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Ask the Vet About Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease
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MichaelDym, V.M.D.
Dr. Michael Dym, V.M.D.
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
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As a practicing veterinarian, Dr. Dym has over 19 years of experience and dedication to enhancing the overall health and well-being of pets. His commitment and passion for pet health continuously drives him to learn more about the art and science of homeopathy through ongoing training and education.

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Date: Jan 13, 2017
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Vaccination Side Effects

Question:My mini poodle puppy 6 months, had his Lyme disease vaccine today 11:00. He threw up in office. Seemed fine afterwards. I came home at 5:30 and he is hot, not eating, very sleepy and limping and whining. Is this a normal side effect?? I've never had a pet before. I called petsmart and they r gone for day.

Answer:This is NOT a normal side effect of a vaccination. I am NOT a fan of this vaccination, which has never been shown to be effective or safe in my experience and opinion, as well as even in people, as Lyme disease is more of an autoimmune disease in those patients afflicted with it. I would return to vet for recheck. I would SKIP this vaccination in the future. My professor from Penn and world renowned lyme disease expert Meryl Littman, VMD does NOT recommend lyme vaccination. If your pet has any remaining chronic residual reactions from this vaccination, I would recommend a consult, with preferably a homeopathic or holistic vet, who are best trained to treat these type of situations. To learn more, see www.doctordym.com Many homeopathic vets offer phone consultations

Date: Jan 9, 2017
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Need second opinion

Question: I have recently taken in a stray yellow lab. She is between 6 and 7 years old. After taking her to a vet they found that she has lyme disease. She has already taken 30 days of antibiotics and test results show that her protein levels are high in her blood and urine (unchanged from initial tests). After our vet consulted another vet it was recommended to start her on Enalopril 10 mg. After doing a small amount of research, I am unsure if this is the correct direction to take as she already urinates frequently and drinks a lot. What would you recommend I do?

Answer:I would follow the directions of your local vet. Enalopril is sometimes indicated in dogs with chronic lyme disease nephropathy of the kidneys. I would ask your vet for referral to vet specialist in your area who can offer expert opinion. I also find that omega 3 fatty acid supplementation can help such as Be well from 1800petmeds. Also consider consulting with holistic vet, who also may be helpful in case like this. To learn more see www.doctordym.com Many offer phone consultations

Date: Jan 7, 2017
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: lyme disease

Question:My dog Diesel tested positive for Lyme disease. We noticed something was wrong when we changed dog food and he refused to eat. After the vet ran initial tests it was found that he had a kidney infection and liver damage, as well as the Lyme disease. He was put on Doxycycline about a week and a half ago and did not seem to improve. We are taking home to the vet every day for a steroid to imrprove his appetite, but he will only eat sometimes. The antibiotics should have worked by now from my understanding... I feel like I'm losing him....I'm wondering if something else related to Lyme is causing damage. Is there anything else we can try?

Answer:I would ask your vet for consult with vet internist in your area to make sure complete workup has been done. Make sure urine protein/creatinine ratios are measured as well as periodic BUN/creatinine, blood protein levels to assess for ongoing damage. Drugs like ACE inhibitors such as benazopril and/or omega 3 fatty acid supplementation may help like be well from 1800petmeds. I would also consider consulting with holistic vet who can offer additional approaches To learn more see www.doctordym.com Many holistic vets offer phone consultations.

Date: Aug 25, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disease

Question:Hi Doctor, i Am Writing In To Ask For Your Advice. When We Were Visiting The Washington Dc Area In The Beginning Of July, Our Two 10lb Chinese Crested Dogs Each Got Approximately 30 Or So Ticks On Them. We Tried As Best We Could To Remove All Of Them Within 24 Hours, But Some Were Probably On For 48. We May Have Missed Some. (one Dog Is Hard To Check As She Is Super Sensitive.) because They Each Had So Many Ticks On Them, We Gave Them Doxycycline (i Think It Was 20mg Two Times Per Day) For Two Weeks. It Has Been About A Month Since They Were Off The Doxy And About A Month And A Half Since The Initial Incident Happened. We Now Live In Dc And Have Been Checking Every Night For Ticks. Luckily, We Haven't Found Any Ticks On The Dogs. i Am Writing To Ask Several Things: (1) First Of All, Should The Dogs Be Tested For Lyme And Various Other Tick Bourne Illnesses Even Though They Were On The Antibiotic? (2) They Are Due For Revaccination Of Lyme About A Month From Now. If We Take Them To The Vet In The Next Few Days To Have Them Tested For Lyme, Is It Ok If We Vaccinate Them For Lyme A Month Early? (3) If Their Initial Lyme Vaccine, The Booster, And The Next Years Vaccine Were All A Form Of The Killed Virus, Is It Ok That Their Vaccine Isn't A Killed Virus But Instead An Antibody Based Vaccine? (we Moved And The Vet That We Are Thinking Of Going To Has A Different Vaccine.) (4) I Keep Being Nervous That My Dog Is Limping, But I Really Can't Tell. If She Were Limping Or Having Stiff Joints Due To The Lyme, Would It Be Apparent? She May Just Be Walking Oddly Because Our New Apartment Has Wood Floors And She Slips. i Really Appreciate Your Time And Feedback.

