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<p>Like the title says, my 9 year old shih-tzu dog has sores/scabs on her skin for over a year now. I took her to the vet several times for this, and he thinks it's allergies - either to something in the environment like pollen or to food. So he put her on a low protein diet. I'm not sure what's going on because she still has the sores/scabs. They don't seem to be bothering her, except that she scratches every now and then. Has anyone experienced this? I'm afraid to let me 13 month old DS touch the dog. We keep the dog quarantined in her gated area with her canopy bed, food & water bowls, toys, etc. Help please!</p>
 

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<p>I have a very allergic dog.  She has both airborne and food allergies.  We did end up treating her airborne allergies with injections, however the food allergies have been more difficult to address.  A low protein diet isn't necessarily the solution - it's figuring out what protein and/or grain is causing the allergy.  The other thing that needs to be addressed is any secondary infection that is occurring in the allergy-damaged skin.  So I am not a vet by any means, but after 10 years of dealing with these sorts of things, here's what I'd suggest. </p>
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<p>First, start a low-allergy diet.  We are using Natural Balance Venison and Potato and for our dog, this has been the best for her.  The key is to get a diet with very few ingredients.  Believe it or not, chicken can be a common allergen for dogs and you cannot believe how many foods have some form of chicken in them.  At the same time, even if the allergy is removed, the skin is damaged and may have a fungal and/or bacterial infection.  When my dog has has sores, a combo of both ketoconzole (an anti-fungal) and cephalexin (an antibiotic) have helped to clear the skin.  Just eliminating the allergy will not clear active skin infections.  And it would be very hard to tell if a food change is working when the skin is infected.</p>
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<p>I am not sure that you need to quarantine your dog as I (or my child) has ever gotten an infection from the dog.  But of course you must do what is comfortable for you! </p>
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<p>I hope this helps!  This may sound crazy, but our dog has a veterinary dermatologist that has helped us through this.  Is that an option in your area?  I found it completely hard to believe that one existed here where I live, but I guess there is a high demand! </p>
 

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<p>Thank you very much for your reply! I just feel so sad for our dog because she cannot be roaming the house like she used to. I had a difficult time believing that she has allergies because it just recently started last year. And I hadn't changed a thing! Can allergies all of a sudden develop? She was on an antibiotic but that seemed to help some - the sores never went away but just decreased. And when the antibiotic was all gone and a few days later, the sores came back.</p>
 

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<p>Sounds like you need a second opinion.  That your vet has let this go on for a YEAR with no suggestions that have helped is appalling!  A second opinion may be all you need to find a good, proactive solution for everyone. </p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Jerlin</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1287664/my-9-year-old-shih-tzu-dog-has-sores-scabs-for-over-a-year#post_16143253"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>Thank you very much for your reply! I just feel so sad for our dog because she cannot be roaming the house like she used to. I had a difficult time believing that she has allergies because it just recently started last year. And I hadn't changed a thing! Can allergies all of a sudden develop? She was on an antibiotic but that seemed to help some - the sores never went away but just decreased. And when the antibiotic was all gone and a few days later, the sores came back.</p>
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<br><br><p>Go to a new vet. Preferably one certified in Internal Medicine or go to a univerisity vet clinic. If you live in a big city there is usually at least one clinic with specialist veterinarians.</p>
 

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<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Jerlin</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1287664/my-9-year-old-shih-tzu-dog-has-sores-scabs-for-over-a-year#post_16143253"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>Thank you very much for your reply! I just feel so sad for our dog because she cannot be roaming the house like she used to. I had a difficult time believing that she has allergies because it just recently started last year. And I hadn't changed a thing! Can allergies all of a sudden develop? She was on an antibiotic but that seemed to help some - the sores never went away but just decreased. And when the antibiotic was all gone and a few days later, the sores came back.</p>
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<br><br><p>We have experienced sudden allergies.  Or at least they seem sudden.  Even foods that once worked no longer do.  I agree with PP that a second opinion would be good.  Again, just my guess here, but if your dog had both a fungal and bacterial infection, the antibiotic may not have been enough. Or maybe a second course of antibiotics was needed. Our vet dermatologist has looked at skin samples from our dog's sores to determine if there is bacteria and/or fungal infection present.   Your vet doesn't sound quite proactive enough to me. </p>
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<p>I know how sad it is!  I hate when our dog is having skin issues! </p>
 

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<p>This is going to sound "out there", but skin issues are related to separation conflicts, did anything occur a year ago prior to the skin eruptions that could have resulted in a separation conflict in your dog? The quarantine is just making the separation worse, hence the reason the skin isn't clearing up. The antibiotics are clearing up the inflammation but by being separated from her pack ensures that it will return because you are not allowing her to heal emotionally to clear the track (trigger). Welcome her back into the pack, I doubt very much she is contagious to your family. I am also a firm believer in feeding dogs species appropriately, which is a raw prey diet, and I would recommend you looking into to this as a way to help her body heal. I would also look into finding a homeopathic vet, and ideally one that also utilizes flower essences which work very well in animals. Allopathic veterinary care obviously isn't working and throwing more medications at the issue is likely not going to improve things; you need to get at the route cause and heal that, then her body, given the appropriate nutrients, will do the rest.</p>
 

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<p>I agree, I think you need a second opinion.  If it is a food allergy, I don't see how a low protein food is going to do a freaking thing.  I don't know about dogs, but with cats they have limited ingredient recipe foods like duck and pea which are outside of what most companies put in all of their foods (chicken and beef).  If it is a food allergy, you need to identify what the allergen is, not just lower the protein.  In cats, a common allergen is chicken, so owners have to find a food without chicken in it, like the duck and pea one.  Even most "beef" foods have chicken in them.  It's just like human food allergies.  If your child had a food allergy to say strawberries, would you just decrease the amount of beef you give them but continue giving them strawberries?  It doesn't make sense.  I would find a new vet.  The one you have doesn't seem to know what he's talking about.     </p>
 
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<p>Another good option would be to find a veterinary dermatologist.  They are fairly expensive, but you can usually get right to the root of the problem and start fixing it without a lot of trial and error that you sometimes get with a general veterinarian.</p>
 
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