Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts?

Posted by: GSDTrain

Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/14/11 09:59 PM

Some of you may remember late last fall me posting about Mason having excessive itching and dry skin. After seeing some post by members, I thought maybe it was due to the change in humidity in the air.

Early December is when I started noticing that Mason was itching more and more and come the 17th (ish) I noted his first hair loss spot on his rear left leg around his "knee-ish" area. As the month went on, I noticed that spot getting a little redder and him continuing to itch, he was not itching just that spot he was itching all over his body. Then I called the vet an made an appt. for him on December 27. The vet did a complete examination and also did a skin scrap which came back negative. He was then placed on Temaril-P for 3 weeks because his itching was getting so bad. During that time, hair growth on the outside of his leg was noted but the inside of his leg still remained hairless, but was no longer red or getting worse. During the time on the Temaril-P his itching was none exsistent. The vet then suggested we change his food to grain-free, so he is now eating Orijen Adult Grain Free, which he loves.

After coming off of the Temiral-P, his itching returned within days. He has been on the grain free food since the 1st of the year, which is 10 weeks and the vet said that if it was a food allergy a change of some sort should be noted by 12 weeks at the lastest and so far, he is still itching excessively. Last Monday, February 7th, I took him back to the vet for a check up. While at the vet we had an allergy test done to rule out enviromental allergies, as I guess food allergy testing can't be done with accuracy. The results can take up to 2-3 weeks to come in and its been a week today. Since then, I have noticed some hair loss on the right rear leg, which is symmetrical to the hair loss on the left side. I have also noticed some slight hair thinning near his elbows (symmetrical on both sides) as well as some thinning above his eyes (again symmetrical on both sides).

I am kind of stumped on what this could be. Like I stated above, it started in early December. Does this sound like it could be allergies or do you think it could be something else? If so, what?

Mason is kept on Revolution year round for hw/flea preventitive, which also is used to treat mange/mites, but like I stated above his skin scrap came back negative.

It's just been a long and stressful 2 months for us, as I hate to hear and see him itching all the time and I don't want my dog to go insane and rip out all his own fur!! The vet gave me the option of putting him back on the Temiral-P for the time being until the allergy results come in, but I decided not to as I didn't think it would be healthy for him to be put back on it so soon and plus he is still growing and I read it can stunt growth in large breed dogs. Am I wrong?

When I first got Mason, he did have 1 bald spot on the top of his head but he was not itchy. I took him to the vet for that to but the vet said it was probably due to poor nitrition and it did clear up eventually. I don't know if this has any relation to what he has going on now.

Thoughts on any of this, are greatly appreciated. If can think of any additional things I should have the vet test for or what I should ask about/bring up...I am open to suggestings. My next step would probably be thyroid testing.

Having no answers is frustrating, but I know I have to be patient.

Here are some pictures I took this evening. In some of the pictures this fur/skin looks greasy and that is because I have been putting cream on it to help reduce the redness.


First the right side, the side that is just starting to thin out and lose hair:






Now the right side:










Sorry this is so long. If you have questions, feel free to ask!


Thanks
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/14/11 10:07 PM

Forgot to add: other than this he is completely healthy and acts normal.
Posted by: Recon

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/14/11 10:10 PM

I don't have an answer for you but sounds very similar to Recon's issues with his skin as well. I promise if I find something to cure my pup I will share the info with you! I know how frustrating it can be.

We just did a full blood panel to see about his immune system frown
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 02:03 AM

Ashley, is there any heat around those knee areas?
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 02:45 AM

Sorry about poor Mason! It does sound like environmental allergies to me but it looks like it's turning into a yeast infection.

What supplements do you have Mason on? Are you able to do preprepared raw to see if that might help?

Kailor has terrible skin problems and we have been seeing a holistic vet and she is doing a lot better. The vet had her on a low does of T.-P for years!
Posted by: Kayos

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 09:46 AM

Did your vet do the blood test or skin test for allergies? Although there is a lot of sucess with the blood test the skin test is considered the gold standard and the more definitive test. I believe you can blood test for food allergieds but again it is not very accurate. The food elimination trial is really the best method to figure out food and it is only as accurate as you are observant.

I think if I would wait on the results of the tests done already and then ask for a referral to a derm vet and take ther esults with you. They will do a very thorough history on Mason so you will need a lot of details on what has been going on with him.

Having been through this with Havoc it sounds like allergies of some kind. Even with allergy shots Havoc still occassionally gets very itchy.
Posted by: Schnickle Fritz

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 10:54 AM

have you changed your laundry soap? had your carpets cleaned? put in new bark or different shavings outside? any new grass growing in your yard? it is so hard to think of things that may cause this...
Posted by: Caja's Mom

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 11:05 AM

I would add some sort of oil to his diet. We have had good luck with coconut oil. It is pretty easy to find in the health food stores. We like the pills the best.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 12:17 PM

Thanks for the thoughts everyone.
Ruth, Mason gets 1000 mg of fish oil in the AM and PM, 400iu of Vit. E in the AM and a scoop of Nupro in the AM and PM.
Its funnny you bring up the preprapared raw meals as I bought some a few weeks ago, just haven't given any to him yet..just a few pieces here and there as a treat.
As far as the yeast infection factor, he was put on Clavamox a few weeks ago just to be sure, for 7 days and nothing changed.

Nothing new has changed...no new soap or anything, no new grasses as it is all snow outside.

Kathy, his knees are warm when I touch them once in a while, if thats what you mean.

I will check back here this evening after I get home from work.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 12:32 PM

Clavamox won't help with yeast.

It's an awfully odd place to start with the discoloration and loss.

Makes me think a few things.

The heat, I worry about infection, along the lines of say Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. He may or may not run a fever (what did the vet say his temp was?), but that's why I was wonder about the heat issue. Clavamox won't touch most of the tick diseases, or other types of joint infections. 7 days wouldn't have been long enough to affect lyme.

Bilateral, hind end, would think thyroid.

If those pics resulted from self-mutilation, then there might be pain, might come from the low back. A fixation in the lumbar area could cause this.

Itchiness can come from strange places - turned out Max was allergic to the cotton sheets that I used to cover his bedding.

You might try some scullcap and St John's Wort to handle the itching, might help better than drugs, but none of that will get at the itchy.

I don't like chemicals, but I had luck once using Advantix with Max once - it repels and I think he was being eaten alive by mosquitos. The last go around it did nothing, which led me to the allergy tests.

You could always try awhile of homecooked restricted and see if that makes a difference.
Posted by: mspiker03

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 02:25 PM

I also think a food trial (raw or homecooked) wouldn't hurt.

As a side note, I never felt the allergy shots worked for us, but the diet change did wonders.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 02:44 PM

Just my 2 cents, for what it is worth. I had Pheonix for nearly a year until I ran into allergy problems and he was 2 1/2 years old.

I did the VARL blood test for Phoenix's allergies. We got a good hold on what his environmental allergens were, but like Kathy said, the gold standard is skin testing with a derm. I did take Phoenix to a derm suggested by my vet, who was great in the information he gave regarding food and environmental allergies. We were set to do the skin test when I got the results from the blood testing. I wanted to give the serum a try for a few months to see if it made a difference, if not, we were going to go whole hog w/ the derm. He was fine with the wait since he didn't consider Pheonix a "bad" case...as in no skin infections or sores/hot spots.

Phoenix also has food allergies, but we didn't just have itching with it, we also had periodic vomiting and runny poo. I did an elimination diet to determine his food allergies.

I also discovered that Phoenix starting reacting to ALL chemicals I used in the house. Carpet cleaner from my Hoover shampooer, floor cleaner (Swifer wet jet, Mr. Clean, Ajax). His skin turned bright pink with little red blotches and hair loss on his rear legs and belly. Oh and the itching was constant.

I was adamant about no pred so we did the antihistamine thing to get things somewhat under control until we got the serum for his shots.

I have found that the shots work well for us, but there are periods of intense itching at the beginning of winter. However, the itching isn't anywhere near as bad as when we didn't know what his allergies were.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 02:57 PM

The rug could also be a problem. Basu was allergic to rugs...or rugs exacerbated his allergies.

The derm vet here is very conventional. I wasn't at all impressed. She thinks raw food causes all dogs to be sick and pushes that kangaroo or rabbit pulverized prescription diet for every single dog who walks through the door. Kailor went twice. Neither time did her treatment suggestions work. The holistic vet has been much more helpful.

I would stop the Nutro because it has yeast in it. I would actually stop all of the supplements (some dogs don't do well on fish oil) and start C and see if that makes any difference. Which kind of pre-prepared raw do you have?
Posted by: aubie

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 03:02 PM

Are you feeding one type of grainfree? Chicken? Beef? Could it be a protein intolerance to chicken for example? Or have you tried different varieties?
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 03:08 PM

Ruth, good point about the rug! Sometimes it's the rug itself and sometimes it can be what is IN the rug, ie, molds, mildew, dust, dustmites. Rugs have so many chemicals in them to begin with when they are manufactured. And unless you are anal about vacuuming every day or every other day, you'd be surprised at what can be captured in the fibers from the enviroment.

I stopped the Nupro for Phoenix while doing the elimination diet. Besides the yeast, it also has flaxseed which can be an allergen for many dogs.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:13 PM

I actually disagree that the skin test is the gold standard. Max's Derm, whom I like very much, uses a blood allergy test for environmental allergens. (She does food by challenge.)

I do agree with stopping the Nupro - there are many things in there that could be a trigger.

Can you tell if the hair loss is from itching and scratching and biting, or does it continue to happen when he is on the drug? Did you ever try benadryl and if so, did that have any effect?
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:17 PM

Lisa, why don't you think it's the gold standard? I know my derm perferred to do the skin test, but was ok with me wanting to wait to hear back on the blood testing my vet sent to VARL? My derm said that the blood testing was more apt to have false positives and false negatives than the skin testing for environmental allergens.

I was also steered away from doing food allergens with the blood testing for the same reason. Both my derm and vet said I could do it, but they both felt it wasn't worth the cost. Though, I wish I had now, I've heard so many folks say that it is, at the very least, a starting point.
Posted by: Kayos

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:22 PM

Diana Havoc also really was itchy at the beginning of winter. I think seasonal changes bring out the worst. He also gets runny poo. The shots have been effective for us as well.

I have noticed Havoc itches more in our bedroom. When we go to bed he comes in and lays on the carpet next to my side of the bed. If I put a bed there he lays at the foot of the bed. He likes the carpet but I am beginning to suspect the carpet may have wool in it. He is very allergic to wool.

Havoc also does not do well with Fish Oil, gives him the trots, Ground Flax seed too. Salmon Oil every other day seems to offer a balance for him at least this week. You may be using too many supplements.

When we did Havoc's food trial we stopped every thing except Duck and Potato for 4 months. No supplements, no other treats, no meat left overs, just his kibble and canned and D and P treats. We added one protein and tried it for 10 days to watch for a reaction. If we saw a reaction on for example day 3 we stopped there and crossed it off the "things Havoc can eat list". If we saw a reaction we stopped the food went back to D and P for 7 days and then moved to the next protein. When you start adding protein it is better to add fresh meat. We used about 1/2 cup of meat for each trial. A reaction can be runny poo, vomitting, gunky eyes or ears or itching.

It is a long process and requires a lot of discipline to stick to it and it is not exact because we are not exact. It took us probably 7 or 8 months from start to finish and I am not always sure about chicken. According to the trail it is oay but sometiems he itches with too much of it. He also has a bad habit of attacking the cat box so we are vigilant about that too.

Allergies are just no fun for us or them.
Posted by: Kayos

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:28 PM

Diana I was busfy typing as the others were posting. Both of my vets, (derm and regular) said the same thing about the blood test reliabilty. They said it was okay as a baseline but too amny false negs and pso made it not worth the money. Havoc's skin testing was not that bad and I had results a lot faster.

I think in the cases where the blood test says puppy is allergic to chicken and owner stops chicken and puppy improves than that is great but it does not happen tha often according to the vet. I think the blood test is also more expensive. Personally I did not care about cost or methed I just wanted accuracy.

That said I am considering a blood test just to back up the skin test and I may insist on it when Havoc goes in for his check up in late March.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:31 PM

Diana, when I first did the VARL testing for Indy, it was at our vet's suggestion. He said he used to send his clients over to UCD for skin testing, but had MUCH better results with the blood test - and that vet, though I often disagreed with his philosophies, is just about the smartest vet I have ever worked with.

I also respect this Derm of Max's, since she seems very willing to work outside of the box, as far as Derms go.

I had good experiences with VARL for Indy and Spectrum for Max. I was also pleased with the food results. No false positives, but, yes, false negatives - hard to know if those additional "issue foods" are allergies or other sensitivies.

Foods are trickier, since in some foods, preparation can alter the allergen, and I think there is a list of other reasons that can confuse the issue. I still like using the blood food test as a starting point for an elimination diet.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:38 PM

Kathy, whenever the itching starts up, I get anxious and think, oh crap, what now. I guess with two years of seasonal changes under our belt,I'm figuring, like you, that seasonal changes are to blame. I have not had an issue with runny poo in a long time (THANK God!!!)

I ripped up all of my carpets in the house and got the hardwoods refinished underneath..what a change! The new house we have has all hardwoods and limited scatter rugs. I've noticed that we have to be careful about certain synthetic fibers. Kathy, I'll trade you a few of my nice new synthetic (aka itchy) scatter rugs for your wool ones...wool is our friend here!

I started out with a home cooked diet, but with my work schedule, I had to switch to kibble. I took a chance at TOTW pacific Stream since I knew NB had flax and since I stopped the Nupro b/c of the flax, I figured why take the chance. All treats, including training treats, were the kibble. Took us a good 6 months to figure out grains (even rice, millet and barley) chicken (raw, cooked and processed) and processed beef (as in kibble and treats) to be our enemy. I didn't understand raw, so I was adding cooked meat and grains. I looked for the same reactions as Kathy noted. Some items (chicken, barley, rice) I saw immediate reactions, others took a little longer, but I believe I gave it 3 days for testing too.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:47 PM

Kathy, looks like I was busy typing when you responded.

