Canine symmetrical lupoid onychodystrophy: The occurrence in Noevegian Gordon Setters
Symmetrical lupoid onychodystrophy (SLO) is an immune-mediated disease affecting multiple claws of dogs. SLO is characterized by a sudden separation and sloughing of one or more claws from the claw bed, eventually leading to the loss of claws on all four limbs. This is commonly accompanied by secondary bacterial infection and pain. Re-growing claws are brittle, soft and misshapen, and will in most cases never go back to their original structure. Histopathologically, the disease can be recognized as hydropic and lichenoid interface dermatitis, especially prominent at the dermo-epidermal junction on the dorsal surface of the claw. Although all dogs can develop the disease, certain breeds appear to be predisposed, such as German shepherd dogs, Gordon and English setters, Bearded collies and Giant Schnauzers, among others. There is also a difference in what breeds are predisposed according to location. Genetic studies on SLO have identified certain haplotypes that increases the risk of developing the disease, as well as haplotypes that will protect against it, and the protective haplotypes seem to be the more dominant. The hereditary nature of the disease makes the dogs affected unfit for breeding purposes. The methods of diagnosing SLO include clinical and dermatological examinations, bacterial and fungal culturing, cytological examinations, antinuclear antibody (ANA) testing and biopsy sampling of affected claws with subsequent histopathological examinations. The treatment regime consists of antibiotic therapy, immuno-modulating drugs, pain management, fatty acid supplementation, as well as elimination diets.