Tuesday, June 25, 2019

This Autoimmune Disease Can Cause Your Dog's Nose To Lose Pigment

Lupus is an autoimmune disease in dogs in which the body's immune system attacks itself.  There are two forms of lupus in dogs - Systemic Lupus Erythmatosus (SLE) and Cutaneous Lupus Erythematosus (CLE), also known as Discoid Lupus. Discoid Lupus is the most common form of lupus and mainly affects the nose and face. Systemic lupus is a much more serious form and can affect the dog's entire body causing bouts of lameness, kidney issues, pain and lethargy.

It's important to understand how autoimmune diseases work in that the external symptoms are not the primary health issue--it is the underlying immune system attacking itself.  Essentially, the pet's immune system is so overloaded that the pet's body forms antibodies to its own tissues and attacks itself.  While there is often a genetic predisposition, the onset of attacks is associated with triggers (exposure to chemicals, sun exposure, food allergens, poor diet, stress in the household) which can flare an attack.  Anatomy is not destiny--pets can get better and you can help manage your pet's autoimmune disease with a holistic approach used in conjunction with conventional veterinary treatments by your veterinarian.

With Discoid Lupus Erythematosus (DLE); also known as canine lupus or “collie nose”, the first sign is usually scaling and loss of color on the nose.  The nose may become smooth and turn gray.  DLE can also affect the lips, ears and less commonly the feet and genitalia.  Pet owners may see more frequent flare-ups during the summer months (due to sun exposure).

Similar to other autoimmune disease in dogs, veterinarians will often prescribe steroids which can help reduce inflammation.  Steroids can bring short-term relief but their effectivenes wears off and they can cause many serious long-term side effects.  Introducing a holistic approach into your pet's regimen can reduce the need for steroids and improve your pet's qualify of life.   A holistic approach would include natural supplements and feeding a hypoallergenic, low inflammatory diet to support your pet’s immune system.  

Supplements especially helpful for canine lupus include: Immune Harmony, Power Probiotic, Amazing Omegas, Curcumin, and Resveratrol for Dogs.