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Hello, I have a 6 yr old, spayed female, pit bull mix, 68 pounds, named Tramp and I also have her mother which is about 8 yrs old, named Lady, similar weight/mix etc.Tramp apparently has a severe allergy problem or some other issue that has been going on for the last two years. Her mother Lady had developed the same skin issue for about a year, at the same time as Tramp did, but it was a much milder case which just went away. Both of them were born and lived in South Florida for a few years and then I moved to East Tennessee four years ago. It didnt start happening for about two years after moving to Tennessee. They are inside pm/outside daytime dogs, well fed and taken care of. Tramps likes to eat grass, acorns and other outside stuff. Tramps skin inflamation comes and goes throughout the day, sometimes disappears for a few days or week or two. It always comes back full strength when it returns. It leaves the skin in her thigh pits bright red/black&blue and inflamed, forms a clear shiny crust, and the skin then flakes off. (If I am able to, I will attach some pics of the Inflamed Skin.) The skin in her thighpits have become very aged/wrinkled from several years of inflamation, and is getting worse. She has been to the vet 7-9 times over the last few years, they don't know what the problem is. They tested for yeast infection, no positive results found. I have changed her food several times, no results or change. In fact, now she is starting to loose her appetite, I have to put gravy on her food to eat, then no problem. Each time they give her either a shot of Cortisone with two tabs of Ketoconazole 200mg a day for several weeks, or three seperate pills being Cephalexin, Atarax and Ketoconazole for a few weeks. The meds would eliminate the problem temporarily, but the skin problem would just come back each time. I have spent a fortune of money.....that I didn't have to spend on this problem, and now the vet has told me I need to bring her to a Dog Dermatologist. I have been told the allergy and other tests are an even bigger fortune, ugh...... I just don't have the money for the dermatologist. I am hoping that someone could be a savior, and offer up some ideas on how I can come up with a cure for Tramps skin problem. Thank you very much for your time, it is greatly appreciated!
 

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Purina One Select-Lamb and Rice, have changed the food several times over the past few years, no effect. Treats are raw cow bones, some table scraps, and vanilla animal crackers, all in moderation, have been giving the same for years. Her ears are ok in appearance, but she has been shaking her ears often in the last month or so. No licking of feet, but she does have the red inflamation between her toes, just not as bad as her thighs, belly. If outside, she lays on wooden deck, daytime only. Nightime, lays in a cushioned bed with several blankets, the same for the last 5+ years.
 

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Welcome to the forum ...

I would say she has a food allergy. I would try removing chicken first. My Golden had bad itching....red inflamed ears..licked her tummy...licked her feet. Was feeding ONE Lamb and Rice before they changed it. Once they changed it she broke out with all the above. Even though it says lamb in rice it does have chicken in it. You have to look at all the ingredients. Some food use chicken fat as a preservative. I have all of mine on Solid Gold Wee Bits and all are doing great. There are others. Blue Buffalo has a few that does not have chicken.

The same with treats. read what they contain. Chicken meal is in a lot of different treats. Table scrapes are not to bad but avoid chicken.
 

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You have my sympathy! I've been thru this and it isn't fun at all!!! My girl's belly once looked much like that!

The simplest solution, the simplest problem, could be an issue with bug / flea bites. Sounds too easy, doesn't it? I had a rescue that would occasionally break out with a pink belly similar to this. Your mention of the dogs spending a lot of time outside in a warmer climate made me think of this right away. Does it ever freeze where you are? Does this issue get better in colder weather???

I found this stuff at a local pet boutique: Amazon.com: Aroma Paws All Natural Repellant Spray 7oz: Pet Supplies and VOILA! Fixed! His pink belly would go back to normal within a day. There are many anti-bacterials out there, but this sure worked well for us. I would try something along these lines and monitor.

Did they check for a staph infection? (I'm assuming so.)

If you have to delve into the world of allergies, I would really, strongly recommend a true elimination diet. Do a slow changeover to a limited ingredient, grain free food of a protein she's never had. Do not give any chewies or treats that are not the exact same thing. No table scraps, either. Give this a solid month, and two to three months is better yet. If the issues clear up, you can at least know you have a food allergy. You can slowly introduce one new food item at a time and wait and watch for any reaction. If you don't do it one at a time, you'll never be able to pinpoint!

What do the ears look like inside? What do they smell like?
 

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Ouch! Poor girl. That's what Nola's legs and belly look like (not quite as severe) when she has corn or soy. I agree ruling out fleas, then an elimination diet. Good luck!
 

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Thank you for all the replies! I will try switching the food again, although I have tried it several times in the past. However, did not really know what to look for like I do now, thanks to all of you. Bug/flea bites were suspected by the vet in the past, but my dogs don't really get fleas, and the vet ruled it out. Her ears look and smell normal, but she does shake her ears alot. I suspect it is either a food allergy or something she is eating in the yard. I have alot of trees and squirrels in my back yard, maybe she is allergic to acorns or something?? The inflamation is definately caused by something getting under her skin on her belly and inner thighs.
 

