Bald Yorkie

Question:
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WE RECENTLY PURCHASED A YORKIE PUPPY FROM WHAT WE THOUGHT WAS A VERY REPUTABLE BREEDER AND NOW WE HAVE OUR HANDS FULL.
HE HAD EAR MITES AND AN EYE INFECTION WHEN WE GOT HIM BUT WE TOOK HIM ANYWAY. HE ALSO DID NOT HAVE ALL HIS TEETH SO WE FEED HIM ESBILAC AND BABY FOOD CHICKEN UNTIL HIS TEETH CAME IN ALONG WITH EUKANUBA SMALL BREED PUPPY FOOD SOAKED IN WARM WATER.
HE HAS ONLY HAD ONE LOW BLOOD SUGAR ATTACK WHICH WAS VERY SUDDEN AND EXTREAMLY SCARY. WE HAVE HAD HIM VET CHECKED FOUR TIMES AND PASSED ALL EXAMS WITH FLYING COLORS AND HAS NEVER HAD A REACTION TO ANY SHOTS. BASICALLY HE HAS BEEN GREAT. UNTILLLLLLLL NOW
HE IS GOING BALD..NOT JUST THINNING HAIR ..BALD. HE STARTED OUT SHEDDING HIS HAIR WHICH SEEMS VERY THIN IN DIAMITER NOT TO MENTION VERY EASY TO BREAK. WE USED MOISTURIZING PUPPY SHAMPOO AND IT SEEMS TO MAKE NO DIFFERENCE WHAT WE DO.
APROX. 4 DAYS AFTER HIS LAST CHECK UP HE BEGAN THIS SHEDDING AND WITHIN 2 MORE DAYS HE HAD A BALK SPOT THAT WITHIN ONE DAY GOT MUCH WORSE....
THE BALDNESS IS ABOUT THE SIZE OF A PINKY FINGER UP EACH SIDE OF THE BACK OF HIS HEAD AND THEN PROCEEDS DOWN HIS BACK LIKE A SADDLE DOWN EACH SIDE. IT IS A VERY DEFINATE LINE AROUND THE BALDING , VERY DISTINCT AND ABSOLUTLEY NO BROWN HAIR IS FALLING OUT ONLY THE BLACK. HE DOES NOT ACT SICK, HE HAS NO FLEAS,MITES, NO SORES NO SCALES , NO THICKENING OF THE SKIN, NO ODOR, DOES NOT SEEM TO BE IN ANY DISTRESS. ALL OF HIS BLOOD TESTS HAVE CAME BACK NORMAL,AND THERE IS NO INFECTION. HIS SKIN IN THE PAST THREE DAYS HAS GONE FROM APPEARING SOMEWHAT BLUEISH GREY TO ATTAINING A BLACK PIGMENT. WE CALLED THE BREEDER AND OF COURSE SHE SAYS ..OH WELL, HE IS YOUR DOG NOW.
WE HAVE TO KEEP LITTLE SHIRTS ON HIM AS HE CHILLS EASILY.
THE ONLY OTHER THING ANY VET CAN FIND IS THAT HE HAS NO TESTICLES YET. NOTHING.
WE NOR THE VETS HAVE NOT A CLUE AS TO WHAT IS GOING ON WITH HIM.
WE ARE TAKING HIM THIS WEEK TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN VET. THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO DO HAIR FOLICAL TESTS AND MORE BLOOD WORK
WE FEEL SO BAD . WHEN EVER WE EVEN SUGGEST HIM GOING IN THE CAR HE HAS A FIT I THINK HE IS AFRAID IT IS MORE VETS....AND IT USUALLY IS, SO WE HAVE BEEN TAKING HIM FOR TREATS TO TRY AND MAKE HIS LIFE SOMEWHAT BETTER, HE HAS HAD A LOT IN HIS SHORT 15 WEEKS,
IF ANYONE OUT THERE HAS ANY IDEAS WHAT MAY BE WRONG WITH HIM, WE WOULD TRUELY APPRECIATE ANY INFO AS WOULD OUR REGULAR VET. SHE IS WILLING TO APPROACH THIS ANYWAY SHE CAN TO HELP HIM AT THIS POINT.
THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR ANY INFO THAT WE MAY GET.

Answer:
DEFINITELY go to the vet ASAP. Hair loss can be caused by a number of medical conditions, from ringworm and other fungal infections to allergic reactions to excessive licking to hypothyroidism. All are treatable but if the cause is untreated it could get very serious.

