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Candy, Veterinary Technician
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 11619
Experience:  Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Former Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
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I have a 3yr. beagle pitbull mix, female. In the last 2 yrs

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I have a 3yr. beagle pitbull mix, female. In the last 2 yrs she has been sick off and on. Our vet thinks it allergies and wants us too do the skin test. She has vomit, not eating her food, scratch her self raw. And in the last 3 mo. has really lost a lot of weight. She was on a grain -free diet, but she kept vomiting so now she has rice and boiled beef, and her dry food 2 cups a day. We have done everything, test, med's, blood work and she is not getting any better.
Also we just got a kitten, could that have any thing to do with it?

If you have any idea's please help!

Hello and Thank You for contacting JustAnswer.


I am sorry your baby is having trouble.


Can you tell me where she itches the most?


Does she have any history of problem with the ears?


Have x-rays of the abdomen been done?


Has a fecal test been done by a lab to look for parasites?


What medications have you tried?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you candy,

She itches any where she can reach and bites her self also.

No prob with her ears.

No x-rays have been done.

Yes her fecal test come back clean.

Her med list is long, Prednisone, amitrypilline, cefpodoxime, cerenia

Thank you for the additional information.


Dermatology is one of my areas of interest and I have spent the last 5 years participating on various study groups and taking classes. The Pit Bull by far represents one of the largest number of allergy dogs. Both environmental and food allergies seem to be the biggest problems.


The itching vomiting and weight loss really lead towards this being a food allergy.


Dogs can develop food allergies at any times even if they have been on the same food for a long period of time While most people think that food allergies are due to grains such as corn, wheat, bran as well as soy that is in fact not the whole truth. The biggest problem is the PROTEIN source. This includes chicken, lamb and beef.


The following article discusses how to do a food trial in-depth this is the same instructions we give our clients. It is recommended to try a different protein source such as duck, rabbit, kangaroo or Bison and grain free We often see dogs do well on a different protein only to develop an allergy to this as well later down the road. Purina HA or Science diet ZD are top of the line allergen diets. These foods have had the molecules broken down to the point that the body can not identify what they are getting thereby eliminating all chance of an allergic reaction

Read more here


When trying a food trail it is very important that they get no other foods, treats or human foods as this will void out the food trial. This can take 6-8 weeks to show improvement so you must stick with it. Should you opt to try the trial and your baby is a treat eater here is a recipe you can make using his food as to not jeopardize the trial. These recipes are for science diet foods however any food can be used.Using canned food:

Open the can and shake the loaf of food out of the can.

Cut the loaf into 1/4" thick slices, and then cut the slices into bite-sized pieces.

Bake the treats in a microwave oven on high for approximately 2½ to 3 minutes.

Store baked treats in the refrigerator and discard leftovers after 5-7 days.

Homemade treats should not exceed 10% of your pet's total daily intake because heat alters the nutritional characteristics of the food.

Do not freeze homemade treats.

For a conventional oven, follow the instructions above and place the bite-sized pieces on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until crispy.


Using Dry Food:

In a blender, add 2 cups of dry food and grind into a powder.

Pour powder into a mixing bowl and gradually add about 1 to 1¼ cups of water, stirring until it forms a dough consistency.

Shape into individual "treats" or "cookies" and flatten the dough using the back of a spoon (the cookies will not flatten like standard "people cookies" do.)

Place treats on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until crispy.

Store baked treats in the refrigerator and discard leftovers after 5-7 days.

Homemade treats should not exceed 10% of your pet's total daily intake because heat alters the nutritional characteristics of the food.

Do not freeze homemade treats.


The only way to know for sure what the actual cause is would be to have the allergy testing done.

If that is not an option I would try the food change and also speak to your vet about a medication called Atopica this is by far the best medication for environmental and topical allergies. Here is additional information on this medication.


Omega three fatty acids added to the diet will help promote healthy skin. These can be used long term.We recommend Derm Caps. Other products can be used but you must be sure they are not flavored. Many supplements for pets are flavored to make them more appealing and you want to avoid this with food allergies.

Here are the Derm caps


Another thing that may help is a leave on conditioner called ResiCort this contains cortisone and is very effective in helping with the itching.



I know you have been dealing with this for a long time and I understand the frustration, this can be tough on both the owner and the dog as well


I hope this has been helpful, I would love for you to touch base with me in 3 weeks if you choose to follow my recommendations and let me know how he is doing. Please reply back if you have additional questions or concerns.




Edited by Candy on 11/19/2010 at 3:05 AM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Yes, we did do the sceice-diet zd for at least 8 mo to a year and she was the same.
so with that being said, do you think we should just do the allergy test?

Also we bath her twice a week with a med shapoo called Seba-Hex, any good?

Is the med you are rec. atopica a long term- med?
Also in her food we give her fish oil, anygood?


Were you giving the fish oil or any treats when she was on Z/D

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
no nothing but the zd treats



Normally topical allergies do not result in the vomiting and diarrhea that you are seeing.


I am so sorry I know how frustrating this is. I would do the allergy testing when you can that is the only way to find out for sure.


Yes the Atopica is used long term and is safe for long term use. Normally this is given daily for 2-3 weeks and then 2-3 times per week. This really has made a huge difference in allergy dogs so I would try this until you can get the testing done.


Fish oil is ok but I would look more at the full omega three products. Be very careful dosing the fish oil to much can lead to Vit D toxicity.This can also cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Seba- hex is good but may not really help with the itching.


Often this itching causes excess bacteria and or yeast to develop on the skin here is a good homemade recipe we use.

1 Tube Monistat Cream(used to treat yeast infections in women)

1/2 cup antibacterial soap (Dial works great, but dawn dish soap can be used as well)

1/4 cup hydrogen peroxide

4 cups of water

Bathe well working into a lather and allow to stay on the skin for 5-10 minutes then rinse well.


I would also check out the ResiCort I have an allergy dog and I would never run out of it. Because it contains cortisone and is a leave on it really helps.

Edited by Candy on 11/19/2010 at 3:35 AM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
just by chance do you think the cat has anything to do with it??? Sorry just want to hit all the pionts

Please do not apologize as I said this is my big area of interest so I help owners who have been dealing with this for years so please know I understand your frustration ask any questions you need.


This was a problem long before the kitten entered the house so I doubt it however it can not be ruled out until the testing is done. I have seen dogs allergic to their cat house mates so it is possible, I recently had one that was allergic to human dander(that is a hard one)

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