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Know it can take at least three weeks to see good results once you change foods. Does she lay in the yard in any specific place? I have a client whose dog's recently started getting red skin. She had it all taken care of with food so now we narrowed the new redness to a tree. She has had this tree for years but it is just now old of enough to drop shucks on the ground. China Berry's...ouch..
 

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Thank you for all the replies! I will try switching the food again, although I have tried it several times in the past. However, did not really know what to look for like I do now, thanks to all of you. Bug/flea bites were suspected by the vet in the past, but my dogs don't really get fleas, and the vet ruled it out. Her ears look and smell normal, but she does shake her ears alot. I suspect it is either a food allergy or something she is eating in the yard. I have alot of trees and squirrels in my back yard, maybe she is allergic to acorns or something?? The inflamation is definately caused by something getting under her skin on her belly and inner thighs.
What foods have you tried?

The dog doesn't have to "get" fleas, perse -- it is the flea's saliva that can initiate an outbreak.

As for ears, are you looking down inside of them?

I doubt it is something being eaten in the yard.

I would seriously use an anti-bacterial on the dog's belly.! Just a daily rub, maybe after you bring her in for the night. Give it a few ++ days. If there is no change after several++ days of application, I'd lean much stronger towards food allergy.
 

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I fed them Nutro Max for 4-5 years, can't remember the exact type though, it came in a pink bag. When the skin issues started happening, that is when I switched to the purina one select, but no change. It tried a third food, but no results, and then just settled back to the purina one select. I will definately try the antibacterial lotion though, sounds logical. My dogs do not lay in any particular spot in the yard, but do lay on a wooden deck. They do play fight and wrestle for hours on end, and whip up a storm in the grass and dirt. That is what had me thinking an allergy to the grass etc. Her mother had the same symptoms for about 6 mons, and then disappered, however her mother is a very strong dog, never gets sick ever. The skin inflamation occurs year round, winter too. Where might I get the antibacterial lotion, walgreens? Thanks, Steve
 

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I fed them Nutro Max for 4-5 years, can't remember the exact type though, it came in a pink bag. When the skin issues started happening, that is when I switched to the purina one select, but no change. It tried a third food, but no results, and then just settled back to the purina one select. I will definately try the antibacterial lotion though, sounds logical. My dogs do not lay in any particular spot in the yard, but do lay on a wooden deck. They do play fight and wrestle for hours on end, and whip up a storm in the grass and dirt. That is what had me thinking an allergy to the grass etc. Her mother had the same symptoms for about 6 mons, and then disappered, however her mother is a very strong dog, never gets sick ever. The skin inflamation occurs year round, winter too. Where might I get the antibacterial lotion, walgreens? Thanks, Steve
Mmm. I am not familiar with those foods exactly, as in what their protein source is or whether it is a mix or if they are grain free or not. Ie, you may have been trading foods, but if the foods had the same protein source, or all had grains and grains are the real culprit, it was for naught.

The guy I had the bug bite thing with didn't necessarily lay around, or in the same spot. He was the only dog of many that lived and played in the same yard, but the only one that reacted in this way. His brother and mother never did, nor did my others.

You could probably use an over the counter anti-bacterial, but I wouldn't. I really like the one I posted before -- it worked so fast and had some very calming skin additives as well. An OTC thing, not meant for dogs, may likely dry the dog's skin. I'd check out the offerings at the petstore, or better yet, a specialty pet boutique type store.
 

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I would use a wash cloth with warm water on it just to wipe any pollen...dirt..bark..dust she might have on her when she comes in. That way you do not get another reaction from an anti-bacterial lotion/wash.

I went through 5 different foods to find one that Phoenix did okay on..
 

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I would use a wash cloth with warm water on it just to wipe any pollen...dirt..bark..dust she might have on her when she comes in. That way you do not get another reaction from an anti-bacterial lotion/wash.

I went through 5 different foods to find one that Phoenix did okay on..
Yes, great point, a nice wash down.

The spray I am so fanatically happy about only requires a few squirts -- and that is *after* a clean off. Glad LynneMarie said that.

It is hard to isolate environmental vs food. Environmental is far more common than food, though. OP, you mentioned you don't notice any changes during different times of the year, but I am wondering if that is because you don't get a hard freeze where you are?

All I can speak from is what I did -- address environmental first, since it is more common -- but when we weren't getting 100% there with only that, I had to also turn to food. In our case, it was both.
 

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EEK! You said she is eating stuff outside! My feral little houla Addy ate moldy black walnuts and went into liver failure!!! Her belly and neck were bright pink, indication of an inflamed liver....looks like your dog might have a secondary infection too and probably needs a vet visit like today! Have them do a liver enzyme test to see the values.Call the vet and see if they did a liver test on her first though. I can't stress enough to get your dog to the vet, it can be only hours before a dog might succumb to it depending on how many over what period of time. If the acorns are moldy with blue green algae or black mold it is even more dangerous. ANY standing water is dangerous outside! The vet would give your dog activated charcoal to flush and then a IV for several days. Denamarin is the med they give for home use. My dogs eat Purina One Beyond Lamb and Rice bec. they are terribly allergic also! They do fine on it. Read: Many people are surprised to hear that those beautiful, shady oak trees in the backyard that everyone, including the dog, loves to stretch out under can be a potential danger for their dog.

