Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Silly side effects…paw hair

I know us pugs have been known to have some shedding issues, but the hair always grows back in immediately as if there is an endless supply (probably to the dismay of our humans).  But for me, some of the PDE meds have stunted my hair growth.  I’m not vain, so normally I wouldn’t mind, but I do get cold easier and because of it, so my mom insists on putting me in t-shirts and the like.  I hated it at first, but now I don’t really complain.  (I'll have to do a separate post on all my "clothes" later.)

But recently a strange thing has been happening.  I’m starting to grow hair in places that hair normally doesn’t grow.  I feel like an old man that has to trim his ear and nose hair!  Check out these pictures of my paw:

My mom has to trim it at least once a month to keep me from slipping and sliding because the hair just keeps growing and growing!  Strange, huh?

To get an idea of my hair loss progression, here’s a picture of me with a full set of fur:

Jan 2007
Here’s one where you can see the hair loss starting:

Aug 2007
Such weird patterns!  And here’s a couple more where you can tell my fur isn’t as thick as most pugs (you may need to biggify to get a better look):

Feb 2008
Look at that bare chest and neck!
Don't I look tough in my sleeveless coat, despite my bare shoulder and arm?
I insisted on posting that last picture cause I look pretty cool, but my mom wanted to make sure that you don't focus on her too much.  Both pictures were taken on our way home from Chicago (same trip) and she is just wiped out from the trip (as you can tell from the tired expression on her face).

When I first started going bald, we tried a bunch of things to include melatonin, but nothing seemed to work.  And now, completely out of the blue, I am actually starting to grow some hair back and am not quite as naked looking as in the picture above.  This is me yesterday:

I'm just not feelin' the camera today...but I still get the treat, right?
It’s not as thick as it was before I got sick, but it’s definitely noticeable and enough of a change that this warm summer feels even hotter than it usually is for me.  I hope the extra fur will stay around for the winter months.  Otherwise, I got this whole thing backwards!  I’m also shedding right now.  My mom seems so excited to do the extra vacuuming and sweeping.  Ok, not really.

The other thing that mom and dad have noticed is that my face has gotten much darker. Yeah, I'm a bit gray around the chin (who wouldn't be at 8 1/2 years) and have two white whiskers, but take a look at this side by side comparison to see how well defined my mug used to be and now it's like some of those black hairs are migrating to the rest of my face.  


My back is also darker.  It's as if I lost much of my tan colored hair and the black ones from my mug migrated to the rest of me.  I have always had darker undertones, but it seems strange to go dark in my older age rather than lighter (gray).  Guess I should be thankful in case I want to snag a younger man.  Just kidding, mom!



Hound Girl said...

Haha thats cool about your new paw hair!!! I have to trim Freddies sometimes but its not that long.

Im thinking of putting Fred on melatonin for his seizures - I know you used it for something diffrent - Can you tell me if there were any side effects you noticed and if you liked it? said...

Payton, you are adorable with or without fur. You do look cool in your sleeveless jacket and I'm looking forward to your post about your various clothes (I have a lot of clothes, too!).

It is pretty amazing how much some of the medication affects your hair growth. It looks like your chest and neck have a lot more hair today than in that photo from 2008. I also think the face coloration thing is something that happens as all pugs age. I've seen some older pugs and their "mask" sorta fades and their whole face looks more "salt and pepper"-ish. It's ok, though - Like fine fines, we pugs only get better with age. :)

Oh, and those last two pictures of you are so cute. My parents call that "peanut mode" - when we tuck our hands in and put our head flat on the ground. You've got that pose down, Payton!

-Love, Sid

Brian here: Lately, Sid's belly and arm skin have darkened - from a white color to more of a grey. His back leg skin has always been more of a grey but now it seems to be spreading to his belly and front arms. The darker areas don't appear to bother him at all and the skin itself looks healthy - just darker. I was planning to take him in to the vet today just to ensure it's not something new to worry about. It sounds like Payton has had some darkening of fur, but I am curious to know if you've seen any changes to her skin coloration.

