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Poorly Tail

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Joined: 23 Oct 2007
Posts: 13
Location: West Yorkshire

PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:18 pm    Post subject: Poorly Tail Reply with quote

I have a 3 year old Dally which is having ongoing problems with her tail. When she gets giddy she wags her tail and is smacking it against doors and walls causing it to bleed. I have had her to the vets who says its a common problem with dallys. Just wondered if anyone else has encountered the same thing???
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Joined: 15 Apr 2004
Posts: 3161
Location: Derbyshire

PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 1:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is very common and can in the end lead to the end of the tail being infected and having to be removed. The best thing is to bandage the end of the tail and keep it bandaged until completely healed. When healed rubbing the end of the tail with vaseline to keep the skin supple and less likely to crack also works.

Some dalmatians will allow you to put a protective covering over the end of the tail (a foam hair roller or small slim piece of foam pipe insulation is good but others will immediately chew off such a bandage. Otherwise just bandage.

Over the years I've become an expert tail bandager and have found the thing that stays on best is strip elastoplast, the non water proof type - use a piece about 6" long, put the padded bit over the actual wound. With someone else holding the dog stick the plaster up the wounded side folding it round the tail and thendown over the other side sticking the sides over the plaster from the first side so that about three inches of tail is bandaged. Hold in place and using other hand wind white surgical micropore tape closely round the tail starting about an inch above the plaster and working down towards the end overlapping the mictopore (you do use quite a lot of micropore and it it is easier if it is on a sellotape type dispenser). This needs to be quite tight, the plaster prevents you from doing damage by making it too tight. The micropore will be stuck to the fur above the plaster. It may take you a few goes to get it right - make sure you have a helper and everything prepared before you start.
Don't be tempted to put cream on the wound but antiseptec powder helps - you can buy Veterinary Wound Powder in most horse shops. This will stay on most dogs without the need for using a cone/bucket on the head.

Once you get it bandaged you can leave it on for several days - no need to change every day. At the beginning I normally change every 2/3 days and once it starts to heal I change once a week. You may need to gently cut the micropore to get the bandage off. Keep the tail bandaged even if it looks OK for 4 - 6 weeks so it is properly healed. I've had success with this and properly healed tails even with a dali who got his tail caught in a car door (ouch) and vet said it needed to be amputated. It wasn't and eventually healed perfectly though did take a few months.

It does take a bit of time and skill to do this and the first couple of times the bandage may come off - usually because you haven't put the micrpore on tight enough. Quite a bit of the tail is bandaged even if the cut is small. Keep practising, you'll get the hang of it. Only do this on a nice clean cut - if anything looks yellowy or infected ask the vet for antibiotic powder to put on it.

Good luck.

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Anne Gurnsey

Joined: 03 May 2004
Posts: 673

PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with Maggi, micropore is the answer. I have used just cotton wool or lint on the wound to pad it followed by the micropore. One of mine had a similar w experience in catching her tail in the door and she went months with micropore, just taking it off when it was really dirty or I wanted to show her. She was bandaged again before going back to the car or the bench. I think Micropore is so successful because it is light and the dog literally is unaware of it. The other tip I woul add is see where it is happening. In our old house it was the post at the bottom of the stairs. Visitors arrive, much wagging of tails, much blood.

Where we live now visitors drive in and close the gate behind them so dogs meet them in the garden where there are no sharp edges. Good luck
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Joined: 01 Apr 2004
Posts: 2395
Location: Denial

PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My old girl Polly did this frequently. We found that dipping the endof her tail in a solution of alum healed it very quickly, but made the skin rather dry and brittle, so once healed a little baby oil rubbed in softened it and made the skin supple again.
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Joined: 07 Sep 2008
Posts: 847
Location: barrow in furness cumbria

PostPosted: Sun Nov 08, 2009 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our first dal used to do the same with her tail.Just did what Maggi said, we had a laugh doing it because she kept wagging it and the more we laughed the faster she wagged it.
Once before we got it bandaged my daughters friend came ready to go out for the evening and Sammy wagged it so hard she splattered the poor girls new white pants.
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Joined: 23 Oct 2007
Posts: 13
Location: West Yorkshire

PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 9:50 am    Post subject: Poorly Tail Reply with quote

Thanks for the advise, I will give your suggestions a go!!, The vet did mention that if it doesn't heal she will have the end of her tail amputated , which I really don't want to happen. I even thought of putting some tights on her and feeding her tail through one of the legs (needs must and all that!!), Once again any advise is welcome!!!
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Joined: 06 Aug 2008
Posts: 164
Location: Alnwick, Northumberland

PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:42 pm    Post subject: My Bad Experience - still upsets me now Reply with quote

This is a very sensitive topic for me so felt like I needed to post on here too. This (I hope) is a one off so I don't want you worrying this will happen to you, but...

My boy, Polo, is 11 next month but I got him from a guest house when he was 1 year old. The old owners said he had a cist on the tip of his tail but it had never caused a problem so just to leave it, which I did and it was fine for 8/9 years. In 2007 when my fella & I moved house, Polo started knocking it on things and making his tail bleed, and it started looking quite sore despite trying to keep it clean & avoid places where he can knock and make it bleed again. After a couple weeks I took him to the vets to ask for advice. The vet got a syringe & cut the end off, duck taped the syringe to the tail and sent me on my way - No vet collar or anything, and 30 consultation fee for the privalege. Polo didn't seem to take any notice of it in the evening, so I put him out to bed as usual. Upon letting him out the next morning I couldn't believe what I was seeing, blood everywhere! He'd chewed off the syringe, which because it had been taped on so tight he couldn't just pull it off, so he chewed that off and the tape, along with about 3 inches of his tail. Well this was a Saturday morning and I couldn't stop the bleeding so I rang the vet and told them what had happened. The vet told me to bring him in (I thought to quarterise it to stop the bleeding), saw a different vet this time who got a piece of pipe insulation and taped it ontop of a bandage which he'd wrapped around the tail so tight to stop the bleeding, without quarterising it. This time I was charged 65 for the call out fee as well. So I got back in the car and took him home. Got him out of the car, and the whole bandage and everything fell off!! So I had to re-attach it as well as I could myself and keep pressure on it to stop the bleeding, which had swiftly started again! I managed to keep it together until Monday when I rang the vet again to sort something out properly. I didn't even want to set foot in that surgery again after the last 2 visits, but had to sort this once and for all. My dad took him in for me as he is slightly scarier looking than me, and told them to sort it out. And they did an amputation, 300 thank you very much.

So now my beautiful show dog who attended Crufts twice and has lots of Best Of Breeds to his name, now has a stump for a tail thanks to the vets who didn't have a clue. I didn't set foot in that veterinary surgery again.

As I said before I started typing, I don't think this will happen to you but I just wanted to share my experience. But every cloud has a silver lining because now I have my adorable Chelsea to show, who is doing very well.
Lisa Barrett.
Dalamanti Dalmatians.
Born to be owned by spotties.
Alnwick, Northumberland.
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Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 79
Location: East Sussex

PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2010 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agree with all so far but just another little tip.
Rather than use a bandage start by putting a hair roller (the brushed sort) over the end of the tail, then use the sticky plaster, then wrap the whole lot round with Vetrap (available most good pet shops & internet) then finish off with more sticky plaster.

My dog has had this problem on and off for years, he has also had laser treatment on the tail which really helps the healing process.

Good luck
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