According to the ASPCA website, as well as Dr. Jon Geller, veterinarian with dogchannel.com, acorns contain gallotannin which, depending on the amount eaten, can cause gastrointestinal upsets in pets and other animals, with symptoms such as cramps, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, sometimes bloody diarrhea, and kidney failure. A few dogs may have seizures. Acorns swallowed whole have the potential to block the intestines, while chewed acorns rele
ase more toxin and the sharp pieces can irritate the gastrointestinal tract. Please keep us posted on the dxc, I feel so bad for you as I know how stressful this is. I am truly worried about the liver!!!
 

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wow, i am so surprised of the support with this site, very thankful for all of you! Well, I am not 100% sure she is eating/swallowing stuff outside, but Tramp is a treasure hunter when outside, and i have taken many small objects (peices of plastic, rubber bands, etc) out of her mouth. She seems to chew on stuff but not swallow it. Inflamed liver....will have to call the vet mon am to see if that test has been run. Keep in mind this has been an on going problem for the last few years, comes and goes, but never goes away:( I am going to try the food change again as well, but to a food that has no animal protein in it. I will also try the antibacterial lotion/wash as well. To me, seeing this year round, and watching the changes in the inflamed skin, has me thinking it is a food allergy. Her eyes tear alot as well, every few days I have to wipe her face, to remove the buildup of tears, and it has a brownish color/appearance to it on a tissue. The skin inflamation seems to be too uniform and consistent to be bites from bugs etc, there are no pimples or any resembelance of a bite or bites, just large patches of red/blue inflamed skin. In fact, my dogs never get fleas that I can tell or see. They do get ticks in ears and between toes in the summer, but I do a daily check on them and remove ticks immediately, before the ticks are able to root in. UUGGHH........
 

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wow, i am so surprised of the support with this site, very thankful for all of you! Well, I am not 100% sure she is eating/swallowing stuff outside, but Tramp is a treasure hunter when outside, and i have taken many small objects (peices of plastic, rubber bands, etc) out of her mouth. She seems to chew on stuff but not swallow it. Inflamed liver....will have to call the vet mon am to see if that test has been run. Keep in mind this has been an on going problem for the last few years, comes and goes, but never goes away:( I am going to try the food change again as well, but to a food that has no animal protein in it. I will also try the antibacterial lotion/wash as well. To me, seeing this year round, and watching the changes in the inflamed skin, has me thinking it is a food allergy. Her eyes tear alot as well, every few days I have to wipe her face, to remove the buildup of tears, and it has a brownish color/appearance to it on a tissue. The skin inflamation seems to be too uniform and consistent to be bites from bugs etc, there are no pimples or any resembelance of a bite or bites, just large patches of red/blue inflamed skin. In fact, my dogs never get fleas that I can tell or see. They do get ticks in ears and between toes in the summer, but I do a daily check on them and remove ticks immediately, before the ticks are able to root in. UUGGHH........
You're going to try a vegetarian dog food? Personally I don't recommend that, dogs aren't obligate carnivores like cats, but I do believe that they do best with meat in their diet. If you do go with a vegetarian dog food make sure you do a ton of research to make sure if meets the nutritional needs of the dog, and that other dog owners who feed that food are happy how their dog does on it.

I'd first go back and read what the protein sources were in the foods that you were feeding before, that would also include whatever fat was used. Once you know that, find a dog food that does not include any of those proteins, and feed it to your dog for a couple of months. While you are feeding it, do not feed any treats or table scraps. If you decide that you must feed them some treats, or they won't eat the food without some sort of topper, make sure that the treat or topper has the exact same protein (and only that protein) as the dog food.
 
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Hi,
Our terribly allergy ridden houla can't even eat dog biscuits, so no treats at all is a good rule. Please let us know what the vet says about the liver enzymes, acorns are toxic to dogs! and moldy ones are killers! Black walnuts also, and mushrooms.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I am going to try a hypo allergenic dry food, because it only has a few ingrediants, I have read that it is easier to narrow down a food allergy that way. I also read that food allergies equate to only 10%, of all the suspected cases of food allergy. If the symptoms continue after a month or two of hypo allergenic food, then it will be on to the next search for a cure.
 

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I am going to try a hypo allergenic dry food, because it only has a few ingrediants, I have read that it is easier to narrow down a food allergy that way. I also read that food allergies equate to only 10%, of all the suspected cases of food allergy. If the symptoms continue after a month or two of hypo allergenic food, then it will be on to the next search for a cure.
Gosh, I really have to back up Rain on this one... I wouldn't go vegetarian. I've never even heard of such a food.... no meat source? Where do they get the protein then? Color me confused. Could you link a food that you're thinking of? I'd like to see the ingredients.
 
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not vegetarian, hypo allergenic food which only has a few ingrediants. Not sure what food will pick yet, heading to the pet store tommorow
 
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