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Discussion Starter #1
Peggy (currently 16 weeks, unspayed) has had stringy yellow discharge when she urinates since about 10 weeks old. She doesn't lick excessively, but will occasionally bite at her back end, sometimes very suddenly as though something is bothering her. She also sometimes has a strong, very unpleasant fishy metallic odor.

Our vet is completely unconcerned, didn't run any tests, and said this is vaginitis and will resolve with spaying.

That runs counter to literally everything I've read about puppy vaginitis (both regarding treatment and diagnosis) and I'm wondering if anyone here has had a similar experience with their young poodle?

Interestingly, our spayed 18-week-old foster GSD Charlie, who we had for two weeks before bringing Peggy home, had the EXACT same symptoms, including goopy eyes, which Peggy also has.

In Charlie's case, the same vet prescribed antiobiotics after a urinalysis (which was negative). I'm so confused...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Regarding possible infection, I agree. Especially with the goopy eyes, it almost seems systemic? Given the identical symptoms, I wonder if Charlie could have left behind some sort of bacteria. Peggy (like Charlie) is not lethargic or showing any other signs of illness.

We have a large credit with our current clinic, and have spent a tremendous amount on vet fees this year, with the passing of our senior dog. So I'm not sure shopping around for a new vet is going to be doable right now. But if we see no improvement in the next couple of weeks, I'll try the other vet at the clinic again and push for tests or even antibiotics.

And I'll continue to push back against spaying Peggy until after her first heat cycle.
 

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I agree, I would find another vet! And I would not spay her until she's over a year old, if possible. Four months old is WAY too young.
There's a holistic vet about an hour from here, who I'd love to try. But after the experience we had the day we lost Gracie, I now know how terribly important it is to have a trusted vet nearby.

Also, we have a credit on file with our current vet because we paid for a "puppy package" before we realized it required spaying within four months of her first appointment. When I pushed back against this, they said the best they could do was give us a credit for the unused balance. No refunds.

That "one size fits all" approach to spay timelines is very common and very disturbing to me.
 

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There's a holistic vet about an hour from here, who I'd love to try. But after the experience we had the day we lost Gracie, I now know how terribly important it is to have a trusted vet nearby.

Also, we have a credit on file with our current vet because we paid for a "puppy package" before we realized it required spaying within four months of her first appointment. When I pushed back against this, they said the best they could do was give us a credit for the unused balance. No refunds.

That "one size fits all" approach to spay timelines is very common and very disturbing to me.
Wow, and not in a good way - I'm so sorry you are stuck with a large credit with this vet.

I understand why you feel stuck with this vet and I'm so sorry you are trapped by this vet practice.....but I would still pay for a second opinion at a completely different vet practice if you don't feel you are getting the best treatment for Peggy. You can still go back to the first vet for routine care, vaccinations etc.
 

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I'd get another opinion at the very least. We go to a 4-veterinarian clinic, all of which push for early spay/neuter, even for male Spoos. For females they talk mammary tumors, and for males it's marking. I just made it clear we were not neutering before one year. When one of them pushed back, we changed to a different vet within the same clinic.
With a female in heat I could see the appeal of early spay. But as I was told in another thread, it's some inconvenience up front vs lifelong health.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
It never actually occurred to me to use multiple vets! I was already feeling kind of guilty using two vets at the same clinic. CLEARLY I need to toughen up!

There's another clinic in town whose after-hours emergency service stepped up when Gracie needed to be euthanized on a Sunday, even though she wasn't a patient there. I'll give them a call.

Still also hoping someone here will say "Ohhhh my puppy had that and it went away! No big deal!"

Dr. Google says puppy vaginitis is common and typically resolves with sexual maturity (i.e. the opposite of what my vet said would fix it).

Google must drive vets crazy!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'd get another opinion at the very least. We go to a 4-veterinarian clinic, all of which push for early spay/neuter, even for male Spoos. For females they talk mammary tumors, and for males it's marking. I just made it clear we were not neutering before one year. When one of them pushed back, we changed to a different vet within the same clinic.
With a female in heat I could see the appeal of early spay. But as I was told in another thread, it's some inconvenience up front vs lifelong health.
Do you think it's really the risk of mammary tumors that is fuelling this big push for early spay? Our clinic wasn't especially friendly when I questioned them about it. Very defensive and not open to further conversation. Didn't even acknowledge that some breeds might benefit from being spayed later.

I just don't get it.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

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I've heard the opposite, with vets pushing to delay spay til after the first heat for dogs with vaginitis!

Vets that push for early spay or neuter make me uncomfortable because I feel like if they are not up with the current science for spay and neuter (very important stuff!) then what else are they not current on? I think there is still a big belief that people can't responsibly manage intact animals. And for a lot of people I suppose that's true. But vets should by now be taking a more progressive approach rather than a one size fits all approach.
 

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The discharge may respond to estrogen, which is why waiting until sexual maturity makes sense. I lopthink the early spay/neuter hype is actually related to the fear of unwanted pregnancies. But for responsible owners it's maddening. Maybe for shelters or rescues it makes some sense. But it just made me choose a purebred from a good breeder after owning three shelter dogs so I could have more control over my dog's health.
 

