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Sarcoptic mange

We took Joules to Terni today for his next check-up after the chemotherapy. All was well in that department, but another problem surfaced.

Sore on Joules' elbow

He’s been scratching himself to death and has a huge crusty sore on each elbow. 2 other vets have variously suggested psychological or dietary problems, but the Terni vet discovered that he has sarcoptic mange (‘rogna’ in Italian).

This is a disease caused by microscopic mites (Italian: ‘acari’) which burrow into the skin and cause an allergic reaction. They had to take 5 skin scrapings from Joules before they discovered them, but this was not an indication of a mild infestation – apparently the less they are seen, the more embedded they are.

It’s possible that Joules’ chemotherapy lowered his resistance and made him more susceptible.

Taylor had been scratching, too, and to a lesser extent Kepler, so we’d taken them along as well. The vet assumed they had the same disease, seeing as it’s contagious, and so he treated all 3 of them and gave me detailed instructions on how to continue.

Now we have to think what we’re going to do about the dogs’ bedding.

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