Answer:Thank You For Your Questions. All Of These Questions Are Quite Variable In Their Answer, Depending On The Particular Veterinarian You Consult With, Etc As There Is No Black Or White Traditional Answer For These. Most Allopathic Veterinary Experts Dont Even Recommend Lyme Vaccination, Including Renowned Lyme Disease Expert And My Former Professor At Penn Meryl Littman, Vmd, Who Is Against Lyme Vaccination, Because Of The Potential Autoimmune Nature Of This Disease In Animals, As Well As The Fact That The Vast Majority Of Dogs Who Are Exposed To Lyme Disease Never Get Sick, Even Though They May Test Positive On In House Vet Lab Quick Lyme/heartworm Checks. In Fact, As You May Read, Lyme Disease Is Way Overdiagnosed By My Traditional Veterinary Colleagues. Treatment With Doxycycline Can Never Hurt, Accept For Rare Digestive Upset. Doxycycline Can Also Help Limping Through Its Anti Inflammatory Effect On The Bone As Well, Which Does Not Mean It Is Helping By Killing Lyme Bacteria. I Am A Conservative Veterinarian When It Comes To This Lyme Vaccination, And Dont Recommend It, As There Have Been Chronic Complications From The Old Lyme Vaccination In People, And In My Experience And Opinion, Even In The Animals I Have Seen In Practice Over 25 Years, And From My Experience Of Practicing In Lyme Hot Bed Of The Northeast Much Of That Time. You Could Consider More Accurate Clinical Testing That Has Recently Developed Including Pcr Testing And/or C6 Antibody Testing Which Most Vets Can Send Off To An Outside Laboratory. More Importantly In Animals Exposed To Lyme Disease, It Is Probably A Better Use Of Your Money To Have A Urine Protein/creatinine Ratio, As That A Unique Form Of Kidney Disease, Where Protein Is Lost Through The Urine Is Truly The Only Really Very Rare Complication Of Lyme Exposure, And Most Of These Cases Are In Certain Breeds Such As Retrievers Or Shelties, Which May Have A Genetic Predisposition To This Very Rare Lyme Exposure Condition. So Please Try And Have Peace Of Mind, And Not Get Caught Up In The Scare Of Testing And Overtreating For This Condition. I Hope This Helps Good Luck

Date: Aug 24, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lymes Disease

Question:My Friends Pup Was Recently Diagnosed With Lymes Disease And The Vet Treated It With Antibiotics But It Had An Allergic Reaction To The Antibiotics And Went Into Seizures. I Am Wondering What Other Treatments Could Be Used On A Dog That Can't Take Antiobiotics As Treatment For Lymes?

Answer:I Would Not Assume This Is From Lyme Disease Or That Diagnosis Is Correct As Many Vets Overdiagnose Lyme Disease Based On An Inhouse Blood Test. Pet Needs Vet Recheck And Full Workup For Seizures. May Needs Other Specific Seizure Meds Here Based On Workup

Date: Aug 8, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Second Opinion

Question:I Have A 5 Year Old Pitbull/lab Mix Who My Vet Just Recently Told Us He More Than Likely Has A Nose Tumor. Back In December He Was Diagnosed With Lyme Disease And Was Treated For It. In January Henry Started Having Head Seizures Which Came On Very Quickly. He Was Treated With Phenobarbital And Prednisone And To All Of Our Amazement Henry Made A Complete Recovery. Not One Seizure And Was His Crazy Happy Self. 7 Months Later And He's Still The Same. The Vet Gradually Cut Down His Prednisone And About 2 Weeks Ago We Noticed Mucus Coming Out Of His Right Nostril, A Droopy Right Eye, And Muscle Loss On The Top Right Of His Head. That Is When She Came To The Conclusion He Had A Nose Tumor. She Upped His Prednisone Back And No More Mucus Of The Nose Or Droopy Eye. He Still Has Muscle Loss On The Right Side And Has Started Pawing On That Side Of His Face. I Was Looking On Here To See If I Could Hear Other Opinions, Hopefully It Could Be Something Else Besides A Tumor? ..

