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Thread: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

  1. #1
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    Default Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Hello,

    I hope everyone is well. I have little Trooper Marie here with a concern. I've just recently noticed that she is developing a black hairless patch of skin on her front paw. It doesn't seem to bother her when I touch it and she is active, energetic, eating, and pretty much normal.

    I'm wondering if this could be a fungal growth, some sort of mite, Mange, callus, or perhaps not enough calcium (She's on some supplements). She's recently been outdoors in her big outdoor cage now that the weather is nice. It was tarped off during the winter and cleaned out with new branches, sticks, toys, and bedding. I'm wondering if something might have bit her or something.

    Has anyone seen this before?

    Thanks,

    Dan.
    Last edited by stepnstone; 06-08-2021 at 10:51 AM. Reason: Merged posts - duplicate pics unnessasary

  2. #2
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    Default Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Hello, I hope everyone is well.

    I have little Trooper Marie here with a concern. I've just recently noticed that she is developing a black hairless patch of skin on her front paw. It doesn't seem to bother her when I touch it and she is energetic, playful, eating, and pretty much normal. She doesn't seem like she is in pain and she's climbing things just fine.

    I'm wondering if this could be a fungal growth, some sort of mite, the start of Mange, or (why I'm posting in life-threatening) Gangrene. She's recently been outdoors the last few weeks in her big outdoor cage now that the weather is nice. It was tarped off during the winter and cleaned out with new branches, sticks, toys, and bedding. I'm wondering if something might have bit her or she has an infection somewhere.
    She also had a hard fall (about 7ft) a few weeks ago that made her yelp (She missed her jump). She shook it off seemed to be completely fine after 10 minutes from that incident with no signs of injury that I know of. I'm wondering if this could be a blood blister or bruise from that fall. I know injury can lead to some weird things, but she wasn't limping or showing any signs of pain. Again, she seems totally normal and healthy, but this has me frightened.

    Has anyone seen this before?

    Thanks,

    Dan.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    I've reposted this in the life threatening forum due to the possibility of Gangrene.

    I can't seem to delete this original post. Sorry for the two threads.

    Thanks,

    Dan.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    I have not seen that. Is the area raised or is it flat to the rest of the skin? Is it hotter than the surrounding tissue?

    I would think a break bad enough to cause gangrene would result in pain symptoms afterward. ??

    For now, I would get a bottle of Betadyne 10% povidone iodine at the drug store. Mix it at about 25 drops betadyne in 1/4 cup water and use it to wipe the area down. Just get it thoroughly wet and leave it to dry naturally - I would do at least twice daily and if you can do more often, do so. It is anti-viral, bacterial and fungal so it covers a lot of ground. It won't hurt if she licks the area, and it doesn't sting in any way. If you warm it to body temp she won't even know you got her wet! It is wonderful stuff and it the issue is one of the above, I would expect it to take care of the problem...

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    It seems flat, a tiny bit scaly but smooth for the most part, and seems to be normal temperature. It doesn't bother her when I touch it.

    I'll be heading to the pharmacy right away here and give this a try. Is there any alarming signs I should be watching out for?

    Thanks for the advice.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    So I guess Betadine is in short supply here in Canada for some reason. I lucked out and grabbed the last bottle I could find. It's a spray bottle but it's only 5%.

    I would assume that I would just mix in 50 drops instead of 25? I just want to make sure before I start the applications.

    Thanks.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverline View Post
    Has anyone seen this before?
    This spring my release apparently got in a scuffle and his ear was kind of dried crustiness and ratty looking, but didn't seem to bother him. After a while, like weeks, it seemed to darken up like yours did and also seemed larger than what I believed the original injury to be (although I can't handle him so could never really tell). I took pics to post on the board because I was worried it was some kind of skin mite or similar. Temps were warming up at that time, and practically overnight, he shed the furry tufts on his ears, and had perfect little ears again. It was so strange, like magic. I wonder if this is how their skin reacts to certain abrasions and it's just a scab?
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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverline View Post
    So I guess Betadine is in short supply here in Canada for some reason. I lucked out and grabbed the last bottle I could find. It's a spray bottle but it's only 5%.

    I would assume that I would just mix in 50 drops instead of 25? I just want to make sure before I start the applications.

    Thanks.

    How odd. Yes and the "25 drops" is just a reasonable dilution - you can use the 10% straight if you wish, but it isn't necessary - it won't kill the bugs any deader...


    I would either actually measure the area or use your photos for comparison and watch to see if it gets bigger, smaller, or what happens. I would also start seeing if you can find any antibiotics. Hopefully you can find them and won't need them. Look for SMZ-TMP (sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim). Brand names are Bactrim, Septra, Tribussen, and generics all have names combining the two names (like "Trimeth-sulfa"). It used to be used for UTI's in people until Ciro came along; then Cipro got too popular and they are starting to see e-coli that is immune to it and so are really restricting it's use to severe infections. Which means that SMZ-TMP usually as Bactrim, is again being extensively prescribed - which makes it easier to find.

