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Jess K
Jess K, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1290
Experience:  Licensed Veterinarian
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The other day I noticed my yellow lab kept scratching under

Customer Question

Hi there, the other day I noticed my yellow lab kept scratching under her neck. I looked to find pinky irritated skin and grayish fur from where the metal in her collar had oxidized from being wet. She loves our pool. Anyway I took off her collar, gave her a good bath, rubbed on some olive oil for the night and thought that was that. Then the next night my fiancé noticed a patch of missing hair on her hind quarter. I noticed it had like 4 small clumps of hair each with brown dead skin on the bottom end tips. I pulled lightly on one and it pulled right out. Now a day later they have all fallen out and it's a bald patch with little red rash bumps. I took a photo. I'm not sure if the 2 are related or not now. It doesn't look like ring worm as it's not a perfect circle. Any idea? Thank you, Amy
Submitted: 16 days ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

Hello, this is Dr. Jess. I am sorry to hear about Wishes! Has she ever had any skin issues before? Is she licking at this area on her hind quarters? If you can attach the photo to our conversation (you should see a link to "attach files" or "add files" on your screen, perhaps by the send button), I will take a look at it.

Has she had any changes in her diet in the past month or two? New food or flavor or treats?

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Thank you so much. No same food, same treats. We do have her on trifexis that she and my black lab started this last month. I will attach photos I took this morning.
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Here's something else I found under her neck
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
I haven't noticed her licking it at all. Just constantly scratching under her neck. She never had any skin issues ever before
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

Ok. The spot on her neck you took an image of looks like it could be a benign sebaceous growth- it is hard to tell without being able to see it in person, but if it is small and not red or irritated, I would continue to monitor it for changes and let your vet know about it next time they see her (or take her to have it looked at earlier if it is changing at all).

What you are describing (patches of hair loss with red skin with small bumps) most commonly is the result of an allergy. We can have allergies develop later in life, so just because she hasn't had any issues previously doesn't mean this isn't allergy related. We can have allergies to things in the environment (called Atopy) like grasses, pollen, trees, dust. We can also develop allergies to food ingredients (most often a protein). Many dogs just get mild allergies which can be controlled with antihistamines and fatty acid supplements and just get flare ups occasionally. For more severe allergy cases we need to be more aggressive by doing things like prescription diet trials or allergy testing, or stronger drugs. Sometimes as a result of allergies we can get secondary skin infections that require antibiotics to treat them....

Is your dog on any medications right now besides the Trifexis?

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
See how irritated her skin is under her neck? Pic attached
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

It does look pretty red and I can see how it would be itchy to her!!! It is possible she may respond to an at-home treatment, but sometimes these guys do need a short course of steroids to get the itching cycle under control, and sometimes they do end up needing antibiotics for secondary infections.

So the safest thing is always to have your dog examined by your vet, or to discuss any medications (even over the counter) with them prior to starting, since they know your pet's health history and can determine what is appropriate for your individual pet. There are some over the counter options that can be effective in mild allergy cases. These would include a fatty acid supplement (you can find these at most pet stores or at your vet's office as a capsule or a liquid to place on their food). An antihistamine can also be helpful in milder cases. The most common one we start with over the counter is diphenhydramine (benadryl). You have to be careful you get plain diphenhydramine- no other added ingredients (some products also contain tylenol, etc.). Here is an article on diphenhydramine, its side effects/precautions/doses:

http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/diphenhydramine-benadryl

The other thing you can try is a topical hydrocortisone- you can get a spray like Cortaid spray, or a topical ointment to apply to the areas 2-3 times a day. The issue is if she is licking/biting her hind quarters it isn't going to stay on her skin long (that is why the oral steroid can be helpful in stopping the itch much faster).

Any worsening- increased hair loss, more bumps appearing, oozing of the skin, bumps that look like whitehead pimples, circles of dry/dead skin appearing, these would all be signs of a secondary infection that will require a prescription from your vet.

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Anyone there?
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

Sorry, did my reply not appear to you? I can see it on my screen as coming through at 2:02, but just in case, I will paste it again below:

It does look pretty red and I can see how it would be itchy to her!!! It is possible she may respond to an at-home treatment, but sometimes these guys do need a short course of steroids to get the itching cycle under control, and sometimes they do end up needing antibiotics for secondary infections.So the safest thing is always to have your dog examined by your vet, or to discuss any medications (even over the counter) with them prior to starting, since they know your pet's health history and can determine what is appropriate for your individual pet. There are some over the counter options that can be effective in mild allergy cases. These would include a fatty acid supplement (you can find these at most pet stores or at your vet's office as a capsule or a liquid to place on their food). An antihistamine can also be helpful in milder cases. The most common one we start with over the counter is diphenhydramine (benadryl). You have to be careful you get plain diphenhydramine- no other added ingredients (some products also contain tylenol, etc.). Here is an article on diphenhydramine, its side effects/precautions/doses:http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/diphenhydramine-benadrylThe other thing you can try is a topical hydrocortisone- you can get a spray like Cortaid spray, or a topical ointment to apply to the areas 2-3 times a day. The issue is if she is licking/biting her hind quarters it isn't going to stay on her skin long (that is why the oral steroid can be helpful in stopping the itch much faster).Any worsening- increased hair loss, more bumps appearing, oozing of the skin, bumps that look like whitehead pimples, circles of dry/dead skin appearing, these would all be signs of a secondary infection that will require a prescription from your vet.
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

Please let me know if my response came through and if you have any additional questions. If you do not, please take a moment to click and rate our conversation so we can know if you were satisfied with your service and I can get credit for helping to answer your question. Thank you!

