Otis – Lupus (Symmetrical Lupoid Onychodystrophy)

Breed: Cross
Age: 2 year old
Sex: Male
Name: Otis

Reason for visit:

Otis had pain and tenderness in his toe nails which eventually began to split, break or fall off. The feet were sensitive to touch.
Vet Diagnosis: Otis’ vet believed he had a nail infection. He was treated with repeated antibiotics and cortisone. All were unsuccessful in treating his condition. Infections returned and the condition began effecting other nails. Vets still believed it was an infection or possibly a fungal infection. Tests concluded only bacteria present.

Vets were unsure of his condition and advised a biopsy would be required. The biopsy involved the removal of his entire nail. (Removal of nail is not advised by Natural Animal Solutions). Otis’ owner spoke of Otis’ condition to her local pet shop owner who advised straight away that Otis had lupus as her labrador Mustafa has the same condition which had been successfully treated by Jacqueline Rudan (Animal Naturopath). She was referred to the Natural Animal Solutions clinic.


Overall health assessment:

Otis is in good general health. The paw problem is his only health issue. He has had a nail removed during the biopsy.



SLO is an inflammation of the nail matrix where the nail is formed. The pattern of inflammation is similar to lupus, giving the condition its ‘lupoid’ designation. The inflammatory reaction at the nail matrix results in abnormal nail development and growth, resulting in compromised claws that lift, separate, and often fall off. Flare-ups are painful and many owners first notice a problem when the dog begins favoring or nursing an affected foot.

Conventional vet treatment of cortisone and antibiotics is used to surpress the immune system. This form of treatment is generally successful in approx. 5% of cases and even then the condition will often reoccur at a later stage.


Medical history review:
Otis is only 2 years old and is in good general health.


Consultation 1 – 9th December 2015

Assessment: Upon seeing Otis’s nails it was clear that he has SLO commonly referred to as Lupus (Symmetrical Lupoid Onychodystrophy).
When trying to touch his nails he pulled away and growled. They were quite painful.
An investigation of Otis’ nails found a bacterial infection which I believe is a secondary issue. Due to the pain that Otis was suffering, he would very likely to have been licking his toes excessively.
With the splitting of the nails from SLO it allowed the saliva to get in and cause a secondary infection. Otis has been on many courses of antibiotics previously so I will treat this secondary infection externally.

Notes: Otis’s diet will be changed alongside the treatment schedule

Prescribed medicines: Otis will be on a mix of supplements and practitioner only natural medicines.
• Lupus Formulation Granules
• Onelink
• Heatoxin
• Natural Animal Solutions DigestaVite Plus
• Natural Animal Solutions ItchyScratch

Notes: The combination of the 3 medicines I have prescribed will reduce the inflammation and heat in the nail bed, this will in turn control the immune system which will stop the it from attacking its own cells in the nail bed.
Heatoxin is included as it provides accelerated results. This is to be used with caution as long-term use can elevate liver enzyme levels.
Natural Animal Solutions ItchyScratch will be used to treat the secondary infection. Toes to be soaked daily until infection has cleared.

Prescribed diet: Otis has been changed over to a raw natural diet.

Session conclusion: Otis has begun treatment for Lupus and a secondary infection in his paw. I’ve requested to see him again.


Consultation 2 – 10th January 2016

Assessment: Otis’ nails have made good progress since his last visit. They have begun to grow back and are looking much more solid. They are no longer brittle at the point of new nail growth. His paw’s are still tender to touch but much better than the previous session and he will allow me to hold and gently palpate them. There was also no growling from him this time either.
The blood tests have showed that the liver enzymes have begun to rise due to the use of Heatoxin. This has produced the required results and will not be used any longer in the treatment schedule.

Notes: Heatoxin has been taken out of the treatment schedule as it has accelerated the nail recovery and they are now growing through normally.
Heatoxin should not be used on animals with known liver issues.

Prescribed medicines: Tessa will continue on the same treatment regime except Heatoxin

Prescribed diet: Otis will continue with his raw natural diet.

Session conclusion: Otis nails have provided excellent results so far. The medication schedule has been altered slightly and Heatoxin has been withdrawn. I will not need to see Otis again unless there are any significant setbacks.

Overall Conclusion:
On 15th April Otis’s owner has provided an update. Otis’ nails have continued their recovery and are now growing normally (They will soon be long enough to cut). He will also let his paws be handled without any issue and are pain free.
It is advisable when pain has subsided to keep the nails short and to try and remove the old split parts of the nail to reduce the risk of the 1st growth tearing away.
Even though the new growth is significantly healthier it will continue to get stronger and thicker with the new cycles of nail growth and can take 2-3 cycles.

Please note: Medicines listed in this case study are practitioner only and can only be prescribed by a qualified Naturopath.

otisotis paw otis paw1 otis paw2