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Freakish Malady Hits My Neighbor's Dog


mbc1963
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My neighbor's dog stopped opening his mouth the other day. She took him in to the vet on Tuesday, and the vet ran all kinds of tests and came up with nothing. He suggested maybe starting the dog on steroids. My neighbor asked her coworkers who'd done this, and decided not to try steroids because of side effects and potential personality changes.

 

Wednesday night, the dog could hardly breathe - sounded like he was choking when he tried to inhale. Then, Thursday morning when he got up, the entire right eye and half the dog's head were grossly misshapen - swollen bizarrely. My neighbor thought the dog was about to die.

 

This time, the vet said, "I know exactly what it is." Retrobulbar abscess. Gave him a shot of antibiotics and started him on pills. When I ran into the woman yesterday afternoon, the dog was happy, took kibble from my hand, and spent a half hour running in the woods.

 

So, in case you ever get a weird set of symptoms like this, remember the abscess thing. Apparently, it's not common, but it happens - an abscess forms in the cavity behind the eyeball.

 

Ick.

 

Mary

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That's the way my dog's auto-immune disease started. Her jaw was painful and she didn't want to open her mouth. Then it went to lameness in her front wrist. Finally her back and hips got painful.

 

Liz: What causes an abcess like that?

I'm curious We also had a dog with an noncancerous Eye tumor why wouldnt this cause the similar symptoms?

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I only looked on a couple websites, but they seemed to not know what causes this. They theorize that it's from an infection elsewhere OR migration of a small foreign object (seed pod, etc.) through the mouth to the eyes. (To me, it seems like it makes as much sense that it could migrate through the lining of the eye... but I guess not.)

 

Weird, anyway.

 

Mary

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I've seen them caused by rotten teeth, foreign bodies, ear infections, necrotic tumors...

 

Eye tumors and tumors behind the eye rarely cause pain when opening the jaw. If you ever have an abscess anywhere on the body try squeezing it and see how it feels. They are incredibly painful.

 

TC - yes, autoimmune disorders can cause pain opening the jaw, but 1) they are less common than abscesses and 2) a quick physical exam reveals obvious clues that it is an abscess (or tumor) rather than an autoimmune problem (ex: you press the eyeball and if it doesn't slip backwards into the skull you know something is behind the eye)

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