Phoenix is our lovely 8 year old Portuguese Water Dog. In the fall of 2011 she started developing open red sores around her vulva. I took her to our vet who thought it was due to licking she was given a cone and some topical antibiotic treatment. We soon discovered that the cone was not needed as it did not provide results and when the cone was removed she was not attempting to lick the area. We had on and off episodes of the same problem for the following year. We then noticed a horrible smell coming from her mouth. The vet couldn’t figure out what it was and it continued despite brushing her teeth. I took Phoenix back to a vet I had years ago that was a distance away as she was able to help us with our Sheltie that had lupus. She immediately discovered that her lip pockets were raw and infected and that was where the smell was coming from. At the same time her eyes started becoming raw and inflamed. It was thought that her eye lashes were curling in and that surgery was needed to correct. When she was under anesthetic the vet was able to fully examine her and discovered that the eye lashes were fine. We were then sent to veterinary ophthalmologist. After several visits we really had no further answers but the condition seemed to be manageable. In the spring of 2013 we again had a flare up of her vulva, lip pocket and eyes. Our vet thought that Phoenix’s problem was likely allergies. So she was placed on a strict diet of kangaroo and oats. She was on that diet for 9 months with no improvement. We were then sent to a veterinary dermatologist that thought the problem was due to environmental allergies. We continued on the kangaroo and oat diet with the addition of steroids. Phoenix improved but we couldn’t seem to reduce the amount of steroids she needed to control her skin issues to an acceptable long term level. We then did allergy testing and results came back showing Phoenix was allergic to a large number of things including four types of tree pollen, dust, mold and cats. Thinking this was the answer in May of this year we started Phoenix on allergy shots. Her condition worsened during the summer. We were told to increase the steroids which sometimes did help the problem. However in September, her eyes were so bad that she could hardly open them in the morning. I couldn’t get the open sores to heal and they were getting bigger and bigger. I felt every time I was trying to clean the discharge from her eyes so they could be opened that I was torturing her as the sores would be bleeding. At this time even a drastic increase in steroids did not help. Both the dermatologist and vet were at a loss as to what to do.
BEFORE PICTURE (October 1, 2015)
AFTER PICTURE (November 5, 2015)