ANOTHER split nail

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Postby fenella » December 31st, 2009, 2:29 am

Nittany had to go to the vet with a split toenail last week. I hadn't noticed that she split her nail, but she pulled her foot back when I touched her paw. I took a look at it and she had split it. There was a small piece hanging down and it was red. I tried to clip it, but was unsuccessful (one person, very wiggly dog in pain, trying to hold a paw and nail clippers didn't work). She was licking at it and the next day, her paw was swollen. I muzzled her and got the hangy piece off. We went to the vet, and she was put on antibiotics. It has been healing nicely.
Fast forward to tonight...
she was licking at her paw again. I went to check the broken nail, and it was fine, but there was blood on her paw. Now the nail NEXT TO the original one is split. The end of the nail is fine...but there are layers peeling off of the nail in places. it is bleeding from the side, not the end. I have no idea what happened.
So, I am thinking that she either has really brittle nails...possibly some sort of fungal infection or something? or that because she was chewing and licking at the original nail that she weakened the one next to it?
She is still on antibiotics for the original nail... I'm :confused:
Any ideas? :|
(Sigh...I know this is going to turn into another vet trip and visit fee when I am still broke from christmas)
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Postby pitbullmamaliz » December 31st, 2009, 7:54 am

What do you feed her? It might be a nutrition deficiency.
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Postby Ino » December 31st, 2009, 8:32 am

Ino had nail issues where he broke on average a nail a week only in winter. His 1st winter when he was a puppy, they would split up the nail long ways. All summer long he was fine- not a single break and we use the same walk area. This is winter 2 for him and as soon as the weather got cold again, the breaks started. A few months ago, he broke one very bad- so bad that this time, he went totally lame on the leg (splits did not seem to create that amount of pain. He had snapped in the across the nail direction most of the way up the nail and his quick was fully exposed. The nail end was hanging off and making it continue to bleed. I did not attempt to touch it and we went to the vet. He muzzled Ino and clipped it and had to cauterize it to get the bleeding to stop with one of those chemical based q-tips. I asked him why he thought Ino was only breaking them in winter and he just said maybe it had to do with the change in moisture in the air in winter. I then saw our holistic vet for suppliments. She put him on a mineral pill as a suppliment and a Nu-Pet vitamin & antioxidant (green food phytonutrients). I also ditched the pedi-paws nail tool and got a chordless dremel tool from walmart. I started using the sandpaper bit to shorten the nail and the sanding stone cone shaped bit to round them off and get rid of any jagged areas (minor splits that were starting on the sides and underside of the nail). His nails were not so long that he should have been breaking them like that, but they needed to be reshaped from all of the previous breaks (rounded off and edges smoothed out). The dremel works much better- pedi paws just was not working- it only had one bit, a plastic cover that prevented reshaping the nail, and did not spin fast enough. Also, the sandpaper was not thick enough. Since we started the suppliments and dremeling (we dremeled a little at a time so it does not get too hot or get his quick- he hates it enough already, but tolerates it) he has not had a single break. I think the combination of minerals, vitamins and dremeling really helped him. I think a lot of the breaks came from his unusual weight distribution/ body shape. He is heavy up front, light in the back and low to the ground. He tries to run like the neighbors lab but is not built that way. Also, the crunchy ice/snow seems to break them more or if he tries to dig through a fallen tree that is water logged and easy to do in summer but too frozen in winter. I honestly am not sure exactly what made the most difference between the vitamins, minerals or dremeling- but the combo definately worked- no breaks since. Good luck with it, I hope something helps. It really sucks to see them break nails often. Sorry this got so long, I just did not want to leave out details of what worked for us. Hopefully your vet has some recommendations. I am by no means an expert, Just wanted to share what worked for Ino so if you want to, you can run it by your vet.
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Postby TinaMartin » December 31st, 2009, 10:29 am

I would recommend looking into the nutritional end as well. Just like people their nails can get brittle in the winter. The air is cold and dry.
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Postby fenella » December 31st, 2009, 3:39 pm

I spoke with the vet. She thinks that maybe the new nail was damaged at the same time as the first one. We're just going to keep an eye on it. If it gets worse or another split happens, she's going to test for an autoimmune disorder or recommend supplements, depending on what she finds.
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Postby blabsforbullies » December 31st, 2009, 5:52 pm

fenella wrote:I spoke with the vet. She thinks that maybe the new nail was damaged at the same time as the first one. We're just going to keep an eye on it. If it gets worse or another split happens, she's going to test for an autoimmune disorder or recommend supplements, depending on what she finds.


I would've thought the same thing. If the nails weren't right next to one another, I would be more suspicious for something more significant (and there are a multitude of reasons for that to happen, unfortunately). But, their proximity would make me suspect the same thing. :wink:
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Postby fenella » January 9th, 2010, 2:08 am

Anyone have experience with lupoid onychodystrophy?
Another nail is now affected, so it looks as if this may be what's wrong. I don't KNOW yet. I'm hoping it's not. Just wondering if anyone has any more info, as google is SCARING me :o
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Postby iluvk9 » January 9th, 2010, 6:39 pm

No knowledge of "lupoid onychodystrophy" but good thoughts sent her way! And remember, while "google is our friend" it also can give you WAY TOO MUCH information. :hug3:
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Postby amazincc » January 9th, 2010, 6:44 pm

iluvk9 wrote:No knowledge of "lupoid onychodystrophy" but good thoughts sent her way! And remember, while "google is our friend" it also can give you WAY TOO MUCH information. :hug3:


Ditto!!! :oops:

Are you going in to test for an autoimmune disorder? Is Nittany on any supplements already?
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Postby fenella » January 9th, 2010, 7:58 pm

We're "waiting and seeing" right now. I have the name of a dermatologist if it gets worse. The antibiotics she was on for the first nail probably kept the second from getting infected.
Her nails are brittle. When they split, they are splitting so that the bottom half of the nail (underneath side) peels and cracks off...leaving the quick exposed.
My vet mentioned that it "could be autoimmune" but didn't elaborate. Last night, a VERY knowledgeable friend who works with a vet whose dog had lupoid o. (SLO) looked at her nails and said that they looked very similar to the way that dog's nails looked when he was first diagnosed.
I don't have any pics, but another dog with the condition has good pics online here down near the bottom of the page
http://blackschutzhundshepherds.blogspot.com/2009/08/horrors-of-slo-symmetrical-lupoid.html
Her nails do look similar...a top "hood" with a protrusion and no bottom nail half.

Anyway, like I said, it isn't for sure yet. I'm still hoping for something fungal, maybe low thyroid, something else other than this. Dr. Blabs may be able to confirm, but from what I read the only SURE diagnosis is to amputate the nail and first part of the toe bone of one toe (essentially de-claw one toe). From what I read, though, experienced vets and dermatologists can usually recognize it and go ahead with the treatment course without resorting to the amputation of the joint. Knocking wood, fingers crossed, big prayers...
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Postby pitbullmamaliz » January 9th, 2010, 11:58 pm

Oh ouch, those pictures made me cringe. I hope you get it figured out soon!!!
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Postby Patch O' Pits » January 10th, 2010, 11:06 am

I hope things get better. Poor baby! :o
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Postby fenella » January 10th, 2010, 11:30 am

Now the little "protrusion" which I think was the quick, though it looked odd, is no longer there. She has white nails, but the inside is now black. :|
I'm going to call the vet again tomorrow.
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Postby Marinepits » January 10th, 2010, 9:22 pm

Hmmmmm, I wonder if it's a fungal type thing.....?
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