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 Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30309
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
Type Your Dog Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Michael Salkin is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My dog hads allergies, I h, Rocco, 7 yrs. Vet said benadryl

Customer Question

My dog hads allergies, I h
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Rocco, 7 yrs. Vet said benadryl and claritan, or zytec
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Rocco?
Customer: Gets red and swollen at sides of privates
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
His mother and grandmother had red mange. He doesn't lose Hair. Mother got healed at 5 months she 10 yrs I have her. He also whines for attention.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

I'm sorry to hear of this with Rocco. His erythema and swelling in those areas needs to be clarified. The use of antihistamines is too often unreliable and ineffective in cases of allergic dermatitis. In one large scale study antihistamines in conjunction with fatty acid supplementation was helpful in less than 10% of dogs suffering from atopic dermatitis - allergies to environmental allergens. It would be prudent for Rocco's vet to perform basic testing as should be done for most skin changes as you've described - skin scrapings looking for mites, a cytology (microscopic exam of a small sample of affected skin surface) looking for abnormal numbers of either bacteria or yeast (Malassezia), and a fungal culture. Treatment, then, would be predicated upon findings in such testing. If nothing untoward is found, an allergic dermatitis should be considered - flea saliva allergy, atopy, and food intolerance are the three main considerations.

Environmental allergies (atopy) are usually initially addressed with prednisone. The new cytokine antagonist oclacitinib (Apoquel) is likely to revolutionize how we address atopic dogs and should be discussed with Rocco's vet. Oclacitinib works as well as a steroid without a steroid's adverse effects. The new monoclonal antibody IL-31 should also be discussed with his vet. Please note that atopy, at least initially, should have a seasonality to it while a food intolerance should cause pruritis regardless of the season. Chronically atopic dogs may be pruritic year round.

Food intolerance/allergy is addressed with prescription hypoallergenic diets. These special foods contain just one novel (rabbit, duck, e.g.) animal protein or proteins that have been chemically altered (hydrolyzed) to the point that Rocco's immune system doesn't "see" anything to be allergic to. The over the counter hypoallergenic foods too often contain proteins not listed on the label - soy is a common one - and these proteins would confound our evaluation of the efficacy of the hypoallergenic diet. The prescription foods are available from his vet. There are many novel protein foods and a prototypical hydrolyzed protein food is Hill’s Prescription Diet z/d ultra. (I prefer the hydrolyzed protein diets because it avoids the possibility of my patient being intolerant to even a novel protein.)

Can you upload a photo(s) of these areas to our conversation? You can upload photos by using the paperclip icon in the toolbar above your message box (if you can see that icon) or you can use an external app such as

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Michael Salkin