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Question DetailsAsked on 9/21/2017

how do I treat continued outbreak on my german shepard- I have changed his food- his soap- he breaks out in bad sor

His sores get infected like right away. He has had so many antibiotic's that I do not know if they are helping or hurting. I clean the sores twice daily. but this time they do not seem to be healing.

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1 Answer


You and your vet need to discusss the treatment plan - and might need to get an allergy specialist into the picture if this is an allergic reaction. Sounds to me like the sores might be a result of licking/scratching an allergic irritation, so finding the roof cause is crucial or he will be miserable all the time as well as getting infected sores.

One thing we were told by our vet and have found (along with a number of friends and neighbors) is if the case starts with licking of the feet (especially pads) without a visible injury (and all pads, not just one) and then progresses to itching/licking elsewhere, it is almost certainly an allergic reaction - which can be to either food or environment.

I suspect, unfortunately, that since he has " had so many antiobiotics" that they are no longer working right (especially if you did not complete then entire treatment cycle each time) so either his immune system is now comprimised, or the bacteria have developed a resistance to the antibiotics - or maybe he has developed/contracted an antiobiotic resistant bacteria - a MRSA for instance.

Our dog with allergy issues failed to respond to Science Diet food (sort of the cure-all for food allergies in dogs) because it had turkey in it, which it turned out our dog was allegic to - so along with taking fowl out of her diet we went with a lamb Pedigree Senior food that solve the issue.

For skin irritations we found that for our deep undercoat dog and several neighbor's dogs Relief Shampoo (available at vets and amazon and pet medical supply places) used in a 30 minute deep-run-in shampooing and bath about every 7-10 days took care of skin allergies from outside irritants - ground mold and fungus during the fall rainy season in our dog. After a couple of treatments we had to be careful not to be bowled over by her as she would dash into the tub as soon as a got her big beach towel out of the hall closet - the Relief shampoo seemed to totally eliiminate her rash/itching for a week or two. Used it about monthly rest of year as a preventative. made ALL the difference in her quality of life, but you need to really lather it up and work it into the actual skin with your fingers - otherwise the guard hairs and underfur will keep it from getting to the skin where it is needed.

May take an allergy vaccine to cure the root cause of the sores (especially if these are sores from licking, not sores spontaneously popping out on the skin) - our dog ended up last 7-8 years of life with us giving an allergy shot every 2-4 weeks (depending on season) - though the allergy screening panel, where they shave a section of skin and inject tiny test shots of irritants/allergens to see what the allergy is to cost around $500, and at least in our case the vaccine and needles were about another $200-300/year.

Other things that might help alleviate the rashing/allergy, if that is what it is:

Keeping off lawn and out of brush and such, avoid rolling outside on vegetated or tree-droppings covered ground, vacuuming carpets and wiping hard floors frequently. Also think back if you changed any carpets around the time this problem started - could be a carpet or padding allergy.

Ours was also allergic (seriously) to cat fur and/or dander - so exposure to cats or a carpet previously lived on by a cat, or even to an area like a pet park where cats have been couldbe a possible cause.

And sometimes putting long socks or T-shirt on the dog is necessary to keep him from licking the irritated spots so they will heal - along with a vet-designated anti-itch antibiotic cream on the wounds to promote healing. And putting his bed next to yours so you can be wakened up by the licking (you have to condition yourself to wake at the sound) and tell him to stop and give him a tiny non-allergenic treat for stopping (we used a single rice chex - a single piece of kibble can also work with some dogs but best if reward is different than the food he usually eats.)

But be sure of one thing - while your observations and continual attention are the most critical to his relief, not following the vet's protocal for treatment is the surest way to ensure he will have a miserable or prematurely cut short life. In some severe cases, if you are not home in the daytime, kennelling at a doggy daycare with frequent observation to tell him to stop the licking may be necessar, because a few unattended hours can result in a LOT of licking damage. In some cases the vet will prescribe a sedative to limit the licking.

Unfortunately, sometimes, especially in cases where people cannot afford the treatment costs or are not able to keep it under observation to suppress the licking of the irritated areas, putting the animal down is necessary just to stop the constant irritation and itching on their part, which in severe cases can get so bad the animal starts incessantly seriously clawing or nibbling to point of causing open bleeding lacerated areas. Heartbreaking when you see their quality of life go downhill that way - hopefully you and your vet can come up with testing and a treatment plan which will allow you to actually attack the source of the issue.

Good luck to you and your buddy.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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