Answer:
I'm assuming your vet has already done the necessary blood and or skin tests. I would think it is some form of hormonal endoctrine disorder (hypothyroidism, cushings (usually diagnosed in senior dogs), addisons, etc.), but all of these should show chemical imbalances with a routine blood test and then you go on to test specifically for the disease it indicates.
There is another disorder in Yorkies that it sounds like and effects young puppies and would also explain the pigment change CDA - color dilution alopecia - http://www.rievaulx.org/health_prob.html
You don't say how old he is - My vet was able to feel the testes at the 12 week appointment.
Please keep us posted on the information you find out. thanks

Answer:
About the condition:
COLOR DILUTION ALOPECIA (CDA)
Alopecia (hair loss) related to dilute coat color is a recognized condition in dogs. The currently accepted medical terminology for this condition is Color Dilution Alopecia (CDA). The condition may affect any dilutely pigmented dog, regardless of coat color. This condition was previously known as Blue Balding Syndrome, Blue Doberman Syndrome, Color Mutant Alopecia, Congenital Alopecia, etc. The term Color Mutant Alopecia arose because dilutes were at one time mutations from the deep pigment occurring in wild canines. Dilutes are now a regularly occurring form of pigmentation in many breeds and have been for hundreds of years. The term mutation is therefore not applicable to dilute individuals. References to Doberman Pinschers or blue hair coats arose because the condition is common in blue individuals of this breed, but it is not limited to either blue dogs or Dobermans. The term congenital means present at birth, but CDA affected dogs are born with normal hair coats.
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The dilute (also known as Maltese) gene also appears in both mice and cats, and interestingly enough, is not associated with any abnormal coat conditions in those species. Color Dilution Alopecia (CDA) has been recognized in dilute individuals of many breeds of dogs including Chow Chows, Dachshunds, Doberman Pinschers, Great Danes, Irish Setters, Italian Greyhounds, Standard Poodles, Salukis, Whippets, and Yorkshire Terriers Dilute individuals carry a recessive genotype of dd and are characterized by blue, bluish-grey, lavender or flesh-colored noses, lips and eye rims. The coat colors may include blue, fawn, blue-fawn, bronze, taupe or some variation of these. These dogs are usually easily distinguished from their deeply (non-dilute) pigmented counterparts. Deeply pigmented individuals carry a dominant genotype of Dd or DD and have black or liver noses, lips and eye rims. Coat colors may include black, red, red-fawn, liver or variations thereof.
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CDA is characterized by loss of hair from dilutely pigmented areas. Coats are normal at birth, and onset of hair loss usually begins between six months and three years of age. Hair loss usually begins along the dorsal midline (middle of the back) and often spares the head, tail and limbs. The pattern seems to vary from breed to breed. It has been suggested that darker colored (steel blue) individuals are less likely to be affected, may be less severely affected or may start to lose hair later in life than lighter colored dogs. This suggests that the severity of the disease may be related to the amount of dilution present. Deeply pigmented or white areas of coat are unaffected. In blue dogs with tan points (Yorkies and Dobermans) the tan areas retain a normal appearance. In piebald (white spotted) individuals, the white areas are unaffected by the hair loss. The hair loss may be total or partial and any remaining hairs are usually sparse, rough and easily broken or removed. The skin in the affected areas is usually scaly and may occasionally develop bacterial infections. Pruritus (itching) is usually absent, unless a bacterial infection has set in.
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Diagnosis of CDA requires first ruling out other causes of hair loss. Diagnostic tests should include fungal cultures, skin scrapings to check for parasitic mites, etc. CDA often closely resembles endocrine (hormone related) hair loss and the dog should be carefully examined for any other abnormalities, and tested for normal thyroid function. Presence of dilute pigment and a characteristic course of disease also aid in making the diagnosis. Microscopic examination of hairs and\or skin biopsies can be used to confirm the diagnosis.
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There is no cure for CDA. Treatment is limited to controlling the scaliness and any associated pruritus with various shampoos or topical treatments.
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The cause of CDA is not clearly understood. Microscopic examination of hairs of dilute individuals reveals that the pigment (melanin) forms large granules (macromelanosomes) which are rarely found in deeply pigmented hairs. In dilute individuals with normal appearing coats, these macromelanosomes are not grouped or clumped and cause no distortion of the cuticle (outer covering) of the hair. Dogs with CDA have many large groups or clumps of macromelanosomes which tend to distort the cuticle of the hair. It is hypothesized that this distortion of the cuticle causes the hairs to break easily, resulting in the short stubby hairs commonly found in affected individuals. It is further hypothesized that the rupture of the hair releases byproducts of pigment formation, which are toxic to the hair follicles. Regrowth of broken hairs is reduced because of damage to the follicles caused by these toxins.
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Why in some dilute dogs the macromelanosomes are clumped and in others they are not, is an interesting question at this time. The relationship between dilute pigment and hair loss is clear, but why are some dilute individuals unaffected? Weimeraners as a breed are dd, all individuals are dilute, yet the disease is unreported in this breed. In Dobermans, the dilute individuals comprise only 8-9% of the breed, yet 50-80%6 of the dilute dogs have CDA. Many individuals are dilutes, the IGCA health survey reported only 71 affected individuals among the approximately 2200 dogs included in the survey. If half the dogs included in the survey were dilutes, the incidence of CDA in IG's would be around 7% of the dilute population, as opposed to the 50-80% affected dilute Dobermans.
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A third allele (dl) which is associated with CDA has been proposed. While this is a long way from being proven, it could help explain why some dilute animals are unaffected. Dogs with a genotype dd would be normal coated dilutes, ddl would be intermediates (mildly affected?) and dldl would be CDA affected. A genotype of Ddl should represent deeply pigmented dogs which were carriers of CDA.
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In Yorkshire Terriers it is known to affect extremeties such as the ears, dorsal nose area. It is also related to flank alopecia characterized by symmetrical hair loss on each flank in an equal diameter pattern. There is sometimes a hormonal or seasonal causation due to a lack of melanomin in these individuals.
Inheritance: Unknown but closely related to the inheritance of the blue gene in coat colours