Answer:I Would Recommend A Consultation With A Veterinary Internist Or Specialist In Internal Medicine In Your Area. I Would Ask Your Vet For A Referral Who Can Review The Complex Case History And Workup To Date. Nasal X Rays Under Sedation And/or Scoping Of Nasal Passages And/or Biopsy Of Affected Tissues May Be Needed For Diagnosis In Case Like This. I Would Not Keep Just Going Up And Down On Prednisone Like This, Until You Get Definitive Diagnosis From A Specialist

Date: Jun 13, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Bordetella And Antibiotics

Question:Hi I Have A 2 Yr Old Pit Bull, she Is Being Treated For A Lymes Disease Flare Up And She Has Been On Doxycycline For About 2 Weeks. I Need To Board Her For Our Vacation And She Needs That Vaccine. Can She Stop Taking The Antibiotic So She Can Get Her Shot Then Resume Treatment After The Shot Is Given? thanks!

Answer:I Would Not Recommend The Lyme Vaccination In A Dog Recently With Clinical Infection. This Vaccination Has Not Been Proven To Be Safe And/or Effective And Because Of The Autoimmune Tendency Seen In Lyme Disease, Vaccinating For This Condition Can Potentially Lead To Immune Mediated Joint And Other Diseases. Most Experts On Lyme Disease Dont Recommend The Vaccination. Finish The Antibiotic

Date: May 20, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lymes

Question:Which Doxycycline And What Is Dose For Lymes...my Dog Has Had It Before And Is Showing Same Symptoms

Answer:I Would Not Simply Redose Your Dog On Your Own, As It May Not Be Indicated And/or There May Be Another Clinical Explanation For Your Dog's Symptoms. Typical Dose Of Doxycycline For Dogs Who Are Suspected To Have Clinical Lyme Disease Is 5 Mg Per Pound Once To Twice Daily For 30 Days. Any Form Of Doxycycline Is Acceptable If Your Vet Prescribes It

Date: Feb 19, 2016
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lymes Desiese

Question:Hi My Grandmother Told Me The Other Day That A Vet Had Told Her Daughter The Owner Of Two Puppies From The Same Litter As My Grandmother's Puppies Had Lyme's Desiese And That The Whole Litter Could Have Been Exposed. My First Question Is.... Is It Possible To Inherit Lyme's Desirae Like My Grandmother Was Told? Also She Asked Me To Search Around For Some Medicine She Was Told That She Should Give The Puppies For 30 Days Before They Are A Year Old. My Second Question Is Should I Get That Medicine Or Should They Get A Vaccine? She Spent Have Much Money To Work With However I Want To Do The Right Thing And Help I Just Need A Little Education Before Taking Any Steps To Help My Grandmother

Answer:Actually, Lyme Disease Is Not Contagious Between Puppies And Is Not Inherited. It Is Transmitted By Bite Of Infected Tick. Many Vets Over Diagnose Lyme Disease, Based On In Office Screening Tests, Many Of Which Often Only Indicate Exposure In Past, And Not Necessarily Infection. A C6 Blood Test Or Pcr Lyme Test Sent To Lab Can Help Rule In Or Out Clinical Infection. I Dont Believe In The Vaccination For This Disease, As I Feel That Most Of This Disease Is Autoimmune In Basis, Which Is Potentially Worsened By Vaccination. In People, Lyme Vaccination Was Yanked Off Market Years Ago Due To Reactions. I Question The Long Term Safety As Well As Efficacy Of This Vaccination By My Colleagues.

Date: Jul 29, 2013
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disease/doxycycline

Question:Hi Dr. Dym, I Have An 18 Month Old Female Hound/boxer Mix Named Nala. She Is Healthy With Normal Weight - 43 Lbs. I've Been Taking Her To Luv My Pet For Routine Vaccinations And Tests For 18 Months. I Had Her Tested For Heartworm, Erlichia, And Lyme On 7/6/13 And She Tested Positive For Lyme. I Have Had Her On Advantix Ii For The Past 6 Months And Had Used Hartz Previously. She Does Not Have Any Outward Signs Of The Disease Yet. I Took Her To A Local Veterinarian Today And He Prescribed 100mg Of Doxycycline 2x Day For 30 Days. This Is A Difficult Medication To Get And Is Quite Expensive. Is There An Alternative To Treating The Dog Naturally? If This Were Your Dog, What Would You Do? Thanks So Much For Your Time. Chris Denning

