Front Leg / foot problems

Hi everybody - wasnt sure where to look and a friend mentioned the forum…

After years of wanting / waiting lists - I finally got my basenji 18 months ago and was suitably impressed / shocked / loved by the new addition - our only dog , but sharing with 2 cats.
Unfortunately , Zinze (Azinza) was 5 months old when we got her and had a few traits and problems along the way that I found strange. The initial problem was the house training - took 3 months to sort that one out - would only do it on a concrete floor. but that is now OK.
Our other problem was the infections and cysts on the front paws between the toes. Got so bad that she would fold the foot over and walk on the top instead.
Numerous visits to the vet cost more than expected - also had a skin allergy that needed dietry supplements to minimise.
We took her to visit her sister and the sister had none of the problems,
Eventually it was diagnosed as Interdigital Furunculosis.
At about the same time - as it was getting better / worse / better / worse ...
her front paws collapsed.
I have some pics of her current condition - not sure if I can post them here.

I try not to stress her front feet but the condition is definitely reducing her ability to "go nuts" altho being a Basenji means complaining is rare...

any comment from the forum appreciated.

PS was going to breed with her next time round - now dont know it its a hereditary problem to worry about.

Have chatted to the local breeder - needed some extra comment please...

Kris
attachment_t_9249_0_img_2371.jpg

In reading of this condition (which by the way I had not ever heard of in Basenjis) http://www.merckvetmanual.com/mvm/index.jsp?cfile=htm/bc/70800.htm

It would be my opinion that you would not want to breed her. Since it seems the condition is not considered hereditary, but the fact that in seems to be connected "bacterial interdigital furunculosis because of the short bristly hairs located on the webbing between the toes, prominent interdigital webbing, or both. The short shafts of hairs are easily forced backward into the hair follicles during locomotion (traumatic implantation)" (from the merck manual)… I would not take a chance that it could be passed on. Also the foot in the condition it is in would take considerable stain carrying the extra weight of the pups when in whelp and could make her very lame either for the time she is carrying or in years to come

Thanx for a prompt reply - I had a similar idea in general , but specifically got a female to go through the breeding process with my young family. I understand that the extra weight would be a problem and we would need to pay special attention to her needs.
I have been extremely happy with little Zinze and she is a real sweetie - and wouldnt put our needs before hers. But I did think that a carefully managed pregnancy would be good for her. That is the beauty of this forum - I can discuss and plan without actually doing anything yet…

No other posters have commented ?

Not specific to Zinze's general condition - but she has the bump on her belly-button of fat from the partially closed at birth hole. This hole is now closed and no amount of pushing and prodding will get the fatty lump to move. We got her with it at age 5 months and there has been no change and she has no discomfort from it. My vet says its fine ???

any comments ?

Kris

Umbilical Hernia's are totally common in our breed and about 70% or more Basenjis have them. So, your Vet is correct it is fine. Most people have them fixed when spay/neuter their Basenjis, otherwise unless there is a problem should be no worries.

I would suggest that you consider that there are better ways to introduce children to birthing then to have live puppies. There are books, videos, etc. Whelping a litter to introduce a family to breed is really not a good reason to breed a bitch. In breeding you should be looking to improve the breed as your motive, not as an educational tool.

Not sure why you would think that breeding would be good for her? Bitches do not need to be bred?

If you search the threads on this Forum, you will find lots of reason "not" to breed. And you should also learn about the breed, what testing for health concerns should be done before breeding (has your pups sire and dam been DNA tested for Fanconi?), judging your girl's conformation, temperament, and knowing that you should be responsible for any pups your bitch might have for their entire lifetime.

wow - that was fast . . .
Zinze has a pedigree longer than both my arms with no fanconi or anything else… altho I didnt know that when we got her. The local breeder assured me that she was perfect to breed with and at age 1 year was ectstatic about her condition and show-ability. That was a time when she was fairly free of the bleeding cysts and she was just so happy to play with the 7 other B's , she ignored any discomfort.

