Itchy scabby skin & licking OCD Diet

Discussion in 'West Highland White Terrier' started by Mrs Christina Parkes, Aug 8, 2019.

  1. Mrs Christina Parkes

    Mrs Christina Parkes New Member

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    Itchy scabby skin & licking OCD

    Good morning, I'm new to this site, my name is Tina, my Westie's name is Lily and she is 6 and a half years old.

    Can anyone please give me some advice on healthy food for Lily to help with her skin problems.

    She has always eaten the same diet since a puppy but I'm at a loss of what changes I can make to her diet as she has had a skin problem for about 18 months now.

    She has specific areas that she nibbles at or scratches at or ferocious licking.

    They are mainly under one armpit, which is bare of hair and is red raw though not bleeding. The only way I can help prevent her from doing this is by putting a coat on her but it's so hot here now I feel cruel to make her wear it in summer. The devil you do, the devil you don't!

    Also she licks and nibbles all 4 paws.

    She has light coloured scabs on her back - where she cannot reach to scratch - hence not blood coloured.

    And she also scratches one ear which on occasion does bleed.

    What I've done so far...

    Vets obviously, first port of call. He gave her an antibiotic & steroid syringe in her ear, twice, which did help. I now syringe her ears twice a week with a cleaner and mostly we're on top of that. He gave her various meds for her itching but they only helped temporarily.

    I add Omega 3 and 6 to her food - no change. Tried recommended shampoo by vet. I'm keeping on top of the usual flea and worm treatments. She has a full groom every 6 weeks. Last year I had to have her coat and skirt stripped so I could see what was going on underneath.

    I have had westies before but never had any skin problems with them.

    I just wonder whether I need to change her diet completely. Any suggestions gratefully received.

    Tina
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  3. Chris B

    Chris B Member

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    CaroleC likes this.
    First think back 18 months. Did you change anything? Cleaning products, air freshener, washing powder?

    If so, there's your problem. If not

    did you change where you walk? Is there any new and different vegetation in that area? I so, there's your problem, if not

    Try an elimination diet. Wafcol Salmon and Potato is favoured by a lot of trainers/behaviourists as it is a novel protein and no grains. Add nothing else for a month and if the itching stops and the skin starts to clear then you add one food item at a time to see what she reacts to.

    Westies are renowned for having skin and allergy problems. I hope you find the source so you can give your girl some relief x
  4. Mik

    Mik New Member

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    Hi, Christina I'm so sorry to hear about your troubles, it definitely sounds like your pouch has allergery issues, but it also sounds like there could be an underlying yeast issue going on with her. I would buy some answers raw goat milk and do a cleanse with her for 30 days, (you feed only the goat milk for 30 days) if the itching improves then it's definitely a yeast issue, and I would then recommend switching to either a raw diet or if you don't like the idea of raw meat you can do dehydrated. Try to stay away from chicken products I've found most dogs actually have issues with chicken.
    I hope this helps. :)
  5. Malka

    Malka Member

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    Did you mistype "pouch" for "pooch"?

    You say there could be an underlying yeast issue - are you a vet who diagnoses online? And why would a 30 days "cleanse" of raw goats milk cure that?

    Perhaps you have been googling in order to give advice. Please leave canine medical problems to a qualified and registered veterinarian.
  6. Mrs Christina Parkes

    Mrs Christina Parkes New Member

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    Thank you for the replies.

    18 months ago, when Lily's pruritis started the vet thought it was indeed a yeast allergy.

    But then when her symptoms eased off over the winter months and started again in June this year, he suggested an allergy.

    I don't walk her anywhere different as I can only walk on pavements with her - due to my feet deformities.

    I usually feed her with cooked minced Turkey thighs & Lambs liver and cooked carrots plus Bakers small dog meaty kibbles. Plus dried chicken strips and Dentastix for her treats.

    I will definitely give the Wafcol Salmon and Potato a try although it only comes as a dry product and Lily is used to part dry and part wet.

