Post # 1
Following our move this summer, our dog now scratches a lot! I don’t know if its any allergy from something in our yard or if its also related to a food change.
We recently switched him to California Natural. Its supposed to be healthier than the Science diet that he was on but it seems that his scratching has gotten even worse since we went to this.
I’m wondering if we should just add something to his food or switch to something else. This isn’t a cheap food (and its great because we have a local company that delivers it to our door on a regular basis).
Anyone have any suggestions on what worked for them?
Post # 3
I switched my dog Nelly to Diamond Natural for a while and that helped. then when the seasons changed again we switched her to Purina Pro sensitive stomach & sensitive skin (it’s in a black and purple or pink bag). that reeeeeally helped her. we also got 4mg chlorpheniramine tablets (chlortab @ walmart for like $3) and gave her 1/2 a tablet 2x a day when it got bad. she’s doing well now! it’s mostly seasonal issues for her though I think.
Post # 4
Our older dog was like this forever. We found out that she has a corn/soy/wheat allergy and when we switched her to Blue Buffalo and it took care most of the itching/licking but she’s still a bit of a licker. We asked the vet about it several times and they think that she is just a bit OCD/nerotic.
Have you asked a vet about the problem? Did they suggest switching foods?
Post # 5
We have used Benadryl (1 tab for every 50 lbs), hydrocortisone sprays and the hot spot sprays. Other than that is sounds like an allergy to me.
Post # 6
We found our dog had dry skin and gave him fish oil tablets. Cleared it right up!
Post # 7
Our dog is allergic to something in this area. His underside gets really red and under his legs gets really red and chafes. We use cortisone cream, tea tree oil spray, and just try to stop him from scratching/rubbing himself on the carpet.
Post # 8
I worked in a pet food store for awhile, and often people who had itchy dogs were feeding them bad food. It sounds like you’ve done this already, but it’s really important to look at the ingredients on the food, because big name brands (like the ones that frequently advertise), are really not such good quality, and are expensive because of the brand.
Switching to a natural or holistic food is a good start, though I agree that you may want to switch from one low in “carbs” (like corn, wheat, corn meal, etc). Those were always big allergin causers. When looking on the ingredients, look for food that has meat as the first ingredient, and following that, a meat by-product meal. And there are plently of foods that have that so make sure to look. (And don’t be quick to buy a food just because it says sensative skin/stomach. It may be better, but doesn’t always make it good, ESPECIALLY for the big name food brands). You could also consider switching to canned food. A good quality can food (like a holistic brand) will be mostly meat, and won’t have any of those carbs. We switched my cat upon the recommendation of a holistic vet, and she’s lost a lot of weight (in a good way…she was a bit too round).
Another option to consider, or possibly additional, that we often suggested…you can buy suppliments to put directly on the dog’s food to help with skin nutrition. Just like people, dogs do really well with omega based suppliments. It really helps nourish the skin, which can make the itching subside. We used to sell salmon oil suppliments (and I think it still exists), and that was always really effective. I think in the same way people really benefit from the high level of omegas in salmon, doggies can too. 🙂
Whatever you do, (change food, add a suppliment, etc), make sure to do it gradually, especially the changing of food. Animals can have sensative stomachs in regards to food switching, so gradual is better.
Good luck with whatever route you take!
Post # 9
Make sure you that you try changing one variable at a time so that you can try to figure out whats going on. It’s possible that he could just have drier skin. At Walmart or a pet food store you can pick up fish oil capsules that can help to alleviate itching. This worked great for our dog and they aren’t even expensive.
Otherwise you can also try an anti-itch shampoo with oatmeal, but be sure not to bathe him too often because that can dry out the skin and cause more itching.
Alternatively, you might want to check and see if he’s had any patchy hair loss around his hind legs, on his belly, or around his eyes because that can indicate skin mites. Our dog caught them from my FBIL’s outdoor cat who had gotten them from being outside. It’s usually a quick fix with a topical solution from the vet. We used Revolution and it cost about $20.
Post # 10
@MrsDibs: We haven’t asked our vet mainly bc of our move we don’t really have a new vet yet and I don’t want to go to someone new for something like this and they want to run a bunch of tests or something. I know there are a lot of OTC options to try before we get to that point.
Post # 11
@mrs.peters.to.be: We will take a look and see if there is anything noticeable. I haven’t noticed any patches of hair missing but I’ll do a double check.
@judithsr: Thanks for the info…I think we will start with a fish oil supplement and see if that helps.
Post # 12
Our doggy had a gluten allergy!!! She was so itchy and we felt super bad for her and to be honest it was totally aggrivating in the middle of the night to be woken up by the knocking on the floor or the shaking on the bed.
It was her food. We switched her off of wheat and such as mentioned by pp’s and it has stopped. We also got her Aveeno oatmeal bath for dogs which soothes her as well! I’m glad I’m not the only fruitcake who went through this and has put her dog on a gluten free diet. I felt silly saying it before.
Post # 13
There are so many reasons your dog could be scratching, but here’s a list of things I have done for mine:
1. My lab recently had a skin infection which was not visible, although she smelled a bit funny.She was also losing hair. This is something your vet will have to diagnose. She was put on antibiotics and a medicated wash containing sulfur. Awesome stuff that we now use regularly for both dogs!
2. My English setter is deaf, which = allergic to everything. We give her bendryl and fish oil.
3. We also spray our dogs daily with this:
4. Wheat free food!
Even with all of this, my setter will still have weeks (especially in the fall and spring) where she just can’t stop scratching. We just live with it.
Post # 14
After trying lots of different thinsg we finally had our dog allergy tested. Results: allergic to Chicken, Turkey, Oats, Barley, Milk/Cheese, Peanutbutter. We had been giving him Benadryl in cheese- talk about counter-productive! We had to find a food with none of those ingredients. He is about 95% better now.
Post # 15
I was like you and tried to figure out what he was allergic to for a year before breaking down and getting him the test ($220). I wish I had done it from the start! Turns out he’s allergic to basically anything with fins or feathers, beets, peanut butter, dust mites, etc. And like @eeniebeans:, I was feeding him salmon oil and peanut butter because I thought they were safe alternatives! My favorite thing about the allergy test we had done is that they gave us a list of exactly what brands and lines of food were safe for him. We could only get 3 of them without driving 50 miles to the next town!
I now just recommend getting the test. He was itchy to start but by the end (allergies worsen with continued exposure) he was a miserable wreck. I felt awful. Fortunately, he’s all better now and we have steroids for those days when he gets exposed to something but those aren’t too frequent.
Post # 16
@caitlanc: can i ask how you found out what your dog was allergic to? my vet doesn’t do it and they sort of gave me the impression that if I went to some kind of dog dermatologist, that it would run us about $500-$600. My furbaby has been struggling and I’ve had him on the steroids every other day for about a year. He is on a LID food (natural balance) and I feel so bad for him. He sometimes rubs his face so much on the carpet, that he’ll tear his wiskers out 🙁