7 mo old female in HEAT, wont eat her food and has bumps on her back

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miaichabod's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-04

I have a 7 month old black and tan dobie female.  First off, she is so beautiful!! Never realized how great dobermans were til we got one.
So she has been in heat for a few weeks now. Hopefully she only has about 1 more week.

About 3 days ago, she wouldn't eat her morning meal.  Usually she INHALES her food (I had to buy oine of those slow feed bowls to slow her eating down).  So her not eating is an obvious sign somethings wrong.

Well that everning getting home from work, I see she has raised bumps on her back which were obvious because her hair wouldn't lie flat.  We made a vet appt for the next day, but then cancelled it when the bumps were gone in the morning and she ate normally.  But, this morning, the bumps were back, not quite as bad, but she wouldn't eat again.
Please help me with some advice... I bought Childrens Benadryl thinking it was allergies, I was going to give it to her tonight when I get home...

glengate's picture
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Joined: 2009-07-22

It's possible that she's gotten a case of staph infection from the stress of her heat cycle.  She may need antibiotics so a vet visit is probably in order. 

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

I also would have acted as you have when the appetite resumed and the bumps disappeared. However, when the bumps recurred and with any situation that recurs, a trip to the vet is called for.

Lady Kate's picture
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Joined: 2009-10-28

Pet Profiles

I'm confused.. how can stess bring on a staff infection?

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

Staff is basically everywhere. We and other animals are constantly surrounded by bacteria with the potential to infect us. Anyone who has grown up in the Southwest knows for example not to ride horses with bare legs. The reason - Anthrax. While not the notorious weapons grade variety, but a natural low level is frequently found on the skin of horses and rubbing our bare legs on their skin runs the risk of irritating the skin and giving the anthrax an opening.

When you place the body under stress, it weakens the immune system, and that gives the bacteria already in the system an opportunity to take hold and flourish. A strong healthy individual can withstand the same bacterial level that would be fatal to the very young or the older population.

In my first litter when I took them in for their first injections after tail docking, I was horrified that they were positive for worms. I asked the vet where they could have gotten the worms - she informed me they got it from their mothers milk. My response was incredulous because Windy had tested negative consistently and her last check was just a month before she whelped. It was not until the eggs got into the weaker puppies rather than the strong healthy adult that they could take hold.

miaichabod's picture
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Joined: 2010-06-04

Went to vet.  She has demodectic mange.  They had no explaination for the lack of appetite, told me the bumps are likely allergic reaction.
She had had a small loss of hair above her left eye which had seemed to be healing up, and the vet focused on that and did a skin scrape and confirmed.  Said its likely the stress from her being in heat may have triggered it. 
I hear its not contagious and can be passed along if we bred her.  So, getting her spayed when this heat is over and we have medecine to give her for the next 21 days.

rgreen4's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-26

Repost of original reply posted June 14 at 5:53 ET.

If you had not planned to breed her, then I would go ahead. If you had really wanted to breed her, then I would do a little more research. First the mange itself is not contagious nor inherited. All dogs have the demodectic mites and only those with an inadequate or not fully developed immune system develop the irritation and disease.

Is the problem with the immune system inherited - possibly. I don't know for sure, but it might be worth more investigation.

If you were not certain about breeding her before, then I would probably go ahead and spay. I am waiting until Princess completes her second heat until I spay her. She has a few minor flaws, and I am not eager to breed another litter.

dobie050909's picture
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Joined: 2009-06-29

My dobie also has demodectic mange.  She is diagnoised with it at 6 months.  But now she is having her first heat and they are back for now.  So we have to do the same thing.  Is your dobie crabby with her first heat? Mine won't even let us touch her.