    Clavamox (amoxicillen/clavulanic acid) is another choice.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    I'm happy to hear that this little guy got better sundoesshine. I really hope that's the case for her too.

    I haven't noticed this because it seems to be right around her wrist area where her hand folds down and her other fur covers it up. We played for about an hour yesterday on the floor and I only noticed it around the end of our play time, so I have no idea how long it's been there for, but I'll watch to see if it grows.

    Thanks CritterMom, I'm about to start her first application and wash and sterilize everything. The only way that I can get Anti-Biotics is to bring her the Vet. This always makes me nervous when her permits get questioned and the fear of them taking her away. Though she's been to the vet a few times, so I think I should be OK. Should I take her now or just see how things progress over the next day or two?

    It doesn't feel that scabby, a little course, but mostly smooth, I think. She's still not bothered by me touching it either. I snapped a few more pictures. It's tuff to keep her still.

    Is there a possibility that this could be Gengrene? Would it hurt or have other symptoms?

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Well, I did a little light reading on gangrene today at lunch. The two main types - "wet" or "dry" and this isn't "wet" - which refers to pus and yuck and stink and all the things we think of when we hear "gangrene". Both types are caused by having an area lose blood circulation. When they injure a toe and it turns black and falls off - or indeed, more often, when they deglove part of their tail, the remainder turning black and eventually falling off is technically dry gangrene. Most of the time it is uneventful but anything can become infected (which would make it become "wet gangrene"). It reminds me a lot of what happens when an area becomes frostbitten.

    Given that she is showing zero bad symptoms, I would watch it for a couple days and see what happens. The betadyne will help prevent any secondary infections.

    BTW, the med names I gave you are for human meds (the SMZ is often used by vets and the clavamox is sold to humans as augmentin). You can ask friends and family if they have any leftover antibiotics - get the names and ask back here.

    And regarding sondoesshine's post - I wonder if we are looking at a squirrel's version of a scab??

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    So it sounds like Gangrene would effect more the extremities then. I won't worry to much about that then if that's the case, unless it starts growing. I'm wondering if it could also be a scab then. I'm not noticing any blood anywhere though, could maybe have been a superficial scratch, but ya even all the hair is gone and it's black.

    It seems that I can get ahold of a pill of Clindamycin 300mg. It was dispensed Feb 23 2021. I can pick this up today if this is suitable.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverline View Post
    It seems that I can get ahold of a pill of Clindamycin 300mg. It was dispensed Feb 23 2021. I can pick this up today if this is suitable.
    Her last weight as of last year was 361g from the vet. This was taken when she got sick last year and lost some weight. She's since gained weight back so I would estimate that she should be around 380g - 400g now. If you need an exact weight, it wouldn't be an issue to grab a new weigh scale today.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    It wouldn't be my first choice. It has rather narrow coverage. I would get it but continue to see if you can find one of the others. Always snag antibiotics when you get the chance!

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Sounds good. I'm going to pick this one up to have on hand, but I'll continue looking.

    Do you think I should start her on the Anti-Biotics asap or hold off? I'm worried that whatever this is could get worse or might spread. That, or I could just be worrying too much.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Let's see what you can get. And watch the patch. If it begins to get smaller then you have your answer. Given that she shows no indication of pain (and they will not use a sore foot, or will do so VERY gingerly) and isn't having any problems getting around, is eating fine, there is no heat or discharge, she doesn't SOUND sick.

    I don't want to tell you what to do, only what I would do. I would try to get some of the other meds, keep up with the betadyne and see what this looks like in 24 hours.

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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    Quote Originally Posted by CritterMom View Post
    Let's see what you can get. And watch the patch. If it begins to get smaller then you have your answer. Given that she shows no indication of pain (and they will not use a sore foot, or will do so VERY gingerly) and isn't having any problems getting around, is eating fine, there is no heat or discharge, she doesn't SOUND sick.

    I don't want to tell you what to do, only what I would do. I would try to get some of the other meds, keep up with the betadyne and see what this looks like in 24 hours.
    Thanks, I'm just going to keep an eye on it for now.

    I'm not able to find any other anti-biotic, but I'm sure that I can get my doctor to prescribe some to me which would be Amoxicillin.

    There hasn't been any noticeable changes on the patch today, though I examined it a little further and it seems to be quite dark going up her hand but she still has fur there which is covering it. I've applied Betadyne about 4 times today. She's still super energetic and playful, eating, and otherwise fine. She still uses her arm as if nothing is even there and I can touch it without issue. I'm just going to keep a very close eye on her and take pictures of her paw everyday to see if and when it starts improving.

    Side note; Is there any type of a protein supplement for Squirrels? I'm remembering that her vet said last year that her levels were low. I tried a squirrel mix that had different types of dried bugs, but she's stopped eating it completely. I don't know if something like that could contribute to this?

    Thanks again and here are some new pics from today.

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  21. #17
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    Default Re: Black Patch of Skin on Paw

    With the concern it may a lesion of some kind, getting a biopsy to examine under a microscope would be advisable.
    In older rodents, and more so in those that are overweight, the occurrence of raised lesions aren't uncommon.

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