11-19-2013, 10:26 PM
Dog Forum ModeraTHOR
Join Date: Jan 2013
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I guess my first question would be about what you've found out from the vet.
Have they done any tests on him? Did they discuss his diet with you or help you figure out what food to try? Did they talk about possible allergy testing? They should be helping you get to the bottom of this...Not just prescribing you special soaps and conditioners and sending you on your merry way. If they aren't showing much concern, it might be time to try a new vet. You may even want to ask to be referred to a dermatologist instead.
If this is an allergy, it could be anything from fleas, to food, to things in the environment that are totally out of your control. Does his current food have chicken? That's a common allergen in dogs and it often develops later on in the dogs life. To see if it's food, you would have to do an elimination diet. Basically, you would start with a food that is a unique protein/carb combination that he's never had before. Obscure meats. Whitefish/potato, venison/potato, pea/lamb, pea/rabbit. Stay away from the normal chicken/poultry, beef, lamb etc that he's probably had before in a food. You can buy kibble with these formulas, or if you have access to the meat, you can home cook for him. He gets NOTHING except that food.
If he does poorly, try a new formula with a different meat or carb. If he does the same, then chances are, it's an environmental allergy. If he improves, then you have a food allergy on your hand. You can keep him on that diet and gradually introduce other meats and carb sources one at a time while carefully looking for any reaction. If he reacts, you've pinpointed the allergen (or one of them).
If it's an environmental allergy, then there's not much you can do except provide an antihistamine (like benadryl) to provide relief and give him skin/coat supplements to improve his physical condition.