Originally Posted by Jessie3625
We've had him since [puphood?], yes, and he's now 2 years old.
He's always eaten normal dry dog food from [puphood? // Brand-name X? // Other?].
[He eats from a] regular plastic bowl.
He seems happy - other than itching a lot! - it started this past summer. It's Jan 2018 now, so I'd say about July of 2017, it started.
He lost hair around his eyes, elbows, & paws. His hair will start coming back around his eyes, but [the haircoat] stays thin. His skin is very sensitive, he can bump himself on anything rough, and his skin will [be scraped], and bleed a little.
We've tried everything to wash him in, [he's been] given antibiotics, antihistamine, you name it.
We can't afford a k9 dermatologist.
Any ideas on what it could be, or how to help him?
1st thing: I'd dump the plastic bowl / bowls
, & replace them, preferably with heat-tempered glass [Pyrex or similar] which is dishwasher-safe, sturdy, smooth, won't retain bacteria, & is very durable, as well as hypoallergenic.
Also, I'd get rid of any plastic toys
- if he has anything he rolls or mouths [a Buster Cube, plastic water bottles or soda bottles to crunch & fetch, a hollow plastic BALL...] or household things that he lies on, or walks on, made of plastic - I'd get rid of it, or make it completely inaccessible to the dog.
So if U have a welcome-mat or mud-mat of Astro-turf, i'd replace it with coco-mat or a washable cotton bathmat or a polyester braided AKA "rag" rug... anything not plastic. Plastic-covered waterproof dog-mattress, plastic dog-house, molded plastic 'lounge' for the dog to lie on - give it away, sell it, recycle it [the city of Boston recycles hard plastics, now].
If he's NOT "allergic" to plastic / doesn't have plastic dermatitis
, by stopping his exposure, U haven't caused any problems; it's a low-cost, low-risk choice.
Instead, U've narrowed the diagnostic possibilities, U've reduced the chance that he'll chew [or break] & swallow plastic pieces, & in any case, U've improved the hygiene of his food bowls
: plastic is porous; it absorbs odors, gets surface scratches that harbor inaccessible bacteria, etc; after a few weeks' or months' use, plastic cannot be completely sanitized, even in the dishwasher, b'c of those scratches.
U still haven't said if U've taken him to a GP vet for a diagnostic work-up on this skin / hair issue - if U did, what did the vet say?
Was it the vet who Rx'ed antibiotics, various antihistamines, special shampoos, & so on? -- Or did U just ask other pet-owners for advice, or look on-line for things that had "worked for other ppl's dogs"? // Trying things at random can make the symptoms of an unknown problem worse; U really need a vet's help to Dx the cause. Important Q:
did any vet do a skin-scraping for Demodex canis
or Sarcoptes scabiei
[variety either hominis
the reverse-raccoon mask of balding skin around his eyes is similar to the after-effect of demodicosis
- an overpopn of Demodex mites, which usually happens in yuong-puppyhood, not
in adult dogs with NORMAL immune systems. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-p...dectic-in-dogs https://www.petmd.com/blogs/fullyvet...ic_mange-12823
A urine test to determine if he has a metabolic disorder, & possibly a culture incubated from samples of affected hair & skin areas [to I-D any bacterial infection], would also be good tests - which aren't terribly expensive.
Sarcoptic mange photos Sarcoptic mange in dogs - Google Search
Demodectic mange photos Demodex mange in dogs - Google Search
An overview of metabolic diseases in pets: Metabolic