How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Candy Your Own Question
Candy
Candy, Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 11613
Experience:  Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
23185754
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Candy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dog has terrible dandruff almost like eczema and is itchy always. I had him on predniso

Customer Question

My dog has terrible dandruff almost like eczema and is itchy always. I had him on prednisone per my vet for a while and it seemed to help a little but he still itched constantly. He also got really fat and just did not seem very happy. He's a two year old lab heeler (I think) mix. The allergy shot worked even less than the steroid pills. So for now I have him on 4 to 6 Benadryl a day or two Zyrtec morning and night. I don't know how much it helps but it's better than the side effects of the prednisone. I use a oatmeal shampoo and he gets baths every two weeks. We tried grain free food for about a month with no noticeable results other than weight loss because he didn't like to eat it. I don't know what to do. He's always happy and a great dog but I can tell that he is constantly itching and miserable.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.
Hello I am sorry no one has assisted you sooner. My name is ***** ***** I have been a veterinary nurse for 26 years.
Labs are prone to different forms of atopic dermatitis. This is most often due to allergies. These can be inhaled allergies or food allergy in nature.
* Environmental-
Common allergies are grass, pollens and dust. Things such as laundry soaps, shampoos, etc can also cause problems with some dogs.
* Food - The most commonly areas of the body effected by a food allergy are the ears the feet and the rear If this is due to food allergies this will continue to be a problem until you find a food he can eat.
Dogs can develop food allergies at any times even if they have been on the same food for a long period of time While most people think that food allergies are due to grains such as corn, wheat, bran as well as soy that is in fact not the whole truth. The biggest problem is often the PROTEIN source. This includes chicken, lamb and beef.The following article discusses how to do a food trial in-depth this is the same instructions we give our clients. It is recommended to try a different protein source such as duck, rabbit, kangaroo or Bison and grain free We often see dogs do well on a different protein only to develop an allergy to this as well later down the road. Purina HA or Science diet ZD are top of the line allergen diets. These foods have had the molecules broken down to the point that the body can not identify what they are getting thereby eliminating all chance of an allergic reaction
When trying a food trail it is very important that they get no other foods, treats or human foods as this will void out the food trial. This can take 12-16 weeks to show improvement so you must stick with it. Should you opt to try the trial and your baby is a treat eater here is a recipe you can make using his food as to not jeopardize the trial. These recipes are for science diet foods however any food can be used.
Homemade Treat Recipe
Yield: approx. two dozen treats
Using canned food:
Open the can and shake the loaf of food out of the can.
Cut the loaf into 1/4" thick slices, and then cut the slices into bite-sized pieces.
Bake the treats in a microwave oven on high for approximately 2½ to 3 minutes.
Store baked treats in the refrigerator and discard leftovers after 5-7 days.
Homemade treats should not exceed 10% of your pet's total daily intake because heat alters the nutritional characteristics of the food.
Do not freeze homemade treats.
For a conventional oven, follow the instructions above and place the bite-sized pieces on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until crispy.
Using Dry Food:
In a blender, add 2 cups of dry food and grind into a powder.
Pour powder into a mixing bowl and gradually add about 1 to 1¼ cups of water, stirring until it forms a dough consistency.
Shape into individual "treats" or "cookies" and flatten the dough using the back of a spoon (the cookies will not flatten like standard "people cookies" do.)
Place treats on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until crispy.
Store baked treats in the refrigerator and discard leftovers after 5-7 days.
Homemade treats should not exceed 10% of your pet's total daily intake because heat alters the nutritional characteristics of the food.
Do not freeze homemade treats.
Also make sure you are not using plastic or ceramic water or food bowls.
These dogs also benefit greatly from omega three fatty acids. There are Omega fatty acid treats that are safe for dogs with food allergies
http://www.healthypets.com/omegatreats.html
Resicort which is a leave on conditioner is great for itching as well and can be used daily if needed. I have an allergy dog as well and I never run out of this.
http://www.allivet.com/ResiCORT-p/26862.htm
Since it is possible that you are dealing with a combination of food and environmental allergies if the food alone does not clear up the problem I would ask your vet about using a medication called Atopica
http://www.us.atopica.com/
I would discuss doing allergy testing so you know exactly what if anything things are causing the problem.In our office we use VARL testing
http://www.varlallergy.com/
I would switch shampoos and bath him with Selson Blue Shampoo for humans.This will kill any excess yeast on the skin and help reduce the scaling. Bathe him every 5 days for 3 weeks then once every 2 weeks.
Make sure you are using a good flea prevention. An oral one like Comfortis would be best while trying to get his skin under control.
Since it is possible that this is due to allergies one other thing you could do is give 1 teaspoon of raw local honey. It has to be raw and local. I work with a holistic vet and he started using this two years ago on allergy dogs and it has really helped. By giving the local raw honey you are exposing his body to local pollens in small amounts each day so eventually the body no longer identifies it as an allergen.
If none of this works then I would suggest asking your vet for a referral to a veterinary dermatologist. Using steroids and antihistamines are only treating the symptoms and what we want and need to do is find the cause.
I hope this helps.Please reply back if you have additional questions and I will be happy to help. If you have no additional questions, please take a few minutes to provide a rating before exiting the site so I am compensated by Justanswer for assisting you.
Candy
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I didn't get a link for the food trial
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.
I apologize here is the link
http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+1587&aid=143
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Cash. How is everything going?
Candy
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He's making it. The dandruff and sores came back much quicker, just a week after I bathed him last. But I washed him today with the head and shoulders stuff and made sure to scrub really well. His skin was flushed and he itched crazy after the bath but I gave him his Zyrtec and it calmed down. I really feel like it's environmental so I'm just going to have to save up and get him allergy tested
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.
Poor boy. I always feel so bad for an itchy dog. I would try to get him on the fatty acids and try the Resicort as well both will really help.