My VARL was $180 and the derm was $220 for the skin...I had already paid for the blood test, so I figured, why not go for it. The derm off the bat, believed dust mites and molds b/c of the age of my house and carpet. The blood test showed those, dust mites and two common molds, as being the biggest allergens on the test. He didn't push for the skin test but suggested if we didn't see a marked difference in the itching on the first vial of serum, to try the skin testing. Lucky for us, 6 months of the serum, my dilegence in vacuuming, dusting and laundering with de-mite, we saw a HUGE improvement. Obviously, the food allergies took a bit longer.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:48 PM

Here the problem with Nupro is not the flax, but the other ingredients in it. Max gets fresh ground flax daily. The Nupro is really not his friend - could be the yeast, the source of liver (chicken? They don't say), or even the.other ingredients.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 04:53 PM

Originally Posted By: MaxaLisa
Diana, when I first did the VARL testing for Indy, it was at our vet's suggestion. He said he used to send his clients over to UCD for skin testing, but had MUCH better results with the blood test - and that vet, though I often disagreed with his philosophies, is just about the smartest vet I have ever worked with.

I also respect this Derm of Max's, since she seems very willing to work outside of the box, as far as Derms go.

I had good experiences with VARL for Indy and Spectrum for Max. I was also pleased with the food results. No false positives, but, yes, false negatives - hard to know if those additional "issue foods" are allergies or other sensitivies.

Foods are trickier, since in some foods, preparation can alter the allergen, and I think there is a list of other reasons that can confuse the issue. I still like using the blood food test as a starting point for an elimination diet.


Lisa, my vet does the derm referrals, but said that he likes the blood testing for environmental allergens. I think I jumped on that immediately, as I really respect this vet as he's bucked the "party line" in the practice. In fact, I'm going with him to Dr. Dodd's seminar. Anyhow, I have since talked to him about the blood testing for food allergens since talking to others, like yourself who have had it done. He still doesn't recommend it because of the false negatives, but admitted it can give a starting point for feeding.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 05:00 PM

Originally Posted By: MaxaLisa
Here the problem with Nupro is not the flax, but the other ingredients in it. Max gets fresh ground flax daily. The Nupro is really not his friend - could be the yeast, the source of liver (chicken? They don't say), or even the.other ingredients.


I don't think the liver is chicken or else we'd have BIG issues in this house w/ Phoenix's severe reaction to anything chicken, including fat and eggs (we found out duck eggs are fine) I never gave the yeast a second thought, I was all worried about the flax since I was told it could be a possible allergen and I avoided all foods containing it.
Posted by: Kayos

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 05:06 PM

Wow exact opposite on the cost here. Amazing how different locations can be so varied.

Diana I think your vet sounds awesome! My vet did tell me I am making him think outside the box more. As I really know little about this I took his advice and went with the skin test and he was backed up by the derm.

There is a holistic vet in Tulsa that I have talked to about this and she actually helped me with understanding the hot, cold and nuetral proteins too. She also felt the skin test was the better test. But you know it may just be that for so long that is all there was and many vets just don't trust the other?

If it flies or has fins Havoc can eat it.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 05:37 PM

Kathy, I LOVE my vet and while we now live over an hour away, I still keep him as Phoenix's primary vet. He feeds his own dogs a home cooked diet and titers. He's the vet that I went to for Dakota's accupuncture when I moved up here and KNEW Dr. Clemmons protocol for DM, so I didn't have to do any educating on what I was doing for Dakota. He is the one who referred me to the holistic vet I now take Phoenix to for his accupuncture and chiro.

I really like my holistic vet. From day one, she's been schooling me on the hot, cold and neutral proteins too. We try to avoid venison and salmon, when possible ( we call them "heaty meats" in our house) and stick w/ ocean whitefish and duck and bison whenever possible. (but during hunting season, we get a nice supply of venison, so I portion it out over the year) She even got me to purchase and READ four paws five directions. I think I brought the book in for the first few appts w/ my highlighted sections w/ written questions. She's not keen on the allergy shots and would love to see us stop them at some point and feels they will not be a life long regimen for Phoenix.

If it has fins, it's a friend in our house...

I never asked her about what she thinks works better, the skin or blood testing...hmm, I think I'll have to write that one down.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 09:14 PM

Thanks for the information everyone.
I will stop the Nupro as well as all other supplements and also see if I can get my vet to prescribe some other antibiotics.
I will also look into the tick disease possibility as well. The vet did not take his temp. either visit.
Thyroid is already the next thing on my list to test for.
As far as how he itches- he itches, scratches and bites himself. The area on his leg he bites at. I do think that the rugs may have something to do with it, possibly, as he does seem to itch more when he is in the living room (which has an older carpet), compared to when he is in my room or the kitchen.
I will have to go look in the freezer and get back to you on what type/brand of raw food I have. (Mason doesn't ever has get scraps, left overs or any other type of people food- he just never has.)

The allergy test that was done was the blood VARL test. When I talk to my vet again, I will ask for a derm referral as well.

In the mean time, I will look into the scallup and St. John's Wort.
Thanks Again
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 09:23 PM

Can you try covering the rugs with something for awhile, and see if that makes a difference? Put a sheet or a blanket on top of them temporarily?

As for the antibiotics, I'm not sure that they will help right now, unless it's an anti-fungal. The vet should have seen yeast on the skin scraping? If he has chewed so there is a bacterial infection, then the antibiotics will help with that. Not sure they will do much more at this point, unless there are tick issues.

I'm hoping it's a rug issue.....it would make sense.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 09:35 PM

The preprepared raw food I bought is Naturte's Variety Instinct RAW.(http://www.naturesvariety.com/InstinctRaw/dog/all)
I bought a few kinds, including the beef and lamb. After looking at them more closely, I see that they both contain flaxseed, which I didn't know was a possible "allergen" suspect at the time I bought them. Should I feed them to him or no?
I will look into raw feeding a little more and contact Lauri, to see what I should be feeding him percentage wise.
Posted by: Woodreb

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 09:45 PM

How about something like the Primal grinds? They are just the meat, bone and organ meat. You add in other things like vegetables if you want it. Here's their chicken grind.

http://www.primalpetfoods.com/product/detail/c/9/id/23
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 10:01 PM

Thanks Johanna, I will look into that! Never heard of Primal grinds before.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 10:09 PM

The cheapest way to do it is with Bravo grinds. They have turkey, beef and chicken in 10 pounders. THat's what Rafi eats.

You can ask Treats Unleashed to order them for you. They also carry some of the Primal grinds there. They have lamb, sardine, chicken, beef and turkey but don't usually carry them all at once. They can get those in 5 pounders. And they carry a new kind called Answers too. That comes in pork and chicken.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 10:20 PM

Thanks Ruth. I am familiar with Treats Unleashed and will look into this as well.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/15/11 10:37 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
..... After looking at them more closely, I see that they both contain flaxseed, which I didn't know was a possible "allergen" suspect at the time I bought them.


*Everything* is a possible allergen, eggs, carrots, etc. What might trigger a dog may be very different than what might trigger a different dog. There is nothing really that is not a potential allergen.

I wouldn't give up on the NV just yet, and I agree with the treats discussed above, BUT I would consider doing nothing *major* except taking out the Nupro and covering the rugs and seeing what happens. I would use the herbs (or unfortunately the drug) to break the cycle of itching, and see if you can eliminate it. If that doesn't work, then go to the next step.

There are lots of great ideas, but you the hard part will be trying to determine which order to do what. It is absolutely never clear....
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/11 12:09 AM

If I were to give him Benadryl, how much would I give him?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/11 01:41 AM

You could give 50 mg of benadryl a day for a trial. It should help if it's environmental, and probably will help if it's food. If it's a pain response or spinal irritation, it shouldn't have any effect at all.

It's not something I would want to use regularly, but using it for diagnostic purposes, or once in a while, isn't a bad thing. With Max's fistula, I sometimes used it in spurts at the 25 mg dose.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/11 09:21 AM

Thank you MaxaLisa. I think I will give it a try.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/17/11 03:22 AM

Also, bathing has worked wonders for Kailor. She gets a bath every week and we use very gentle shampoos formulated for skin problems. So far it hasn't damaged her coat (it's been over a year of regular bathing).

I would also try spraying Azmira's NEEM spray on the areas. It's stinky but seems to give a lot of relief for itching. We also use the Rejuva Spray by Azmira.
Posted by: AgilePaws

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/17/11 11:49 AM

My first thought was thyroid. Glad to hear you're having it tested!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/21/11 11:56 AM

Mason's allergy test results still aren't in yet, hopefully this week. crossedfingers

He is still itching really bad. He is now losing hair on the tips of his ears and when he itches his body, he now has clumps of hair falling out, plus excessive shedding. His itching has gotten so intense that he has a sore under his one front arm where he itches all the time. The hair loss is still symmetrical on both sides.

I took him back to the vet this AM, to have blood work taken for Thyroid testing. They have to send it out to Michigan State, so it will be atleast a week before the results of that are in.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/21/11 12:08 PM

I have also noticed that he has been a bit more reactive as well, since the onset of all this and from reading, I guess it can be realted to thyroid issues.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/21/11 12:47 PM

I am really hoping that something will turn up with the thyroid.

I take it benadryl did nothing? Has anything seemed to help?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/21/11 08:55 PM

I am too hoping that something shows up with the thyroid.

No...the benadryl didn't do much. The only thing that helps is the Temaril-P
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/22/11 03:33 AM

I hate these mystery itchy cases......any chance you covered the rug and gave a bath and put something on for critters (advantage or spray or something)?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/22/11 06:16 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
He is still itching really bad. He is now losing hair on the tips of his ears and when he itches his body, he now has clumps of hair falling out, plus excessive shedding. His itching has gotten so intense that he has a sore under his one front arm where he itches all the time. The hair loss is still symmetrical on both sides.



I've been thinking about this.

The hair loss on the tips of the ears, seems like this would not be a contact allergy. Seems like thyroid, skin parasite, or extreme food allergy.

Wish those tests would get in.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/25/11 09:25 PM

Well, I got Mason's allergy test results back today. Everything pretty much came back neagtive except D. farinae....that was the only thing that showed up that he was allergic to. He scored a "3" on it out of "6". My vet said anything scored above a "2", the dog is considered allergic to and can receive allergy shots for. Do you think this is what could be cause all of his issues or something more? I have never even heard of D. farinae before.
I am kind of really hoping something more will show up in the tyroid test results....still waiting on those results though.
Thoughts?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/25/11 11:53 PM

That's dust mite, and it's possible it could cause problems, but this seems more severe with the hair loss on the ears.

I would do some serious environmental stuff to see if it makes a difference, daily changing of bedding, added vitamin C (or do you do that already, forgot), etc.

Also, Indy was sensisitive to things that were lower than a three too. I will have to dig her test out and see. So I would get a copy of the results and browse the "2's".


I too am hoping for something to show up on the thyroid...
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/26/11 12:16 AM

Yes, he already gets vitamin C

I have a copy of the report and the following are marked "2"

Short Ragweed
Goldenrod
Plantain
Cocklebur
Yellow Dock
Pine
Timothy
Perennial Rye
Brome
Rhizopus
Mucor
D. pteronyssinus
Tyrophagus putrescentiae


here are the "1"

Alfalfa
June (Kentucky Blue)
Epicoccum



and the "0"

Pigweed
Firebush
Mugwort
Lamb's Quarter
Rough Marsh Elder
Birtch
Red Cedar
Sweet Vernal
Quack
Penicillium
Cladosporium
Aspergillus
Alternaria
Helminthosporium
Fusarium
Stemphylium
Aureobasidium(Pullularia)
Curvularia
Cat Dander
House Dust
Human Dander
Acarus siro
Malassezia pachydermatis
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/26/11 12:53 AM

Can a dust mite live on a dog? Probably not. Still stuck on the hair loss on the ears. If nothing else is found, I might consider a preventic collar for awhile to see if it helps, since mites are members of the spider family.



Some of those 2's might cause problems. For example, *i think* it's a ragweed allergy that can cause one to be allergic to some fruits and melons - would have to look up those cross-reactions.

I think plantain is in some supplements (Perfect Form?).

For right now, I would be careful of anything on the list, thinking also about the alfalfa, particularly because soon a lot of alfalfa will be GMO.

Good that a lot of the fungi are 0's.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/26/11 01:26 AM

He could be ingesting the mites too: http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/kids/suburb/story2/mites.htm
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/26/11 10:59 PM

Thanks for the info MaxaLisa....I read over that article....interesting. I never even thought about him possibly ingesting them...yuck!
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 10:53 AM

Just reading this and thinking of middleofnowhere and the mange - where is she! Remember, her one dog was tested for everything and they thought no way was it demodex but it was? Wasn't that how it went? Anyway, wanted to throw that out.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 11:04 AM

Thanks for the thought Jean, I appreciate it. I do keep him on Revolution year round...if that makes a difference.
If I remember correctly, several of our fosters that had mange were treated with Revolution.
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 11:31 AM

I think that's for sarcoptic mange???? Not that he looks like generalized demodex, just thinking of that weird case of middles.
Posted by: GSDElsa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 11:37 AM

Are the thyroid results back?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 04:09 PM

Nope, not yet
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/01/11 07:29 PM

Originally Posted By: JeanKBBMMMAAN
Just reading this and thinking of middleofnowhere and the mange - where is she! Remember, her one dog was tested for everything and they thought no way was it demodex but it was? Wasn't that how it went? Anyway, wanted to throw that out.


