UK Registered Charity 1122246 This website would not be possible without the kind help of Tony Martin of the “AV Martin Charitable Foundation”

Robert Walker

It was on December 14, 2005 that Jazz took ill whilst in kennels. Jazz a 6 year old Black Labrador Cross has always suffered from allergic reactions and digestive disorders. Prior to our going on holiday Jazz suffered an allergic reaction to something and developed lumps on her nose and head and her ears became puffy. A trip to the vets resulted in her receiving a steroid injection and steroidal cream for her ears . The lumps appeared to be going down and the kennel owner was happy to accept her and continue her medication. On the second day of our three night break we received a phone call from the kennels who informed us that Jazz’s condition had worsened. Her ears were full of sores and pustules as was her right eye and muzzle. Steroids were prescribed. When we picked her up she was in a right state, her ears were raw and full of dried blood. Her muzzle and eye were also raw.An immediate appointment was made at the vets and as there was nothing that they could do a further appointment made the next day. Jazz was fitted with a Buster Collar to prevent her getting at her ears which were clearly distressing her. Biopsies were taken (no clear results) and antibiotics and steroidal injections prescribed. A week passed with regular trips to the Vets for bandage changes etc. Jazz was not improving her sores were deepening and her fur being lost rapidly. Jazz was referred to the Skin Specialist at Rutland House Veterinary Hospital who told out Vets to immediately cease the steroids. MRSA was immediately suspected. Jazz remained hospitalised for a couple of days where cultures and samples were taken. We collected her on Christmas Eve and whilst she was initially happy to see us she was generally exhibiting all the signs of a poorly dog, not eating and lethargic. We cancelled all our Christmas plans and Christmas Day was a pretty solemn affair. My Wife and I were pretty tired as we had taken it in turns to sleep downstairs constantly observing her condition. A week later MRSA was diagnosed and the antibiotics (Antirobe and Marbocyl) prescribed by Rutland House changed to Trimacare. A couple of weeks went by and Jazz was continuing her recovery until one night her back legs gave way and she could not walk. The Vets suspected polyathropathy and Jazz was referred to Rutland House but this time the Orthopaedic Specialist. He immediately suspected a reaction to the antibiotics which tests proved to be correct. Desperation caused me to contact Jill who gave me hope and a non-vets understanding of the situation. Jazz’s antibiotics were stopped and her improvement both skin wise and movement progressed rapidly. Three weeks ago Jazz was given the all clear. She was free from MRSA !! Her fur is now growing back save for her muzzle which will never recover. She is regaining her fitness and enjoying longer walks with each passing week. Her appetite is better than ever. As a treat for her we are taking her to the lake District in a couple of weeks. She has deserved it. When Jazz’s legs failed we feared the worse and thought that we would lose her. Every day now is a bonus and despite our ghastly experience with this disease there is hope. Early detection is essential and the good work being undertaken by Jill and her colleagues can only raise awareness to prevent future casualties.

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