Itching for Relief

For those of you who have been around for years now, you’ll remember that Bud isn’t really my dog. Bud is actually my dad’s dog. We rescued Bud from Dad’s house because he was getting into bigtime trouble with a neighbor who was threatening Buddy’s life.

Bud is also the one who was getting into trouble with me when he first came to live with us. Because that’s what happens when you do things like chew up: my purse, my really good bra, my favorite quilt, a few pillows and swallow my wedding ring. But that was years ago. He’s been forgiven and promises me he will never, ever chew up my things again.

Other than that, Bud’s a really good boy! Oh, yes he is!

Over these last couple of years, unfortunately, Bud’s acquired an itch.

When I say an “itch” what I really mean is that his entire back and backside has become inflamed. He might as well be in HELL! This is a torturous itch (what itch isn’t), and we’ve not been able to alleviate it with anti-itch vitamins, shampoos and, of course, scratching him in all of his itchy places. We’ve seen his itch go from mild to a raging inferno. Last week he couldn’t seem to stop scratching and chewing on himself. Now that we are officially into temps that feel upwards of 110 degrees with the heat and humidity, that’s only exacerbated the problem.

Some dogs live to play. Bud, at this point in his life, lives to have his back scratched. Constantly. And when we don’t oblige him — well, let’s just say that he’s gotten a little too intimate with our sofa. Sorry, y’all, no sound on this. Actually Bud makes a horrendous noise that y’all truly don’t want to hear, anyway!


Unfortunately, Bud’s sessions with the sofa were becoming longer and longer and more frequent. Even more disturbing is when he gets between someone’s legs and does this to the chair they are sitting in. I’m not saying that what Bud’s doing is illegal, exactly; even though it looks like it — but if this were the 17th century, the person sitting in the chair would probably be burned as a witch because it would look very much like the person was having an affair with his or her familiar!

Nobody wants the appearance of that even in modern times!


At the vet’s office — after going through how Bud’s itch was escalating in severity and how neither fleas nor ticks were the cause (as was initially suggested to us) — that he probably had bad allergies — the vet saw with her own eyes just how red and irritated his skin actually was. Finally, she prescribed meds for him. I was hoping for the biologic Cytopoint, which is an injection and is supposed to last for about eight weeks. The vet said she’d never heard of Cytopoint.

How is it that I’ve heard of Cytopoint and she, the vet, hasn’t? *sigh*

While I don’t know the answer to that, the good news is the vet’s providing Bud with Apoquel, which is not a biologic, but is still expensive as shit. I imagine Cytopoint is as well, but now we (which really means me) have to give Bud meds on a daily basis instead of getting him an injection once every two months.

And let me tell you, I get injections for hives and asthma every month. I understand exactly where Bud’s coming from when it comes to itching. You just want the misery to STOP! My Xolair shots have been life-changing for me. I was hoping that I’d eventually be able to taper off of them, but my doctor now believes I’ll have to be on them the rest of my life. *sigh*

This is not about me, though.

This is about Bud and what this means is — Bud, the very smart dog, gets to have treats in which I hide this big-assed horse pill  — at least until he figures out what I’m doing and starts distrusting anything I give him. Until then, we’ll count this small blessing of Apoquel as a win.

It’s only been a few days, but we’ve already noticed that Buddy itches considerably less. Perhaps, by the time he refuses to take his meds come hell or highwater, the vet will have discovered Cytopoint; and we can transition him over to that. I imagine that Bud will also have to be on anti-itch meds for the rest of his life.

Why is it that we always manage to get the expensive diva animals who simply started out life as mutts?

Anyway, over the next week, Bud gets two pills a day and then one every twenty-four hours after that.

Lauren — thank God for our daughter! — is helping us out in so many ways, including paying for Bud’s vet and meds, which was expensive as — well, you know.

So how did our Bud repay such kindness and generosity?

By chewing up Lauren’s undies, of course.

Alas, Bud is back to where he started — in TROUBLE.

I told Lauren that Bud just thinks he’s helping her start her own Frederick’s of Hollywood line of underwear.

She said she has no idea what Frederick’s of Hollywood is. After seeing the expression on my face, though, she said she doesn’t want to know either.

Because she’s a good girl. Oh, yes she is!


