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Don't know what to do for my dear dog, can you help me?

(15 Posts)
MintyChops Tue 13-Sep-16 13:50:16

My beloved elder dog is almost 11 (so not that old imo) and has a history of chronic skin problems. He has been on everything under the sun: steroids, Atopica, Apoquel, Malaseb baths. He has been allergy tested and is off the charts for house and dust mites.

This summer he has been the worst he has ever been. He has ripped the fur and skin off his hind quarters, back legs, bum and tail. It is frequently bleeding. He literally can't stop. He has now developed an all-over staph infection on his skin.

He also has pancreatitis (controlled by diet) and a compressed nerve in his neck which is causing his paws to drag so we don't walk him on hard surfaces anymore. Surgery is not an option according to my vet due to age and the staph infection. I agree with this.

His current pill regime is;
morning - 1 X 50mg Atopica, half a 50mg Tramake, half a 80mg Marbocyl, 2 X 5mg Prednicortone
Evening - half a 50mg Tramake, 2 X 5mg Prednicortone

He is also getting a Malaseb bathe very week (sometimes twice a week). He is due a review next Thursday but his itch is getting worse and driving him mad. I can't get a decision either in my own head or any inkling from my vet about what to do. Are there any vets here that can advise me? Is that a sustainable pill regime, will it start to work? I know it's hard without seeing him but I just don't know what the right thing to do for my old friend is.

Hopefullyoneday1 Tue 13-Sep-16 13:55:41

i don't have a experience of this in dogs but one of my horses suffers from sweet itch which is a skin condition aggrevated by numerous environmental conditions.

There are lotions, potions and drugs but nothing seems to work for long. I find her wearing a fine mesh sweet itch rug is the best preventative. They don't get hot, she wears hers all summer. Google sweet itch rugs, i'm sure someone out there has something similar for dogs

tabulahrasa Tue 13-Sep-16 13:58:29

Have you seen a dermatologist? Mine has a dust mite allergy and so far (fingers crossed) Apoquel is working, but if it didn't we were going to try immunotherapy...

Veterinari Tue 13-Sep-16 14:01:09

I'd also suggest a derm referral and immunotherapy. Allergies are awful flowers

takesnoprisoners Tue 13-Sep-16 14:09:53

Tried acupuncture for dogs? I have no personal knowledge or experience but a lady I met while walking my Dog said that her dog was riddled with allergies and 5 sessions of acupuncture helped the dog immensely. She recommended it for my Dog who has been getting hotspots all summer.

MintyChops Tue 13-Sep-16 14:13:26

We have tried the immunotherapy (if that is the injections made using his own blood serum?) and although it initially worked, it soon stopped. I have the number of a vet in Celbridge who apparently is very good with allergies (we are in Dublin) but I don't know if he is a dog dermatologist, I'll find out. I used to have a pony with sweet itch Hopefully, it is a bastard of a thing.

Frecklesfrecklesfreckles4 Tue 13-Sep-16 14:15:08

Referral to a dermatologist.
What about Cortavance topical steroid spray in addition to his current regime?
Presumably he is on one of the flea tablets to rule out contact with fleas? (Simparica,Bravecto,Comfortis). Sites of itching you descibe are typical for Flea bite allergy, often atopy will manifest more as lower limbs, underside of dog,face/ears (though itching can be anywhere or all over). If you're using a topical flea treatment the washing (which should be at least twice weekly with Malaseb) may make it less effective. Even though allergy to other things has been diagnosed these cases can be multifactorial and you don't want to ignore the basics, so all dogs/cats in household treated with effective flea control and also spray house.
If skin infection not clearing re swab and re culture for antibiotic sensitivity.

Frecklesfrecklesfreckles4 Tue 13-Sep-16 14:17:01

Also, sometimes if your vet contacts the pharmaceutical company that make some of the drugs he's on for technical support they will give some guidance.

Frecklesfrecklesfreckles4 Tue 13-Sep-16 14:18:19

Referral to the Vet College if you're in Dublin?

sparechange Tue 13-Sep-16 14:29:04

I don't want to sound like a shiny eyed raw feeder, but my best mate's shar pei x has been absolutely plagued with skin issues since they got her as a rescue and has been on every steroid, cream and special food under the sun.

Within 6 weeks of moving her to a raw diet, the skin issues had disappeared and her fur has grown back, but she still has a few red spots from over licking, which the vet thinks is from habit rather than irritation

MintyChops Tue 13-Sep-16 15:11:39

Freckles we do have the Cortovance spray as well but it doesn't seem to help. We did flea treat them both (have 2 dogs) a couple of weeks ago but I never thought about the baths just washing it off. I will ask for flea tablets to sort that out. I will get the house spray as well - you are so right about keeping up with the basics, I had forgotten about the house spray. Thank you all so much, also for the advice about the raw food diet spare.

Karcheer Tue 13-Sep-16 17:18:31

My mums old dog was allergic to lots of foods and other things and itched like hell if he accidentally ate something. He could only eat something like turkey and one other thing, can't remember what it was.
We used to bath him in oilatum which helped.
Great weather to sit in the paddling pool with him and soak him in oilatum...
Has he been allergy tested?

Karcheer Tue 13-Sep-16 17:21:09

Re: the raw diet, my mum tried this too, before he was allergy tested and as she fed him raw chicken his skin got much worse. It was only after she found out what he was allergic to, she realised why.
I'd definitely recommend he gets allergy tested.

Re fleas, don't forget to boil wash and treat their beds as well.

MintyChops Tue 13-Sep-16 17:34:46

Oh Takesnoprisoners have just seen your suggestion about acupuncture, I would totally try that.

Veterinari Tue 13-Sep-16 21:54:01

Acupuncture can be useful
If he's already been tested and positive for dust mites then reducing his access to soft furnishing by keeping him in rooms with hard floors, (laminate, tile etc), ensure bedding is regularly washed/frozen and hoovered to remove dust mite burden.

And check that the allergy panel screened for everything. For example you can test for household allergens, tree pollen allergens, grass pollen allergens, food allergens etc and not every allergen panel tests everything - if your dog just had an 'indoor' panel he maybe reacting to other allergens that weren't tested for

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