MANUEL - SA treatment, MANUEL-development

First spring-shedding with SA

The majority of people with experience from SA say that they find SA to be more aggressively active during the shedding periods.

Therefore me and Mikael decided to increase the Atopica dose for 2 weeks and then decrease again when the shedding period started (without us seeing any signs of “attack”) to help his body.

Yes – our vet has allowed us to decide that ourselves.

Now I understand that it wasn’t a bad decision as such, but the timing was all wrong.

Manuel usually starts shedding in late February/beginning of March, April is calm and then middle May a second effort is made and in June he normally his coat is very thin . We increased the dose with 50% in March, now I see we should have waited until May. Anyhow now it is rather aggressive so we have decided to increase the dose again. We will also book a meeting with our vet since it was decided we would meet after 6 months (soon that is).

Actual picture taken in April - before it became worse.

Actual picture taken in April – before it became worse.

You might think it “doesn’t look that bad”. Now he might not have lost a majority of his coat (yet) but that does not mean the attack isn’t going on there underneath…

Manuel doesn’t have any heavy scales, but the skin is super dry and the area affected has grown. I guess this is what I would have found if I had looked under his coat before I saw the first patch of hair falling off.

We have not used any oil or anything for a while (except for his ears and if any patches). We wanted to see what the medicine actually does. On the other hand an oil would give the skin protection (but Manuel has still some coat to do that job).  He is tested for allergies when younger and all came out negative, but now the situation of course is different – it can be secondary to the fact that the skin barely no protection left, so I keep an eye on that…

Talking about patches and oil…. he had one on his head and I put some baby oil there since I have it for his ears. OMG, such a bad reaction. All red and angry. I had to clean it up and put some Locobase Repair there, and it calmed down again. Bad bad human – not thinking before doing…

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Charlotte Steneloo

Author:Charlotte Steneloo

Akita owner from Sweden working for openness regarding health issues.

3 Responses to “First spring-shedding with SA”

  1. Anna Soininen
    12 June, 2013 at 12:20 #

    Just popped in my mind: when you have decreased Atopica’s dosage, have you just cut-down every day’s dosage or reduced the number of doses given in a week? I have read that best way to do this is first give one month 2x100mg five times in a week. If no worsening of SA is seen, you can decrease dosage to 2×100 mg every other day. So it is better to keep dosage in 200 mg but to reduce the number of doses given in a week. I have though no experiences on this matter… Does anyone else?

    p.s. I have reduced number of dosages given in a week to five times. I first thought about to wait ’til fall, but last monday I forgot to give her pills, so I decided to try what happens when I give those pills five times in a week…

    • Charlotte Steneloo
      12 June, 2013 at 12:52 #

      The recommendation from our vet when cutting down from 2×100 mg every day was:
      2×100 mg every second day instead of 100 mg every day – as it was supposed to give a better result (just like they do with cortisone).

      In Manuel’s case at THAT time we STILL had to choose 100 mg every day, based on the stomach reactions he THEN had on 200 mg.

      Currently he is up on full dose a again (stomach OK with that) and I will write a blog post about that later on. Next time we will cut down, we will give 2×100 mg every second day as it seems as his stomach is fine with that dose again.

  2. Anna Soininen
    13 June, 2013 at 07:26 #

    The reduction of only four pills in a week sounds like a no big deal, but basically it means that medication costs about 72 euros less in a month! In my budget that is a lot… If given in every other day the saving is 110-140 euros in a month! I wonder if any other medication costs as much as Atopica…

    In Finland insurances cover up 1700 euros (and some companys pay only one years medication!) in a year. With 200 mg/day dosage in a year the cost of this med is 3180 euros. It leaves for you to pay for yourself 1480 euros in a year.

    Medicating SA costs hell of a lot of money… Hopefully every akita and american akita owner realizes that. In my opinion the risk of getting SA is so high with american akitas, that I would never take dog of this breed without insurance. It would be really horrible situation to realize that the only option – because of the lack of money, is to put your dog to sleep…