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Greetings all!

I'm finally joining a forum to see if anyone has any insights that might help me help my 6 year old pit mix with very severe allergies.

I got Dolores at the ASPCA a year and a half ago. They warned me she had allergies, but said it would a sort of out-break and resolve once a year type of situation. Unfortunately, Dolores had a severe outbreak the very first weekend I got her. I took her immediately to the animal hospital, and they treated her with a shot of antibiotics and told me to change her already prescription diet to a different protein.

So, I put her on a venison diet (instead of duck) and began washing her with the special allergy shampoo more often. Immediately after the antibiotics wore off, her skin started showing signs of infection again. So I took her to the vet. They gave more antibiotics. She got better. As soon as the antibiotics were finished, she got worse again. So, I took her to a dermatologist. She went through a series of testing and we ended up where we started, that she had bad allergies, likely a variety of environmental ones. So, they tried another dose of antibiotics and also gave her the anti-itch CADI injection. Again, it helped for a couple weeks. Her itch level was okay as long as she was on the CADI inject, but her skin was always bad. Then the CADI stopped working too, so we tried every single anti-itch over the course of about 6 months. I'll spare you recapping all of the visits, but I have been going almost monthly to the dermatologist ($$$$$!!!!!) and have tried many forms of antibiotics, including testing for the exact type of bacteria and seeing what antibiotics she isn't resistant to and targeting it. Some of them have been dangerous and many have side effects. While we've finally reduced the itching by having her on both atopica and the CADI injections, the infections won't go away. The antibiotics seem to slow them down, but never resolve the problem. She's always bare and incredibly dry, coarse, flaky, and smelly on her chest, legs, tail, and head.

We've run out of options and she cannot keep taking antibiotics to ebb the infections. The dermatologist told me as a last resort, to soak her skin in bleach daily and rinse her. I was hesitant to do so, but am desperate to help her out, so I started doing it. It's been a few weeks, but I haven't noticed any improvement.

I have more than depleted my funds over the course of the year (to such a degree that I took out a loan) with expensive visits, tests, and blood monitoring, so suggestions of additional exploratory tests aren't really feasible. We considered trying to get her on immunotherapy, but because it takes up to a year to kick in and is hard to get right if the skin is infected during testing, the dermatologist didn't feel it was the right approach.

She'll officially be off of antibiotics in another week, and then she'll get worse fast, so I wanted to see if anyone had any insights or creative solutions.

Thanks!!!
 

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All the antibiotics and anti itch shots in the world aren't going to help. They are just masking the problem, not fixing anything, as you are seeing. You are going to have to first pin point the root cause of the allergies. Are they food related, or environmental/contact allergies? I have a couple with the environmental type allergies, and I put them all on spirulina and it has stopped all the symptoms. Among lots of other benefits, spirulina is a strong natural antihistamine.
 

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My dog has ibd and food allergies and my cat has severe environmental and food allergies. The dog has chronic diarrhea no skin issues so gets prescription dry food and a restricted protein canned food since he's picky and won't eat most of the prescription foods I've tried. The cat won't eat special diets and benadyl doesn't do much for the itching. He's had raw areas of his skin for over a year now. He's had a steroid shot, flea and tick treatment even though he's indoor only and I give him the allergy shots, immunotherapy. They really help. The antibiotics didn't help much either. He had multiple shots of Comvenia along with medicated creams to put on, helped a little but not much. Then got a.liquid stronger antibiotic that made him violently I'll with vomiting and diarrhea. I hate steroids but the one steroid shot and the allergy shots worked for him better than anything else, and he tested positive for tons of things, basically everything in the environment and many foods. Dermatologist and all the vets here say the food allergy tests aren't accurate and refused to test my dog since he has stomach symptoms only and no skin issues. Then why do them?
 

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All the antibiotics and anti itch shots in the world aren't going to help. They are just masking the problem, not fixing anything, as you are seeing. You are going to have to first pin point the root cause of the allergies. Are they food related, or environmental/contact allergies? I have a couple with the environmental type allergies, and I put them all on spirulina and it has stopped all the symptoms. Among lots of other benefits, spirulina is a strong natural antihistamine.
How do you determine whether it's food or environmental? :-/
 

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All the antibiotics and anti itch shots in the world aren't going to help. They are just masking the problem, not fixing anything, as you are seeing. You are going to have to first pin point the root cause of the allergies. Are they food related, or environmental/contact allergies? I have a couple with the environmental type allergies, and I put them all on spirulina and it has stopped all the symptoms. Among lots of other benefits, spirulina is a strong natural antihistamine.
Is prepared raw okay to feed? Do you recommend feeding 'beef?' I read another post of yours and you seem to be advocating feeding beef over chicken?

Is there a good place (preferably Canadian vendor) for ordering spirulina for dogs? Or should it be a formulated one especially for dogs? I am going to guess they are often not available at pet stores and maybe it's cheaper if one finds an online vendor. Not having much luck finding a decently priced one that will ship to Canada and not destroy you on shipping. :)
 

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Vets do allergy testing for all kinds of food and environmental allergens to see what the pet reacts to. Supposedly the environmental allergens tests are more accurate than the food allergy tests
A more common allergy is to fried food and just chicken in general since it has more additives than other proteins. Any food allergies the vets tend to suggest eliminating everything from the diet and starting over with a special limited protein diet of one or two ingredients that the oet hasn't eaten before, like kangaroo, venison or rabbit to hopefully help the symptoms. Theoretically allergies develop from prolonged overexposure and heightened sensitivity to a trigger over time. So a pet will become allergic to something like chicken or beef he's been eating fine over time.
 

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Is prepared raw okay to feed? Do you recommend feeding 'beef?' I read another post of yours and you seem to be advocating feeding beef over chicken?

Is there a good place (preferably Canadian vendor) for ordering spirulina for dogs? Or should it be a formulated one especially for dogs? I am going to guess they are often not available at pet stores and maybe it's cheaper if one finds an online vendor. Not having much luck finding a decently priced one that will ship to Canada and not destroy you on shipping. :)
I prefer beef over chicken because red meats in general are the most nutritious. Commercial chicken can be a problem for a lot of dogs, mainly due to the fact that they are crammed inside in chicken houses, and constantly have nothing but grain in front of them to eat. Being so grain fed isn't good, plus chicken has a tendency to be injected with salt solutions, so that needs to be looked at. If you are going to feed raw, variety is key, but do some research into it first. Although not hard, it does take dedication and meal prepping. So you need to know about it before you get into it. It's more than just throwing raw meat to a dog.

I order my spirulina fromhttp://springtimeinc.com. They have it for dogs, horses and people. In order for it to be effective, it needs to be a good quality, so expect to pay a decent amount for it. But it works, and well worth it.
 
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