    Can I still give her carrots and Dentastix, would you know.

    Many thanks again.

    Tina
  7. GsdSlave

    GsdSlave Member

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  8. Chris B

    Chris B Member

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    CaroleC likes this.
    Personally, I think I'd try swapping the Bakers for the Wafcol ( or similar) and drop the chicken. Carrots should be fine. Dentastix - no idea as I don't know what's in them.

    This, of course, is just what I'd be trying as a first resort. I'm just going on what I know tends to cause reactions.

    If that didn't work, I'd be looking at asking the vet for allergy testing
  9. Malka

    Malka Member

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    Carrots and other vegetables should be fine - either frozen and just defrosted but not tinned. Things like pumpkin are OK either raw or lightly steamed in a microwave so just gently softened.

    Some dogs [luckily not mine] have allergic reactions to chicken but not to turkey. I have no idea about Dentastix or, to be honest, any ready-made dog food. Nor does my vet but it took him long enough to accept that I am a raw feeder!

    I am not sure about allergy testing and whether it would help. I do not think it would help but it never helped me.
  10. CaroleC

    CaroleC Member

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    I don't like the Bakers products. They get a very poor rating on All About Dog Food, and are full of colourants and additives. Your Turkey mince and carrot should be fine mixed with a grain free kibble. I would cut out the Dentastix for now, she can have veggies to chew. Though I'm not against an occasional Dentastix, they do have a lot of dubious ingredients. Keep it simple till she improves, then try adding back other ingredients - hopefully you will detect the culprit.
  11. Mrs Christina Parkes

    Mrs Christina Parkes New Member

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    Lily's not overly fussy with food but she will waffle her meat and Bakers and sometimes sicks it all up.

    So in order to keep her a healthy weight and allowing her a little more bulk without too many calories (she's a small Westie at 7.2 kgs) I add the tinned (?) cooked baby carrots. First dog I've had who won't eat raw veg!

    She only has a half dentastix daily for her teeth that is. Only in the last couple of years because it's impossible to brush her teeth.

    I will try some raw veggies again. I must admit she was a puppy when I last gave them to her.
  12. Mik

    Mik New Member

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    Are you a qualified and registered veterinarian? Are you not giving advise as well? And, no I did not mistype "pouch" for "pooch"; I typed "pooch" but my phone autocorrected to "pouch". I have worked in the dog food industry for over ten years now and I have helped a lot of dogs and with a proper diet advise corrected thousands of dogs allergy or yeast issues. Have you done that? I can tell you that when it comes to yeast it presents itself as if it seems to be an allergy issue and no amount of limited ingredient formulas will help until the yeast is removed from the dogs body. How does the Answers raw goats milk do this you ask? Well I'm happy to tell you. Answers goats milk contains high quantities of caprylic acid, which fights yeast. Also, it contains wholefood probiotics and healthy yeast which in return establishes healthy microorganisms and normal flora. With a balanced pH and normal flora this will prevent yeast overgrowth on the skin and ears. Relieving the itching. Carbohydrates (grains, potato, tapioca, peas ECT) creates the wrong pH on the skin and in the ears, raw fermented milk helps to establish a balanced proper pH. In addition it also kills bad bacteria that may be in your dogs gut, has probiotics (200+ species of good bacteria-), enzymes, conjugated linoleic acid (fights cancer), and glutathione (great antioxidant). I also always recommend feeding a raw diet due to when you feed kibble your dog only gets 20% - 40% of the nutrition contained in kibble because of the way processing changes the molecules. Where as when you feed a raw diet your dog can absorb 70%-90% of the nutrition. In fact study's have shown dogs who are fed raw diets compared to kibble or canned diets lived an average of 3 years longer than dogs who are fed kibble. Even just adding the raw goats milk has tremendous amounts of benefits for your dogs health. :) I hope I helped clearify any confusion you may have. Enjoy your day! :)
  13. Malka

    Malka Member

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    I guess that using wrong words as the fault of phone autocorrected is the now excuse for ignorance.

