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Dog skin irritation around eye, secondary rash on thigh

by Jude W.
(Canada)





Three weeks ago we noticed that the skin around our dog's left eye was red and swollen. The vet initially diagnosed this as a scratch on the surface of her eye. Two days later, the skin around her eye was even worse. It's red, has lost most of the fur, and is now starting to sag and be scabby. Her eye leaks continuously and her infection site weeps.

We've visited two vets (many visits!). One of them was an eye specialist, but we now feel that this is a skin problem, not an eye problem. As you will see in the one photo, the skin is very irritated and now seems to have lumps in parts.

Her treatment has included steroids and antibiotics. Currently, Dayzee is on Baytril and Dextab, without any improvement. Her eye continues to worsen, and the vets don't know what to try next.

We've also noticed that the skin on her thigh is very red and dry, although there is no hair loss.

Dayzee is a Shih-tzu mix, is 11 years old and has never had major health issues or skin problems (but she has always had leaky eyes).

Thank you in advance for your help.

Comments for Dog skin irritation around eye, secondary rash on thigh

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Nov 03, 2011
My Online Vet Response for Dog skin irritation around eye, secondary rash on thigh
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Jude,
Poor Dayzee looks SO uncomfortable. You did not mention if she was itching or scratching her face/eye area. Is it possible that she scratched her eye when she was scratching her face? Or did the scratch on the cornea occur first? Or is she even scratching at all?

Just from the photo you sent, I would start drops IN her eye and ON the skin around her eye, two times daily for the next 3 weeks. This will help her cornea heal.

If she is scratching her face, she will need to wear an Elizabethan collar. Try the Comfy Cone Pet E-Collar.

Since the Baytril antibiotic and Dextabs do not seem to be doing any good, I would suggest that you discontinue them.

Of utmost importance for her dry, red skin, is to provide lots of moisture in her diet. DO NOT feed her any DRY DOG FOOD. Whatever brand you have her on, see if they carry it in a canned form. Also, check our page on the 10 Best Dog Food Options, and even consider feeding her a RAW diet for dogs. She also needs dog supplements with a high amount of buffered Vitamin C.

Since she is 11 years old, at her age she may not be producing enough Vitamin C, and since 'cooked' dog foods do not contain any Vitamin C, she will need to have it supplemented. A low level of vitamin C can result in a weakened immune system, and delay healing.

PLEASE SEE BELOW FOR THE REST OF MY RESPONSE



Nov 04, 2011
Part 2 of My Online Vet Response to Dog skin irritation around eye, secondary rash on thigh
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Here is the rest of my response...

Something else to consider: did this start after a vaccine was given to her? If so, that would be a determining factor in which homeopathic remedy to choose. A holistic veterinarian skilled in homeopathic medicine can evaluate her.

In the meantime, use coconut oil to massage into her skin all over and let soak in for one to two hours (I have had some clients leave it on overnight!). Then shampoo her with Dawn or Palmolive Dish Detergent to remove the excess oil, rinse well, and then shampoo her with an oatmeal shampoo. This oil soak and shampoo can be done 1-2 times per week, if needed.

To find a holistic veterinarian in your area click here:
find a local holistic veterinarian

Also, consider the AVH for a veterinarian knowledgeable in homeopathy.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Related Pages:
- Dog Skin Conditions,
- Dog Itchy Skin,
- Dog Skin Rash,
- Dog Skin Allergies,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Skin Rashes, Marks, Spots, Lesions & Patches (including itchy skin and mange) Section,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Hair Loss Section

Jan 03, 2012
Jan. update
by: Jude, owner of Dayzee

Through biopsies, Dayzee was diagnosed with "red mange" caused by mites. She is taking Ivomec (ivermectin) daily and will need to be taking this medication for at least 80 days. She has slowly improved and as of today, she looks almost normal. In a couple of weeks, she will go back to the vet for some kind of skin scraping to determine if the mites are still a potential problem and to determine how much longer she must take the medicine.

Perhaps our story will be helpful to someone else.

Jude

Jan 04, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Dog skin irritation around eye, secondary rash on thigh
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Jude,
Thank you so much for the progress report on Dayzee. That is a very unusual presentation for Demodectic (red) mange. I am glad that a biopsy was able to solve the problem.

You wrote,
"Dayzee is a Shih-tzu mix, is 11 years old and has never had major health issues or skin problems (but she has always had leaky eyes)."

It is more common for mange to occur in a young (less than one year of age) dog. Mange occurs due to an immature or weak immune system. For Dayzee to have a compromised immune system at her age, I would be concerned about some other underlying condition. Do not rely on just the Ivermectin to clear up her skin, support her immune system too.

Some good immune system supplements:

1. Missing Link Canine Formula
2. Immuplex from Standard Process
3. OrthoMolecular Specialties, Mega C Powder

For the Immuplex, open one capsule and sprinkle into her food two times daily.

Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is AVH.org.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

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