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Unread 08-09-2008, 12:32 PM   #1
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Default Bullmastiff Skin Problems

I have a 4 year old female bullmastiff, since she was about one, she has developed a skin condition, the vet says its seasonal alopecia as well as dermatitis, she loses some of her coat starting from prob about april time, it normally starts to grow back nearer winter, she scratches all the time, bleeds, sucks her paws, gets spots, sore ears, eye infections, the list goes on! Hes given her steriods, creams, pain killers, drops, everything, she has now been diagnosed with hip dysplacia too and goes hydrotherapy once a week, Im at my wits end, I feel so sorry for her all the time, she still eats & enjoys her walks & cuddles but the scratching must be driving her insane & her skin always looks so sore. I dont like to keep her on steriods cos that affects her weight (knock on effect on her hips) and are not good for her in the long run. Has anybody else experienced anything like this with their dog? Any advice would be much appreciated.
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Unread 08-09-2008, 12:38 PM   #2
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Awww! Poor darlin'! She's a bundle of issues!

I can only suggest what worked for a much lesser problem with my boy Ash. He sucked his paws as well and turned them a pinky color that looked terrible, had flaky skin too. My vet suggested we try him on Solid Gold dog food and within a week he showed a LOT of improvement! No anti-histamines needed, just the food. I do not think that a food change would take care of the whole problem, but nutritionally supporting your dog tailored for the issues she's displaying might help. I would ask your vet about this option and see if you can't find a well balanced food that would assist. Best of luck!!!
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Unread 08-09-2008, 12:46 PM   #3
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I agree with Draco about checking her food however maybe try a dog nutritionist and see what they have to say as some vets will stock a particular brand of food and will always suggest that brand because they will get a cut of the profits from the sales (at least they do down here).
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Unread 08-09-2008, 01:09 PM   #4
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You are right, Poot poot! The reason I was so interested in trying the food my vet suggested was because they didn't even have it! So there was nothing for them to personally gain. I also made sure to read the label on the bag to make sure it was a good food, and it was even better than the Nutro I had been feeding.
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Unread 08-09-2008, 03:31 PM   #5
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Thanks for your advice, I have already changed her food re vets advice but hasnt made any difference at all, Ive also been giving her fish (which she likes) re the oils for her hips, oh I dont know, at a bit of a loss what else to do!

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Unread 08-09-2008, 04:30 PM   #6
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How long has she been on the food change? With such a complicated issue it can take some time to see results.
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Unread 08-10-2008, 01:34 PM   #7
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Few months now, its the 2nd time its been changed. When she was younger, the vet did allergy tests & said she had a reaction to rice, potato & certain vegetables, all the stuff thats in skin sensitive food!!!

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Unread 08-10-2008, 01:44 PM   #8
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Oh wow! That's a bummer! Sadly, the dietary change is all the experience I have had, and it worked on Ash. I wish you luck! Maybe someone else on here will have more information. Allergies are a pain to mess with.
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Unread 08-10-2008, 05:40 PM   #9
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here are a number of options when dealing with an atopic (allergic) dog. Your vet has conducted allergy tests so he knows what he’s up against.

Don’t forget the beneficial effects of water. Cool water baths decrease pruritus (itching) by soothing the skin and washing away inflammatory mediators and potential allergens.

Colloidal oatmeal is safe and a relatively effective antipruritic. Veterinary oatmeal based products are available as shampoos, conditions and bath treatments. They only provide short-term relief (24-48 hours) but think about that; if you were itching until you made yourself bleed then 1/2 days relief is more than welcome. Oatmeal doesn’t have any antifungal properties. There are also some oatmeal products which contain Diphenhydramine , and there is one product which is ‘leave on’.

I don't know whether your Vet has explored GLA(gamma linoleic acid) this is found in evening primrose oil (Epogam) Allermyl® (Virbac).

Fatty acid supplements have been reported to be beneficial too. Its complicated how they work, but trials show good results.

Tricyclic antidepressants are also useful for allergic dogs, amitriptyline, and doxepin to name a couple, but your Vet wil know which ones to prescribe.

Has your vet also mentioned immunotherapy? That might be worth considering, if you haven't already.

Sorry that your dog is suffering so much. If it were mine I'd go back to the vet and get a referral to a veterinary dermatologist. However, your dog will come to no harm if you give it evening primrose oil capsules prior to the veterinary consultation.

Sorry I haven't been of much use.

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Unread 08-11-2008, 11:41 PM   #10
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I have heard many success stories in regards to people switching their dogs with allergies to raw food, if you are willing to try it.
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