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chicadelplaya's avatar

My dog has a chronic itchy skin condition?

Asked by chicadelplaya (2208 points ) October 27th, 2009

Our dog has been having an itchy skin condition on and off for the past year or so. We believe this comes from some sort of allergic reaction. We are not sure if it is dietary, environmental, or a combination of both. We occasionally feed her a little cheese and popcorn, which she loves. We also think maybe it could have something to do with the carpet shampoo??

She seems to be itchy all over, but mainly on her front flank.

Have any of you had your dog experience skin allergies? What was it from? What did you do to resolve it??? I thank you, and Shelby (my dog) thanks you, too! :)

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18 Answers

Beta_Orionis's avatar

Does her skin look any different? Scabbed or Raw?

chicadelplaya's avatar

Well, it is scabbed in some spots. I already checked for fleas and ticks. Negative. I hate to give her a low dose of benadryl all the time, but I hate seeing her almost constantly itch. :/

Darwin's avatar

We have had several dogs with unduly itchy skin.

Sometimes it can be caused by food sensitivities, especially to corn. We feed our dogs a rice and lamb-based food.

Sometimes it can be caused by flea allergy. In the old days all there were was flea baths or steroids. Periodic flea baths can help, but these days there is a monthly pill you can get from your vet to take care of the fleas.

Our American Bulldog comes out in hives if we use the wrong laundry detergents. Thus, we use one of the detergents that is free of scents and coloring, and are very careful about any other cleaners used in the house.

One of our dogs has multiple environmental allergies, including to pollen, grass, and mold, so she gets a daily dose of Benedryl when allergens are particularly bad.

There is also a new medication called Atopica, which helps with otherwise intractable skin reactions.

In any case, your vet can run a blood-based allergy test just as you can have done on a person, and can even prescribe allergy shots. However, from personal experience I have to say that dogs don’t understand that the shots will make them better and they become adept at avoiding them.

There is also the potential for a staph infection or a fungal infection or both on the skin. That calls for antibiotics, anti-fungal medications, steroids and medicated shampoos.

Your best bet is to go see your vet.

aprilsimnel's avatar

My roomies have been adding Omega 3 oil to Hazel’s food when her skin gets scaly and dry like that. And there was some prescription tablet that I had to give her after her morning walk, but I don’t know what it was, since Hazel is actually my roomies’ dog.

chicadelplaya's avatar

@Darwin -Thank you! We may just have to break down and go to vet for further testing.

@aprilsimnel -How is the Omega 3 oil working out? Is it helping??

Darwin's avatar

We tried Omega 3 oil but it was fish-based, and our dog with the worst problems is allergic to fish.

Beta_Orionis's avatar

@chicadelplaya A friend of mine also suggested the oil. Her process was to first bathe them with a special moisturizing shampoo (which I’m trying to track down) and then give her dogs fish oil each day, to replenish oils in their dry skin. It’s worked really well.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Smooth and supple these days. It’s working for her, and she’s stopped nipping at her skin. It was so dry and tight she was nipping at it all day long, which made matters worse at the time.

YARNLADY's avatar

My dog had this also. Our vet started us on a prescription food plan that is offered through the vets only. The food is guaranteed free of any non food substances.

rooeytoo's avatar

If you have a little bit of extra time try her on a BARF diet. You rarely find food allergies showing up on dogs on this sort of diet.

Val123's avatar

Try Benedril lotion. Worked on my dog when she seemed to have some sort of allergic reaction just above her tail bone. She’d scratch all the hair off leaving a bald spot, then scratch some more and leave scabs. Just a few applications seemed to cure it, and she stopped itching and the hair grew back.

Val123's avatar

I noticed that some have suggested Omega 3 fish oil…just regular vegetable oil might work just as well.

chicadelplaya's avatar

Thanks everyone! :)

Val123's avatar

@chicadelplaya Let us know, K?

chicadelplaya's avatar

Will do! I just put some olive oil on her food, and I plan on getting some benedril lotion tomorrow. :)

SamIAm's avatar

Hey girl – my beloved cat Frasier has had skin allergies for a few years now. They used to be terrible – he would scratch until he was bleeding daily. I brought him to the vet & after being charged an arm and a leg, we discovered that he’s pretty much allergic to everything. He has since be getting allergy shots (they started out once every 2 days and are now at once every 3 weeks and I can administer them at home). The allergy test was very expensive but worth it because I can help avoid some of his triggers. He is not 100% but he is better. Also, I recently was told about this pill called Atopica. My derm loving vet said this stuff is amazing but has it’s drawbacks (like once you start pup on it, they have to be on it forever and for big dogs it can be costly). Best of luck to you…

Val123's avatar

@Samantha_Rae Um. Your vet charged you an arm and a leg? Um. Might want to check this out
http://www.fluther.com/disc/59484/what-do-hospitals-do-with-the-severed-limbs/

panatlantica's avatar

Get the dog to the vet. He/she will likely prescribe some lotion or special dog shampoo that will help his/her skin condition.

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