I've been wondering the same thing, which is one reason I was thinking of the Preventic collar.
Posted by: middleofnowhere

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 02:42 AM

I'm here. Treated for allergies for over 2 years - TWO dogs (didn't make any sense). Scabies not demodex. But yes, mange. So I now say treat for mange - much easier and less expensive than all the allergy stuff. (I spent a lot of money on allergy mitigation...)
Treatment for both forms of mange is the same or similiar enough to work in either case. It's also dramatic in forms of seeing change quickly.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 04:54 PM

Talked to the vet and she thinks we should wait until we get the thyroid results back before we do anything else. Once we get those results in and depending on what they show, I will bring mange treatment back up to her.
Also, if it were scabies wouldn't Ivy & the cat be itching as well, since they are in direct contact with him? The vet does not believe it is mange at all because he is on Revolution, but I will still consider it as a possibility if the thyroid results show nothing...I know mange can be tricky. I want to look into every possibility.

I think I may put him back on the T-P again, just to relieve him of all the itching.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 05:16 PM

Ok, just called the vets office again and talked to a tech. She said partial results have come in for the thyroid but not the full report. She said full report should be there in a day or 2. I did not think to ask what the patial results showed.
When I was talking with the tech, I did mention that I am putting him back on T-P. My question is ( I didn't think to ask the tech...my bad), how much do I give him....last time he was on it, the initial dose was 3 tabs every 12 hours for 4 days, then 2 tabs every 12 hours for 4 days, then 1 tab every 12 hours for 4 days, and then 1 tab every 24hrs.....so do I just go back to the 1 tab every 12 hours?
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 05:50 PM

I'm so sorry Mason is having more problems. Dust mite allergies can be terrible. If you have rugs or cloth bedding then you have a very nice home for dust mites. I wash the bedding with a few drops of tea tree oil to kill the dust mites and I pulled up all of the rugs (b/c I have am very allergic to dust mites).

It really does sound like some sort of parasite. I wonder about boosting the immune system, provided the thyroid test comes back negative.

A good dehumidifier might also help.

The tricky thing about T-P is that is suppresses the immune system and, of course, can cause long term damage to the kidneys and liver.

Have you looked into a holistic vet? Again, after thousands of dollars and years of T-P, the herbs from the holistic vet are what's helped Kailor the most.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 06:23 PM

Ruth, so do you suggest that I do or don't put him back on the T-P? I just want to help relieve some of his itching and haven't been able to find anything else that helps him. Long - term damage to kidneys and liver is why I was so hesitant to put him back on it even for a short time (a few weeks or so), but he needs something for relief...I know I wouldn't want to be itchy all the time like him...its gotta be uncomfortable. He does get vitamin C.
No, I have not looked into a holistic vet as I don't really know of any close to me.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 06:28 PM

If it does relieve his itching and the vet says it's ok then I'd say do it--it's just not a long term solution.

This is the vet Kailor is going to: http://www.theveterinaryalternative.com/aboutus.html
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 08:35 PM

Thanks Ruth...that vet is actually not to far from me. I didn't even know they existed!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/02/11 08:39 PM

Originally Posted By: BowWowMeow
If it does relieve his itching and the vet says it's ok then I'd say do it--it's just not a long term solution.


I guess I should have said that I do not plan on using the T-P long term or as a solution, just as a temporary thing until we can sort out his issues, to provide him with some relief.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/03/11 09:23 PM

Got his thyroid test results back today and everything came back normal. I had the vet fax me a copy of the report so I could look it over myself and everything is in normal range...nothing is out of wack at all.
On the plus side, he looks to be growing some hair in on his hind leg (the one that lost the hair first), although he has some new hair loss areas on the neck/chest.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/04/11 12:33 AM

Was it a full panel, and is everything in the upper half of the normal range?

I don't know how long he was off the Temaril - any immune suppressant should probably also suppress an autoimmune reaction and mask and autoimmune thyroid problem.

But, this sounds parasitic, or infectious, or possibly autoimmune.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/04/11 03:08 PM

Yes...it was a full panel. I am not home right now to look at were everything was in range but I do believe a few are under the 50% range and from my research, he could still be affected by that and meds can be prescribed..is that correct? (I read it's called "sub-clinical", or "low-normal" and that most vets aren't familiar with "borderline" hypothyroidism).
I will post everything when I get home in a bit for you to see.

He was off the T-P, for a month and a half (6 weeks) before the blood for the thyroid test was taken.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/04/11 04:44 PM

Ok...I'm home now. Here is what the results show:


TT4 [15-67] -- Mason is 46 -- 50% is 41 -- (so he is above 50% range)

TT3 [1.0-2.5] -- Mason is 2.3 -- 50% is 1.75 -- (above 50% range)

FT4 [8.0-26.0] -- Mason is 14 -- 50% is 17 -- (BELOW 50% range)

FT3 [4.5-12.0] -- Mason is 6.6 -- 50% is 8.25 -- (BELOW 50% range)

T4 Autoantibody [0-20.0] -- Mason is 9 -- 50% is 10 -- (BELOW 50% range)

T3 Autoantibody [0-10.0] -- Mason is 5 -- 50% is 5 -- (exactly at 50% range)

Thyroid Stimulating Horomone [0-37.0] -- Mason is 11 -- 50% is 18.5 -- (BELOW 50% range)

Thyroglobulin Autoantibody** [0-35.0] -- Mason is 4 -- Anything <20% is negative



Endocrinology Interpretation by Michal Mazaki-Tovi DVM, Dipl. ECVIM-CA (Michigan State University-Endocrinology Section):

Circulating concentrations of thyroid horomones and thyroid stimulating horomone are normal and do not provide a diagnosis of hypothyroidism. The negative autoantibody results further decrease the likelihood of lymphocytic thyroiditis in the thyroid glands of this dog.



All advice and any insight appreciated.
Should I question my vet about putting him on the thyroid meds as a trial to see if it makes a difference or should I go the mange treatment route first?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/05/11 12:19 AM

You're right, he should have been off the drugs long enough.

Yep, the FT3 and FT4 should not be low in a young dog, though most vets will still consider that normal. Most vets will go by the TT4 and the TT3.

The TSH, when in the normal range is useless, since you don't know if that's a real measurement or of the test isn't working, which is common. The only TSH value that you would pay attention to is high (it has an iverse relationship, high is bad).

Antibody stuff you want low.

It's possible that the thyroid is in the process of going low, but it's not clear in the test. I think the free values are suspicious, it's possible that something else is making the thyroid a bit low, and once the other thing is resolved, the thyroid will get better.

I dunno....how's that for being definitive?
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/05/11 10:36 AM

Have you sent pics/info to Allie and Leslie? They might be able to help.

I just took Ernie and Emma's (I think that's her new name) siblings to get speutered yesterday and the girls had no fur/sparse fur on the backs of their hind legs so I boiled myself when I got home. Just in case. Skin things are mysterious.

Have they checked for zinc deficiency? Wonder if putting some desitin on one of the spots as a little experiment would be okay. You'd have to cover it because that stuff is so sticky.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/05/11 07:02 PM

Can you check for zinc deficiency? I know in Huskies, they supplement, and see if there is a response, but they have a genetic thing for that.

Indy was very zinc deficient as a young dog. I think it's more likely when feeding a dog food with grains in it. Then the flip side, you certainly don't want to overdo it with zinc.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/05/11 09:17 PM

I will check with the vet Monday to see if we can check a Zinc deficiency.
I am feeding him Orijen Adult Grain Free...so there are no grains in his food or treats, as they are grain free too.

Also, are there any other tests you think I should have run on him?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/05/11 09:23 PM

Forgot to ask, how do they check for a zinc deficiency?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 05:13 AM

I honestly think there isn't a test to check for zinc deficiency. Huskies often have zinc issues, and they don't have a test - they supplement and note response. You could give 30 mg for a couple of weeks and see. I like using zinc pincolate (sp?)
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 05:05 PM

Ok. I am going out now and will pick up some Zinc supplement and start him on that.
Does he need 30mg total a day or 30mg each meal?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 05:41 PM

30 mg total each day. If there is no response after 2 weeks, then stop, since too much zinc is bad for the liver.

Indy had a hip surgery when she was 14 months, and had a heck of a time recovering. Someone did a "read" on her, and said that she needed zinc, and sure enough, it made a world of difference for her.

If it helps, we'll take it from there to figure out the next step.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 06:05 PM

I would go to the holistic vet. Kailor has gone from hairless and miserable (for YEARS) to having a beautiful coat and a new, happy personality. I really think it's worth it to work with someone who is going to think outside of the allopathic box, especially when nothing obvious is showing up.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 06:48 PM

This may be a funny question but, how can I tell if they Zinc is working? I know that sounds dumb....sorry! Is him being on the T-P going to interfere with the Zinc response?

Ruth...I haven't had time to look into that holistic vet very much yet, but if worst comes to worst and this doesn't work I will defientley look into contacting them.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 06:55 PM

Ok, I wasn't able to find the zinc pincolate but I was able to find this Zinc and I did buy some: http://naturemade.com/Products/Minerals/Zinc.aspx Will this work?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:01 PM

It looks like zinc is depleted with *long term* pred use, so great question Ashley. http://www.naturalnews.com/DrugWatch_Prednisone.html

If the condition is worsening, at the least, you should see it stop getting worse. If it appears stable, I would think you will notice some subtle signs?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:13 PM

So, it is safe then for him to be receiving the T-P and the Zinc at the same time, correct?
I will start him on the zinc tonight and keep an eye out for any changes.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:15 PM

BTW, the vet gave me about 35 days worth of T-P for him...is that too long for him to be on it or should he be ok? Last time the vet only gave 2 or 3 weeks worth.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:40 PM

I would go ahead with the zinc along with the med.

I am really the wrong person to be asking about length of treatment with these meds. I don't like them at all. I understand their necessity as Max went through a similar extreme itching issue, but I will go to extreme lengths not to use them. The answer will probably vary, depending on whom you talk with. Since the vet prescribed that length of treatment, it seems clear that he is comfortable with it, unless he gave other verbal dosing instructions?
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:51 PM

Why choose the holistic vet as a last resort?

Kailor's allopathic vet was comfortable keeping her on a low dose of T-P for 5 years. My experience is that if vets can't figure out what the real problem is and fix it then they are very comfortable just sticking a bandaid on the problem, even if that bandaid has a very high chance of causing additional problems.

Sorry to be Debbie Downer here but I have seen this so many times before and the steroids never helped with anything but the itching (and sometimes not even that).

I'm especially unhappy that the vet is prescribing steroids to a puppy. I think depressing the immune system at this age is a recipe for disaster...or at least a lifetime of chronic skin issues. And what is the vet's plan if, after 35 days, the itching and hair loss continue?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 07:58 PM

I will agree with Debbie Downer here, though I understand the thinking that if you "just do this", it will fix everything, as I've fallen into that too sometimes. Very often, it's a big picture thing that has to be approached from different directions (it's not just one thing), and many (most?) allopathic vets don't treat this way.

With these meds, it's entirely possible that, while they include something that helps with the itching, they also include something that prevents your dog from getting better. This is probably more the norm than the exception. You want to address this with things that will build the body.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 08:12 PM

Ashley, I know that you have a plan and are taking things one step at a time. It's a process, you guys will get there.

IF the zinc helps, that will give a clue to a bigger picture issue. Btw, zinc helps the thyroid work properly....
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/06/11 09:55 PM

I appreciate all the thoughts and helpful information. I want to keep all my options open. It's just a lot to take in and frustrating not having answers but I know we will get there. We will just take it a step at a time.
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/07/11 10:01 AM

Zinc stuff:
http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+1659+1662&aid=718

Toxicity:
http://www.petmd.com/dog/conditions/toxicity/c_dg_zinc_toxicity

Looks like there is a serum zinc level that can be tested?
http://www.petplace.com/dogs/zinc-toxicity-in-dogs/page1.aspx
http://www.vet.uga.edu/vpp/clerk/hardy/

More:
http://www.gopetsamerica.com/dog-health/zinc_responsive_dermatosis.aspx

But I think you have to be careful with zinc. It scares me a bit getting the balance right - the metals.

That's why I was thinking a little Desitin on one of the spots to test - it worked when Bella had the paw pad thing when I first got her.

Good luck!
Posted by: Natalie559

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/08/11 03:01 PM

Have you ever tried comfortis for flea allergy dermatitis? Penny had many of the same symptoms and a lot of the same tests all the while being on frontline and when we tried comfortis it changed her life!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/08/11 08:54 PM

No, I have not tried Comfortis.
How could he have flea allergy dermatitis if he doesn't have fleas and never has?
Plus, his hair loss areas aren't really in the places fleas like to hang out.
Thanks for the thought!
Posted by: Natalie559

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 05:01 PM

Well Penny was on frontline plus and if you flea combed her you would almost never ever find a single flea. With FAD dogs one bite can really send them into a downward spiral. Then the constant scratching leads to bacteria, yeast and seborrhea which all itch and the cycle just keeps continuing.

Her problems started when she was just over 1 yr old. She had thin fur, hair loss on all her legs, had lost her 'gsd britches' on the back side of her legs, her stomach itched so much and was red.

We did allergy testing along with shots, tested for thyroid, mange, changed food, tried all kinds of shampoos and it wasn't until our current vet commented on what great luck she had had with comfortis that we thought to try it and it has done a 180 for Penny. Just a thought if you continue to have issues.

Have you tried neem oil? When I thought Pennys hair loss spots might be from mites I tried that, just applied it with a cotton ball.

I truly hope you get it worked out as an itching dog is so frustrating for everyone involved!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 06:40 PM

The Neem oil and cottonball might be a good rule out?
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 06:43 PM

Azmira makes the best NEEM product. I used it for Rafi when he had mange and it worked really well.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 07:41 PM

Yes, I have already been using the Neem oil on the spots, as well as Neem Shampoo when I bathe him.

