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Discussion Starter #1
George has been worrying at his tail for a couple of days and today I noticed it has a funny crook in it and some of the hair won't lay down. When I touch it, it's obviously tender. Here's what it looks like. Anybody have any experience with this? Should I take him to the vet?

 

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I'd see the vet if George were my dog. I don't know what is wrong with his tail. Sometmes dogs can injure their tails. Or they can have "hot spots." I had a dog with what we thought was an injured tail and it turned out to be a mast cell tumor.

I think if you're concerned enough to ask "should I bring him to the vet?" than it certainly warrants a call. As I always say, "when it doubt, check it out."

Good luck and let us know what your veterinarian has to say.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
George wouldn't let the vet really look at it. Every time she even touched the hair on his tail, he'd wince away and whimper. She kept trying, though, and finally concluded that he'd injured it somehow or maybe something had bit him (I don't know WHAT -- he goes out to potty and we go on walks and surely we'd have noticed some other critter biting him) and that it had become infected and that he has an abscess. She gave me some antibiotic and pain pills and said if he doesn't seem to feel better by Thursday, we'll have to sedate him so she can shave the area and look at it without hurting him. Sigh. At least he usually takes pills without too much trouble, as long as I hide them in cheese. We'll hope for the best.
 

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Poor George. Lots of healing drool being sent your way. I hope it's just an abcess that clears up very quickly.
 

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One of my dogs has a sebaceous cyst on her tail that periodically becomes infected.

I'm surprised your vet didn't have an assistant restrain/muzzle the dog so she could get a decent look.
 

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Years ago, when I let my cats go outside, my mama cat had an abcess in her tail that required surgery. Poor Buffy came home with tail poof at the tail tip and tail poof near her rear, but right in the middle was bandaging and no hair at all! Thankfully, she healed well and didn't have to have the tail amputated. But my vet told me that his personal observation was that tail injuries seem to be among the most painful. The only way they could do a good exam on my cat was to knock her out, and when I brought her back for a dressing change, the tech said, with a rather unhappy expression on her face, "Oh --- I remember that cat!!!!" :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The vet did say she'd have to knock him out to get a good look without hurting him, but she was pretty sure what it is without having to put him through that, and he's already acting better, so I think she must have been right.
 
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Wondering how George and his tail are doing?? Hope he is feeling better.
 

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He's feeling better and his tail is looking a bit better. The abscess burst and looked horrible but my husband put some blood stop powder on it (the stuff they use when de-horning cattle -- we have it around in case flies get after doggie ears) and that helped immensely too. Getting George to take his antibiotic is a chore, though. No matter what I conceal it in, he finds it and spits it out. Sigh.
 
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