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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 9131
Experience:  I have owned, bred and shown dogs for over 40 years.
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My dog keeps licking his front leg and the elbow area. it is

Customer Question

my dog keeps licking his front leg and the elbow area. it is raw and bleeds ozzing clear liquid. i've taken him to the vet he says he is stressed. my dog lost my husband 4 years ago and never was stressed. I just don't believe he is stressed. He is 13 years old and a pampered pet....
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?
Customer: He is biting his toe nails but they are trimmed.
JA: What is the dog's name?
Customer: I was wondering if arthritis might be a problem....He leaves in a house of stairs and I have a big truck he gets in and out of all the time. His name is Kodiak
JA: OK. To minimize me, please click the down arrow at the top right corner of this box. OK. To minimize me, please click the down arrow at the top right corner of this box. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Kodiak?
Customer: no the sore has been there for 5 months. Started about Christmas time. He has trouble seeing. Older dog....but happy. about 4 years ago I had to have a tumor taken off his back leg and he went through that with flying colors. That is why I find it hard to believe he is stressed...
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 6 months ago.
Hello, I'm Dr. Deb and will do my best to help you today. I'm sorry for this concern for Kodiak. I do have a few thoughts about his situation so please give me a few minutes to type up a response to you. Thanks for your patience.Deb
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 6 months ago.
When an older dog starts to excessively lick one area of their body especially their elbow and or a limb, then I do often suspect that arthritis or neuritis or some discomfort may be the reason why....especially if they've never had such issues in the past.Based on the description of his sore, it sounds as if he may have developed what's known as a Lick Granuloma. The underlying cause for such lesions is different for every dog and while stress or boredom is likely the reason for some patients, it's by no means the reason for all of them. In order to successfully treat these lesions (which can be a challenge), we often strive to identify the underlying cause but this is usually easier said than done. For Kodiak, if we suspect that arthritis or underlying discomfort may be the trigger, then the following is what I'd suggest: 1. If he's not currently taking any steroids or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication and isn't vomiting, then Aspirin can be given at a dose of 10 mgs per pound of body weight twice a day with food to avoid stomach upset. This drug has anti-pain properties, too, which why is may be effective. It's possible that he might require stronger drugs from your vet but it will be interesting to see if he licks less on this drug. 2. If he's not currently taking supplements, then I'd start him on them since they may take several weeks to build up and be effective.a) I’m a huge fan of joint supplements such as Dasaquin or Cosequin which are veterinary products specifically formulated for dogs. Quality control is a big problem with these products since what’s on the label is not necessarily what’s in the bottle which is why I mentioned specific brands. These are available on the internet.b) Also, fish oil supplements can be helpful since they have anti-inflammatory properties. Welactin and 3V Derm Caps are good veterinary products and are also available on the internet. Once started, these supplements should be continued for them to be effective; you wouldn't stop and start them, in other words, like you would drugs...but you may already know this.c) Another option would be Zeel which is a human combination homeopathic that can be used in conjunction with other NSAID medications and has a very low incidence of adverse effects. Dose would be one tablet two to three times a day....I'd go with three times a day for the first 2 weeks, then drop back to twice a day for maintenance.d) Combinations of antioxidants such as Cell Advance 880 or Golden Yearse) Tumeric 1000mg/day Additional options include: Adequan injections which would have to be given by your vet twice weekly for one month and then monthly. 3. As to the lesions themselves, some dogs respond well to bandaging the area, if possible, although some patients will just chew them off. But, if you'd like to consider it, then apply antibiotic ointment such as you would use on a wound for yourself and then lightly bandage the area with whatever you can fashion from human bandage materials (available at most pharmacies). Care should be taken to avoid too tight of a bandage since it could affect circulation.Change it every 2-3 days. 4. Use of Vetericyn Spray may be helpful since it can facilitate healing of all sorts of skin problems. It's available on the internet although it may be found at local pet/grain stores. Lick Granulomas (if this is his issue) can often be quite frustrating to treat since what works for one patient doesn't work for another; it's often a trial and error process but I hope this helps and provides options for you to consider.
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 6 months ago.
Hello again,I'm just following up on Kodiak. How are things going with him? Deb