I have noticed recently though that his spots are re-growing the hair.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 08:09 PM

So, the spots where you are applying Neem are regrowing?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 08:16 PM

All of the spots are regrowing. I don't know if it is realted to the Neem or not as I have been applying the neem daily ever since the hair loss started back in early December. But he is still itchy.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 08:54 PM

Ok, here are some pictures from today. To me they look really good, compared to what they were as they definitely got worse (worse than in the original pics I posted) before they started getting better.


Right Leg...hair loss spot is almost un-noticeable:








Now the left side (the side that was the worst of the two)...hair is regrowing but hair loss is still noted, but the area is smaller than before!:








This is the main spot on his left leg that is still slowly regrowing hair but it looks good and the area is getting smaller...




Now some pics of his ears...












Thoughts????
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 09:07 PM

Just as reference...here is a picture of him, when he had the bald spot on his head when he was little.
The spot is kind of hard to see but its the only picture I could really find....It took about 3 months before the hair was fully all grown back.


Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 09:11 PM

This is just so weird. Those ears look like...well, I guess just regular old dermatitis right?

I would pick a spot. Put a little desitin on it and wrap it. See if it responds. Love that stuff. But just one spot so you can see if there is a difference.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 09:14 PM

Jean...I will try that on his ears and let you know how it goes.
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/09/11 09:18 PM

It is very sticky! So watch out. When Bella had it on her paws and Bruno would take her boots off when they were playing, everything would stick to her poor feet - she looked like some kind of weird nature mutant!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 03:57 AM

So, what did you change so that the hair started to regrow, just the shampoo and the NEEM?
Posted by: middleofnowhere

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 09:31 AM

If the hair loss started at the margins of the ears, I would treat for mange regardless of whether he tested pos. for it or not. Each treatment we tried I was sure was looking better when we first started it. Since it was mange, it only resolved when the vet finally wised up and we started treating for mange.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 04:18 PM

I am not sure what is considered the margin of the ears (I know that probably sounds dumb!), but his hair loss started on the very, very tip of his ears.
Lisa, I didn't change anything recently that would cause the hair to grow back. I have been using the Neem on him ever since I first noted slight hairloss back in December. It got worse before it started getting better.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 09:34 PM

I actually just got off phone with Mason's vet. With a more indepth allergy test analysis...it is shown that he is highly allergic to grains, house mites(which I already knew), pine trees (already knew) and almost every weed....and he said he is going to be the most effected in the fall/winter, which is when everything flared up.

He said that he has atopic dermatitis and suggests allergy shots to see if they make a difference.
He suggested a hypoallergentic kit from online that you can spray on carpet and furiture to eliminate the house mites. I will try to find the link to it, as he did mention a website.

Any thoughts on this? Could this be the trigger to all his issues or do you think there is maybe still more?
Should I continue the zinc, just to be sure to rule that out or do you recommend I stop it? I plan on taking him off the T-P, over the next week, as I don't want him to be on it too long.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 09:57 PM

Here is the link and info:

http://www.dustmitex.com/newsite/dustmiteandfleacontrol.html (you have to scroll down some to find it)




The Clean and Natural Way to Control Dustmites.

The Ecology Works® DustMite and Flea Control is a specially formulated borate compound that mixes easily in water and provides long lasting control over dust mites..

Boron is a natural element that is essential for healthy plant growth and aids in the assimilation of calcium in the human body. Borates have a long history of use in insect control, and are effective against fleas, termites, cock-roaches and ants. .

The Ecology Works® has been granted a patent for its use against dust mites..

.The Ecology Works® DustMite and Flea Control can be applied in several ways:
.

For small areas like an upholstered chair, just mix one cup DustMite and Flea Control to a half gallon of water and apply with a spray bottle.
For larger areas mix and apply by pump sprayer.
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Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 11:01 PM

Ashley, will be back later when I'm at a regular computer to put in my 2c. Or is it 2c (does that work?)

It really is great, in some respects, that the allergy tests showed all that - it makes most sense. There are most likely other things he is allergic or sensitive to, some that are not technically allergies. For example, ragweed allergies will make him susceptible to many fruit allergies (I think I have the right one).

I would continue the zinc, only because folks with allergies tend to need more zinc. Will be interesting to see what happens.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 11:03 PM

Ok...Thank You! I appreciate it!
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/10/11 11:22 PM

I'm interested in the dustmite control....it would be great to irradicate them! Borax powder is supposed to kill them, but I really hate using anything unnatural around the house.
Posted by: middleofnowhere

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/11/11 01:42 AM

You do not want to eliminate them. There is a good mite that feeds on dustmites. Eliminate dustmites, that mites die, dustmites come back = many problems as the dust mites are then totally unchecked.
Not original with me but I thought a good argument for integrated pest control (IPC).
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/21/11 11:14 PM

Just thought I would update....Mason is doing well and he is off the T-P but still itching a little. We haven't started allergy shots yet, I have to call the vet this week.
He has been on the zinc 2 weeks as of yesterday and I don't know if its something I should continue or not. The only real change that I have noticed since he has been on it is that is stool is less (amount wise) and is firmer than before. (It has never been soft..always firm but now it is firmer and he is going less.)
Thoughts?
I know that it was mentioned that dogs with allergies tend to need more zinc in their diets, but thought I should ask here to see thoughts on whether he still needs it as I don't want to continue him on it if he doesn't need it.
His coat is getting shiner and filling in VERY nicely, I don't know if that is because of him being on the Zinc or becasue of the T-P (because of the fact he hasn't been itching and its giving it a chance to fill in.)
He is still shedding, but its that season! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 02:13 AM

Hmmmmmm, interesting and confusing!

Off the T-P and itching less. Is the itching increasing now off the T-P, or stable?

Zinc will help hair, nails, thyroid, among other things. Weird about the stools???
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 09:49 AM

He is off the T-P..he didn't itch at all while on it but he is starting to itch again now that he is off it but I wouldn't say that the itching is as bad as before he was put on it (atleast not yet anyways..)
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 09:50 AM

If Zinc helps with coat..I have definitely noticed a difference then, because like I said..it is shiner and filling in more than before.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 11:55 AM

It sounds like he is zinc deficient then. I think there is something in kibble that block the absorption of zinc. There is if the kibble has grains. but I think he's on grain free?

Glad this came up, I will be increasing Max's zinc after his surgery....
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 11:56 AM

I was wondering, maybe he needs to be treated like eczema......I don't know.

Forgot to add above, I would continue with the zinc for awhile, but we should look for a better allergy type supplement that contains zinc.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 03:50 PM

I just checked in on this and read Mason's allergy triggers. Good to hear you've got some answers.

Dustmites/house mites are not Phoenix's friends either. I used the Dustmitex for the carpets and my couch. I think found De-Mite to be the only thing for the laundry that you could use with cold water. I hate using hot water and usually wash everything in cold or warm. The De-mite works w/ cold water. I wash both my bedding and Phoenix's bed cover in it. It has a particular smell, I must warn you. May take some getting used to.

I also am obsessed with vacuuming. I bought a vacuum with a HEPA filter and along with doing all of the above, it really seemed to work well for us.

Phoenix is also allergic to ragweed and six other weeds/grasses as well as grains. Like Lisa mentioned, I've taken a good look at everything I feed Phoenix fruit and vegetable wise. I never gave it a thought prior to Lisa mentioning it in another thread a LONG while back. It was a lightbulb moment for me.

Ragweed allergy can be associated with allergies to raw bananas, and the members of the gourd family (melon, watermelon, honeydew, cantaloupe, zucchini and cucumber).

Grass allergy can be associated with allergies to orange, melon, watermelon, tomato, kiwi, peanut.

I have been giving Phoenix allergy shots for 1 1/2 years now and have seen a difference since we started. He still has what I would call "flare-ups" in the fall/early winter, but for the most part, the severe itching hair loss and his overall discomfort disappeared.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 04:14 PM

Yes, he is on grain free food- Orijen Adult Grain Free

Thanks for all the other information. I will keep him on the zinc and also watch what he gets that could possibly associate with his allergies.

Thanks!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 04:26 PM

Diana, glad that info helped. I know when I first started looking at it, it was a whole new world. I've had bad grass and weed allergies all my life, and always wondered why so many fruits made me feel crummy.

Unfortunately, I don't see this talked about on too many veterinary sites. Still trying to figure things out!
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 05:00 PM

Lisa, the information have been a HUGE help for us as Phoenix loves raw veggies and fruits. Sadly, his favorite, banana and apple, are two one of the worst for him. I have read that they believe the skins of certain fruits and veggies are to blame, as in the case of the apple, but I found that it's the apple as a whole.

I am constantly bouncing stuff off my vet and derm and when I brought up the whole veggie/fruit thing you had mentioned, they said neither gave it a thought and found it to be interesting. We all talked about proteins and grains, but never gave the vegetables or fruits a thought. Your input has had a big positive ripple effect in my world!!!

Back to Mason and his issues (sorry for thread jacking), I would love to hear how he is progressing with his allergies as time goes on and when you start the serum. BTW, if you are doing the shots, who are you getting the serum from?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 09:53 PM

His serum, I believe, will becoming from VARL (I believe thats what its called)


Sadly, Mason's favorite fruit is bananas too, but he is going to have to stay away from them just in case!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 10:34 PM

Max loves bananas too frown They would give him ear infections, and I always thought it was the sugar (feeding yeast) - I never expected it was an allergen.

(Thanks for the feedback Diana, great to hear it helped laugh )

I sure hope that Mason doesn't increase in his itchiness. Do keep us posted on if it stays stable, etc.!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/22/11 11:56 PM

This evening Mason has increased in itchiness frown ...probably becasue the T-P is fully out of his system now. I am calling the vet tomorrow about the allergy shots, but may take a visit to the holistic vet before we actually start allergy shots to see if there is anything alternative that can help him as well, but haven't totally decidied yet.
I'll keep everyone posted!
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 12:08 AM

I would do the same, holistic options seem to be best. I would go acupuncture if I had an acupuncturist available!
The book 4 paws 5 directions was very interesting in herbal remedies, but finding the ingredients was challenging for Onyx's allergies.

FWIW....my dogs are all scratching right now, maybe coat blowing time, or just the change in seasons.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 12:11 AM

I was afraid the itchiness would increase, but hoping it wouldn't.

I too would see the holistic vet and acupuncture options as a first step. You still may need the allergy shots, but I think there's a "big picture" here that a holistic vet can help with.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 10:22 AM

Originally Posted By: Jane Jean
I would do the same, holistic options seem to be best. I would go acupuncture if I had an acupuncturist available! The book 4 paws 5 directions was very interesting in herbal remedies, but finding the ingredients was challenging for Onyx's allergies.


My holistic vet lent me the book and then I bought it off Amazon. The herbal remedies I give Phoenix, as well as the acupuncture, I believe have helped. Our goal is to stop the serum at some point (I get the VARL serum), maintaining with the remedies and acupuncture. I also learned from the book (and my holistic vet) the foods that also affect allergies depending on what type of dog you have. We try to avoid the "hot" meats/foods.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 11:03 AM

Thanks everyone. I will put a call into the holistic vet this week, before I call my vet back about the allergy shots.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 11:05 AM

They close at 11am today, so will probably have to wait until tomorrow to call them.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 11:08 AM

The holistic vet I recommended does acupuncture and herbs and homeopathy. Kailor has gone from a raw mess and itching almost constantly to having a beautiful coat and itching infrequently. She is allergic to mold so she does have setbacks with weather and location but overall she has improved a lot.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 02:40 PM

Thanks Ruth! I am going to look into taking Ivy as well because I think the acupunture would be good for her and her hips! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/23/11 04:13 PM

GSDs tend to run "hot" and "livery". I keep getting told how "classic" Max is with his symptoms - wish he were as classic in their resolution!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/24/11 07:05 PM

Called the holistic vet today, but got the answer machine. I did leave a meassge, so hopefully they will call me back! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/24/11 11:20 PM

I hope so too, and hope it's a good fit.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/25/11 05:14 PM

We have an appt. for Tuesday April 5th, thats the soonest appt. they had available. Now lets just hope I don't get scheduled to work that Tuesday afternoon, so I don't have to cancel it! crossedfingers
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/25/11 11:39 PM

You'll just have to let work know that you have plans! I sure hope that you can keep the appointment too!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/27/11 07:45 PM

Unfortunately...the only evening I have to work that week is the day I made the appt for (should have known...that is my kind of luck), so I will have to cancel it frown
I am going to call tomorrow and I just hope they have something else available for that week..I know that she books up fast so I am crossing my fingers....I really want to get him in
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/27/11 09:17 PM

Darn it - hope you can get him in very soon!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/27/11 09:47 PM

me too!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/28/11 10:28 PM

Well, I got him another appt. for April 7th, instead of the 5th. Now I just have to hang in there until then!

I am actually thinking of switching his food back to TOTW Pacific Stream just to see what happens as he never had any issues on that food and I am wonderig what will happen if I put him back on it as all of his issues started after I switched him off it.
Another thing is, now that I know what he is "allergic" to, I have been paying MUCH closer attention to ingredients in foods and I notice that the food he is currently eating (Orijen Grain Free Adult) actually contains sun cured alfalfa, and alfalfa is one of the things that showed up on the allergy test results and TOTW doesn't have any alfalfa in it. I don't want to make him worse by feeding him a food that has an allergen in it. I figured allergies are all about experimenting anyways to find out what works and what doesn't, so why not give it a try? I am going to start this, this week and transition him slowly.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/28/11 11:36 PM

I forgot to add....I don't know if the onset of his issues are a result of me taking him off TOTW or if it is just consequential that that is when they appeared, which is why I figured it won't hurt to experiment a bit...
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/29/11 01:22 AM

I think that sounds entirely reasonable. If alfalfa is on his list, I definitely would try not to feed it. Sure would be nice if it were a simple fix, but it's usually not that easy. BUT, if the food switch could bring significant relief, that would be great.

