Medical Diagnosis of Blastomycosis?: Yes
Where Caught: I'm certain that Lucy picked up Blastomycosis at our cottage on Lake of the Woods, in NW Ontario. This area seems to be a hotspot for blasto, and we believe my parents cocker spaniel died from blasto in 2001.
Symptoms: Lethargic, not eating for a few days, cough when she tried to play or run, and a couple nights of labored breathing. The vet originally thought it was pneumonia, or some other infection in her lungs. After she was on antibiotics for a week without improvement, the vet x-rayed her chest and found a suspicious area about the size of a baseball in upper portion of her left lung. Sputum from a throat swab was examined and found to contain blasto spores.
Treatment: Itraconazole. Lucy was kept @ the vet's for observation the first 5 days of treatment, as our vet had never treated a case of blasto before and wanted to keep close tabs.
We gave her the itra pills with a large spoonful of bacon grease or butter, and mixed wet dog food in with her dry food.
Other than the first couple weeks before treatment and the first few days into treatment, she had a strong appetite whenever we mixed her food with something good like cooked chicken or bacon grease.
She showed great improvement within 5 days, and was acting perfectly normal within a couple weeks.
Cost of Treatment: Total including original mis-diagnosis, x-rays, blood tests, medications, and 5 days of observation @ the vet's home will probably be around $850 if everything goes well from here on out.
We received the Itra from Diamondback Pharmacy in Arizona for about $39/month of treatment. This is compounded itra (powdered, not beaded)