Anyway - our local breeder has the final say as to who the sire will be and we are a while away from that decision...

kris

@krissteyn:

wow - that was fast . . .
Zinze has a pedigree longer than both my arms with no fanconi or anything else… altho I didnt know that when we got her. The local breeder assured me that she was perfect to breed with and at age 1 year was ectstatic about her condition and show-ability. That was a time when she was fairly free of the bleeding cysts and she was just so happy to play with the 7 other B's , she ignored any discomfort.

Anyway - our local breeder has the final say as to who the sire will be and we are a while away from that decision...

kris

All registered Basenjis have a pedigree longer then an "arm" (unless they are from the newer Afs that were introduced into the gene pool and AKC stud books in the 80's and a few more in the last couple of years. And unless they are DNA tested for Fanconi, no breeder can say there is no Fanconi in their lines. If you don't test you don't know. So hopefully the Sire and Dam were test and your bitch will be tested also before breeding.

And I understand that everyone has different opinions on the age to breed, but most breeders do not breed until age 3, 2 at the earliest.

But also good that you are connected to her breeder and that person will be giving their input

I would like to know how the diagnosis of "Interdigital Furunculosis" was made? Skin biopsy? Process of eliminiation? And how is it being treated or is it? Does it affect more than one foot? And what about the skin allergies? Did she have these conditions at age 5 months when she came to you?


Bmw R75

Lets see : driven down from the owner overnight : 20 hour journey aged 5 months - took 2 days to settle down and be vaguely house trained - it appears her previous owner trained her to do it on only cement/concrete floors and not "in the bushes". Didnt notice the feet at first but within a week we had foot-licking,

Got her settled - stayed with her 24/7 for 2 weeks , which meant I was at a building site where renovations were happening for 2 weeks (only).
Assumed she had a "splinter" and so did the vet, We waited 10 days and more erruptions occurred. vet couldnt work it out - tried creams and stuff - all still lying there and it didnt really improve.
Came and went at will.
She of course was now "domesticated / willfull / "almost impossible" and very active ! Our spring flowers were out and the scratching was mainly around the head area - ear mites checked for 3 times - nothing ! now have her on a special oil additive with her "special" diet and that seems to have minimised the problem , altho she still gets the scratches - we do have poison ivy in the garden ??? and she like to bury her bones (celphones/keys/cameras) down in that area…
Popped into the vet (we go fishing sometimes) and he showed me pictures from one of his big books of her condition - matched exactly - altho I am no expert. Its possible that isnt the problem - but it seems to fit.
The feet collapsed over a 3 week period about 7 months ago and the vet looked at it all , scratched his head and said , short of major re-constructive surgery by a specialist, he couldnt see any quick answer.
3 times I have tried keeping her quiet for 10 days in a closed area with minimal movement - but that didnt help - just drove us nuts !

Our spring time is round the corner and we will be monitoring her closely to check on allergy scratching and foot erruptions.
She has no fleas - I keep checking and she gets advantage regularly.

She has a kennel which , altho out on the porch , has a heating system for winter and she stays toastie-warm in there and appears happy enuff.

need any more info ?

kris

By the way , the vet did a skin biopsy - sent it away for results - nothing conclusive at that stage…

Welcome to the forum Krissteyn and Zinza.

Your poor girl -she must get a lot of pain with her feet so bad. I do have one Baseni who does occasionally get an interdigital cyst. I am a great believer in homeopathy and natural treatment for our natural dogs. I give this bitch Hepar Sulph 30c at the first sign of a problem and it quickly clears up! Of course your girl seems to have an extreme problem and personally I wouldn't even consider breeding until all this has cleared up.

Re Fanconi - I have bred basenjis for several years and inherited a line going back for many more and we had to my knowledge, no Fanconi. We had obviously been very lucky as when one of my breeding was tested she was a probable carrier. I then had her grandmother and father tested -(her mother had died) with the result that her dad was clear and her grandmother a probable carrier. I'm intending now to get my others tested.