I found that when my ever sensitive dogs were fed kibble, even when I just used it as treats, I could never use the high end stuff, had to stick with more middle of the road stuff, primarily because of allergies.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:09 PM

Well...to make a long story short Mason has decided that he no longer likes TOTW. He wouldn't eat yesterday or today. I offered him his Orijen but he wouldn't touch it yesterday at all, but he did pick at it a bit today.
So...with that said it looks like I need a new food to try with him since I will not keep him on the Orijen as it contains one of his allergens.
I gave him some ROYAL CANIN Veterinary Diet® canine POTATO & DUCK FORMULA™ dry dog food today at lunch time and he gobbled it right down and then I fed him some for dinner and he gobbled that too. Does anyone have any thoughts, insights or experience with this food? (My friend's dog is on this due to allergies, he is a golden, so thats how I got some to try on Mason).
I am just suprised that all of a sudden he won't eat the TOTW (and is now being picky with the Orijen) as he has always loved that food and I used to use it as treats for him.

Here is the link to the food:
http://products.royalcanin.us/products/veterinary/canine/potato-and-duck-formula.aspx

Please let me know thoughts. He will eat anything but the Orijen and TOTW.
If you have any other suggestions, please let me know. I have experimented with the raw, and he does enjoy that.
Hopefully, we will get some help from the holistic vet Thursday.
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:13 PM

Why can't you feed raw? I would certainly do that in regards to his issues. Then you'd know exactly what he is ingesting.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:23 PM

I have seriously thought about it but I am just scared about not getting the amounts right, even with the handy dandy charts available etc., but I guess it wouldn't really hurt to try.
I do know that he can't handle chicken (gives him loose stool)...he handles turkey and pork the best.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:26 PM

yikes, just looked up the price for a 25lb bag of the ROYAL CANIN Veterinary Diet® canine POTATO & DUCK FORMULA™ dry dog food and its $107 a bag, and that would only last me a month. Raw, per month, is cheaper than that normally, correct?
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:31 PM

If you can find decent sources for it, it should only run you a couple bucks a day+ supplements. So the price may be around $80(if you fed chicken, cost of raw feeding would be much less), unless you get with a good co-op and get wholesale prices. Worth checking into,and once you get going on it, it isn't hard to do.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/03/11 09:36 PM

my concern is the RMB to OM to MM ratio, thats the part that confuses me.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 01:08 AM

I fed Indy IVD Potato & Venison at one point. I think IVD in now RC. She did better, but it was only temporary, and it was a matter of time before she didn't do that well on it. She actually got a bad bag and it made her sick, though I didn't realize it at the time. Nothing like paying through the nose for a bad bag of food....

You might look at Pinnacle Duck and Potato, and NB Potato and Duck if this seems to work. Would also make sure you are giving probiotics and l-glutamine - sounds like his gut is messed up.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 06:18 PM

His raw diet begins today!
Posted by: Braverhund

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 08:57 PM

Hooray for Mason!! party A raw diet is so great for longterm skin issues. Grimm finally stopped itching and chewing at himself... stopped with ear gunkies.. and grew a MUCH thicker, longer coat on raw! party I am sending the very best positive good thoughts for Mason's new raw diet! cheers What a GREAT owner you are! goodjob
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 09:09 PM

Thank you Patti!
Posted by: Braverhund

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 09:21 PM

I will be cheering Mason on! 3penguins The board here is excellent for raw feeding support. Without it, I would never have been able to feed Grimm raw myself. I can feed raw for LESS than I could feed kibble. ( I tried Orijen, Timberwolf, etc.)

You can find Yahoo groups local to you who have people happy to dish the dirt for cheapest local sources to nab a nice haul of bulk raw.

Plus, Lauri's site helps explain the percentages pretty well. Right now, a meal for Grimm looks like this:
One chicken quarter (weighs maybe 12 oz)
A couple of turkey hearts (maybe 2 - 4 of 'em)
a teeny-weeny, itsy-bitsy chunk o' frozen beef liver (size of my thumbnail)
a chunk of frozen pureed veggies (can be found in freezer sect at grocery)
a tablespoon of plain yogurt
2 squirts of fish oil
1 200 IU vitamin E capsule
(Grimm was slowly accustomed to chicken, then turkey, over a few weeks time with the help of people right here on the forum guiding me!:) )

You can also try this: For the first month, grit your teeth and pay for the expensive lurking premade raw.... THEN transition him to whatever homemade raw diet you like, one protien source at a time. Why is this a good way to transition? Because dogs who start raw will happily sometimes puke up some chunks of bone, and that's 100% fine-- but we owners get scared about it when we see it! wink Feeding premade for the first month lets a dog's tummy acids and enzymes learn to handle bone easily while it's all ground up anyhoo. laugh

I began the cheap-o way though.... so I kept bugging people on the forum about the "scary" bone chunks that sometimes happened during the first frew weeks. crazy No problem for the dog-- the owner just worries! wink

A cheap way to nab a freezer is on Craigslist, or Freecycle, or I bought one for just $16t8 with free delivery from Best Buy or Home Depot.

Whatever you decide to do, however you transition Mason-- I am so very proud of you, and so very HAPPY for Mason! happyboogie Here's to happy, healthy skin! cheers
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 09:40 PM

Thanks for the support Patti! Hopefully, the transition will be easy for Mason!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/04/11 10:11 PM

I did use Lauri's spreadsheet to help calcualte his precentages
Posted by: mspiker03

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/05/11 12:03 AM

My first few months of feeding the dogs raw were half premade half do-it-myself type stuff. I found that each dog has a different amount of RMB that they need, so it will be trial and error for a bit, but you'll get used to it.

You should also try calling around to different meat distributors in your area and see if any of them sell to the public and start pricing them out. It will definitely help keep the cost down.
Posted by: Braverhund

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/05/11 12:33 AM

Oh yes, I forgot to mention: For right now, you would also be wise to consider avoiding all dogtreats even during training, unless they're simple dehydrated chicken or beef (no grains). Using training treats can add chemicals and grains to the diet. Wanna see Mason with healthy skin and no itchies! smile

I have a raw-feeding friend who sometimes uses a grain-free kibble for training treats, but her dogs still do get occasional hotspots.

A great treat made just from dehydrated chicken is PureBites, sold at Petco. smile Not a cheap treat but a nice-sized bag, plus, you can break 'em down into whatever size you want! Great nail-clipping bribe for Grimm. smile
Posted by: Braverhund

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/05/11 12:35 AM

I get stuff in bulk at cheap prices from a distributor of Oma's Pride. Maybe a distributor in your area? Turkey hearts, chicken quarters, etc. Nicely affordable!

http://www.omaspride.com
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/05/11 09:32 PM

Thanks Patti!
Yep...no treats or anything for him! Good thing he is toy motivated and he gets his ball as a reward during training.
I do have some freezer dried beef liver treats that I bought at the pet store...those should be fine to give him eventually correct?

I will defintely begin to look around at different meat distributers for pricing. I do have some old meat in the back of my freezers that I plan to use for him as well, since I read that it won't hurt them at all.

So far, he is handling it very well and seems to really enjoy his meal times now!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/08/11 12:12 AM

His appt. with the holistic vet went well today. I was very pleased with how it went and look forward to going back next month!
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/08/11 12:30 AM

What did the vet suggest?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/08/11 12:04 PM

She gave us some chinese herbs to try. She said that I have been on the right track with the things I have already tried for him.
She thought he has an AWESOME personality and disposition! smile She said that it was nice to see a GSD with such a friendly, non-agressive personality like his.
She also did an acupuncture session and Mason just sat there through the entire thing calmly.
Everyone in the waiting area loved him and had to pet him before we left.
He goes back in a month to see how he is doing with the herbs.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/08/11 07:45 PM

So glad it went well!

I hope the itching gets better - have you noticed anything?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/08/11 11:23 PM

haven't noticed much yet, but I thinks its still soon to tell.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 08:04 AM

Ashley, just wondering what herbs your holistic vet gave you for Mason. I would be interested in comparing what your vet is giving him vs. what my vet has me giving Phoenix. We first started with Corydalis (1 1/2 2x a day) and Dry Derma Relief (3 tablets 2x a day) both in tablet form. We just changed over from the Corydalis to a new herb, but I forgot the name at the moment. I am also giving him Ultra EFA (from Rx Vitamins for pets).

If Mason has a sensitivity to processed chicken (like in kibble), I would be intersted if he's got a sensitivity to raw chicken. We've found Phoenix is sensitive to all things chicken, including chicken, chicken eggs and chicken fat. However, he is sensitive to processed beef, but raw beef is fine. Just more food for thought.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 09:27 AM

Thanks for the thought Diana. So far, he hasn't had any problems with the raw chicken that I've seen...his stools are great!

The holistic vet gave Mason Wind Toxin and Epimedium, both in powder form- mixed together, to start off. (In the beginning, he was not very keen on the idea of eating his food with the herbs on it but he has gotten better with that now!)
Since I am new to this, I am not really sure what either are for, excpet that the Wind Toxin is supposed to draw away heat or something from his itchy areas. She thought he was on the smaller side for a intact male GSD (which I believe he is, but I have no problem with that, plus he just turned a yr old so still has a lot of filling out to do), so I think the Epimedium is supposed to help him fill out and mature or something along those lines...I can't remember what she said exactly.
She also gave me some Silicea, I had to give him 4-5 granules on his tongue...she said it was only a one time thing...I am not sure what that does or what it was for.
We go back in a month to review how he is doing on the current herbs and we will go from there I guess.
This is new for both of us, but so far I am liking this route. It's an adjustment for me as I am not familiar with all the different herbs and their effects, but I'm learning.

Any thoughts other thoughts, help or advice are greatly appreciated!
Thank you to everyone for helping us get this far!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 09:33 AM

Forgot to add...she believes that the hair loss on his ears is likely mites (non contagious), but she said not to really worry about it becasue it will go away on its own. She said that it can be common in young dogs?
She said if I really wanted, I could apply lavender oil to them and she named some other product as well, but I can't remember the name right now.
She also said with him being on the raw diet, that should help things too.
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 09:53 AM

She didn't think the hair loss was fungal? A couple dogs I train with have had hair loss on their ears off and on their whole lives(they came from the same kennel, but different genetics and different owners). We thought it was from a fungus.
I'm glad you've gone the holistic route. I am following Masons progress with interest:)
Are you journaling this? I would be writing down everything!!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 09:55 AM

Yes, I am keeping a journal of everything!


Just looked up what the Silicea was for and I found that it is for the mites.
Posted by: DnP

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/12/11 12:17 PM

I'm not a big fan of journaling stuff, but I've become journal queen with Phoenix. Only way to keep track of things as my mind gets older...LOL

GREAT to hear that Mason is doing well on the raw chicken. And gotta do the happy poop dance for ya!!! poop Who knew one could fall in love with nice hard poop,eh?

I know my vet has tried to have me balance Phoenix's heat w/ the foods I'm feeding him (eliminating all "hot" foods like salmon, venison, etc)

I think it took us a good two to three months of acupuncture and giving the herbs until I saw some improvement. Of course, I have been giving the allergy shots the whole time. Our real test is going to be when we stop those after this last vial of serum.

Interesting diagnosis on the mites! Can't wait to hear updates on how Mason is doing!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/14/11 12:20 AM

Haven't noticed any major changes yet, except the change in his stool. He's still itching , and has started a new "itch" spot on his back leg that he is pulling hair out of frown


Yesterday morning, while I was in the shower, he snuck into the cat food container and ate some food frown I don't know how much but I am hoping that won't set us back any, as it has grains in it. He has never bothered with it before. I have since moved it out of his reach, so he can no longer access it!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/14/11 02:13 PM

I'm not sure if I should post this, but...

Max's allergies are so severe that he reacted to all of the things that all the vets had me try. I got labeled as "difficult" because they thought I was just stopping things and didn't have the "patience" to see the response.

You can imagine how frustrating that is, because I refused to give something that was philisopically right, but that, in practice, wasn't working.

It *is* important that you don't stop too soon, but you will have to use your judgement - is it part of the healing process? Was there another possible trigger? Etc?

If he continues to get worse in that spot, be sure to communicate that to the vet.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/14/11 02:17 PM

Btw, I was hesitant to post that, because I don't want to encourage you to stop something too soon, and I do not want to discourage you about this vet.

I do have a working relationship with one of these vets now, or should I say, we are working on it - I have a couple of appts scheduled.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/14/11 03:25 PM

I just have a second to chime in here.

I wouldn't stop anything. This vet uses Chinese herbs and it takes a while to see changes. It took a long time to start seeing results with Kailor but now she is like a different dog. This vet is also a classical homeopath so you usually only dose with something 1 to 3 times, across a period of days.

Also, it is spring here and since most of our dogs have environmental allergies (since I am an allergy sufferer myself I notice these things) this is the time when you are going to see flare-ups due to an increase in the mold count and blooming trees, grass, etc. So equating the herbs with a new hot spot could very well be a false correlation.

Re: demodectic mange I would apply Azmira's Neem spray to the affected areas. And the spot on the leg could also be mange. Rafi had a spot on the top of his and several on his back, up near his shoulder blades. In his case I boosted his immune system and applied Neem and it resolved. It is very common in dogs under 2 years of age and usually indicates a weakened immune system (which would make sense in Mason's case, especially since he was given steroids).

Finally, if you are concerned about new problems contact the vet. She always wants to know what's happening, especially if some new health crisis arises.