Hope everyone is having a great and itch-free start to their summer!

  • Do you have diva animals like we do in our household? How so?
  • Any tips on giving a finicky dog pills to swallow?
  • What’s your favorite summertime song that makes it feel like summer to you?

And music —



and courtesy of Anonymous from the comments below —



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Sparkle y’all,



14 thoughts on “Itching for Relief”

  1. Apoquel was a [very expensive] miracle drug for Rose, who began chewing on her paws incessantly, past the point where it was making her cry because they were bleeding. As for how to give it, skip the pill pockets and poppers and learn to open his mouth, shove it far enough back that he can’t use his tongue to spit it out, and then close his mouth while he swallows. Then give an immediate treat. Rose could have bitten my arm off but, amazingly, did not. She got used to it. I can’t tell you how Bud’s going to punish you … I’d keep my laundry way off the ground. 🙂

    • Amy,
      How the hell are you, Pam, “the kid” and your furbabies? Gosh, what year of college is your son in at this point? I bet it’s a lot cooler where you are than where I am. Remember when we were in Tulsa and y’all thought it was hot and I was, “You call this hot?” It looks like Kat went through a power outage recently, but they survived. You probably saw that on FB, too. I’m not sure we’d survive a power outage in this heat. It’s 98 degrees but feels like 110 at 7:38 PM. It’s going to be a very hot summer this year. Sugar free popsicles are a definite must!

      All I can say is you’re one brave woman. Hopefully, Bud will continue to take his meds wrapped in meats and cheeses because as much as I love him and he loves me, I’m not sure he still wouldn’t bite me for no other reason than out of fear. I think he might have been abused when he was a pup. I just saw an ad for a chewable Apoquel, so that might be the answer. I wonder if this vet has heard of that?

      I’ll tell Lauren to keep her laundry off the ground. Again. As if she listens to me.

      It was great hearing from you! Big hugs, Mona

  2. Poor Bud! He is such a cutie though. I’m glad he’s getting some relief with the med he was prescribed. “Frederick’s of Hollywood” LOL!! I’m sure my kids would respond like Lauren did if that was mentioned.

    • Thanks, Rhonda! We love him and are relieved that he’s feeling much better. As to Frederick’s, I wasn’t even sure they were still around, but, yep, they are. Have a great week my friend! Hugs, Mona

  3. The greatest summer song (in fact the all-time happiest song) I can think of is ‘Friday I’m In Love’ by The Cure. Guaranteed to cheer anybody up – you could try it on poor Buddy. I hope the itch soon goes and you can invite people to sit in your chairs again. P.S. I very much hope that said underwear was not on Lauren’s person at the time of the aforementioned mauling!

    • Anon, (May I call you Anon?)
      I love that song! The Cure often get a bad rap for being too emo or melancholy, but this is a song that blows that reputation right out of the water! I’ll add it to my play list courtesy of “Anonymous.” Buddy seems to be perfectly okay today. Thankfully, especially since it’s hotter than blue blazes outside today (not that he’s outside.) Still, it’s 100 degrees Fahrenheit and feels like 112 degrees, which means it’s uncomfortable even inside. He’s enjoying a Vienna Sausage on a daily basis, too (that’s how I’m currently disguising his pill.) Thanks for your support. I haven’t seen him bite or scratch once. Also, I’m glad to report that said undies were not on Lauren’s person at the time of the incident in question. If they had been, I’m positive we’d have heard about it as well as had a dead Buddy on our hands. As it is, Buddy has some trust he’s going to have to earn back with Lauren. I’m hopeful he will get there. 🙁

    • Hey Roger,
      Well, apparently, I’ve accidentally turned both of us on to a new word. It should have read “torturous,” so thank you for pointing that out to me. I’ve now corrected that; even though, Bud has been twisting and turning in a “tortuous” manner, so I guess both words apply. Also, he is doing much better. He does still enjoy a nice back scratch, but it’s not because he’s in sheer misery anymore.

