itching scratching and bleeding

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Feb 21st, 2007 04:55
Canada
Puddlesdaddy
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My dog "Puddles" is a 14 year old female Staffie mix. She has never been fixed. Every winter she is affected by winter itch. She gets a lick granuloma or a hotspot and it just goes everywhere. This year has been the worst ever as she is now scratching herself while my wife and I are away at work, to the point of bloodshed. We have an E-collar on her when we are away but she still uses her feet on her neck, underside legs and elswhere, pretty much wherever she can reach. She is one big bloody sore! Her breed has a high pain tollerance and as such she won't think twice about biting or scratching to the point of injury and beyond. I am going to have to take her to the vet to get something for this problem but every time I do this it seems like it is just a bandaid solution. She is better or a bit less active for a couple of days or a week or two then she is back at it full speed. I am beginning to think it might be diet related as we switched her to Senior food about 5 years ago (which is when this seems to have all started to happen). We use medicated shampoos, extra humidity in the house, benadryl, oilly adatitives to her food, medicated sprays etc etc. I am reaching a very sad realization that she probably does not have very many winters left, and I would rather her be at peace then in so much pain and frustration. We are at our wits end. All the doctors want to do is give her Steroids, but I am hesitant, becuase I don't want to spend the remaining years of her life paying for big fat vet bills. I feel horrible becuase I feel like I am being cold and uncaring but I would rather put her down than put her through medical procedure after medical prceedure, just to selfishly get a few more months with her. I need a permanent or at least a better solution to this problem. Someone please help me! I want to do what I can to make the itching stop get her healed and healthy again, without having to deal with the side effects of medicines and proceedures which will make things worse down the road. I need some advice to get her on a permanent solution to help her get over this. What am I doing wrong? Any advice would be desperatle appreciated.
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Feb 21st, 2007 05:07
North Carolina
libertydogtraining
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Try putting her on a non-allergic formula. I feed and recommend the Fish and Chips formula at http://www.frrco.com/121668 I have pit bulls, so I'm familiar with their skin sensitivities and health. Also, do not bathe her to often. Try using an oatmeal shampoo on her to sooth her skin. In between baths, brush her fur and then wipe her down with sensitive skin baby wipes. What have they been giving her medication wise? If it is diet related, switch to the food I mentioned gradually, then keep her on it for a couple of months to let her body detox any of the ingredients from the first food that may have caused her reaction, and to give the new food time to boost her immune system and work on her skin and coat. Good luck with her. I think you should explore your options. If her condition can be regulated with this food switch, then great. If not, get the meds for her if they control the problem. I do not think a "controllable skin" condition warrants having her put down...
   
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Feb 21st, 2007 05:18
Canada
Puddlesdaddy
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No, I'm not suggesting putting my best friend down because of a frusrating skin disorder! I have been led to belive that the steroids my vet keeps trying to shove at me will harm her liver and cause a whole bunch of other secondary health problems. (kind of like treating a headache with a hammer blow to your head). I just want her remaining years to be as trouble free and comfortable for both of us, if possible. I don't want to compound her health issues with side effects and other problems that might crop up as a result of over medicating or treatments that are not good for her overall health. Thank you for her advice, I think when I take her to the vet next I will look a the food option more closely. BTW, I think it was the "at peace" line that makes it sound like I want to needle my dog, I should have said "Comfortable"
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