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Klaus
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Hello,

My 5 month year old doberman has a big bump /lump on his back. I noticed this big bump on his back that was soft. I ended taking him to the vet and they drained what was in it which was blood and gave him a penicillin shot as well as some antibiotics. The doctor said his first though is that the dog has von willebrand disease. The next day in grew back to its previous size but was much harder. Also his skin around the bump is now very soft and filled with some fluid. It looks as if his whole back is swollen and if another bump is starting to form but this time on the side. I took him to a different vet and they told me I should take him back there as she believed maybe he got an allergic retain to a hot they gave him or they didn't correctly administer the shot. When I took him back they doctor just prescribed more medicine an didn't really give an opinion on what it could be. I am very worried and scared. I have no idea what it could be an not vets around my area since to be helpful I can post pictures if needed. I just really want some help, advice , anything to help my dogie out. Please and thank you.
 

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Von Willdebrand isn't the cause of the swelling and lump, it's a result of whatever caused the problem in the first place. VwB is a blood clotting disorder. A VwD affected dog can live a relatively normal life, but when injured or ill with something that causes bleeding it will cause a problem. My suggestion is to find a vet that can diagnose and treat what's causing the underlying issue. Best wishes, and let us know how he does!
 

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Got mutt?
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Like DoberPapa said, vWD is a clotting disorder, similar to hemophilia in humans. There is a simple DNA test that can tell you whether your dog is clear (doesn't carry the gene), carrier (has one copy of the gene), or affected (has two copies of the gene). Not all genetically affected dogs (carry two copies of the gene) are clinically affected (have mild to serious problem with their blood clotting properly).

If you don't know your pup's status, you need to find out. The test can be ordered through companies like VetGen and Vetnostics. You dont need to have the vet do it, just follow the directions that come with the kit. If your dog is genetically affected, he could well be clinically affected.
 

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Alpha schmalpha
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Your pup had a large lump on his back ! The vet drained it and it went away , but refilled overnight and is harder now. Did you see the fluid that was drained out? Was it pinkish clear or was it dark red? Where exactly on the the back is the lump forming ..close to the spine?
I had a similar sounding issue , a large lump , drain it and it would refill. We gave it about a week in hopes that the body itself would absorb the fluid on it own but this would not happen. We could not see any improvements and we had to cut him open because nothing was making sense. He had managed to open a blood vessel on his back and the body formed a sac that confined the blood . It was about the size of a grape fruit , he looked like a Bison.
The vessel was sewn shut and removed as much of the sac material possible and the body dissolved the rest. We did have to leave drain tubes in him for about a week.
 

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It sounds more like an abscess than anything else--unlike cats, who often form abscesses in response to an injury, dogs rarely do. But when they do end up with an abscess they often end up needing to have surgery to open and debride (yes, and insert drain(s) before the abscess will heal.

The fact that the area that is affected is getting larger and a new lump is forming is worrying. It doesn't sound like any vaccine reaction I've ever seen and it doesn't sound like the kind of thing that occurs in a dog who is vWD affected and clinical (which means that he does bleed abnormally--because platelets, which are involved in clotting are not functioning properly). But it does sound like your vets might want to examine the fluid to see if it contains bacteria and if it does since the whole thing seem to be getting worse send a sample out to see what is growing and what would be be the best antibiotic to us to control it.

Somehow just throwing antibiotics randomly at it doesn't seem to be working.

Seems to me that what Alan J describes that his vets did would make more sense--at least open it up and see what the underlying tissue looks like.

But I'm not a vet--I'd suggest a specialist but can't even think what kind 0f specialist would be appropriate. If you are anywhere near a vet school this is the kind of thing they can get a handle on more quickly than a general practice clinic simply because they have enough experts in a variety of fields to at least look to see what might be causing these swellings and drainage.

Good luck.
 

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Hairy Dog, RIP Caesar, Katana, Kip, Capri
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Complicating the issue, from what I’ve heard, is that it is difficult to get antibiotics into the abscess site--the swelling walls itself off to prevent spread of the infection (if the swelling is caused by an infection), which also keeps the antibiotic out. Often cutting open the abscess, draining it and leaving it open to heal is the best treatment. Needle aspiration does not seem to be as effective as this method.

BUT I’m not a vet--I’m just repeating what a vet told me--and I may not have quite understood what she was saying :) I would head for a specialist (dermatologist perhaps, or surgeon ??) since the first treatment did not seem to work and you are simply getting advice to do more of the same.
 

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Complicating the issue, from what I’ve heard, is that it is difficult to get antibiotics into the abscess site--the swelling walls itself off to prevent spread of the infection (if the swelling is caused by an infection), which also keeps the antibiotic out. Often cutting open the abscess, draining it and leaving it open to heal is the best treatment. Needle aspiration does not seem to be as effective as this method.

BUT I’m not a vet--I’m just repeating what a vet told me--and I may not have quite understood what she was saying :) I would head for a specialist (dermatologist perhaps, or surgeon ??) since the first treatment did not seem to work and you are simply getting advice to do more of the same.
Yes, Melbrod--that's exactly the problem with just trying to aspirate an abscess on a dog--and exactly why it's rarely effective. Cats abscess so easily and thoroughly that their abscesses always get opened and cleaned and drains put in. The other thing that happens with dogs is that their abscesses are often sterile--no bacteria so antibiotics aren't effective but the tissue in the swelling keeps deteriorating and fluid and blood keep accumulating in the area until surface tissues (dermal tissue, including skin) finally rupture--then it gets cleaned out--and either left open to heal or if there is enough good tissue to suture, drains get put in etc.

And I'm still not a vet but I've seen enough of this stuff treated to have a pretty good idea of what gets done and what works.
 
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