    As for raw goats milk being the cure for all allergies - I only wish it was. Because if it was I would not have to live with Epipens and an emergency medical button all the time.

    You have squawked total rubbish, and for your information peas are vegetables, not carbohydrates.
  14. GsdSlave

    GsdSlave Member

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    Mik likes this.
    Do you have to be so rude to a new member, she said there could be an underlying yeast issue, and offered advice as other members have and you didn’t question them.
  15. Chris B

    Chris B Member

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    Just a thought, but the itching didn't happen to coincide with the addition of the Dentastix to her diet did it?
  16. Malka

    Malka Member

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    I was not being rude, I was being honest. Quoting Google as a "cure" for someone's problem by assuming that their problem is due to a yeast issue, is wrong. Dogs and people, have died by following "advice" given by people who blithely quote what they read on Google.
  17. Mik

    Mik New Member

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    I'm so sorry if you misunderstood what I was saying, but never once did I ever refer raw goats milk as a "miracle" cure for "all allergies". I specifically stated that it reduces yeast in a dogs body. Overgrowth of yeast causes irritated itchy skin and in ears (that's why it can be mistaken for food allergies). I'm not sure how you misunderstood that I was implying it was a cure for allergies when I indeed did nothing of the sort. By the way potatoes are also classified as vegetables but since they contain high amounts of carbohydrates, a lot of people consider them to be a carb the same as with peas. That's why peas are not on low carb diets. But you didn't question whether potatoes were carbohydrates did you? You say I'm ignorant, but I wonder if you're even taking the time to read what I am saying considering you failed to comprehend the fact that this entire time I have talked about raw goats milk helping to eliminate the overgrowth of yeast in the body, and not that it is a miracle worker for allergies. And I'm sincerely sorry you're struggling with your own allergies, that must be very hard for you.
  18. Mik

    Mik New Member

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    I didn't learn about the company Answers and their products off of a ten minute google search. I've sat down and had conversations with their representatives and talked intensively with them about their products and learned about the benefits some of their products have to offer as well as about the company itself, which by the way has scientific evidence to back their products. I'd like to know what line of work you're in, and how you determined I must have done a google search to give her an answer. Are you a veterinarian, canine nutritionist, worked at all within the pet food industry? Have you studied dog food at all and what nutrition benefits different breeds? Or is all of your information coming from google? You can't simply state something that is "honest" if you have no clue what it is. You have no idea who I am, what my background is or even my knowledge on pet food and it's ingredients, so you're not "simply" being "honest" you're flat out being rude. And that is being honest, if you want to go down that route. I have done absolutely nothing to you. I gave her advice, that's what she was asking for. It's up to her to decide what she wants to do, you don't need to ride your high horse around like you know everything, there is an abundance of information out their especially on pet food, I learn new things all the time, because it's only been recently (within the past couple decades) that we've dove into the science of dogs and what nutrition really works for them, and you know what, we're constantly finding out more and more.
  19. Mrs Christina Parkes

    Mrs Christina Parkes New Member

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    Chris B. Good point. I am now wondering whether the Dentastix could be the reason for her itching and skin probs although I'm pretty sure that they had started before I gave her Dentastix.

    Worth beginning with stopping them for a couple of weeks before I change her main diet. I do hope it's as simple as that.

    I'm currently applying Exmarid skin soother on the raw areas and Exmarid ointment on her dry scabby places.

    The ointment was excellent when I previously used it although I had to keep her coat on because it is very smelly and gets on carpets and furniture, not to mention that she may lick it.

    I have just looked through her paperwork (I keep everything) and she was prescribed Apoquel, Cephacare and Hibiscrub in the past.
  20. CaroleC

    CaroleC Member

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    Did the Apoquel not work?
  21. Mrs Christina Parkes

    Mrs Christina Parkes New Member

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    Yes, the Apoquel did work temporarily. But I can't keep her on it forever. So I'm trying so find the source.

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