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Help Jacey live without the annoyances of Demodectic Mange that won't go away due to her autoimmunity imbalances...PLEASE

I found Jacey three days after she was born. She was lying in a shallow mud puddle, crying and nearly lifeless. She’d been rejected by her mother, my German Shepherd Mix. I couldn’t stand the thought of losing a third baby girl, so I rushed her inside and put her between two Ziploc bags filled with hot water and fed her the puppy formula I had on hand. Amazingly, my little girl survived. After four weeks, as Jacey began to become more and more active, I put her on soggy Puppy Chow in addition to the formula. At six weeks, she was eating solid food and horsing around with her brothers and sisters. At 7 weeks old, Jacey was my smallest pup weighing only 2.5 lbs. I couldn’t let her go. She was left alone with her mother in the pen, the two were the best of buddies; both happy and healthy!

In the Spring and Summer of 2010 Jacey was Paralyzed three times by ticks. I asked my Vet why this was happening and he explained to me that Jacey didn’t receive the nutrients that she needed and so her immune system isn’t as strong as it should be, but her mother rejected her at birth probably for that same reason, the smaller puppies can’t fight to get their food. Dr. May put Jacey on an antibiotic and put a stronger than normal collar around her neck to fight the fleas and ticks. From then on, Jacey was great!

In early March 2011, I noticed Jacey’s forearms losing fur. I took her to Dr. May where he ran some tests and diagnosed Jacey with Demodectic Mange and a severe skin infection. Demodectic Mange is not contagious, and these particular mites take advantage of dogs with weaker immune systems. Generally pups that get this mange will heal naturally within 6-9 months. I moved to Southern California late March 2011 and left my sweet girls in my mother’s care. My mom then took Jacey to the vet for evaluation every two weeks. Dr. May had Jacey on an Antibiotic for 60 days, a multivitamin, and a medicated bath every two weeks. In August, Jacey was given a health certificate and I was given the OK to fly her to CA to be with me. Jacey’s mother is still in AL with my mother. Once I got Jacey here, I needed to continue her treatment to get rid of these mites once and for all. Jacey was taking another antibiotic and her skin infection cleared. She went through 8 Mitaban dips and looks absolutely beautiful! In the last couple of weeks, I’ve noticed Jacey’s paws are losing fur again as well as a patch on her face above her right eye. I read that the mites are typically worse in the feet and start showing there and on the face first. I’m so scared that Jacey will have to live with this horrible aggravation the rest of her life! However, I did hear of a dog skin specialist in Orange County who is spectacular.

The only problem is that I cannot afford the treatment. And, it kills me to even consider giving Jacey up after everything we’ve been through together-SO I’m asking for any help that you’re willing to give to help heal my baby girl and let her stay where she belongs, WITH ME!

Thank you.

UPDATE #1 2/16/2012--
Jacey went to the Animal Dermatology clinic yesterday. Dr. Wayne confirmed the demodex and also diagnosed her with severe cellulitis (generally caused by certain bacteria known as Streptococci and Staphylococcus). Jacey has both the strep and the staph in the advanced stages. All 4 paws and legs are swollen and have open wounds from the itching and the gnawing. And, her lymph nodes are 3 times the size they should be which is because her little body is fighting such infections. She also has a third infection: Pyoderma (Pyoderma is a bacterial infection of the skin. Puss under the skin). Dr. Wayne said this is because of the bacteria internally has compromised her immune system which also leads to the infestation of the demodex mites. He ran several tests; the first was a skin scraping to see just how bad the demodex is. The mite count was too high for his charts (adult, eggs, larva, and nymph). He did a genotype test to see if she’s positive or negative for the gene (I forget the name) that will give us the go ahead for the desired treatment. Jacey also has heartworms and hookworms. He ran a culture test to test for any allergies so that we can put her on a stronger antibiotic for the bacterial infections. He gave her an 8 day supply of Cipro for the infections, and once the culture test comes back, we either give her better antibiotics, or we keep on the Cipro. In two weeks, when the genotype comes back, we have two options; if she has the gene, our Ivermectin option is out because that gene and the Ivermectin will kill her. If she’s negative, we get a bottle and she take the Ivermectin and the antibiotics until her skin scrapes come in negative for mites. We’re hoping she’s negative. If she’s positive, I have to do the Mitaban dips-a minimum of 12. I can’t afford that. Period.

Demodex generally heals itself in quite a lengthy amount of time. However, Jacey’s immune system just isn’t up to par for her to heal herself, which is why the mites keep coming back and attacking my little girl. We’re hoping (desperately) that’s she’s negative for the Ivermectin gene so that this will be gone. Ivermectin is the most successful and the cheapest way to go. But, given Jacey’s unidentified genealogy, we can’t just go for it. I KNOW she’s German Shepherd and Siberian Husky, but there’s something else runnin’ around in there to give her the size and the thin coat.

I’ll have a response Monday or Tuesday for the culture test and we’ll decide about the antibiotics.

In two weeks I should hear about her genotype test to see if we go for the Ivermectin, or not.

For now, I give her a special bath ever 2-3 days, and an antibiotic everyday.
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