If you haven’t read Part I yet of Cody’s story, click here!
Five weeks later, Cody was doing much better. The hair on his face and legs was growing back, and the scabs were nearly healed! At his recheck exam six weeks later, however, Dr. Eisenschenk saw that although the Advantage Multi was killing some of the mites, it was not killing enough of them to rid Cody of the infestation. A stronger option was needed.
Dr. Eisenschenk offered an alternative drug called Moxidectin, also known as ProHeart6, an injectable heartworm preventive for dogs administered every six months. Moxidectin has had a rocky history since it first launched in the U.S in the early 2000s. Many dogs had bad reactions to the injection, and some even died, so it was pulled from the U.S. market in 2004. A manufacturing residue, believed to be causing the reactions, was removed, and ProHeart6 was relaunched in 2008. Since then, Moxidectin has been shown to be a safe and effective product for heartworm prevention. But would it kill Cody’s mites? And, more importantly, would it be safe for Cody?
Of all the oral treatments for demodex, Moxidectin had the least likely chance of causing a reaction in a dog with Cody’s gene mutation. A reaction was still possible, however. Cody’s owners opted to go forward with Moxidectin, once daily, slowly increasing the dose in an effort to avoid a toxic reaction.
The Moxidectin did not make Cody sick, and three months later, Cody’s symptoms were completely resolved. His hair had grown back, and there was no sign of the mange infestation!
Cody’s owners, Karen and David, said “We truly can’t thank Dr. Melissa Eisenschenk & Michelle for all they did to help our furry ‘baby’! Cody is a super friendly, fun-loving pup who does everything BIG (bones, sticks he pulls out of the woods, etc.) He loves playing with toys and playing Frisbee; he loves playing with other dogs and doesn’t even look back when we drop him off for an afternoon at doggy daycare. He even plays with our Hyacinth Macaw – Bella. And he was such a trooper all the way through his treatments.”
What a great outcome for a wonderful dog and his supportive family. At Animal Emergency & Referral Center of Minnesota, we are so lucky to be able to positively impact the lives of pets, every single day. Cody’s case illustrates that positive impact really well, and the amazing photos speak for themselves!
Dr. Eisenschenk is a board-certified veterinary dermatologist who sees appointments at Animal Emergency & Referral Center of Minnesota’s Oakdale location every Friday.