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NancyH, Pet Health Care, Rescue,Train,Breed
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience:  30+yrs pet vet care & nursing, rescue, behavior & training, responsible breeding, small animal care
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seborrheic ear margin dermatosis

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Got so much great advice on my last question, I decided to see if you guys could help me out with another doxie medical question:

I have a ten-year-old red short-haired. About a year and a half ago, she developed ear margin dermatosis. It got really bad really quickly. I don't think there's a connection, but I should mention that it started right after she was bitten by another dog. The other dog had just come from a foster rescue home and was waiting for its new parents to arrive. It was current on its shots, but it was very dirty.

Anyway,,, the ear margin dermatosis has been virtually untreatable. Our regular vet tried prednazone (sp?), sulf-oxy-dex shampoo, antibotics, medicated wipes, and I'm sure there are other things I'm forgetting. We also switched to a raw food diet. after trying Science Diet's ZD with no result. He also ran a few tests to check for mites and various diseases.

We finally took her to a vetrinary dermatologist. They did a tape test, scraped a sample, checked for mites, etc. They finally diagnosed it as Seborrheic ear margin dernatosis, which we already knew. They sent us home with an ointment called Kerasolve and new shampoo. (I can't remember the name, and I've given it to my sister because it works wonders on her dog's hot spots. I know that it did contain some type of disinfectant that my vet uses to wash up for surgery.) Anyway, that was also ineffective.

The condition has gotten progressively worse: At one time we had to keep her ears bandanged 24/7 because they dripped blood.

Right now, through much research and trial and error, we've put her on pentoxfillyne. It has helped more than anything else. It at least controls the condition enough that she doesn't have to wear bandages. We missed three pill once because the compounding shop was closed, and we went right back to the bleeding.   

At one time, I also gave her a supplement called Oli-pet, but I quit when we started the pantoxofillyne. It also controlled the condition somewhat, but it is alternative medicine, and I'm not at all comfortable giving it to her.

One interesting thing I have noticed: One ear is markedly worse than the other. In that ear, she's always had a problem with smelly black wax build-up. I have to swab the wax out of the folds inside her ears very regularly. If I don't, she will develop a blockage. I also use an ear cleaner fluid on the one when it becomes itchy.   (About once every other month or so.)

The ear margins don't itch. She never picks at them, and they don't seem to hurt. She finds the bleeding very distressing, though.    

My question is: Does anyone have any other advice? Could the wax be related to the problem? Could the bite be related?

Thanks for any info!

Hi there! Have you tried cleaning using the ear cleaner on them more often to see if this helps to decrease the amount of buildup?

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to V Matthews's Post: Well, yes, that works pretty well for cleaning, but she has open sores on the edges of the ears. The cleaner is irritating to them, so I try to use it as little as possible. She will let me swab as much as I need to because it feels good to her. Her doctor says this is fine because I'm only cleaning out the folds, and it helps me keep the cleaner usage to a minimum. Since she doesn't get infections, I try to only use the cleaner on the one ear when it gets bad inside. It will loosen the debris, and when she shakes her head, the excess wax comes out. Neither she nor I care for this much. :)
Tacrolimus (Pro-Topic) 0.1%” ointment might help with the scabbing and bleeding. In combination with the Pentoxifylline which increases the blood circulation that seems to be one of the combinations of meds that works.
If you have not changed foods to one with minimal allergen potential you might want to do that. You may find a rabbit or venison or duck or even fish based food where no starches come from grains (sweet potato is a common substitute for the grains) will work. Wellness is one company that makes this sort of diet.
The ear wax build up could be in part due to a food sensitivity which dogs can get even if they have eaten the same food for years. Make sure all treats conform to the new diet too.
Hope this helps you!
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Nancy Holmes's Post: Okay one more question regarding the tacrolimus: Is it not carcinogenic? I was thinking that either my vet or the dermatologist said it wasn't worth the risk. Maybe I'm thinking of the wrong thing.

-BTW, she switched to Royal Canin Venison and Rice, but we went back to Science Diet when it didn't work. Maybe it's her treats. We never switched those b/c we couldn't get the venison treats locally. I'll try again with mail-order...

Sorry to make you have to answer me again...
She's 10 years old which is a senior dog. I'd worry about you handling it - maybe gloves? if you were putting a lot on or putting it on yourself.
The drug is also used in patients who get transplants as it is immuno suppressive

I don't think any long term studies have been done in humans or dogs.
You always have to weigh benefits against dangers when using meds. Other dachshund owners have had good luck using it in combination with the other med you are using.
Maybe its worth discussing again with your vet
Also the diet change - if she's not keen on venison try fish, or rabbit, or duck and do make sure treats including rawhides etc fall in the category of being OK
And you can buy one kibble for meals and another for treats - kibble makes nice small dog sized treats and if its different from dinner its still a treat!
NancyH, Pet Health Care, Rescue,Train,Breed
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience: 30+yrs pet vet care & nursing, rescue, behavior & training, responsible breeding, small animal care
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