shih tzu skin skin problems

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This topic contains 14 replies, has 0 voices, and was last updated by  Johannah 7 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #465526

    Margi
    Member

    My Shih Tzu, Bisket, is an adorable little girl, full of love and energy, she was born 4/20/08. Ever since I got her, she has a skin problem, that gives her bald spots, when she chews them too much. I took her to the vet, and the vet said, it was an immune problem, that hopefully will go away when she matures a bit. The vet gave her some antibiotics. The vet stated, there is not much more she can do for this ailment. I feed her good dog food, she is loved and well cared for by the family. The sad thing is, when I take her out, people are taken back by the bald skin spots on her, this interferes with her socialization, with others, animals and people alike. They seem to think, they can catch something from her. I explain what it is, the vet called it somekind of dermititis, caused by her immune system, and not contagious, but still puts people off.
    She goes on chewing on different areas, right now, its her front paws. I give her chewy toys and such, hoping it might make her stop chewing herself. Any advice on this? I should also mention, it has seemed to improve a bit since I got her. But it is still a problem, nonetheless. Thanks for your time.

    #465527

    Beverly
    Member

    When I got my first Shih Tzu he also had skin problems – I took him to several vets and knowone could tell me what the hell was wrong with him. He had bald spots everywhere and fur all over my house, well I started to get him groomed very short a puppy cut and then I found a wonderful vet and she told me it was like a yeast infection in their system and will never go away. They did the samething and gave him tons of drugs and finially they put him on prednizone and he was on it up until he pasted he was three when I got him and he died 6 years later but of cancer. But it did help him I made sure he was groomed every 8 weeks and gave him a bath once a week to keep the small away. I know you are in a different state but if you would like to call them her name is Dr. Kellerman Mobile Vet PA. 724-843-5443- see what she has to say it couldn’t hurt.

    #465528

    Johannah
    Member

    If you can find a vet who specializes in dermatology it would be worth a visit, although it won’t be cheap. Your dog could have a yeast infection, a fungal infection, demedex mites or any number of other things, including food, household and outdoor allergies. Only a qualified vet can do all the testing, hopefully make a proper diagnosis and then set up a treatment program. Skin problems are rampant in Florida where I live and every dog is diagnosed with a different allergen and a different treatment program. I would not wait and hope the puppy grows out of the condition because permanent hair root damage can occur from some of the potential underlying causes. You have my sympathy as I have been down the path with itchy, chewing dogs and it is so frustrating not being able to allay their discomfort.

    #465529

    Manderz
    Member

    dont spend a ton of money on vets. I have a dog with exactly what you just said. we saw MANY vets and none of them did anything useful for her. instead, my husbands aunt is a dog groomer and she has used this shampoo before for dogs like this. so we tried it. 1-2 baths a month and in 4 months her bald spots were compleatly gone. shes 6 years old and had those bald spots her whole life. i told someone i know who has a chiwawa about it and her chi was compleatly bald on one shoulder to her elbow. she used it and it worked too. just try it. its alot cheaper then going to a vet and paying $70 for antibiotics and $30 just to see the vet in the first place. this actually worked. its a eucalyptus shampoo. im giving you a link for it so you can see what it looks like, check your dog stores before you order online, just cuz you dont gotta pay shipping and handling that way.
    you could also find:
    baby oatmeal and aloe shampoo
    eucalyptus oil(farmers markets always have it, about $2)
    put 1 tbs in the shampoo and bath her in it. thats worked on other dogs but if it doesnt, the shampoo i told you about should deffintetly work. but it takes time, it wont work right away. the chiwawa took only a month thought. our dog took 4 months. but it should work.

    #465530

    Margi
    Member

    Thanks Butch for your post, I have heard about taking prednisone, for skin conditions before, in fact I remember my doctor gave it to me once when I had a bad case of poison ivy. How well did it work, and how much did your dog have to take a day? Also I wanted to know, did your shih tzu, had a bad odor as well! I was surprized such a sweet little dog could smell so bad!.. Thanks!

    #465531

    Margi
    Member

    Hi Joannah, thanks for your post. Yes its really frustrating to have an ichy dog! Did your also have a odor as well? The vet thats an allergy specialist, is probably expensive, and in these days of a tight economy, a little steep for me right now! We have a few kids as well. And have had to cut back a little on things, so not likely I will do that anytime soon!
    As for your remark about living in Florida, I am in Connecticut, right now it is about 20′ outside! I was thinking, maybe when she can go out in the sunshine, it would help her heal, well so much for that idea I guess! I will post on how she is doing. Thank you!

