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Other Systems

This is an other system condition.

Shar-Pei Autoinflammatory Disease, SPAID, Shar-Pei Fever

What is SPAID?

More commonly known as Familial Shar-Pei Fever, this autoinflammatory condition causes recurrent high fevers, joint swelling and pain, and overall malaise. Some Shar-Peis will also develop amyloidosis, an inappropriate accumulation of an abnormal protein, amyloid, in the liver and kidneys.

What are the signs & symptoms that develop in affected dogs?

During an episode, affected dogs will be listless, have no appetite, and have swollen ankles and/or muzzles. A fever of 106ºF or above is considered a medical emergency. Please ask your veterinarian to show you how to take your dog’s temperature at home.

When do signs and symptoms develop?

First signs typically appear before 18 months of age but can occur at any time.

How do vets diagnose this condition?

Shar-Pei fever is diagnosed based on clinical signs: fever and swollen ankles/muzzle. Affected dogs may have abnormal protein (amyloid) deposits in the kidneys and liver. Your veterinarian may want to perform blood, urine, or other tests to determine the extent and severity of the disease.

How is this condition treated?

SPAID can often be managed symptomatically with anti-inflammatories, although the response to treatment does vary. In severe cases, the liver and kidneys can be affected, and hospitalization with more aggressive treatment will be required. Colchicine, which can prevent kidney damage secondary to amyloidosis, may be recommended in the early stages of disease.

What actions should I take if my dog is affected?

  • Monitor your Shar-Pei for signs of fever and swelling of the legs and muzzle. Bring your dog to the vet at the first sign of these symptoms.
  • This variant likely has a codominant inheritance in the Shar-Pei, meaning that Shar-Peis with one copy of the variant are at lower risk when compared to dogs with two copies of the variant, but at greater risk than dogs with no copies of the variant.
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