sleep!) but I know that isn't an option for the bigger dogs. Callie explained to me that the pred messes with their ability to 'know' they have to go potty, so they'll just kinda 'go' without thinking about it. Or something like that ~L~.

    2. Small meals. It makes them super-hungry (or at least it made Pirate hungry!) so I broke his usual 2 meals into 4 mini-meals. It was the same amount of 'stuff' just broken into 4. I think having that many meals kept his tummy full-ish. BUT with that said, anything remotely food-like is fair game. Pirate ate a pink pencil eraser! :/ (And then there was the time we went away for a weekend with him, and I had prepacked his meals into ziplock bags, all inside a bigger ziplock bag and then in my tote bag. He tore thru ALL OF IT and had a little feast.)

    3. Lots of water, available all the time. I know it seems counterproductive with the peeing thing, but the pred makes them SUPER THIRSTY. I had a water bowl in literally every room of our house.

    4. Remember - and say it with me now - I love my dog. This is only temporary. It will get better. Pirate was a cranky jerk. Seriously. One of the few times he's *every* snapped at me has been while he was on the pred.

    Hopefully Callie will be along - I'm sure I missed something and I bet she has even more advice :)

  • Here's a link to my post on it:

    http://forum.dog.com/forums/t/75509.aspx 

    It doesn't even bother her. I was putting coconut oil on it before I took her to the vet. It's isolated to that flappy part of skin that connects her belly to her hind legs. Started on one side and now it's on both sides. The rest of her skin is fine. I have a feeling that this area was affected simply because  there isn't any fur there. One possibility is some memory foam I put under her blanket a while back. I trashed it a few days ago so we'll see if that makes a difference too.

  • sl2crmeg, your points 1,2 and 3 are spot on. Drinkin, eatin and peein like crazy.. Did you keep Pirate on the Pred for the full prescribed time?

  • Ooooo yes. Back before you got here, (I think? It was last summer) Pirate was pretty sick and needed it. It would have been impossible to take him off, he probably wouldn't have survived.

    BUT it had nothing to do with a skin issue. Jewliee is right, you must must MUST wean off of pred, you can't just stop giving it.

  • Yep, my lab had the very same issues with prednisone, but it also helped to clear up an infection, so as much as I didn't like the side affects, I didn't stop and you really shouldn't either. Are you giving it daily and then tapering to every other day? If so, you'll see the problems decrease soon. I just made extra sure to take Sassy every hour or so and that took care of the problems with peeing in the house.

  • Cakana,

    Yes, it's Twice a day for 10 days, then once per day for the remaining 10. So she has to be on it for a total of 20 days.

  • Cephalexyn is a very-often prescribed antibiotic for staph skin infections (and if the skin is red & sore there is infection and infection won’t heal without antibiotics). It’s hard on the gut so give it with food.

    FINISH THE ANTIBIOTIC. Don’t stop if the skin looks ‘better’ because the infection will come back. And often unless you do the anti-inflammatory (prednisone is a steroid – it IS an anti-inflammatory) you won’t get the skin to heal either.

    pred doesn’t work fast – typically it takes a couple of weeks unless you flood the body with super high doses (which isn’t good either).

    Every doctor or vet has their own way of using prednisone. But typically once it’s been given for 3 days to a week you have to ‘wean off’ -- and a 2-3 wean-off is typical. But that way you don’t have to give extremely high doses, so what the vet has done is pretty typical.

    You might want to go ahead and give milk thistle as well – for a boxer give the adult human dose of milk thistle 2-3 times a day.

    Pred can be nearly a ‘miracle’ drug but it can also be damaging if used unwisely. To get the dog back ‘level’ so the skin is ‘whole’ and not open to all sorts of secondary infections, you’re probably going to have to give it to him.

    ALL slr2meg has said is true – pred has a ton of side effects so expect them and COPE with them. It can make them moody or downright bad tempered - they can NOT help it. It makes them drink like fiends – THEY MUST. Don’t deny water – pred is hard on the kidneys and the body is trying to make an attempt to wash itself out. Just get used to taking the dog out **a lot**.

    Pred can also interfere with muscle use – meaning, it can make it so they can’t ‘hold it’ like normal. So don’t get upset if the dog has accidents – they truly can NOT help it. It’s frustrating stuff to take sometimes because you’ll know you have to ‘go’ and then you can’t do it!! Try and try ... and then walk away and lose control. It happens to humans, dogs, old and young.

