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Discussion Starter #1
Mikko's tick panel came back and the titer for RMSF was 1:64, which is the very low end of positive.

The vet recommended we proceed with treatment (three options: 1) doxycycline 2)doxycycline from a compounding pharmacy since doxy is super expensive right now 3) another tetracycline drug that I can't remember the name of that may treat it)

Questions for those who have had a dog test positive for RMSF:

1. Did your dog have any symptoms and what were they
2. How long did the symptoms show before you found out it was RMSF?
3. What was the antibody count for the titer (not sure I'm phrasing that correctly)
4. What treatment did you proceed with?

Thanks!
 

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Oh no that is terrible. So sorry to hear that. I haven't dealt with it myself but I know a few people that have and I believe they got on doxy right away. Not sure if that is what you should do or not. I'm sure others will have more info for you.
 

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Thanks, Belinda! I found the doxy at a decent price at CVS ($150/100 compared to over $300 at other places), so I'm going to ask the vet to call it in tomorrow. I really didn't want to have to go the compounding pharmacy route, so I was leaning toward the minocyclin until I called CVS.

I hope people can chime in about their dogs' symptoms and such, I'm really interested in hearing about them!
 

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RiteAid if you have one near you! it was $51 for 84 pills.
 

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RiteAid if you have one near you! it was $51 for 84 pills.
Unfortunately, no. But how long ago was that? Before or after the shortage?
 

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Hey, I'll weigh in.

1. My dog's symtoms were dizziness, head tilt, and rapid eye movements (nystagmus). They were extreme and very scary and came on suddenly one morning after our run.

2. I took her to the vet right away and we started treating with doxy before the titer came back.

3. I'd have to check but it was very high. I want to say 1:3200???

4. I treated with doxy for at least two months per my vet's recommendations. It is my understanding that RMSF if actually a "safer" tick illness than others because it goes away completely- unlike erhlichia or lyme. However, the nuerological symptoms my dog had were extreme and scary and I am so so pleased they went away. She is a GSD, spayed female, was 3 at the time. She is almost 7 now and never showed any signs of being sick except for the brain issues. She ate well, had high energy and wanted to play the whole time, even though she'd fall over when she moved too quickly... those were stressful times. I was waiting to see, but if she'd stayed so dizzy I wasn't sure it would be fair to keep her alive..... the vet wasn't sure she'd recover. She did... love that girl!
 

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Also wanted to add- my dog never had the classic signs of RMSF. Her blood work was normal, she had no fever or malaise/loss of appetite. All she had was that terrible dizzyness and the high titer and response to doxy confirmed it.

I had no idea RMSF could present itself that way, but apparently it can. I think it was the first my vet had seen it. I was in Massachusetts at the time, but we'd spent time in Pennsylvania and Illinois so she could have picked it up anywhere.
 

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I rescued a little terrier who had two seizures at the shelter. By the time he came to my house he was lethargic and had neurological symptoms. Took him to the vet immediately, blood was drawn for the tick panel and he was started on antibiotics. He died the next day, two days before the test results came back positive for RMSF. It should be treated aggressively as it can be very serious. Even people die of RMSF.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
How scary for both of you!
Muskeg- I'm glad your dog made a full recovery.
I'm not really sure what to think of Mikko's results, being the low level that they are. The Dr. said he might not even have it, could just have been exposed to it in the past, but of course because it is such a bad disease, he is treating it anyway.

The reason we got him tested was because he has been slightly dragging his front left leg. I didn't think it was a joint/arthritis problem because it didn't respond to Adequan or Rimadyl. I wasn't sure it was an injury because he runs, jumps, etc just fine. His appetite has been normal, but he seems kind of tired and bored. Then my vet noticed that he was squinting his eyes (which someone else pointed out a few days prior too).
 

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Unfortunately, no. But how long ago was that? Before or after the shortage?
3 weeks ago. Have your relatives in PA get the script filled for you and mail it to you. Wonder if your vet would call their vet and have it called in for you?
 

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3 weeks ago. Have your relatives in PA get the script filled for you and mail it to you. Wonder if your vet would call their vet and have it called in for you?
Wow, that's a huge price difference and a good idea! I'm assuming that was for the 100mg pills? I have to call a couple of other places in the morning, but I doubt they will come close to that price.
 

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I was told that they will get better after a few days of doxy and that is a sign that they do have it if you aren't sure. It is better to treat for it sooner than later so I'm glad you were able to get the medicine. Was he exposed to any ticks lately?
 