The cases of Interdigital Furunculosis and Interdigital Cysts we see at the clinic usually have familial properties; ie closely related english bulldogs that come in.

I find it unusual a proper skin biopsy (using local or full anesthesia, taking a rather large and deep section to get all dermis layers of an infected area) would come back inconclusive. Perhaps not conclusive for IF per se but certainly should have come back with some sort of irregularity noted - assuming the biopsy was excisional in nature.

My concern too would be the folding and collapse of the feet. Nothing in my research shows this to be documented symptoms of this condition. Lameness, yes but that is all.

Regardless - I feel for the bitch as she must be quite uncomfortable when in the throes of an "attack". I can only hope her discomfort is being adeqautely addressed at those times. Ouch!


WEED VAPORIZER

Pain - this animal has a pain thresh-hold way above normal !

only 3 times I have heard her cry was when the indenti-pet was done, the biopsy on her foot , and when she applied brakes too late chasing a big bird off the deck and landed 12 foot down (just bounced) in the garden - altho the last was more fright than pain. Her paws seem to have no nerves and altho she isnt as active as I would expect , given a squirrel or neighbours cat to chase - she tries to break the sound barrier…

She has a delicate tail that doesnt like being bent "the wrong way" , but when I play with it, she lets me bend it anyway I please ??? go figure...

kris

thanx for the tip on the treatment - will enquire...

@krissteyn:

Pain - this animal has a pain thresh-hold way above normal !

This is actually a huge fallacy in the human world. We assume that because animals continue to do things while in obvious pain, that would set a humans teeth on edge, they must have a high pain threshold. Not true; what they have is a inate instinct to survive.

Showing pain or vulnerability in the wild can lead to death depending on the animal and the pack dynamics. A pack is only as strong as the weakest link and if you cry out, can't keep up, show their weakness, etc. they are liable to be attacked and killed by the pack members or at the very least ostracized from the group.

Now let's assume you are correct and I am wrong. Just because she has a high tolerance of pain does not mean it is in her best interest to feel the pain and/or live with it for the rest of her life. Pain management in the veterinary field has made leaps and bounds in recent years - there is no reason not to take advantage of it. I imagine your bitch will thank you for it.

Feel free to Google the long term effects chronic pain can have on the body and you will find that it can be a silent killer. :O(


Gf 250

Well put, Sinbaje! Thanks for that post

My previous posy got lost
She seems to have no pain - only slight discomfort - I can tell by the duration of the "dancing" - but unless you compare what she was like before - you would never tell.

pain appears to be relative - she shows no sign. But I do try to minimise stress to the fore-paws/legs - always pick her out the car and put her down , always place her gently on the ground after cuddles.

My previous pedigree hound involvement was with Irish Wolfhounds - so am well aware of joint problems…

Am kinda busy at present and Zinze is currently in a good space with no hassles - so will leave her for now. Really wanted to get a feel for what you guys had to say and then factor in all that when I approach the breeder.

all contributions greatfully received

kris

Than you all for your input - took Zinze in the canoe today and she jumped out to investigate the ducks 🙂 She is showing no discomfort at present.

I looked at the photos from her pedigree forebears and 2nd, 3rd and 4th generations appear to have similar front feet. I will monitor it carefully and assume my lack of knowledge is most of the problem - will be seeing the breeder within the next couple of weeks for an update.

On a happier note - Gosh but she has an international pedigree - from all over…
She has lotsa B sparkle and chased an English Mastiff down the beach recently - takes no prisoners 😃

glad I found this site

Kris

welcome to the forum Kris and Zinze, have you any pics ?

Just looking at her pedigree, I really would urge you to have her DNA tested for Fanconi especially if you consider breeding her. There is lots of Fanconi, both Carriers and producers of Affecteds in the pedigree from years past before we had a DNA test.

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