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Old 11-30-2012, 02:49 PM   #21 (permalink)
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These suggestions were offered to me by a poodle breeder/groomer who answered my plea for help on the OP's behalf. I sent them to her, but it occurs to me others might benefit or wish to comment.

"....'grain free,' I would do that for this Mini. I would also give her about two months worth of Twinlab Yeast Fighters which is something that [* name deleted*] recommended after a long drawn out skin issue with one of her dogs.

It's possible it's color linked alopecia, rather than SA, just because it's usually a SP [Standard Poodle] thing, but other breeds get SA as well. Another reason is leg hair, which SPs usually still have, and I think it sounds like the Mini might also have missing leg hair. Something I will be trying, as soon as it gets here is Denamarin. That is because of a discussion on the Liver list about itchy dogs who improved post shunt surgery, so I'm going to give toning up her liver a try.

Bad skin also begets staph infection. I would suggest using Sebolux (Virbac mfg, available via I saw it work a miracle on an ancient Lhasa whose skin was actually sticky and stunk to high heaven ... her terrible skin went from thick, black, sticky and stinky to so soft the hair grew back and I could roll her skin between my fingers it was so soft.

SA will itch IF they get a staph infection. It's the bad skin/staph that itches or hurts, not the dead sebaceous glands per se.

I would bathe her in Sebolux 2x/week until she sees improvement."

Cabryn Chagall CGC
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Old 11-30-2012, 09:19 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Wow, I just wanted to post and thank each and every one of you for your helpful and thoughtful posts, both here and by private message! I haven't been able to respond to every one individually but I want to make sure you know it means a lot to me (and my little gal)!

You have given me a lot to try and think about so I will start making changes again, one by one, to see what helps, and of course look further into the SA punch tests. I appreciate the encouragement to keep trying. She's such a sweet dog that deserves a contented life!
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Old 12-01-2012, 07:17 PM   #23 (permalink)
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blasted computer!! Arrgh I typed a pretty long response and it went away cause I took too long typing it *sigh*. Forgive me, I'll have to give you the cliff notes version lol.

Have you had her tested for allergies? There is a method where they shave an area, prick the skin with many possible allergens to see which flare and ergo which she is allergic to. And you can do like me and have her blood sent off to be tested. Either way they send you vials of allergenic extract serum of differing concentration with a schedule to follow to help desensitize the body.

Have you tried chlorhexidine shampoo, sugar scrubs, mud treatments, or aloe? I use all for my girl with allergies that has skin issues that flare up now and then. Animal aloe did a really good job of treating the staph infection she acquired which makes her itch like crazy.
Laura, Eve, and Fergie
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Old 12-07-2012, 06:22 PM   #24 (permalink)
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I have seen a few horrible cases of SA in Poodles, but more commonly Akitas. Unfortunately, food changes don't make a significant difference. Feeding a diet high in fat/oils is better than something higher in carbs.

Raw diets are actually not recommended by most specialists with dogs dealing with SA, as the body is compromised any natural bacterias which most dogs can tolerate, may not be tolerable by these dogs. Home cooked food is a better option for these ones, or commercial kibbles that suit your dogs dietary requirements. Adding fish oil can help too.

What medication has your pup been on? Typically, we treat SA in two ways medically - cyclosporine, or prednisone. There is also an important shampoo/oil bath that in combination with medical therapy is very helpful.

If you can, seek out a consult with a boarded dermatologist. The consult fees arent as expensive as you think (probably $150-200), and they can give you the names/dosages of drugs that you can get through them or your regular vet, plus the names/directions of use for shampoos and oil soaks.

I would think if you can invest $5-600 into this dog (specialist consult, meds, bathing, bloodwork), you will be able to significantly improve her quality of life, or at least give yourself peace of mind that you have done everything possible to give her a chance.

Sounds like she has been a very lucky dog to have found you
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Old 12-07-2012, 06:35 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Please don't give up on her. I hope you find something soon to help her.
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