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Wow, that's a huge price difference and a good idea! I'm assuming that was for the 100mg pills? I have to call a couple of other places in the morning, but I doubt they will come close to that price.
yes 100 mg. 228 pills for 400mg 2x day for a month was about $130.

The prices are crazy and the differences between the pharmacies is crazier

For the 84 pills first filled
Walmart - $228
Kmart - $561
RiteAid - $50.35

I offered to take the RiteAid pharmacist out to dinner.

The Kmart guy told me 2 months ago it was $10. the RiteAid guy told me that there was a back order but they now have it in and the manufacturer jacked the price but to his knowledge there was no reason for the extreme prices at the other places. Interesting, huh?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I had a dog who had temperament changes with RMSTF--she became very cranky and surly and also started being startled by ordinary things. Vet check found some vascularity in her eyes and so we treated with Doxy (last fall), and it was like I got a brand-new dog.

The range of symptoms is so interesting to me. Google searching only gives you the expected symptoms-which are really serious and distinct.

I was told that they will get better after a few days of doxy and that is a sign that they do have it if you aren't sure. It is better to treat for it sooner than later so I'm glad you were able to get the medicine. Was he exposed to any ticks lately?
That's what the vet told me too. But, if for some reason he is testing positive only because he had prior exposure but really does have a shoulder injury, then I just don't know...everything is wait and see at this point :(

I don't recall seeing any ticks on him lately. He had several in late December when we were in PA. My husband and I got some on us after being in the woods several weeks ago-Mikko was with us, but I don't recall finding any on him.


yes 100 mg. 228 pills for 400mg 2x day for a month was about $130.

The prices are crazy and the differences between the pharmacies is crazier

For the 84 pills first filled
Walmart - $228
Kmart - $561
RiteAid - $50.35

I offered to take the RiteAid pharmacist out to dinner.

The Kmart guy told me 2 months ago it was $10. the RiteAid guy told me that there was a back order but they now have it in and the manufacturer jacked the price but to his knowledge there was no reason for the extreme prices at the other places. Interesting, huh?
That price difference is insane!
We ended up finding it for just over $100 at Walgreens so the vet is calling it into there today. It's just easier to go that route than having to coordinate getting it in PA and then shipping it. If it cost any more than that, then I would have tried to get it in PA.
 

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So, I called Walgreens to see if his prescription was ready and the pharmacist said, it is but it's really expensive and said Mikko could get a Walgreens Rx plan! I just had to pay $20 to join the plan and $10 for the doxy!
 

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Thanks, Belinda! I found the doxy at a decent price at CVS ($150/100 compared to over $300 at other places), so I'm going to ask the vet to call it in tomorrow. I really didn't want to have to go the compounding pharmacy route, so I was leaning toward the minocyclin until I called CVS.

I hope people can chime in about their dogs' symptoms and such, I'm really interested in hearing about them!
Geez, it's expensive! I actually work at a compounding pharmacy and make doxy all the time for dogs, and it's never close to $300. It might not even be over a $100.


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So, I called Walgreens to see if his prescription was ready and the pharmacist said, it is but it's really expensive and said Mikko could get a Walgreens Rx plan! I just had to pay $20 to join the plan and $10 for the doxy!
Really? I need to look for a Walgreens!!
 

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Rmsf

Just wanted to add this in for future reference.

1. Did your dog have any symptoms and what were they
Started having leg spasms at night. Hemorrhages on his genital.

2. How long did the symptoms show before you found out it was RMSF?
Nova was tested positive for Lyme Disease at his annual check up. Noticed symptoms a week after he started taking his medication. Did the tick panel and came back positive for Ehrlichia, Lyme Disease, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.

3. What was the antibody count for the titer (not sure I'm phrasing that correctly)
Not exactly sure. The vet did not mention anything about the antibody count. Will update later.

4. What treatment did you proceed with?
He is currently on Minocycline 100MG 1 & 1/2 tablets twice a day for 28 days
 

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Sounds like you've found a decent deal through Walgreens but for future reference, I get all my scripts filled through Diamondback Drugs, an animal pharmacy in Arizona. They ship nationwide. My dog is on a chemotheraphy pill that is upwards of $10/pill at Costco and other local pharmacies (i.e. Walgreens, CVS). At Diamondback we get them for just over $2/pill including overnight shipping. They also have some of the best prices on budesonide I've been able to find outside of Canada. They'll give you a quote via email, so it might not hurt to check and see what their rates are.
 
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