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Gen B.
Gen B., Retired Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 2227
Experience:  Lhasa,Shih Tzu Breeder/ B.A.Neurophysiology & Animal Behavior/I use plain English!
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My dog has itchy skin and get watery eyes. Over the counter

Customer Question

My dog has itchy skin and get watery eyes. Over the counter Diphenhydramine HCI 25 mg contols it. Is there any way to get rid of it?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Gen B. replied 8 years ago.
What breed is your dog?

How old is he/she?

When did the itching start (at what age)?

What brand of food does your dog eat (including snacks)?

Do you have public water at home (or well water)?

Are there any problems with the hair, or just the skin?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.

She is 3 years old We got her when she was less than 1 year old


started itching 6 months later


Gets Science Diet Dry Dog food for senitive skin in moring and 1 can of light Science Diet at night


We have City Water and she get hers from the tap


There was a problem with the hair but I believe that was from chewing and licking




Expert:  Gen B. replied 8 years ago.
Hello and thanks for researching this very important question!

Sorry about the overlapped additional questions...the system has been reprogrammed to post your question before you are finished entering your info.

Skin problems
in pets are varied and complex...I'll be giving a lot of information that you might use in your discussions with your dog's medical staff. Be sure to let me know if you have other questions!

I am glad that the vet already checked her for skin mites--these are often associated with irritation around the eyes, but often passed over during exams. You've started out exactly on the right foot.

The canine immune system matures between 18-24 months of age. After this time, we begin to see allergies erupt in individuals who begin to have overactive immune function.

Dogs get a lot of skin symptoms, and some respiratory problems. Allergies get worse over time if we can't figure out what is causing the problem...many dogs that start out on antihistamines progress to needing stronger steroid medicines, and are even put on anti-allergy injection therapy in severe cases. This is not so much a failure on your part so much as a natural progression of the allergy syndrome.

Dogs sensitive to grasses and molds are usually more affected at the points of contact--the feet and belly.

Dogs that have allergies to foods suffer from all-over symptoms, from nose to tail, since the offending substances circulate through the entire body. The digestive linings are a specialized kind of "skin", so they suffer as many uncomfortable symptoms as the outside skin of your pet...allergic pets have more problems with indigestion, gas, stomach bloat, diarrhea and excessive acid.

The majority of immune problems can at least in part be relieved by improving nutrition to the Premium level. I'd suggest right away a trial of a limited-ingredient all-natural food such as Natural Balance Sweet Potato and Fish...found more and more in better pet supply stores. This food does not contain any of the common allergenic food ingredients, toxic food dyes or chemicals that can often irritate the skin. Stop feeding anything that lists corn, soy, wheat, gluten or red food dye on the label.

You might also try using Distilled Water in her dish instead of tap water, again to see if you can eliminate irritation from chemicals. Use this kind of ultra-clean water for her bathing as well.

Most dogs will generalized skin allergy develop overgrowth of yeast on the skin...this is also a source of itchy sensations! You can try a rinse of 50:50 white vinegar and distilled water once or twice weekly to keep these kinds of organisms under control. Foods high in carbohydrates (notably corn) increase the likelihood of yeast overgrowth, so eliminate these kinds of sugary ingredients from her diet...use a good-quality acidophilus supplement to help combat yeast overgrowth in the digestive organs.

These are some general impressions and suggestions...please let me know if you need more information by clicking "Reply". I will be away from my computer from 10.30am-2pm New York time (EST), but will check messages right away this afternoon.