    #465532

    Beverly
    Member

    Yes he had a horrible order- that is why I had him groomed every 8 weeks and gave him a bath in oatmeal shampoo it’s make their skin feel good but I had to bath him everyweek. You are right vet bills are like going to a people doctor any more. Good Luck and keep us posted

    #465533

    Margi
    Member

    Thanks Butch, I wondered if my dog, just had a smelling problem. I use baby oatmeal bath, along with some shampoo I got in the drugstore, for ichy scalp. This seemed to help her a bit. In between, I use doggie wipes I get in the pet store, for in between baths. They smell nice and make her fur pretty and fluffy. Of course it doesn’t last long! I think going to the groomer on a regular basis is a good idea, do you keep the fur really short?

    #465534

    Beverly
    Member

    Going to the groomer is a great start- and yes I had them give him a puppie cut very short and in the summer almost bald, it seem to help him.
    good luck

    #465535

    Johannah
    Member

    Skin odor like you’re describing is most often due to a yeast infection or a bacterial infection. Yeast infections require treatment with an antifungal medication and bacterial infections require antibiotics. Some of these bacterial infections are deep-seated and require much longer treatment than the usual two week antibiotic protocol. Yeast infections are also difficult to get rid of but it can be done. When all is said and done, only a qualified vet can determine what is wrong with your dog. I understand when you say you have children and the budget is tight. However if one of your children had this type of skin problem, was scratching and/or licking/biting due to the pain would you not get medical treatment for him/her? Is your dog any less worthy of being treated for his medical problem? Going to the groomer frequently costs money that would be better spent getting a proper diagnosis and treatment plan for your dog. The longer you let something like this go the more painful it is and the more difficult it is to get rid of. And of course the cost of getting rid of it will also escalate. Try to find a vet who will take payments. Otherwise you are setting yourself and your dog up for a lifetime of pain and frustration.

    #465536

    Margi
    Member

    But of course I took her to the vet, Joanna! She went to the vet in December and the vet gave her antibiotics, she had to take for nearly a month. No I wouldn’t let my kids or my dog suffer anything like that! Actually the vet told me, it might be something with her immune system, and hopefully she would grow out of it a bit. She has seemed to improve a bit since the beginning, but my main complaint is that she still bites and chews on herself, and scratches herself too much.

    #465537

    Margi
    Member

    Yes Butch, I agree with that, I am making an appointment for her to get a short cut, I think that is the best idea!

    #465538

    Johannah
    Member

    I didn’t mean to be disrespectful and I’m sorry I offended you. I only used the children/dog analogy to illustrate how important it is to follow up with your vet, because the problem is not resolved. Skin problems are one of the most frequent reasons for visiting a vet. They are very difficult to diagnose and usually cannot be by only looking at the dog. If your dog has an infection no amount of trimming and bathing will cure it. The vet should do a skin scraping and possibly some other tests to determine what is causing the dog’s discomfort. And unless he has already done this he is just guessing that your dog has an immune mediated illness. If it is a bacterial infection it needs to be identified because different infections respond to different antibiotics. And once identified the treatment can take months and somestimes even much longer. Some dogs even need to be on low dose antibiotics for years. If yeast is the culprit a skin scraping will also identify it and it also takes a long period of drug treatment to get rid of. I understand that this all cost money which most, myself included, have a shortage of. But trying to treat with trimming and bathing will only prolong the time for curing the underlying cause and of course the cost will go up expotentially. I have many friends with dogs who have been successfully diagnosed and treated for various skin conditions. The difference in the physical appearance and the emotional well being of these dogs is nothing short of stunning. A dog who is chewing and scratching itself is a dog that is in pain.

    #465539

    Margi
    Member

    I thought I would update all of you great people who wrote replies to me. When I posted last in January ’09, I had quite a problem with her odor and skin chewing. Now in Oct.’10, after many vet visits, he is an awfully nice vet, finally diagnosed her with mange. Antibiotics, prednisone and constant use of Pro Meris flea treatment, this is supposed to be good for dogs with skin problems, she has greatly improved. She no longer has bald spots, hair loss or bleeding anymore. She still does however, get itchy patches, usually on her lower back near her tail which still itch. The vet was right, she did seem to improve with age and careful monitoring of her skin. I bathe her once a week, with medicated shampoo and she’s doing so much better. At one point, she had not one hair on her tail! I have one picture of her posted in the gallery, I will post a new one, soon as I find one. I thank all of you, who took the time to give me your advice.

    Click on any picture to see full size:

    #465540

    Johannah
    Member

    Thanks for letting us know the outcome. And it is so good to hear it is a happy one!

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