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Swollen Parotid Glands and Increased Licking?
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Swollen Parotid Glands and Increased Licking?

Hi. My dog Rocco is a 6 year old chiuahua-terrier mix. He has been a very healthy dog until last week I came home and he had, what felt like, two mump like golf balls under his neck.  I rushed him to the Vet ER and they thought it was his lymph nodes. No other lymph nodes were inflamed and when they aspirated them the tests were inconclusive but they saw saliva. He has been on Cleocin for a week and I am seeing the size of them decrease very slowly -- more ping pong now than golf ball.  His red blood cell count was also very high so they gave him subcutaneous fluids.  He is eating and going to the bathroom just fine and temp is normal.
In addition to all of this for the past few months his has really increased his licking behaviors. He can lick for minutes at a time, almost cat-like. He will even just lick the air.  I'm wondering if somehow all of this is related? Somehow he is not salivating properly and becuase of that his mouth is really dry and his fluids are really low (or some combination thereof).  What can be done?  Strangely, I once had a swollen parotid gland and the doctor had me suck on sour items to help secrete the saliva.  Kind of hard to convince Rocco to suck on a lemon drop.:)  Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated!  
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It sounds as if your dog has a sialocele,  which is a salivary gland cyst that causes a blockage in the ducts so that the saliva doesn't drain into the mouth, where it normally goes.  

The exact cause is often hard to determine, but causes include trauma to the gland or ducts, infection, or possibly a growth that obstructs the ducts, causing rupture.

Surgical removal of the damaged gland and duct is one of the treatments.  Other treatments include placing a drain and emptying often, or by reconstruction of the ducts using a sub-mandibular gland allograft, and some of the cysts do resolve on their own.

I am hoping that your dog's problem will resolve on it's own, but if it doesn't it may be possible to give a medication such as cyclosporin, pilocarpine, or cevimeline which will help to increase salivation.










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234713_tn?1283530259
Aleda M Cheng, D.V.M., C.V.ABlank
American Animal Hospital
Randolph, NJ
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