Answer:Hi Chris. Thanks For Your Excellent Questions. I Dont Recommend Treating Dogs For Lyme Disease Based On A Positive Test With No Symptoms. A Positive Test Only Means Exposure. If You Decide To Treat The Lab Values, Other Cheaper Antibiotics Like Amoxicillin Or Cephalexin Are Equally As Effective Against Lyme Disease. As For Natural Treatment I Would Boost Immune System With Herbs Like Olive Leaf As In The Product Olimune From Www.animalessentials.com Add Fatty Acids To Meals Like Super Pure Omega From 1800petmeds. I Also Love The Combination Antioxidant Product Called Canine Health From Life Vantage. To Learn More About This Great Product And To Order Go To Www.mylifevantage.com/drdym

Date: Jun 13, 2013
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disesse

Question:If My Dog Tested Negative And I Treat Him For Lyme Disease Will It Hurt Him?

Answer:Wont Hurt Him, But Why Treat Him If He Tested Negative.

Date: Jan 14, 2013
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disease

Question:My 2 Year Old Brittany Spaniel Was Recently Diagnosed By A Vet With Lyme Disease When Analyzing A Blood Draw. he Recommends An Additional Test For $110 To Determine Severity Before Treatment. is This Test Necessary? can We Just Start A Antibiotic Treatment And Watch Her For Symptoms? we Now Realize She Has Symptoms For A Few Months. thanks

Answer:Starting Antibiotics Would Be Fine In My Opinion. Spending More Money On The C6 Test Is Not Worth It In My Opinion, As The Clinical Symptoms Of Lyme Being Present Are More Important Than Any Test. A 3 To 4 Week Course Of Doxycycline May Be Helpful.

Date: Oct 24, 2012
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: What Is Test For Lyme Disease?

Question:I Found An Engorged Deer Tick This Evening On My Kitchen Floor. The Dog Had Been Running In Woody Area, Near Lake, Earlier In Day. I Don't Know If Tick Fell Off Dog Or Where It Came From. What Is Test For Lyme Disease In Dogs? How Long After Possible Bite Do I Need To Wait To Get Test Or Treatment For Dog? Dog Is 3 Yr Old Female Bloodhound With No Health Issues. Thank You.

Answer:I Would Not Worry About One Tick Bite. You Could Test Dog In One Week At Vet. I Dont Treat Dogs Even With Positive Test Results Unless They Have Limping And/or Other Symptoms Of Lyme Disease. Many Dogs Get Exposed To Lyme Disease, And Test Positive, Yet Never Get Sick And Get Over It On Own With No Symptoms Or Illness.

Date: Aug 10, 2012
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lymes Disease

Question:I Just Rescued A 8 Yr Old Male Pug I Was Told Had Lymes Disease For Approx 6 Yrs The People Were Giving Him Prendisone Only When He Would Have A Flare Up And Collaspe What Can I Give Him To Ensure He Stays Healthy And To Treat It?

Answer:Dogs Usually Dont Have Lyme Disease For Several Years Like This So I Would Check With Your Local Vet On Assessment And Diagnostics. I Would Make Sure He Is On Good Natural Diet Like Wysong, Halo Or Natures Variety From 1800petmeds. Add Naturevet Enzymes And Vitachews To His Diet As Well.

Date: Mar 20, 2012
Category: Lyme Disease
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disease

Question:Our 18 Month Old Male Lab Tested Positive For Lyme And Anablastosis This Past February. He Was Put On 400 Mg Of Doxycyline A Day For 4 Weeks. We Are Taking Him To The Vet To Have His Blood Tested To Make Sure We Killed Off The Lyme And Anablastosis. My Wife Said The Vet Tech Who Made The Appointment For Us Told Her That Once A Dog Contracts Lyme Disease, They Never Fully Get Rid Of It And Our Lab "eli" Probably Will Test Positive For It Again. Is This True? How Would We Know If He Was Re-infected With A New Case Of It?, And What Would Be The Point Of Treatment Anyway??? Thankyou, Glenn Thank You, Glenn Chase

Answer:Great Questions. Most Dogs Who Are Treated For Lyme Disease Recover And Clear The Bacteria. Some Pets May Have Chronic Low Level Infections That Can Become Active At A Later Date. Many Blood Tests Will Continue To Be Positive In Many Cases, Indicating Prior Exposure To The Lyme Bacteria But Not Necessarily Active Infection. The Only Time I Treat Is When A Pet Has Active Symptoms Of Lyme Disease Such As Stiffness, Soreness And Limping.


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