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Oh no... just no. It's not that vet's job to deny proper treatment so you'll spay your dog to suit him. A vet's job is to discover, diagnose the problem, give you treatment options, give his/her opinion but it's not his decision to take the liberty to decide it'll be cured when we spay her at 4 months. I would never again go to a vet who took that upon him/herself with my animal. This person is serving their agenda at your pet's expense. For anything serious I still take mine back home to my vets 8 hours away unless it's an emergency. If it were something extensive I'd still go back to the university animal teaching hospital because these are people I have relationships with & I trust them. I do have a couple of local vets I'd use in case of emergency.

I combine holistic & conventional health care for myself & my animals.
 

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Do you think it's really the risk of mammary tumors that is fuelling this big push for early spay? Our clinic wasn't especially friendly when I questioned them about it. Very defensive and not open to further conversation. Didn't even acknowledge that some breeds might benefit from being spayed later.

I just don't get it.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯


When it comes to doctors or veterinarians, I will not have either who gets defensive or cop an attitude when you have questions or you question how they got a certain answer. To me this says the argument & data is weak, it's old, or they are too arrogant to admit they are not the holder of all knowledge. My docs & my vets & I have disagreed but we respect each other & they know when I ask questions, or I cite studies I've read... I am not doing so to be obnoxious or as accusation, I am asking to understand. If they can't handle that... do not spend money with them. Their opinion is far more valuable to them than your animal is to them. A good many of them get set in their ways & they'd rather get you to spay than be truthful about it or to take the time to read new studies.
 

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Somehow, Dogsavvy and Peggy the Parti are sharing the same dog. ??

Yes, call the other vet clinic. I use more than one vet clinic. You should also find out if there is a vet chiropractor in the area, in case you ever need one. And any other specialists.

As for tumors, other studies have shown that they can be related to diet as well as toxins in the environment.
 

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Somehow, Dogsavvy and Peggy the Parti are sharing the same dog. ??

Yes, call the other vet clinic. I use more than one vet clinic. You should also find out if there is a vet chiropractor in the area, in case you ever need one. And any other specialists.

As for tumors, other studies have shown that they can be related to diet as well as toxins in the environment.
Yes, I noticed the avatars were similar too!

To Peggy and others:

I switched vets recently after too many visits that left me feeling annoyed that I couldn’t have a collaborative conversation about my dogs. I didn’t want to listen to yet another self serving speech framed in “recommendations” about my dogs’ health. He was smart and competent, but it didn’t work for me.

I’m happy with the practice I switched to. They have a sub specialty in reproductive health, which isn’t something we need. However, I did have a very nice conversation about when I should spay Gracie. The vet was extremely open about the fact that the research is mixed, and not conclusive. We talked about the breeder recommending at least one heat and she agreed with that, particularly for a dog that will be doing agility. She also said that the big problem she is seeing with early spays with females is incontinence.

I was impressed with her knowledge base, her comfort level in discussing different options, and the ability to interpret the current research and not just say “here’s what we do now based on the last study”. To top it off, it was clear she was also leaning into her experiences with patients to balance all of it, and she listened to my concerns and goals. That is exactly what I want in a vet. And better yet, she actually owns a mini poodle.

I don’t need a paternalistic set of recommendations, I can read what’s on the internet. What I do need is a collaborative conversation that helps my animals get to the best place.

I think I have finally settled on a vet for the long run. They did come highly recommended from my agility friends, which also speaks volumes to me, as they are a very discerning group when it comes to vet care, and that’s an understatement!

Bottom line, didn’t be afraid to fight for what is best for Peggy. She can’t speak for herself, she needs you to do it!
 

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LOL, I couldn't figure out what you were talking about but now I see what you're getting at. Our pups do look quite similar. Peggy's legs look whiter than Mr. Layne's though but you can't see his legs well in the pic.


CarolineK, You have found the kind of vet I am still looking for locally. I'm looking for an educated collaborator. I'm not interested in being talked down to or in someone's opinion who cares little about staying up to date on information important to my pet's health. My old vets back home can be a little set in their ways at times but if I prod them with something they may come back at me with the old answer but they know they better start digging. But also I respect the fact that some times they will just say, "This is what I would recommend as standard but..." or "I'm supposed to say this but it's often not what I find to be true or effective". The older one is not a holistic guy. Everything with him is main stream medicine. The younger one is more open & even told me once that he regularly reads & follows up on things he finds that works that's outside of mainstream medicine.
 

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My vet use to be for early spaying/neutering. But over the past 4 years he has changed his opinion. When we got our boxer we discussed at length with him the pro's we read about later neutering regarding orthopedic issues and certain cancers. Well he must have done his homework as when we got Renn two years ago he was totally on board with later neutering, if fact recommended it. He has also looked more into holistic areas for certain issues. I like a vet that stays up to date with research. You might want to print some info out on later spaying and give it to your vet asking him to read it at his convenience and let you know what he thinks. Now my vet has know me for about 15 years so we also have a good understanding of one another and he knows that I am responsible and would not allow my dogs free run to make puppies.
 
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