Ask a Dog Vet and Get Answers to Your Dog Veterinary Questions
Hello, this is Dr. Jess. I am sorry to hear about your problem. Is there any way you could upload a photo here for me to view?
You can actually post it here in this window. You should see an "add files" or "attach files" link next to your Send/Reply button and you can attach it that way. Do you see that link?
Ok. Give me a few minutes to look at them and type- I have to drop my son off at school and will look at them in about 5 minutes ;)
Ok, thank you for the photos, those really help! It appears to me that your dog is suffering from something we call Flank Alopecia. Here is some information on this condition: http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&S=0&C=0&A=2965. We don't really know the cause for it, and many dogs have it seasonally- so during the winter months are more affected. It doesn't cause discomfort, just looks funny! There has been some success in treating it with melatonin. The usual dose is around 3 mg total per dog once daily (best to give in the evening as can cause drowsiness) and sometimes increasing from there if response isn't being seen. As with any medication, I recommend consulting your vet before starting anything, as they know your pet best.
I do not have any experience with the product, and in the literature there are no reports of any topical products helping. The only proven successful treatment is melatonin. If you want to try it, it doesn't sound like it would hurt (unless your dog develops some hypersensitivity to the ingredients),but it likely will not make a difference. Luckily, this is more of a cosmetic issue than anything else, and you can tell the people who meet him that it isn't anything contagious or harmful to him!
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