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Dr. Nell
Dr. Nell, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
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Experience:  Retired veterinarian after serving 33 years as a country doctor.
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My 7 year old Shih Tzu today started panting and scratching

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My 7 year old Shih Tzu today started panting and scratching himself ,nose and toung is warm. His skin was bright pink, now it is almost normal. Could this be an allergy? He loves peanutbutter, I gave him cheese/sausage treat with peanutbutter on it yesterday. It never bothered him before. What could be the problem, and what can I do to make him comfortable?

Hi Customer.

I too have a little Shih Tzu. What great dogs they are. Yes, this could be an allergy. In fact, what you described sounds very much like an allergy. Of course, I cannot tell for sure as I cannot see him. It is possible for him to suddenly have an allergic reaction to something that he has been eating without any problem for years. Of course, it could be something in his environment. Like people, they can be allergic to many, many things. A soothing bath in a medicated and/or oatmeal shampoo might help. If this continues to be a problem, your veterinarian can prescribe something for him to take when he is having a problem. Hope this helps a bit.


Dr. Nell

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Customer: replied 8 years ago.
OH, thank you. I was looking for a striod the doc gave me for itch when he had hot spots.I didn't find them ,they are a year old. I did find a bottle of SULFA-MED for skin care and treatment. It has eucalyptus,aloe vera, SD-40-2 alcohol, aceic acid and other stuff. what do you think? I hate to use it because the alcohol stings! Thank You

Hmmm...Im not sure that I like the alcohol either, as it does sting, and it tends to dry out the skin and hair. However I do like the aloe vera etc that is in it. Is it just to put on a specific lesion, or to put all over the body. If it is to put on a certain area, I think that would be ok....just don't put it all over. You might want to get a medicated, hypoallergenic shampoo to keep for times like this when he is having a problem.



Dr. Nell

Dr. Nell and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Ok, I will find oatmeal bath or some other non stinging medication. In the past 30 min he has begun to settlr some. Thank you! Is peanutbutter bad for dogs ,like chocolate? Another thing I forgot to say, we gave him a ham bone fresh from the supper table, with ham. He loved it! It was a sugar cured ham. Is this a problem related to this curant problem?

Hi Customer.

Peanut butter is ok for dogs. Of course it is possible that he is allergic to the peanuts. I am suspicious of that because he started itching after he ate the peanut butter. And you need to be careful about ham. Make sure all of the fat is off before you give him any ham. At his age, he should not be eating a lot of fatty foods. Thank you so much. I hope I am being helpful to you.


Dr. Nell

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Dr. Nell,
Thank you for your help! Last night I was up most all night because Bear (I should have included he is mixed with Maltease) couldn't sleep peaceful like he usually does. As the 0700 hour came on I could see bear feeling much better. The constant panting had all but stopped. Bear was beside me in a recliner, his usual spot, when we both went to sleep for a couple of hours. It was about 1130 my wife bathed him in a bacterial fighting soap, and more itch stopped. As 1300 came he was more 'bouncy' and excited. We had an errand to do and he was excited to tag along. As the day went on he seem to be more of his old self, he even took a few naps like he usually does (you know the one were the slightest sound he is instantly alert). Around 2000 we noted his nose was back to the chilly norm and the panting was stopped, he still has some itch spots on his hind quarters and belly, nothing outrages. He gets hot spots on his hind quarters usually start of fall through spring; during the summer he is usually free of this.
In the summer time I use my electric wheelchair to get around. Bear walks or rides sitting in my lap or on the footrest. He loves it when I take him to the cemetery and turn him lose. He chases squirrels, and mice. He even will sniff mole holes and runs stopping to dig burring himself in the dirt. Most times he gets a mole and plays with them as if they were a tossing ball. He never eats them but usually after the first time a mole is in his mouth a throws up (Vomits?) a thick saliva/foam mixture. I have been told there is no poison in their skin and not to worry. It is fun to watch him sniff and run from one spot to another, and then he stops and digs. If he can’t get it he barks until I turn over the flowerpot he wants, usually revealing a mouse nest. It puzzles me though when a squirrel is in front of him by 50’ and he doesn’t seem to see them until they move. Oh he is so much joy! We live in Allegan MI a small town of 5k, many know us as the man in the wheelchair with the dog. I am angered when some stores won’t let him in, some state law! I thought I’d get him a blue vest so they would leave us alone.
Again, thank you for your help, may God Bless!
Rev. Barry Cantrell

Good morning Rev. Barry,

Wow, Bear sounds like a wonderful little pet and a great companion.  My little Shih Tzu is 13 now and she too has been a joy to me all these years. They are so much company.  I am glad that the panting has slowed down and the itching has stopped.  You might want to call your vet's office and ask them about something to keep at home to give him when he is upset by noise or when the he has an itching episode.  Thank you very much for telling me about his vole searches and his great times with you.  LOL  he sounds like a real clown. Hope yall have a wonderful new year, and I wish you all the best


.Dr. Nell

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Yes Doc, he is! We always found it interesting that he is frightened by loud POPs, and thunder. It must be an inherited instinct .As I stated his problem did start the day of an early morning thunderstorm, so that may have been a trigger. Yesterday I had my breakfast of oatmeal, which I had added peanut butter. Bear got a whiff of that and wined and begged till I gave him some! I let him finish the last 1.5 tablespoons. He had no problem with it. That afternoon I was eating backed puffed cheetoe snack, again he whiffed that smell in the air and begged me for some. I let him have a couple of small pieces, he 'chowed' them down, with no problems. He is fussy about his snacks. Our postperson leaves him two milkbone type biscuit and he usually will not eat them, however when we go through the bank or drug store drive thru, they give him the same biscuit and he ‘chowed’ those down. In fact when he is with me and we get close to the drive thru he gets excited pawing at the window and barking his beg bark. I try to have biscuit with me so if they don't have any, I have them. (they are usually the same ones the postperson left for him. If he thinks they came from the window he will chow them down! I thought it was the smell of the postpersons dog on her biscuits that kept him from eating them right away. Go figure!? He also won't eat just any treat, he prefers the Ol' Roy sausage type that are in the tan can from Wal-Mart! We have tried the red can and others but he turns his nose up to those and will go without until we get the ones in the tan can, though I some that were a cheese and meat type and the only way I got him to eat them was by putting peanut butter on them! Fussy, no just well loved! My reward is his love and devotion. He follows me wherever I go, bathroom, basement shop, and even now he is at my feet under the desk! Hey, I've enjoyed talking with you about bear, due to my illness I don't get out too much and even less in the winter.Vonage phone XXXXXXXXXXtoll free So thank you!
[email protected]@XXXXXX.XXX

Thank you Rev. Barry..It has been a pleasure for me to make you acquaintance. I won't be able to call you as it is totally against the rules. Sorry. Thanks for your stories about Bear and I feel that I have made friends in both of you.




Dr. Nell

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