And finally, finally...are you giving Mason regular baths? That has been such a huge help for Kailor. She has to have a bath a week or her skin gets itchy again. We use a variety of different shampoos but right now I would use a Neem shampoo for Kailor because that will help with the mange too.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/14/11 10:16 PM

Thanks for the info Lisa and Ruth. I appreciate it.
I am definitely going to give it more time to get built up in his system...I know things like these aren't instant (although I am sure we all wish they were!).

I do believe he is having a "flare-up", because his armpit areas are getting really red and irritated which has never happened before.

One thing I am sad about right now is, his coat condition is still getting worse (I know that it will take time for the effects of raw to kick in)....on his sides, where he used to be solid black- he itches it so much that he has pulled the black guard hairs out and the grey undercoat is showing...it looks so weird but I love him anyways!

He is continuing to lose hair on his ears and on his feet. He was doing so good for a couple of weeks with his hair re-growth and now he is starting to itch it all out again frown

Mason gets a bath usually every other week, with Neem Shampoo.

Yes..it is frustrating, but we will get through this and hopefully find something that will work for him, given time!
I know that being patient and giving time....lots of time, is our key to success!!!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/15/11 12:53 AM

I know it's so frustrating. Hopefully he will turn a corner soon hugging
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 04:54 PM

Well, I believe Mason may have a skin infection now, as a result of all his itching and scratching. frown There are a few areas on his lower back that are bumpy and gooey and kind of smell and it feels very werid to touch. sick
Yesterday, he was really digging at himself. I didn't get a chance to look at the area last night because it was late when I noticed it, but I looked at it today. It wasn't like that when I gave him a bath 3 days ago.
I am going to call the vet tomorrow to see if I can get him in.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 04:55 PM

BTW, I tried to get a pic, but it is hard to see it in the pic because its dark and hidden by his fur.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 04:58 PM

That really sucks, I'm so sorry.

Is the itching getting better or worse?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 04:59 PM

On another side note...he didn't want to eat his breakfast this AM...
Posted by: DancingCavy

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 08:11 PM

Poor boy. frown
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/17/11 08:33 PM

He did eat his dinner tonight! smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 12:13 PM

Mason didn't want to eat breakfast again today, but I did eventually coax him enough and he did eat.
Vet appt. @ 1:15pm today...will update later
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 12:19 PM

Poor Mason! What the heck is going on with that boy? Cleo, Kailor and I have all been suffering from seasonal allergies this past week. I'm so sorry that he's uncomfortable and not feeling like eating. frown

It really depresses me that all of these young dogs are having such serious health problems.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 03:31 PM

Back from the vet with Mason.

Vet took his temp. and it was a bit elevated (he did not mention what it was...that there told me right away that he had an infection). He then took a look at the area on his back where it has been bothering him...he noticed all the pus and "white-heads". He did a skin scrap and he says he has Superficial Pyoderma. He said it is the Staphylococcus intermedius bacteria type. He sent us home with antibiotics and some special shampoo.

The antibotics he prescribed are Cephalexin 500mg- 2 capsules 2x a day for 21 days. The shampoo is Chlorhexidine 4%....I am supposed to bathe him in it every 3 days or so for the next few weeks...until gone.

He mentioned that I should start seeing a difference in a couple days, once the antibiotics get in his system. He said that if it is allergy related, than it is most likely going to re-occur, but we won't know for sure until we treat this and then see if it comes back or not.

On a side note, he wasn't very supportive of Mason's RAW diet, which I completely expected from him.
He also asked what I was doing for his allergies, as he wants me to start allergy shots, but I told him that I was trying the holistic way first...he didn't seem suprised as I guess he gets that a lot from his patients, as that vets office is only around the corner.


For the next few meals, I will not be adding in Mason's herbs as he has become very picky with them lately and will not eat his food if the herbs are mixed in. I want him to get eating again on a regular basis before I add them again. He has no problems with this fish oil, vit. E, or vit. C pills.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 05:39 PM

Do you have any Penaten cream? It works great for pyoderma. It's what most people use for it.

I hope the antibiotics help Mason.

Have you ever tried taking him off of the fish oil? Some dogs don't do well on it.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 07:00 PM

Thanks Ruth.
No, I do not have any Penaten cream.
Yes, I have tried taking him off the fish oil, tried it earlier this year and nothing changed itching wise, so I put him back on it. The holistic vet said that I could try cod oil as well, but I haven't tried it as of yet.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/18/11 11:32 PM

You should call or email Dr. Koenig if you haven't already done so. She will want to know about what's going on and may tell you not to do the herbs while you're giving the antibiotics or she may want to change his herbs.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 12:09 AM

Yep...I will contact her.
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 10:21 AM

What about an IgA deficiency? Does he have any poop issues?

I would be worried about how his immune system was responding - or not - to all of this.

http://www.upei.ca/cidd/Diseases/immune%20disorders/selective%20IgA%20deficiency.htm

?????
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 12:39 PM

Nope...he doesn't have any poop issues
Vet said his body is attacking the infection
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 07:39 PM

Quick update on Mason today. Fed him breakfast this AM (had to sit there with him and hand feed him) and about an hour later he threw it all back up in 2 piles.
As the day went on he seemed pretty much himslef.
About an hour ago, he threw up some stomach bile, so I just now fed him his dinner (again, I had to sit there and hand feed him) and I am hoping that he will keep it down.
I don't know if he just has an upset stomach or if the antibiotics aren't agreeing with him, as this is the first time he has ever thrown up his food. I did feel his stomach and it is not painful to him, not hard or anything and he is not gasey at all. I have not seem him pass stool yet today, but he usually only goes once a day now and he usually goes in the PM.
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 09:28 PM

I guess I meant GI issues more than just poop issues - looking at that IgA deficiency. Is this normal for him - not the puking - but the sensitivity to food and stuff?

"Dogs with IgA deficiency usually have problems from a young age. They may have recurring skin, respiratory, gastrointestinal or urinary tract infections. The typical signs you might see include pustules and scratching, sneezing or nasal discharge, prolonged or recurring diarrhea, frequent or painful urination (cystitis - bladder infection).

These dogs are also prone to develop allergies or immune-mediated disorders."

"" From that article. Which only partly sounds like what you have described.

His immune system is definitely reacting - but is it enough or is it able to do enough to clear whatever this is OR is it doing too much and attacking itself?

To me, a young dog should heal like a young dog. Or not have a problem at all. VERY frustrating to read all this for a couple of (or more) dogs here, and even more frustrating for the dog and owners. ETA- and kudos to you for all you are doing with this.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 09:57 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Quick update on Mason today. Fed him breakfast this AM (had to sit there with him and hand feed him) and about an hour later he threw it all back up in 2 piles.
As the day went on he seemed pretty much himslef.
About an hour ago, he threw up some stomach bile, so I just now fed him his dinner (again, I had to sit there and hand feed him) and I am hoping that he will keep it down.
I don't know if he just has an upset stomach or if the antibiotics aren't agreeing with him, as this is the first time he has ever thrown up his food. I did feel his stomach and it is not painful to him, not hard or anything and he is not gasey at all. I have not seem him pass stool yet today, but he usually only goes once a day now and he usually goes in the PM.


Since this is the first time he's thrown up and it's pretty common for antibiotics to cause stomach upset, I would guess the antibiotics are not agreeing with him. Are you giving a probiotic apart from the antibiotics? Which antibiotic is he on again?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 10:17 PM

Ruth...he is on Cephalexin 500mg. He is not receiving any probiotic but I do have one that I could give him.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 10:24 PM

Jean...what do you mean as far as sensitivity to food?
Mason has always had a sensitive stomach ever since I got him and especially if he receives anything out of the ordinary or something that he does not get on a regular basis. Is he a picky eater....generally speaking, no, but he has been the last few weeks which is not like him.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 10:28 PM

This is also his first *confirmed* skin infection.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/19/11 11:37 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
I don't know if he just has an upset stomach or if the antibiotics aren't agreeing with him, as this is the first time he has ever thrown up his food. ...


Ceph is awfully difficult for some dogs to tolerate. Indy would throw up within 20 minutes of getting it, and she almost NEVER threw up. Max could take it longer, but by the end of the dose, he was also getting ill.

It's commonly known for causing digestive upset in dogs and in humans. It actually sent my mom to the ER shortly after she took it once. I am always amazed at how well Val's dog(s) tolerate it!!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/20/11 01:19 AM

I think I remember that Patti's Grimm was on it and also had problems?

Anyway, Ashley I think it's hurting poor Mason's tummy. I would definitely give a probiotic (I think the rule is 2 hours away from the antibiotic) and you might also try something to soothe his tummy, like slippery elm (but that has to be half an hour before the meds or it could absorb them).
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/20/11 09:59 AM

Thanks Ruth. I will try that!

Mason did hold down his dinner last night and the antibiotics.
Fed him breakfast this AM..he was much more enthusiastic to eat and I didn't have to stand there and hand feed him!! I gave him his antibiotics as well...so far, so good- he is keeping it down.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/20/11 10:06 PM

Doing well today.....ate the probiotic without any problems! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/21/11 12:48 AM

Oh good smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/21/11 02:41 PM

He is doing well today too! He was so excited to eat breakfast this morning and I didn't have to hand feed him or anything...he ate it right out of the bowl! smile
I am starting to notice some differences too, since he has been on raw. His coat has gotten softer and the thin areas on his feet are starting to fill in. The re-grown hair on his legs, when it first came in was not very soft and had a different texture, that too has turned soft.
His skin has grealy improved...less itching.
Since being on the raw and anitbiotics, the spots on his back are scabbing up and healing really nice. The dry, unhealthy skin is flaking off and being replaced by a much healthier looking skin.
I hope I continue to see these types of improvements! Its been almost 3 weeks on raw and I can tell its making a difference! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/21/11 08:21 PM

The raw will help with the regrowth, I think the abx were critical.

I'm hoping this continues!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/21/11 09:05 PM

Originally Posted By: MaxaLisa
I'm hoping this continues!


Me too! smile
Posted by: JeanKBBMMMAAN

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:16 PM

Mason is looking good on his Ceph!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:18 PM

Thanks Jean....I looked at pics of him I took today and compared them to pics that I took of him before the raw diet and ceph and omg, what a difference! smile

(PS- it was nice to see you and Mila today!)
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:33 PM

With the Ceph making such a difference, I'm wondering if he had a bit of overall Staph infection.....just something to keep in mind for the future.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:39 PM

Lisa...I was thinking the same thing
Thanks!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:45 PM

I just wanted to share these before/now comparison pictures here! After being put on the raw diet, his coat has changed sooo much in 3 weeks. What a difference! smile He has filled out too!






So what do you think?!?!
Posted by: GSDElsa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:48 PM

WOW!!! That's really all I can say. I cannot believe the improvement!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 10:50 PM

Thanks Justine...either can I! smile


Patti....I hope you see these! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 11:07 PM

That's a HUGE improvement!

The diet with the antibiotics, so glad you found something that is making the difference!
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 11:19 PM

I agree with Lisa, the meds&diet are showing improvement in Mason....Finally a light at the end of the tunnel for you! He even looks happier!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 11:27 PM

Wow, that is unbelievable! thumbup

Kailor had a similar transformation but it took months of raw plus Chinese herbs and weekly baths. I can't believe how quickly Mason has changed.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/23/11 11:31 PM

I know...I am soooo glad we are finally seeing improvements! smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/19/11 08:55 PM

Let's just start off by saying that it has been nice not having to visit this thread so much!! smile

Mason continues to do well on his raw diet. His itchiness has been reduced soooooooooo much, I never thought it would be possible. His excess shedding has also decreased and his coat is continuing to do good....no more dry itchy skin!!

His 3 week course of antibiotics has been completed, his medicated baths every 3 days are done and his skin and fur are looking great.

Pollen levels have been very high here lately, and I think he is doing great considering...


Here he is now (#3)....(#1- before raw, #2- 3wks on raw, #3- taken today)




So, how do you think he looks??!

Let's hope everything continues down this path!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/19/11 08:58 PM

Oh, and his ears have healed!!
(I knew I forgot something!!)
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/19/11 09:31 PM

I think he looks GREAT smile . How long has he been off of the abx?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/19/11 09:47 PM

He finished the abx last week
Posted by: LukesMom

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/19/11 10:24 PM

Mason looks great, glad he's feeling better.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/20/11 12:59 AM

I hope that he continues to do well, now that he's on the right track :fingerscrossed: ugh, edit.... crossedfingers (I always reverse those!)
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 05/20/11 10:30 AM

me too! smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/01/11 07:55 PM

Just wanted to stop by here and update!

Mason is doing well and looks great! No more intense itching, even after being outside all day in the grass. His fur is soft and silky. I have been giving him frequent baths too. It's really nice because his ears are completely healed and look perfect and the spots on his elbows where he had a tendency to itch open when he got itchy, are all healed over and look nice. The little thin haired spots on his back legs that I thought would never fill in, have filled in and I notice that he is getting darker in ceratin places.
Although he doesn't always eat every meal, especially when its really hot out, I believe he is enjoying being on raw and it has helped him cover leaps and bounds! smile

Here is a picture of him from today!




I think he looks good...what about you?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/01/11 08:12 PM

and his tail fur is starting to fill in fuller and its getting a little thicker!
Posted by: DancingCavy

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/01/11 09:23 PM

He looks great! So glad he's feeling (and looking) better.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 02:33 AM

Stunning!

Sure would like to know what buggers he had!

The diet is definitely great for him!!
Posted by: Natalie559

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 02:48 PM

He's a glowing handsome man!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 06:16 PM

Thanks everyone!

Update-- Well, Mason is back on antibiotics for 3 more weeks....I decided to extend his "treatment". He is doing well overall, eating, drinking, exercising normally, but I noticed last night a sore on his under side that was getting oozy, so I called the vet and he agreed to do the antibiotics for a few more weeks to get that cleared up.

