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Bradley, Certified Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 156
Experience:  Associates Degree in Veterinary Technology. 11 years of experience.
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my dog has black hard like grit spots and the itch drives him

Customer Question

my dog has black hard like grit spots and the itch drives him crazy
what could this be (flea eggs)?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

Are they localized in one general area or all over?? (on back, right above tail)


When is the last time that you used any topical and what exactly did you use?



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
They are here and there head,neck back and spine area.I used
tea tree oil,advantage,flea n tick spray,baths you name it. I
even shaved his hair so all would sink in. But nothing works.
Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

When was the last time that applied anything topical? And what did you use?



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
2 days ago advantage nothing else
Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

Sorry you are having this problem.

Yes, it sounds like fleas. What you are seeing is flea dirt, also known as flea poop which is just digested blood. The eggs are white but are usually mixed in with the flea dirt. The appearance looks like potted soil, right?

The advantage is a great product but what you faced with, you will have to stay consistant and have some patience. It takes awhile to get rid of these little critters. If you can give him a bath, it would be a great idea to do so now. You have to allow advantage 24 hours to dry before bathing. That is before and after applying the advantage. If you have more applications of the advantage, you can reapply after three weeks. If you are out, you might want to switch to something a little different to see if you get better results.

Frontline is another product that you can use and it is applied just like advantage. With frontline, you have to apply 24 hours before and 24 hours after a bath. It works through the oil glands which means the dirtier the dog the better to distrubute. The only withdrawl to using frontline is that some fleas are becoming resistant to it. This means that instead of the flea biting once or twice and dying, it has to bite several times.


A newer product is a tablet that is called Comfortis. It works great. It begins to kill fleas within thirty minutes after giving the pill. The dog has take it with food to get the Best results.


Some of the flea topicals that you can get from somewhere like wal-mart, Hartz products, do not work well at all. Yes they are cheap but do not work. It can sometimes make your pet sick. The flea collars dont work well either. Save your money that you would spend on these products for something that you know will work.


If the dog is inside, you might want to bomb the house. They work but not wonderfully. You will have to repeat it in three weeks when the eggs would have hatched. Fleas love carpet and will lay their eggs there. One female can lay up to a thousand eggs. Vacuum your house and empty your bag everytime. Try to vaccuum once a day if possible. The more the better.

If the dog is outside, you might want to spray with a flea spray that you can purchase at your local tractor suppy or co op.

It would not be a bad idea to hire a Pest Control company to help you treat. If you do this, they guarantee no more fleas after their treatment.

Hope this has helped.

Bradley and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
yes that sounds about right,but when I remove this matter it
seems to be enbeded into his skin and when i pull it does make
his skin bleed. Is this also normal.
Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

It could be where he has chewed himself from the intense itching which has produced scabbing. Yes that is normal. How much do you think you dog weighs?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
under 15 lbs. No I mean the black grit is attached to his skin.
Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

Yep, that sounds about right. If he chews on himself or scratches with his back legs, it breaks open his skin, the flea dirt will be introduced into the holes that he has made into the skin making it harder. He has a flea allergy which will make him very itchy.

Try a dose of benedryl. It is 1 ml per pound of body weight. If he is 15 pounds, you can use one teaspoon of childrens benedryl or3/4 teaspoon of adult. Benedryl is very safe. Start it twice a day, if no improvement then you can do it up to three times daily. If no improvement within 3 or 4 days, then you are not going to see any results wtih it. Remember, fleas will always make him itchy but this should give him a little comfort til the fleas are under control.


When you give him a bath, try picking up some shampoo with chlorhexiderm in it. It is an antibacterial soap and is good with any skin issues. If for some reason this is not fleas, the other possiblity would be a small skin infection like blackheads. I don't think that is what it is but if so, the chlorhexiderm shampoo will be great for that as well. That is the only other thing I would think of if you are seeing grit like substance. Doing both will not hurt. Chlorhexiderm shampoo is good to use anyway. You can find it at any pet store.

Hope this has helped you.

Expert:  Bradley replied 7 years ago.

Let me know if you could not receive my last reply. Thank you.



Edited by Bradley on 11/12/2009 at 7:54 PM EST