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Dog rash

October 16th, 2010, 11:02 AM
My 2 year old lab/rott mix (Romeo) has developed a nasty itchy rash over his torso.

I've checked and bathed for flea's and have found nothing. He's also scratching at his ears and I've noticed that his ears are red on the inside, but no build-up of gunk in there. He's also had some nasty smelling gas and itches in places where the rash isn't present (base of tail, paws legs).

A week and a half ago I used a cleaner in a bedroom that has carpet (all other rooms are hardwood) and I originally thought this might have been the cause. I've since steam cleaned and washed everything in that room (with no chemicals/detergents) and have completely restricted Romeo's access to that room - to no avail.

I also thought it may have been his treats/food. I've since eliminated all treats and switched his food to a Wellness brand - to no avail.

The only other thing I can think of is if he's allergic to something in our backyard. We have tall weeds that are growing in the area he goes to the washroom and he prefers to go under these tall weeds to do his business. Again, I've limited him to where he can go the bathroom (keeping him on a leash) making sure he keeps away from that area - to no avail. Romeo is terrified of being outdoors and unfortunately at this stage does not venture outside of the backyard for walks. So if he's picked something up it's either in the house or in the backyard.

I'm going to try to get a picture of the rash, however, Romeo is a rescue dog (abused/neglected) and is not 100% trusting of humans) and won't let anyone inside his comfort zone too easily - so that's going to be a bit of a process.

A client who is a vet tech suggested I give him benadryl. I've given him 1 25mg capsule (told no liquid and the childrens benadryl was all flavored) which did nothing. I increased that to 50mg (what I was recommended) and it also did nothing other than knock him out for a few hours. Romeo weighs about 60-65 lbs.

All the itching aside - he is totally his usual self - playful and smiling and eating and going the bathroom normally. I feel for the little guy and want to relieve his pain - anyone have any suggestions on what this could be and what I can do to help relieve him?

October 16th, 2010, 11:54 AM
Maybe a quick vet check would be in order and they can probably give your dog a shot to alleviate the itchies a bit. I have used benadryl too and it does make them sleepy and you would think its not helping but just having the animal sleep and not scratch is giving them some relief.

by any chance have you recently turned on your furnace? my lab used to start scratching when the furnace came on?? I have also heard of allergys to flea meds like revolution and advantage?

If I was betting on it I would say its likely food related. I know you indicated in your post that you have switched to Wellness and thats a good food but if its only been a couple of weeks you cant really judge wether the food works or not. Especially if there are sores. I would try to eliminate certain ingrediants like chicken, grains etc and see what works.

Good Luck

October 16th, 2010, 12:01 PM
Hi Winston,

Yup we've turned our furnace on. We live in an old house so we have radiators instead of vents - so I don't know if that makes a difference (no hot air blowing up).

I didn't bathe him in flea shampoo - just oatmeal shampoo. I haven't put any flea medications on him at all.

He's not scratching at the rash site - he licks there. He scratches on area's that the rash isn't - his neck, near his ears.

It's only been a few days since I changed his food so certainly not enough time to tell. I'll give it a little more before I go to the vet.

Thanks for replying :)

October 16th, 2010, 02:33 PM
First of all, welcome to :highfive: and thank you for rescuing Romeo. :thumbs up

Like Winston, I also think it is likely food related. Was he itching even a little when you first got him and then it got worse? Were you feeding him the same food he was eating before got him or did you switch to something else before trying the Wellness?

Are you feeding him the Wellness CORE (grain free) brand or the regular Wellness? The grain free one is the one you should be trying. I actually prefer the Orijen ( brand myself or else Acana Provincial which is also grain free and made by the same company.

Does the rash have any crusty looking sores or is there any hair loss at all? If so, then it could be demodectic mange which definitely needs vet attention asap. Good luck and please keep us updated. :goodvibes:

October 16th, 2010, 04:40 PM
Hey Rainbow, thanks for the welcoming.

We've had Romeo for about a year now - this rash is a brand new thing. He had been eating the same food for a year - Pedigree (I realize now not a great choice, vet never advised me to change). Now I've got him eating the Wellness Super 5 Mix, which is wheat free.

No crusties where the rash is but again he doesn't let me get too close to him. Surprisingly he's allowed me to put some ointment on him (dr. maggies antibacterial and anti-itch ointment) but of course he just licks it off.

October 16th, 2010, 07:01 PM
Welcome to the most puzzling thing you will ever figure out for a dog. Been there and still don't know......:( Stick to a limited diet such as fish and sweet potato or as someone mentioned grain free for 8 weeks. I like the acana fish one. I myself am suspicious of grains. Check for parasites and of course fleas. Benedryl did not work but someone mentioned reactin which I am going to try after talking to the vet. There is good meds called Atopica, it made my girl sick, but not the norm. Then there are good old steroids, last resort. There was a thread going lately about fall break outs.......wondering if this is happening to your dog. :shrug:

October 16th, 2010, 07:34 PM
The Wellness Super 5 Mix does contain grains which I think you should stay away from. It also contains flaxseed which is a known allergen.

While flax oil, flax seed and brewer's yeast (torula nutritional yeast aka hydrolyzed nutritional yeast) are healthy for most, some dogs do not tolerate them. Many commercial dog foods now use these ingredients because they are in vogue. Beets and beet pulp that many dogs do not tolerate are commonly used in the new natural kibbles. Symptoms of allergies are itching, feet licking, the dog biting at the small of its back or tail.