    The milk thistle (just use a really good brand – go to a health store and ask their advice) is important – that will keep this from damaging the liver longer term.

    ALSO you need to figure out how to deal with a dog with allergies. Likely it can be both environmental allergies (like hay fever, dust, pollen, mold, dust, etc.) AND it can also be food-related. Usually it’s both. LOTS of folks on here have allergy dogs (including me) -- there’s no one miracle cure. You have to learn to keep the skin in as good shape as possible and keep the damage minimal. You treat the allergies ALL the time – not just when it gets ‘bad’ because when it gets bad it’s six times harder to deal with.

    Is your dog altered?? That will relieve the stress load on the dog and help deal with the allergies. But if this dog has allergies that are this bad, then honestly the dog never ever should be bred. I don’t know you at all - I’m not hollering at you. It’s simply that this is one of the side effects of the fact that boxers are ‘tough looking’ dogs and so many people think breeding is just a matter of letting them have puppies.

    Having to do antibiotics and steroids to get some relief for the skin is not unusual with an allergy dog. It can be unrelenting at times. But there ARE things to do – good luck.

    You're probably right in that it showed up on that flap of skin because there was no hair - but take a look in the ears as well -- they are prime targets.  And allergies in dogs tend to worsen as they age. 

    Just please don't stop the pred, nor stop the antibiotics.  Essentially you have to learn to lessen the bad effects of the drugs and deal with them -- you can't just 'stop' them of you will create a re-bound.  Meaning, the original problem will come back -- about 3 times as bad as it was!!  A pred re-bound is dangerous.

  • dax702

    Here's a link to my post on it:

    http://forum.dog.com/forums/t/75509.aspx 

    It doesn't even bother her. I was putting coconut oil on it before I took her to the vet. It's isolated to that flappy part of skin that connects her belly to her hind legs. Started on one side and now it's on both sides. The rest of her skin is fine. I have a feeling that this area was affected simply because  there isn't any fur there. One possibility is some memory foam I put under her blanket a while back. I trashed it a few days ago so we'll see if that makes a difference too.

    My lab had a very nasty infection on her tummy and it didn't bother her a bit either. Based on the pictures in your post, it doesn't look exactly the same but similar. Sassy's tummy was red but it was also moist, almost like a hot spot. We went thru every antibiotic there is, including some very pricey ones. We tried pred, but it didn't do a thing. We started out by doing a culture and sensitivity. Did your vet do that? If not, and it doesn't clear up, I wouldn't accept any more prescription meds without a culture and sensitivity. Otherwise, it's all a shot in the dark. It took over 3 months for Sassy's tummy to clear up and that was after doing a punch biopsy to see if it was something more serious (it wasn't). I hope your situation is much easier than ours was.

  • She's spayed.. I'll continue the medications based on the input I've received here.  And I'll also get the milk thistle. What exactly is that? Are they in pill form? What about dosage? She's 43 lbs, mostly boxer, part pit bull too.. Her ears are clean. I give her natural dry dog food (no bad ingredients or as few as possible) and a raw bone once a week to keep her teeth clean. I also put a little apple cider vinegar in her water as it is good for them..

  • calliecritturs

    You might want to go ahead and give milk thistle as well – for a boxer give the adult human dose of milk thistle 2-3 times a day.

    Milk thistle is an herb -- go to a good health store (not a mall store, but find either a Whole Foods, Wild Oats or a good 'mom and pop' type store) and ask them for their *best* brand.  Herbs are plants ... so you don't want cheap you want good quality (just like you'd go and get the best tomatoes you could find if you were making spaghetti sauce).

    I don't use 'pills' or 'caplets' when I get herbs b/c they're too processed.  I get the ground herb in a capsule OR I get tincture.  Mostly the tincture (altho actually a more powerful form of it) can be too alcohol-y for most dogs, so the ground herb is probably easier.  If you feed kibble then just put the capsules in something like yogurt or ricotta cheese (most dogs will learn to take stuff like that right off a spoon)  - or even butter (not margerine -- keep it an 'animal fat' and it's more easily digestible by them).

     If you feed 'wet' stuff, you can actually dump the capsules (open them if the dog won't take 'bumps' in their food) and stir it in.  Milk thistle isn't bad tasting (it almost doesn't have much taste at all) so it's not hard to feed them.  Good luck.

  • Thanks for the info on the milk thistle. I called the health supplements store around the corner and she said she had it so I will get some. Should I only have her on it for the rest of the duration of the Pred and Ceph? Also, what kind of dosage is recommended for a 43 lb dog?