Keep everyone updated!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 09:58 PM

Well, darn it. I hope that this will be the end of it.

If not, we might have to see if there is a supplement program that might help. It's so tough, the darn GSD immune system can be so incompetent. If he has repeated skin infections, then I would worry a bit about that IgA deficiency.

BUT, hopefully, that's not it - so encouraged at how well he is looking!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 10:32 PM

Thanks!
Yes, he looks really good, which is awesome, and is not having any other issues except for this one spot...no intense itching etc.
I don't think it is another skin infection...I believe it is still part of the first one we were treating for and it wasn't completely gone when the antibiotics ran out.
I first noticed the sore as we were nearing the last few days of his first round of abx, called the vet the next day to continue the script for a little longer but the vet wanted me to wait and see if it would heal or get worse. I have been cleaning it daily and putting antibiotic ontiment on it, but when I went to clean it last night I noticed it was starting to look oozy and called the vet this AM for more abx. I picked them up early this evening....so hopefully 3 weeks from now it will be completely gone! smile

Despite him being on the antibiotics for another 3 weeks, I am really amazed and happy at how far he has come already....just his coat alone looks 100 times better than before. He is totally on the right track now and we won't be looking back! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/02/11 10:38 PM

Oh, that sounds good about the sore being there before - very encouraging.

yes, no looking back now!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/12/11 09:53 PM

Sigh, Ashley, I just wanted to thank you for this thread.

Looks like Max has the same thing (nearly identical places, colors, etc), and the abx that he's on (for his fistula) isn't getting at it. Similar insane itching too. Started after some "heme acupuncture", where she injected his own blood into the acu points in those back legs and other areas. Makes me think his blood is just toxic, which wouldn't be surprising.

Now that I see Mason's pics again, off to figure out what to do...

I'm really glad to see how well your boy is continuing to do - very encouraging!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/13/11 06:14 PM

Sorry to hear about Max. Hope you get it all figured out!
Mason continues to do well (I hope I am not jinxing myself by saying this!) and I couldn't be happier!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/13/11 06:29 PM

Yes, be careful what you say.....and I'm so happy for you guys!

I will use some cipro on Max, his digestive system has such a difficult time with Ceph. He has a vet appt scheduled for next week, and I should know by then whether or not it's working. Always something!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/25/11 04:50 PM

Mason is doing well (knock on wood!!)! smile
A little off topic but, Mason went to the vet today for a check up. He weighed a healthy 73.8# (he has lost weight (5#) since last visit, but still looks good). He got his rabies vaccine (3yr). He was also heartworm tested, which can back negative! as well as tested for lyme, anaplasmosis, and erhlichia which also came back negative! Unfortunately, his fecal came back postivie for whipworms, which completely suprised me, so we are now treating him for it with Panacur. Vet recommended monthly interceptor or Triflexis (sp?) to prevent from happening again...have any thoughts on those? I'm just worried about them possibly screwing up his system, as he is on a strict raw diet and never gets anything non-raw. The only way to know is to try, correct? ( I have used interceptor on Ivy in the past without any issues. I don't know anything about Triflexis as it is kind of new).
While there, I also got a refill of the shampoo that I got last time I was there, this way I have it on hand may I need it again (hopefully I won't anytime soon!).
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/26/11 01:33 AM

Knock Wood!! crossedfingers ! I hope that you don't need that shampoo either smile

I think that Kathy uses Triflexis, maybe a forum search will bring up info on it? She might be the only one I've seen so far?

I use Interceptor, at a low dose, so it's only good for HW, not for the worms. Here's one way to look at it. Is it better for him to be on the monthly at full strength for his weight, or to once in awhile need panacur. Let's say the fecal didn't pick up the whipworms, then you have a dog getting sicker....I think you can convince yourself either way.

Does the vet think this might be a reason for the weight loss? Is this is first weight since going raw?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/26/11 10:09 PM

Thanks Lisa!

No, this is not his first "weight check" since being on raw. He gets weighed every week.

Before raw, he weighed about 73lbs or so, he looked good but could stand to add a few pounds. After I put him on raw he started gaining weight and got up to 78lbs, which is where he sould be at.
Then over the last month or so, he hadn't really been eating as much and would only eat some of his meals. I thought maybe he was getting picky, or it was too hot out for him to eat (it has been in the 90's and 100's here and we have no a/c), so I didn't really worry. I figured that his weight loss might also may be because he was running in agility now, and being more active since its summer, again I didn't see anything to worry about it. I did think about upping his food but I didn't because he wasn't eating his meals all the time and he was only going to eat so much ayways.

But now it all makes sense, having the whipworms show up in the fecal explains all of that because weight loss and loss of appetite are "signs" of whipworm. So yes, his weight loss and appetite loss are because of the nasty whipworms.

He has had 2 panacur treatments so far of 3, and I am already seeing a difference in his appetite. He is getting his "old" Mason appetite back! smile So hopefully we aren't too far off getting him back to his ideal weight!

As far as the Interceptor, my vet said that it is good for heartworm and intestinal parasites, not just heartworm. The only things it doesn't cover, according to my vet, is fleas and ticks.
For Trifexis, I will do a forum search and see what I can bring up. If I can research some good results, I may give it a try to see how it goes. We don't want anymore wormys in Mason!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/26/11 11:22 PM

I think I read here that it's not effective for ticks, not sure about fleas.

It sure is nice when there is a straightforward solution that makes sense! (So jealous of a straightforward solution, but you went through the ringer too!)
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/23/11 08:04 PM

Just thought I would stop in here for a quick update!

Mason continues to do fantastic and I just love his coat...its soooo soft!
The worm treatment threw his system all off wack, so I did add probiotics to his diet and his system is all back to normal now and his poops are great! poop (Geez, what those nasty worms can do to them! Yuk!)

He goes back tomorrow for his fecal re-check, cross your fingers that it comes back negative! crossedfingers
His appetite is back and its amazing! All he wants to do now is eat eat eat. I love to see that back in him again! smile

I will update again tomorrow, after I get his fecal results back!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/23/11 10:55 PM

Sounds like a good progress report - glad the probiotics were so effective.

crossedfingers for tomorrow!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/24/11 03:59 PM

Negative Fecal! happyboogie
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/24/11 04:36 PM

poop Yay, great news! What a long way you guys have come!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/24/11 05:53 PM

Yay--glad that Mason is doing so well! You've done such a good job with him on his health issues!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 01:18 AM

Here is my boy! wub A few days shy of 5 months on RAW! smile



I can't even believe its the same dog!

His coat is softer, fuller, has darkened up/better pigment, sheds less and no smell. He is so much less itchy and oh I could go on! wub
I am SO SO SO glad that this is working for him!

Just wanted to keep everyone updated.
Posted by: LifeAsMe

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 01:23 AM

Wow...look at how much redder he is! I love to see these before and after pictures. smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 01:46 AM

Thanks! I couldn't be happier with how well he is doing!
Posted by: LifeAsMe

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 01:52 AM

He looks happier Ashley! Do you think he is? Like he was just to uncomfortable to be happy before?
Posted by: Barb E

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 02:05 AM

happyboogie
That is awesome!!!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 08/28/11 09:15 PM

Originally Posted By: LifeAsMe
He looks happier Ashley! Do you think he is? Like he was just to uncomfortable to be happy before?



Yes, he is much happier! smile
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/18/11 02:36 PM

Well, this fall/winter weather is making Mason nuts!

He is itchy again frown (but not as bad as last year!), so I have a call into his holistic vet, to make up a new plan for him.

He has been doing soooooo good too. Summer was AMAZING!

I think fall/winter, is just his bad time of the year!

Posted by: arycrest

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/18/11 02:51 PM

He's getting handsomer and handsomer!!!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/18/11 03:51 PM

Well drat! Any skin issues that you can see?

Is it dry where you are? Some folks find a humidifier helps in the winter, but I dunno, just passing that along...
Posted by: Jane Jean

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/18/11 04:11 PM

http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/solutions-for-allergies/
A couple years ago I bought the Herbsmith Clear AllerQi that is mentioned in this article.
Onyx didn't want to eat the food when it was on there so I discontinued using it. I think I'll give it another shot after reading this article, maybe if it is in tripe she'll be more willing to eat it.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/19/11 07:55 PM

Thanks for the humidifier idea, Lisa. I use to have one but I let someone borrow it and haven't gotten it back yet, and I know that they are no longer using it, so I will see if I can get it back.

Yes, he made a sore on the side of his tail and under his one armpit this past week. He did have a hot spot looking area on his knee but it looks fine now, as I have been making him wear the cone of shame to keep him from getting at it so it doesnt get worse or infected. I am giving him his medicated baths and have put some chlorahexidine (sp?) lotion on his spots which seems to have helped dry them up faster. This is my first experience with the lotion and it seems to be working well.

I have been looking into a few different products, AllerQi being one of them. I do know there is a holistic pet store near me, which I just discovered the other day, that sells an "allergy kit" which contains a few different products/herbs to help with allergies.

We have an appt on Thursday afternoon with the holistic vet, so I am going to bring the "allergy kit" up to see if it is worth trying in addition to any herbs she gives Mason.

Thanks Everyone. Will update afyer our appt on Thursday!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/19/11 11:56 PM

Ah, poor Mason!

We used that AllerQi stuff for Kailor and it didn't make any difference. Apparently some people have had great luck for their dogs with it though.

When she's really itchy we put her on plant sterols and sterolins: http://www.onlynaturalpet.com/products/Only-Natural-Pet-Immune-Balance/999051.aspx

This is a natural anti-inflammatory but, of course, does not get to the root of the problem. However, it does really help make her more comfortable.

Do you have a hepa filter in your furnace? It's most likely dust mites at this time of year. If you have a hepa filter on your vacuum cleaner I would vacuum at least once a week. I would spray those hot spots with Rejuva Spray and also coat them with calendula once or twice a day. I'd also suggest weekly baths for the itchy areas. There's a great shampoo for dogs called TheraNeem. And I'd also recommend putting him in a t-shirt so he can't do as much damage to himself.

The humidifier might work but if it's mold that's causing the problems then it could make it worse. It's absolutely worth a try though!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/20/11 02:44 AM

Originally Posted By: BowWowMeow
Do you have a hepa filter in your furnace? It's most likely dust mites at this time of year. .....


Now that Ruth types this, it reminds me, wasn't this one of mason's allergens?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/20/11 01:26 PM

Yes, dust mites are one of his allergens.

He has been getting weekly baths, but I will change shampoo and use the TheraNeem as I had been using something else. I will get the rejuva spray too. I should be able to buy that at the same health store, right?
Calendula, I have never heard of that before, I dont think, but am going to buy some.

T-shirt, great idea! Going to put one on him now!
I am actually going to order him a custom jacket after the holidays, so he will be able to wear that too.


I took the cone off him last night as I was home but when I walked into the other room to put something away, I came out to find him going at him self crazy biting and he ripped his spot on his knee back open and it looks nasty now. And it was almost healed! How quick they can create one of those spots is crazy!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/20/11 06:37 PM

Went out and picked up all the things Ruth suggested!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/21/11 09:59 AM

Keep us updated. If you got the ONP stuff be aware that it can take 2-3 weeks to notice a difference.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 12/21/11 04:26 PM

crossedfingers
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/18/12 07:57 PM

Something just came through my email, and one link led to another, and I saw this story about mite allergies and atopic dermatitis, and I thought of Mason. The pictures that I saw where terrible, and the story was actually centered on kibble as a source of storage mites, and thus these types of allergies.

I know that Mason is on raw, but I wonder if regular house mites (which he was allergic to if I recall), are seasonal? What type of environment encourages house mites? I dunno, but even when you there's not a lot that can be done, it's nice to know at least the cause?

How is he doing nowadays?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/18/12 10:45 PM

Thanks Lisa.

Sorry, I haven't updated recently.


I am actually starting to think that his house dust mite allergies are seasonal. He was doing so great and then the seasons changed and he got itchy again frown

He is doing ok, he has defiantly been better. He is itchy, his coat has thinned out a lot and is very coarse feeling now frown His skin is also very dry and flaky.

He has a day or two left of the powder that the holistic vet gave us, and I started the Immune Balance that Ruth mentioned, 2 weeks ago. The powder defiantly helped heal up the irritated spots on his hind legs and tail but now he is bothering under his front legs and the insides of his front legs. Haven't noticed any changes with the Immune Balance yet, but it is still building up in his system.

Just tonight while I was making dinner, I turned around (he was laying on the floor behind me) and he was chewing at himself on his back and irritated it.

I got my humidifier back, so now I am just hunting for filters for it. Also, I just purchased a new vacuum with a HEPA filter, so hopefully that will help some. Unfortunately, our heating system is baseboard, so we do not have any type of filter on it....


Overall, We are hanging in there, and are managing. As far as sores on his skin, they are not as bad or as severe as last year, so that is good. (Knock on wood!)
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/18/12 10:49 PM

Oh, and we have been using the Calendula Cream and spray Ruth mentioned, with great results. I have gone thru 2 tubes already and need to go out and buy a 3rd as soon as I have time. We have also been doing weekly (was doing twice weekly when he was bad, a few weeks ago)baths with the Neem Shampoo...
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/18/12 10:55 PM

Hang in there, Ashley! It is so hard, especially once they have a flare-up. Kailor is doing better now but her feet are starting to blow up because of the cold, snow and salt on the sidewalks. The Rejuva spray works well to keep her feet at least functional. During her really bad seasons she wears long sleeve t-shirts and socks.

I do remember it took 3 weeks for that Immune Balance to start working for Kailor. We are about to try something new for her but it's for yeast problems (which is what she has).