Gracie the Agility Pug said...

I have to trim my feet, too, but it's nothing like your's.

My big brother Levi is losing his "definition" on his face, too. He used to be very contrasting, but now he's kind of grey/black all over. He's 12 years old.

I love your pink coat.

Payton said...

Hi Hound Girl! The only side effect that the vet told us about was fatigue...cause I think it's actually used as a sleep aid for humans, probably among many other things. We didn't notice anything different or any side effects. But at the time she took it, her body was still adjusting to all the other PDE meds, so she was a bit more tired making it hard for me to say for sure. The vet told us to stop after 60 pills if we didn't see the hair growth, so that's what we did. Hope that helps.

Hey Brain! For the longest time as a puppy, Payton's skin was pink like a piglet, but (and I don't remember when exactly - before or after PDE) she started getting these blackish splotches around her belly. At first when we noticed I thought it was dirt and wondered what she got into, but it wouldn't wipe off. And then the strange thing...that dark coloring started to migrate around to different parts of her chest and belly. It tended to concentrate around her armpits and pelvis area, but would move from day to day or week to week or even disappear and reappear altogether. This was easy to follow when she didn't have any hair there. We all (to include the vet) just assumed her pigments were changing cause of all the medicine, but maybe it's just a pug thing as they age (like the fur color). Cause now (I'd say just in the last year) her skin isn't splotchy; it's mainly dark (with just a hint of pink showing through) all over as some dogs are naturally. If you end up taking Sid in, let us know if your vet says anything different.

Tiffy said...

I don't think you look like an old man! I think the hair looks kind of cool. It makes you look like you're an arctic animal. You can prowl across the frozen tundra without getting frostbite as long as you have a parka on, of course.

I don't have any hair on my armpits and my chest hair is kind of sparse. I told Momma that's just how I roll but she wonders if I have some sort of skin condition. Silly Momma!


Anonymous said...

Payton, that is some crazy paw fur! It's really interesting that your body fur is actually coming back.

Suki said...

Hi Payton,

I think your part Persian cat. Mom said her persians she had before me had paw hair too.

When we were at the winery, I couldn't believe how thick your hair was, I almost thought you had extensions like the celebrities. Hehee.

Keep up the great attitude, you are such a sweetie pie.


Anakin Man said...

Miss Payton!!
You are still very beauTeefuls!!

The fur on your paws is unique for sure!

In a good way--
You are too cute!

IzZY, TriXie and Anakin Man

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Hi Payon
I like all the special little things about you.
Do you know what? I am kinda naked.. I have a naked chicken neck,, and sometimes my skin turns black like tar almost. Yes, I used to be pink like a piggie too. My moms took me to the dr once to see why I did not have as much hair as some puggies,, and they just were not concerned.
I wear a lot of clothes too,,cause I am always cold.
You look adorable in your jacket,, and the change in your face color,, is just from all the kisses that you get.

Vito and Gina said...

Oh Payton, that's some crazy hair in your paws! Good thing you are a good enough girl to let your mom trim it. I would never let my mom do that. I would freak out. And we love the picture of you in that super cool vest (don't go getting any ideas, Mom). Plus we love the pictures of your adorable face on the carpet. No matter the grey! I've gotten a grey beard in the last year. Mom says it makes her sad. I say it makes me distinguished.

PS will you have your mom email my mom? She needs to tell her something!

Vito said...

Thank you for the info about Payton's skin. It does sound like perhaps it's just a pug (or dog in general) thing. As long as he's not scratching the areas and they look healthy, I think we're in the clear. I'll keep you posted if we do end up finding out anything from our vet about it. - Brian

Sequoia & Petunia & Emma said...

Hi Payton! I too have paw hair but Mom thinks mine is because I don't walk much (I walk in the grass or carpet only) so my hair grows there easy. Mom likes it thinking I am cute with my hairy paws however it makes it harder to clip my nails.

Oh and your Dad's pug doodle is really good!

Tuni Woons