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Discussion Starter #1
My guy is almost 9 months and he seems pretty itchy. He also licks his feet a good deal. Our trainer said it could be due to allergies. We got him when he was 7 months old, and he was/is solely on Royal Canin mini starter (per our breeder). He didn’t really have tear staining until we had him for a week and it could be either environment (he moved from Texas to California) or the treats we introduced - PureBites chicken (only chicken breast).

I don’t really want to spend a fortune on allergy testing if there’s an easier first step to try.

Thoughts or suggestions?
 

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You could also waste a ton of money on hit or miss elimination trials to figure out if he has a food sensitivity or intolerance. It isn't cheap, but if you have insurance it should be covered, do a NutriScan analysis. Then you will have good data on which to base your decisions on foods and treats. It made a huge difference in clearing up some health issues with our three dogs to test all of them. https://www.nutriscan.org/
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That’s a good point about wasting money in elimination diets.

It says to order test online and do it at home or at the vet. Assuming it’s more expensive at vet. Is it effective at home?

I think we will do this before trying to switch food and treats - good idea.
 

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It is easy to do it with a bypass of the vet, but if you have insurance you may want to make sure you have the report sent to the vet's office too so that they can document why you had it done.


It is easy to do at home for the most part. None of my dogs had a great interest in chewing the piece of rope that they are supposed to saturate with saliva, so I just stuck it in their cheeks and held it there and checked a couple of times to see that they were making it wet enough.
 

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Our last dog was allergic to everything. I went the expensive route and took him to a dermatologist and was never sorry I did. His predecessor suffered so much, I just wanted to cut to the chase. Your dog could have environmental sensitivities so bathing him in a soothing shampoo and between shampoos washing and rinsing paws will help. I know how upsetting it is to hear that constant scratching. Hope your pup gets some relief.
 

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From the experience of having a puppy that was allergic to EVERYTHING......find a Animal Dermatologist! Very first visit we did testing and results told me everything I had to stay away from (mostly environmental!) Much better than repeated Vet visits to 'try' this and that! Dermatologist was pricey but in the long run, much cheaper than the repeated visits to Vet!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So is the vet dermatologist better than the test we can do from online? My trainer said that the skin scratch test can be quite invasive. How much was that testing?
 

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Office visit, Blood panel/testing/treatment & meds, was quite a few years ago but was around $500.00 for everything.

NutriScan wasn't around at the time, but that doesn't sound like a bad idea if you also get a consultation included!
 
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