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DrEss, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 204
Experience:  Over 5 years small animal medical and surgical experience. Over 12 years in vet med field.
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my bichon is biting and licking his front legs so much that

Resolved Question:

my bichon is biting and licking his front legs so much that he has 2 bald patches. What is causing him to do this. I noticed 2 small patches on his front legs the day i collected him from the vets after he had a small operation , he was very nervous when i took him in. Now he just keeps on biting them and has made the patches bigger
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  DrEss replied 8 years ago.
Hello there.
It sounds like you dog may be reacting to some clipper irritation. It can only be an assumption on my part but those small patches on his front legs were probably areas that were clipped to put an IV catheter in one of his legs. Perhaps they couldn't get it in one front leg so went for the other.

It does happen then, that the clipper causes some skin irritation and the dogs will lick those shaved areas. Your dog will need something to help cut the itch, or you might have to consider a cone to keep him from licking. You can try some benadryl (1mg per pound up to three times daily) to try to cut the itch, but something topical would probably work better. In a pinch some hydrocortisone ointment might help, but if he has caused any sores to be created he may need an antibiotic ointment. You might want to bring him back in to show your vet and get something from them for treatment.

In my experience, the dogs will continue to lick until a good amount of fur has grown back. And the licking will not improve until some healing can take place, so again you will need to try to prevent him from licking either with a barrier or some medication to help with the irritation until hair starts to growth back.

I hope this helps and don't hesitate to call your vet and ask about clipper irritation.
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