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Mysterious Sores & Flaky Skin on Dog

by Taylor S.
(Marietta, GA)

Photo 1 - Sore on dog's back left leg

Photo 1 - Sore on dog's back left leg

Photo 1 - Sore on dog's back left leg
Photo 2 - Sore on dog's back left leg
Photo 1 - Flakiness on dog's lower back
Photo 2 - Flakiness on dog's lower back

My dog, Asia, has a number of concerning ailments that I’m not sure have been properly treated.

The most noticeable one is a half-dollar sized sore in the middle of her back left leg. When my family first noticed it about a month ago, they said it was very red and bleeding a lot.

After two or three weeks of putting Sentry Wound Cream on it, it looks like it currently does in the picture—kind of like an old infected burn, except it’s not actually a burn. And it’s raised up off of her foot about a half inch.

The second one is a bump in the middle of her back right leg. It’s somewhat hidden under her fur, but it’s dime-sized, pink, and protruding about a third to a half inch off of her foot.

The last thing is flakiness on her lower back, right above her tail. I’m told they noticed that about two or three days after they noticed the bleeding sore on her foot.

Apparently, it started off just a light pink partially bald spot. Then Asia started nipping at it a lot and it got redder and started to bleed, so they also began treating it with Sentry Wound Cream.

After that was when it started flaking, as it is in the picture. The flakes are thick and “peeling scab-like” more than “dandruff-like.” It’s not so bald anymore either. I had to pull her hair back for the picture.

Asia is a 13-year old female German Shepard collie mix. I have been away at school in Ohio, and learned about the above issues when I came home to visit.

Two weeks after discovering these ailments, they gave her a bath with Sentry Flea and Tick shampoo, and sprayed her with Adams Flea and Tick Mist. They say she stopped nipping at her back sore as much after that, however, she still continues to nip at her feet.

I should probably mention that my family lives on a property in Georgia where the backyard is somewhat of a woodsy area. They have since cut down most of the trees and bushes, but a few remain.

However, Asia typically does not venture out into that area, she seems to dislike being outdoors, outside of going to the bathroom. Although it does happen sometimes.

She is not currently on any medications, and has not been to see a vet in years because of affordability in this area.

So, I guess my question is... what could this be and how can I help her?


Comments for Mysterious Sores & Flaky Skin on Dog

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Jul 23, 2013
My Online Vet Response for: Mysterious Sores & Flaky Skin on Dog
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Taylor,
From the photos you have submitted of Asia, a female 13 year old, German Shepherd mix, it appears that the 'sores' on her hind legs are *lick granulomas*.

This is considered a more intense form of hot spot, that will develop granulation tissue or 'proud flesh' as time goes on and the chronic irritation continues from Asia continuing to lick and/or chew at the area. The dandruff and scabs on her back may also be due to chronic itching/licking.

The CAUSE of all the licking/chewing may be due to a number of things:

1. Stress because you have gone away to school.

2. Flea allergy dermatitis

3. Pain due to arthritis in her 'ankles' and hips/low back.

4. Dry skin from a DRY DOG FOOD DIET.

Here are some suggestions:

1. Ideally, a total blood panel that includes thyroid would be nice, in order to establish a baseline on her health. In order to see if her kidneys and liver are ok, make sure she is not anemic, make sure she is not hypo-thyroid, check her protein levels, electrolytes, etc.

2. If that is not possible, then the next step is to adjust her DIET. Decrease the amount of dry dog food, and gradually mix in canned and/or some steamed green beans, carrots, yams and RAW chicken, turkey, or beef. NO RAW PORK or RAW FISH. See our page on 10 Best Dog Food Options.

The goal is to increase the moisture content in her food. (And that is NOT accomplished by just adding water!) The best way is by feeding her cooked vegetables, canned food and some raw meat. Increasing moisture content will help her dry skin, help her joints, and help her back!

3. Next is control of fleas. See our page on Dog Flea Treatment. And check out Wondercide.

****Topical Treatments:
The Sentry Wound Cream has questionable safety. It is classified as a synthetic antiseptic. It contains the ingredient, Benzalkonium chloride. Soap and water is better. Especially if you can bathe her in an oatmeal shampoo, such as Virbac's EpiSoothe. Bathe her one to two times per week, or as needed, to control itching and self trauma.

Use Rescue Remedy (for humans), add 20 drops to a 4 oz pump spray bottle and fill with Spring water.

Rescue Remedy is a flower essence that will help to *calm* her skin, and *calm* her so she is NOT chewing and itching so intensely. You can spray it directly onto her dry skin on her back and also on the open sores on her hind legs. You can use is as often as needed. So, if she does lick it, it will help to calm her down.


Jul 23, 2013
My Online Vet Response for: Mysterious Sores & Flaky Skin on Dog
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Taylor,
Here is the rest of my response.

There are homeopathic remedies that are useful for pain, but for now, try one to two baby aspirin (NOT BABY TYLENOL) in food one to two times daily to see if that makes her more comfortable for a few days.

This is NOT holistic, but she needs to have something NOW to decrease the itching, and redness. Chewing her skin until she bleeds can hasten problems with infection, increase pain, and delay healing.

Another option, Dog Acupuncture, would be a great option, if there is a holistic veterinarian near you.

Use hydrogen peroxide two times daily to clean the sores on her hind legs, then spray the area with the diluted Rescue Remedy.


1. Immune support. Try one of these to add to her food:

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

2. Omega 3 fish oil for dogs, add one 1,000mg capsule, (cut it with a knife or scissors) and squeeze it into her food two times daily.

3. Glucosamine/Chondroitin Sulfate Supplements or Sea Jerky


Find a holistic veterinarian to write an exemption form for her.

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

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: 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,
- Dog Symptom Checker - Photo, Question & Answer Library for Thousands of Dog Symptoms

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