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
This is my first time using this. Is it normal to wait 45 mins for a second reply? Sorry don't know.
Expert:  Jess K replied 16 days ago.

I am not sure why you are not getting my responses... Can you see this message? I will copy and paste my reply again (originally posted at 2:02)...

It does look pretty red and I can see how it would be itchy to her!!! It is possible she may respond to an at-home treatment, but sometimes these guys do need a short course of steroids to get the itching cycle under control, and sometimes they do end up needing antibiotics for secondary infections.So the safest thing is always to have your dog examined by your vet, or to discuss any medications (even over the counter) with them prior to starting, since they know your pet's health history and can determine what is appropriate for your individual pet. There are some over the counter options that can be effective in mild allergy cases. These would include a fatty acid supplement (you can find these at most pet stores or at your vet's office as a capsule or a liquid to place on their food). An antihistamine can also be helpful in milder cases. The most common one we start with over the counter is diphenhydramine (benadryl). You have to be careful you get plain diphenhydramine- no other added ingredients (some products also contain tylenol, etc.). Here is an article on diphenhydramine, its side effects/precautions/doses:http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/diphenhydramine-benadrylThe other thing you can try is a topical hydrocortisone- you can get a spray like Cortaid spray, or a topical ointment to apply to the areas 2-3 times a day. The issue is if she is licking/biting her hind quarters it isn't going to stay on her skin long (that is why the oral steroid can be helpful in stopping the itch much faster).Any worsening- increased hair loss, more bumps appearing, oozing of the skin, bumps that look like whitehead pimples, circles of dry/dead skin appearing, these would all be signs of a secondary infection that will require a prescription from your vet.
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Hello
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Hi, I did receive one messsge just now that you pasted. Thank you for your reply. Any chance this could be a form of mites? My indoor cat is on flea meds but still has scabs going down his back. Not red just flesh white colored that heal and flake off easily. He's been scratching too. Neither have any fleas do to the meds do it must be something else. I do know his sister my exs cat has really bad flea allergies from a single flea bite. I'm just scared there is something going around the house like mites. I guess if her neck doesn't start healing with your ideas above I will take he in for skin scraping/ testing. Just wanted to know your thoughts after seeing the pictures. One more thing sorry. Did you see the other pic I added by itself? Does that bump/ mass look ok to you? It's like the size of a pea. Thank you so much! amy
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Cont... its on her itchy neck area
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Please Resend last reply I did not receive it again
Expert:  Jess K replied 15 days ago.

I apologize that for some reason our communications were not working well yesterday, I know the website was experiencing some issues. Unfortunately I had signed out before your last replies so I am just now seeing them. I am going to copy and paste all my previous responses below again to be sure you see them:

Ok. The spot on her neck you took an image of looks like it could be a benign sebaceous growth- it is hard to tell without being able to see it in person, but if it is small and not red or irritated, I would continue to monitor it for changes and let your vet know about it next time they see her (or take her to have it looked at earlier if it is changing at all).What you are describing (patches of hair loss with red skin with small bumps) most commonly is the result of an allergy. We can have allergies develop later in life, so just because she hasn't had any issues previously doesn't mean this isn't allergy related. We can have allergies to things in the environment (called Atopy) like grasses, pollen, trees, dust. We can also develop allergies to food ingredients (most often a protein). Many dogs just get mild allergies which can be controlled with antihistamines and fatty acid supplements and just get flare ups occasionally. For more severe allergy cases we need to be more aggressive by doing things like prescription diet trials or allergy testing, or stronger drugs. Sometimes as a result of allergies we can get secondary skin infections that require antibiotics to treat them.... It is possible she may respond to an at-home treatment, but sometimes these guys do need a short course of steroids to get the itching cycle under control, and sometimes they do end up needing antibiotics for secondary infections.So the safest thing is always to have your dog examined by your vet, or to discuss any medications (even over the counter) with them prior to starting, since they know your pet's health history and can determine what is appropriate for your individual pet. There are some over the counter options that can be effective in mild allergy cases. These would include a fatty acid supplement (you can find these at most pet stores or at your vet's office as a capsule or a liquid to place on their food). An antihistamine can also be helpful in milder cases. The most common one we start with over the counter is diphenhydramine (benadryl). You have to be careful you get plain diphenhydramine- no other added ingredients (some products also contain tylenol, etc.). Here is an article on diphenhydramine, its side effects/precautions/doses:http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/diphenhydramine-benadrylThe other thing you can try is a topical hydrocortisone- you can get a spray like Cortaid spray, or a topical ointment to apply to the areas 2-3 times a day. The issue is if she is licking/biting her hind quarters it isn't going to stay on her skin long (that is why the oral steroid can be helpful in stopping the itch much faster).Any worsening- increased hair loss, more bumps appearing, oozing of the skin, bumps that look like whitehead pimples, circles of dry/dead skin appearing, these would all be signs of a secondary infection that will require a prescription from your vet.As far as mites, the more common mites we see in pets (demodex, sarcoptes, cheylietella) are species specific, so it is always possible with skin issues we could have mites, but what you are describing sounds more like allergies and if it was mites, it wouldn't likely be affecting both the dog and the cat. Fleas, however, can, and if you just recently started them on flea preventative, it is possible this is a reaction to flea bites they had previously. Also, you are correct in that some pets are extra sensitive to flea bites and just one bite can trigger a bad skin reaction. It is great you have them on flea preventatives, but it doesn't gaurantee they will never ever be bitten by a flea so that is a possibility. Please let me know if you have any other questions and if my response came through to you!!!
Expert:  Jess K replied 12 days ago.
Hi Amy,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Wishes. How is everything going?
Jess K
Expert:  Jess K replied 11 days ago.

Please let me know if you have any other questions and if my response came through to you!!!