      Have a great rest of your week, my friend! Mona

  4. I had a cat, she passed a couple of years ago, who at one time itched so badly she looked like she had mange. Her fur was coming out. Her skin was red and irritated. It was awful. Turned out she had Flea Allergy Dermatitis and Frontline wasn’t working on her anymore. I had to buy a new medication (drops like Frontline, forgot the name of it) and it cleared up her skin, thank goodness. Eventually, I couldn’t find it anymore so I had to try other things. That’s when I discovered Seresto collars. They are expensive as heck here in the US so I get them from the UK. ($30 less is good!) Anyway, talk about diva pets. She was a psycho diva; she could be sweet as heck but she had a lot of quirks. Lol. Good luck with Bud. I hope his problem subsides completely. I was thinking that maybe a change in his food will help, too? Did the vet say it was a food allergy? Well, good luck! <3

    • Hey Deb,
      I’m so glad you were able to get to the bottom of your kitty’s itch problem. The best kitties are part psycho diva. I’m just saying —

      Vet didn’t say anything about Bud’s food, but that might be something to look into. All I know is that he is finally getting relief from the Apoquel. My fingers continue to stay crossed.

      Hope your week goes exceptionally well, my friend!
      Hugs, Mona

  5. We’ll do anything for our dogs, won’t we? A few years ago our middle kid–let’s face it, they’re like children who never really grow up–had a terrible case of bladder stones and we nearly lost him. Ever since then he’s been on a special diet. That got me wondering if Bud could have food allergies. We had a boy who was allergic to everything with feathers, which meant he couldn’t have chicken, turkey, or duck, and it’s really hard to find dog food without those.
    Also speaking of The Cure AND Frederick’s Of Hollywood I had a friend in high school who looked like Robert Smith. At least with his hair and clothes. What can I say? It was the ’80’s. One day at the mall my friend went in to Frederick’s Of Hollywood. The saleslady followed him all around the store and finally, very curtly, asked, “Can I help you?”
    My friend just asked, “Have you got anything in leather?”
    We managed to leave before security arrived.

    • Chris,
      It wouldn’t surprise me if Bud has food allergies. As long as he doesn’t get anaphylaxis and I don’t have to give him my Epi-style pen, the Apoquel seems to be doing its job. He loves to help me debone a chicken. He gets to eat gristle, joints, skin and all the offal meat. He loves it!

      I bet it was fun hanging with y’all at the mall back in the 80’s and 90’s. Great story. Does your friend now look like an older and wiser Robert Smith? They’re tearing down malls left and right where I live. My kids are sad because of all the memories they had. I tell them they’ll build new places to have new memories. Still…

      BTW, my tech guy assures me that my site, since he moved it from Go Daddy to his server, will take a few days to — I’m going to say “cycle through and get rid of issues” I’m currently having — but I could be wrong and I may have to do something else on my end. Not sure what that will be. But I’m going to give it a chance. Anyway, why I’m telling you this is I tried to leave a rather lengthy yet I thought decent comment on your latest post (the one about when midsummer is) and your site no longer recognizes my RSS feed (whatever that means.) I got an error message and my comments were ‘poof’ gone. I’m hoping that by next week, it will recognize my site that’s now on Richard’s server and I’ll try again. Just wanted you to know that I’m reading and trying to comment. It’s just not happening for me at present. 🙁 Mona

  6. I do feel bad for Bud; itching like that has to be the worst. He needs relief and that’s the only reason he’s ever acted out. I just know it. 😳😳
    Our Lillie (RIP) was on apequel and it was a life saver for her. Of course, she was small, so were the pills and I simply tossed them into her food.
    I hope he continues to get better and stops eating underwear. And shoes. And bras. Ok, stops eating everything aside from food and his pill.

    • Suz,
      Bud has no idea just what a good friend you are for standing up for him that way! If he did, I know he’d give you a lot of tail wags and sweet kisses to say thank you. Then we’d have to tell him to leave you alone. More than once. Bud is nothing if not a lot! He means well, though!

      He is much happier now that he’s on the Apoquel. I’m glad they worked for your Lillie as well! I so agree with you, itching is one of the worst things ever! I know this from experience. I don’t know whether he and Lauren will ever figure out the undies issue, but he stopped chomping on my things long before he started itching. As she likes to frequently tell me, though, she’s a grown-assed woman, so I figure she’ll eventually prove to be smarter than our Bud and learn to keep them where he can’t get to them. Fingers crossed. Have a great weekend ahead, my friend! Mona


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