Does he get relief after the NEEM baths?
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/18/12 11:05 PM

I was hoping you hadn't updated because all is well frown

Has Mason ever been on MSM?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/19/12 02:11 PM

Thanks Ruth.
Yes, he gets relief from the Neem baths.

I bought him a coat to wear so he can't totally itch himself up. He doesnt mind wearing it at all. He wears it often!

Lisa, no he has never been on MSM.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/22/12 08:03 PM

Hmmmm, ok, don't know if I should post this here or start a new thread but I am going to post it here anyways.

I want to apologize in advance on the length of this post.

Mason's diet is changing....He has been on his RAW Diet for 9 months or so now.

We started out with beef and chicken and he did well. In addition to that he has had duck, pork, rabbit etc, since being on raw.

With his recent flare up, he can no longer tolerate the beef or the chicken (chicken wings are the only chicken part he will eat and he loves them), they make his flare up worse. So I switched his main raw protein to pork, which the holistic vet said was a good choice as it was considered "neutral". Well, needless to say he doesn't care for the pork what so ever. Tried lamb as well, but same thing, no interest in it, which I guess was ok anyways since, according to our holistic vet, its considered a "warm" meat and will only make his flare up worse, same with venison.
And turkey gives him the runs, always has...

So next I tried the premade raw by Bravo. Story short, that didn't last long either. He wouldn't eat it. (He is a very PICKY eater, if you haven't figured that out yet!)

Now, I am at a loss and don't know what to feed him, with beef, chicken, pork, turkey, lamb, duck and venison out of the picture, so I went out and bought a small bag of Grain Free Evo Salmon & Herring Formula, to feed him in the meantime until I could get a hold of our holisitic vet for the next course of action.

His stools are great on it, but his ears are red now (which I know is a result of the dairy products in the Evo.) That said, he had to come off the Evo, ASAP.

So today, I decided to go out and get a small bag of the new food by California Natural, Grain Free Kangaroo & Lentils. He had that for dinner for the first tome tonight, so we will see over the next few days how that goes.

After I got home, I got an email back from our holistic vet suggesting I change him over to a vegtable broth & whitfish/cod based diet in addition to canned pumpkin (which he is iffy about!), sweet potatoes and vegtables like califlower.
Mason HATES fish, he will only eat Tuna Fish (in water) & Sardines (in water), so this diet idea is not going to work.

Does anyone have any ideas on where we could try to go from here?

I would really like to continue with a raw diet but have run out of protein sources for him! He seems to love rabbit ( bought some of the expensive canned rabbit to try), but it isn't really available to me, neither is Bison.

Thought about home cooked diet, but have no clue how he would do on that and I don't know anything about it, like balancing etc, but again I run into the protein source issue. Also, I know it can be time consuming but I am willing to do that for him...he is my boy, his picky self and all!

Any suggestions?

Again, sorry this is so long.
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/22/12 09:10 PM

Wow, I can't believe Mason is so picky. :-(

Are your other dogs eating the raw food that he won't eat? Let me know b/c we can always buy it from you--no one is picky around here. Kailor does very well on that Answers pork but it makes her fat. She did great on NV rabbit but it now costs a fortune so that's out of the picture.

There is also canned beaver at Treats Unleashed.

If I were going to start now with home cooked I'd buy one of Monica Segal's books and use that to figure it out.

Does he like and can he eat eggs? What about beans or tofu? When I did home cooked for Chama and Basu I made a stew for them (based on the Pitcairn recipe which has grains) and I used beans as part of their protein source. That worked fine for both of them.

Whenever animals are this picky I always suspect their tummy is hurting them...is he on anything for his gut health?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/22/12 09:43 PM

Yep, he is that picky! He always kinda has been. Not so much when he was younger, but now that he's older, he is. He loves the dry kibble and eats every last bite! I always say, I've never seen such a picky raw fed dog! He loves all the stuff he cant have!

As of right now, no, the others are not eating his raw. I will see what all I have and let you know. I would love to see it go to someone who will eat it.

Nope, he can't have eggs although he loves them. They make his ears red and itchy frown
He's never had tofu before! Not sure about beans...

I will do some research on Monica Segal. I know LauraHolder is using her diet with Oscar, so I have been reading through her thread. I will look at her books too.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/22/12 09:53 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Lisa, no he has never been on MSM.


I missed this before, but it's a supplement that is supposed to help with allergies and also skin, as well as joints. Might be worth a try?

Now off to read your long post!
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 01/22/12 09:58 PM

Thinking about the diet...maybe with a cooked diet, he won't be so picky and might tolerate more proteins?

I am with Ruth, to me, picky often (usually?) means something isn't right or optimal.

You might want to start a new "diet thread", for more input, though here is fine too.

Max is King of Food Intolerance, and I'm fortunate that he tolerates beef nowadays. For awhile, it was lamb only, and that's pretty pricey. He absolutely can't have chicken, turkey, or pork.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/12 04:40 PM

Just wanted to update on Mason

(knock on wood, hopefully I'm not jinxing it!)


I am pleased to say that Mason is doing very well! smile

He is eating Grain Free California Natural Kangaroo & Lentils. He is doing fantastic on it and he eats every meal now which is huge for Mason! happyboogie I no longer have to entice him to eat and he looks forward to eating.
I do notice a difference though, with him being off raw as far as the "dog odor" goes!

His skin has cleared up and is no longer dry, flaky & itchy. He no longer has any sore/red/itchy/hairless hotspot like patches, not even under his front legs/arms!

The edges of his ears are doing great and looking good too. They are healing, the hair is growing back.

His coat is starting to fill back in. His saddle was almost gray in color before, as he was itching it so much and pulling the hair out. That now is starting to fill back in black and is getting darker, like it was over the summer!

Anyways, I couldn't be more pleased with how he is currently doing and I hope it continues this way.
When we went out and about last Saturday, a guy that had seen him two weeks ago commented on how much better he looks, how his coat is filling in and that he is starting to look like a German Shepherd again! wub
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/12 08:13 PM

Forgot to add, that he is no longer on the ONP stuff. It wasn't agreeing with him, think maybe it was one of the ingredients.
He is back on fish oil, vit e, & vit. c, finally too, and doing well! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/12 10:16 PM

So glad to hear good news.

So, was the main change the food then?
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/12 10:19 PM

Yes, the food was the main change
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/16/12 10:37 PM

Okay, so now we know he really has some major food issues. The abx helped with skin issues that maybe were from the allergies. But, the food...so glad that he is doing so well. Let's hope it keeps working!
Posted by: BowWowMeow

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/17/12 12:15 AM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Forgot to add, that he is no longer on the ONP stuff. It wasn't agreeing with him, think maybe it was one of the ingredients.
He is back on fish oil, vit e, & vit. c, finally too, and doing well! smile


I'm so glad to hear that Mason is doing so well. What a huge relief for both of you!

And, we will be happy to buy the ONP stuff off of you. It has worked wonders for Kailor.
Posted by: MSD

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 02/17/12 08:59 AM

GSDTrain—hi, I'm still new here, but wanted to say Congratulations!!!! We’ll keep our fingers and paws crossed for continued success.
I’ve read your thread and it is helping us, so Thank You for sharing Mason and his story.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/28/12 11:52 PM

Still doing well! smile
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/28/12 11:54 PM

Yay! Amazing what these subclinical food issues can do, isn't it? I'm so glad the food change is still working!
Posted by: Barb E

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 03/29/12 10:02 AM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Still doing well! smile

groovy
Posted by: MSD

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/02/12 01:23 PM

GSDTrain—just wanted to say congratulations to you and Mason, it is a BIG deal that his skin is doing so well. My one boy is having such a hard time right now with his skin. Best wishes for continued success.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/09/12 10:12 PM

What a difference a year can make!
I was looking through pictures tonight and came across Mason's pictures from last March when his allergies were at their worst. This March, he looks nothing like that! He is currently having NO allergy issues, what so ever (and I hope it stays this way)!!!

March 14, 2011- Absolutely miserable (but still trying to put on a happy face!), extremely itching, losing hair etc.



March 12 & 18, 2012- Happy, healthy, and full of life- no itching, scratching, hair loss, inflammation, redness etc!



Posted by: Woodreb

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 04/09/12 10:43 PM

wub
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/17/12 09:36 PM

Update:
Mason is having a flare-up frown

Left for a wedding yesterday morning and came home and he had himself all torn up frown

He has had 1 spot on his side that started out as a spider bite and then he kept biting it, the "area" got bigger but I have been keeping that clean and its almost all healed now.

In his armpit area, it looks like someone implanted a baseball under the skin, thats how swollen and inflamed it is from him scratching at it non-stop and biting....its bad, really bad, and very deep and open, ozzey (sp?)...nasty. I cleaned his sores up, gave him benadryl but he is still itchy and trying to get at it. He has an appt at the vet for Tues, but I called them and left a message and will call again first thing in the AM, to see if I can move his appt up to Monday.
He is definitely going to need abx this time frown (It was this time last year that he needed the abx)

Oh, and he has licked and chewed inside his toes all raw and they are ozzey too frown

Poor guy.

Nothing has changed (his "tickle spots" (usually he doesn't have tickle spots but when his allergies kick up they emerge) came about before I got Kyro, but I didn't think about it, thought he was just itchy from swimming so much, so I bathed him, he was good for a week and then yesterday this) and with the way he is biting/licking/chewing at his toes makes me think its his environmental allergies kicking up this time.

Hope he will bounce back quickly.
Posted by: Wisc.Tiger_Val

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/17/12 10:46 PM

OH No. I hope you can get Mason in to the Vet on Monday. It is no fun when they are suffering so much from allergies/infection or what every is causing it.

Can you ask you vet since the areas are oozing, if they can try to get enough junk to culture, if not I would have them do a couple of punch biopsies. I spider bit thing you described is (not to scare you) but is a pretty classic way the MRSA erupts, at least on humans.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/17/12 11:17 PM

Thank you for saying something, I definitely will say something.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/17/12 11:29 PM

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Thank you for saying something, I definitely will say something.


*Thank you for saying something, I definitely will ask.
Posted by: Wisc.Tiger_Val

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 12:22 AM

Ashley, I just didn't want to scare you. MRSA can be hard to deal with, but if you can get a handle on it early then it helps.

I hope they culture at least and just don't throw Meds at the problem.

I know you will keep us updated on Mason.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 12:26 AM

Oh no! I'm so sorry. This time of year is so tough for him :-(

Glad that tomorrow is Monday, and yes, sure hope that they can culture something.

hugging I know how frustrating and difficult this is, let us know what the vet says!
Posted by: Good_Karma

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 06:36 AM

Lots of good thoughts for Mason!!
Posted by: Braverhund

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 07:49 AM

Also cheering Mason on towards feeling better soon. Hoping they run a culture, this can be so helpful. crossedfingers Skin stuff is so difficult to puzzle out! Sending healing, healthy vibes out for handsome Mason! butterfly
Posted by: MSD

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 08:07 AM

GSDTrain—I’m so sorry to read about Mason and can completely relate. frown. I wish I had the magic cure for your Mason and my boy too.

Originally Posted By: GSDTrain
Oh, and he has licked and chewed inside his toes all raw and they are ozzey too frown


Derma Paw—Link: We are using this product for that exact reason and it helped, it really helped. We apply it every other night before bed and put the socks on with it, they don’t stay on long, but enough.

I had received great advice here, and they are working ie, Only Natural Pet Immune Balance, T-shirt, socks, scarf, etc.

I hope that your vet will help & do the biopsy/culture like suggested.

Good luck and hugs to you both.

PS—DH wanted me to add that the Temaril-P did help him and it did, but I’d add that he was really tired, not himself and did vomit a few times on it. It is a combination of Prednisolone and an anti-itch.
Posted by: GSDElsa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 05:27 PM

Ooh, this definitely sounds like a staph infection to me. Similar to what happened to Elsa with the "scratch/bite/wound" getting bigger and bigger. The lump is what happens to my friend whenever she gets a flare up.

Hopefully it if that is what it is then it's as easy to treat on him as it was on Elsa. Easy 2 weeks of antibiotics and she was good to go.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 06:01 PM

Had the vet appt this morning!
Vet did a culture, and it is a staph infection, so he is on abx for 2 weeks, as well as panalog cream to apply to the affected areas.
Vet offered TP, but I told her that I would wait on that, and continue with the benadryl for now.
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 06:01 PM

And I haven't put a t-shirt on him like usual because it is so warm here and he would be burning up if I put one on him.
And the ONP stuff doesn't work for him.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 06/18/12 07:28 PM

Sure hope it clears up quicly crossedfingers
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/11/12 10:06 PM

Just updating,

Mason's staph infection cleared up nicely. He finished his abx last week.
No other issues. He is doing really well.

Those dang spiders!!!

Knock on wood, no itchies!! smile Nice soft, silky coat. And the hair he lost in the hot spot area has grown back really fast.

We are back on track! smile
Posted by: Barb E

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/11/12 10:41 PM

happyboogie

Love it when the news is good!!!
Posted by: MSD

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/12/12 11:53 AM

GSDTrain— so glad Mason is better. This is such Awesome news!!!!
Because we’re still having problems with our boy, may I ask what ABX Mason was on and if you were using the panalog cream the entire time as well? Thank you.
Wishing him a long track of good health, he’s a handsome pup.
Posted by: MaxaLisa

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/12/12 04:57 PM

Knock wood, great news!
Posted by: GSDTrain

Re: Mason Skin Issues- Thoughts? - 07/13/12 10:02 PM

MSD--- Mason was on Cephalexin (2 500mg pills, twice a day). The panaolg cream was used on an "as needed basis"...I used it daily for about a week then I stopped as it wasn't needed anymore as the sores were pretty much healed up.
I wish the best of luck to you with your boy. I know how frustrating it can be. Hang in there!