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My dog has started chewing himself. It started with one spot.

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He chewed all the hair...
My dog has started chewing himself. It started with one spot. He chewed all the hair off and now has it raw...now he has chewed his behind raw as well. Skin looks very scaly and dry. Yesterday we put a collar on him to keep him away from it. I also used some triple antibiotic ointment on the spot he would let me touch. He would not let me get near his backside.
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Dog Veterinary
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Answered in 8 minutes by:
10/20/2009
Dog Veterinarian: Doctor H, Veterinarian replied 8 years ago
Doctor H
Doctor H, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 299
Experience: 5.5 years experience practicing small animal medicine in a large urban setting
Verified

My name isXXXXX and I would be more than happy to help you. First I will need to ask a few questions.

How long has your dog been chewing himself now? Where is the hair loss? Is there any at the base of the tail? What about the back of his hindlimbs? Is he currently on a topical flea and tick preventative monthly? If so, what is the name and when was his last dose?

Exactly where is the dog chewing besides his hind end?

How old is your dog? What breed? What state do you currently live in? Has he been licking his paws at all?

Please let me know so that I may assist you.
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
About a week and 1/2 , hair loss is mainly back right thigh and inside of that same leg(where it seemed to start) His coat seems dull and flaky like dandruf..(just recently)...yesterday I came home and he is now chewing an area to the right of his rectum... which is now very raw and bald...put a cone on him to keep him from getting at it....seems very agitated. I buy flea and tick drops (hartz) I think and prob rec 2-3 months ago as he is mostly an inside dog.....he does chew and lick his feet alot....we always think he chewing his nails...he is a Lab-chow mix and approx 11 years old. We live in PA
Dog Veterinarian: Doctor H, Veterinarian replied 8 years ago

When a dog goes after his hindquarters (and even the rectum) like that, it's most likely because of fleas. Since he has to go outside to urinate/defecate, he is always susceptible to a flea infestation.

Hartz is not a very good flea and tick preventative and has been associated with neurologic side effects after administration. Additionally, I'm sure it's required at least monthly in order to provide any kind of protection from fleas.

If he has a chronic history of licking/chewing his paws, he likely has seasonal inhalant allergies. While these could also be causing the clinical signs your noting, a flea infestation is far more likely. If he does have inhalant allergies, he may also be allergic to fleas as well.

I would highly recommend administration of a flea preventative such as Advantix, Frontline plus, or Revolution. Regardless, a visit to the veteriarian is also recommended have him evaluated for a secondary infection based on the traumatization to the affected sites. If the veterinarian does diagnose fleas, he can also give a pill that will ensure a quick flea kill (the above flea preventatives take about 24 hours or so for a 99% flea kill) as the topicals take effect.

Additionally, fleas can harbor tapeworm, so if a diagnosis of fleas is obtained, he needs to be prophylactically treated with a dewormer as well.

After he is treated, it would be good to discuss the best way to pursue an allergy workup with your veterinarian. If you have any other questions, please let me know. Otherwise please click the green accept button and good luck with your dog!

Doctor H
Doctor H, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 299
Experience: 5.5 years experience practicing small animal medicine in a large urban setting
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