Answer:
:animal36 Thank you so much for the reply. You have helped us more than you will know. If you could possibly tell us , in your spare time, where did you come up with this article. We are going to e-mail it to our vet, have already talked to her and she wants a copy and would like to know where you found it. We are still taking him to the U of M but it would help us to be armed with info . Our vet is talking about doing a biopsy that would require sutures and also that the U of M would also be doing some testing that will require sedation. I am sure that they will know all about toy sized dogs but is there anything I should be informed of before I let them do this. I am sorry I sound like such an idiot but I am totally used to english bulldogs and just want to make sure this little guy gets the best of care. Again thank you so much for your rapid response. We thought we had done all the research to feel a little in the know before we bought him....boy were we mistaken. Thanks for being there for us....Pen,Dan and Little Regan

Answer:
This article is from the link I posted in my first response (you have to scroll down to CDA).
What does the puppy weigh? How old is the puppy? Anesthesia is always a risk and the smaller and younger they are the more I worry and especially if they are not in good health you run a risk of losing them. I, too, would want a diagnosis, but if the pup is acting fine and eating fine, I think I might want to hold off on any anesthesia, if he is under 6 months, or under 2 pounds. I would definitely exhaust all blood and urine tests available first and do the testing for CDA, if your vet feels that this could be the problem.
It sounds like he may also have retained testicles which will require opening him up to locate and remove them or he has a good chance of getting testicular cancer, but they usually wait until 6 months to do this procedure just in case they are just delayed in moving down to the scrotum. I would recommend doing the biopsy and this procedure at the same time so you only risk anesthesia once (if he is doing fine).
My prayers are with you, your family and your little guy. Thanks for keeping us posted.
Crystal

Answer:
Pen,
You might also want to look into a "blue born puppy". This is a serious genetic defect and all the testing and money will not help.
Here's a link:


Answer:
Oh My, your poor little guy. I have heard of a genetic thing called FELICULAR, it doesnt make the dog ill,and they lead a completley normal life,however he will be bald. I hope his health will improve :)

Answer:
I was going to mention "blue born" also. ANYTHING you may want to learn about can be found by going to Google and typing in key words. If you have absolutely no idea what something may be called, even words like "yorkie puppy hair falling out" or "puppy bald spots" skip words such as "the" and "with". Please let us know how your pup is doing and what they find out. I pray it is something cureable.

Answer:
Pen-
First of all - welcome to YT!!
What a terrible ordeal you have been going through with this little guy in a few short weeks. That breeder's response is totally unacceptable. If you have a contract that has a health guarantee, even if the wording states only life threatening genetic defects are covered, should be of some use here. If your little guy is a Blue Born, that is definitely a life threatening genetic disorder and you should be reimbursed in full. Make sure you keep very accurate vet bills just in case you end up in court.
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your little guy. Sounds like you have your hands full. Please keep us posted.