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Skin Rash on Inside of Legs - Flea Allergy Dermatitis with a Secondary Bacterial Pyoderma

by Ryan H.

Picture of belly and inside of leg

Picture of belly and inside of leg

Elle, Age 11, pure bred Lab. Over the past few months she has had this rash get worse and start to spread. She has been in the same yard for the past 4 years with no issues.


She is scratching so much that the hair is coming off on the inside of her legs and about 3 inches above her paw. Pretty much whereever she is biting, licking and scratching.

She spends most of the time inside and we have a very clean house. She is outside for about 1 to 2 hours in the morning and evening. The back yard is grass and plants but nothing new over the past year.

About 2 years ago she starting eating her poop and I fear that she might have worms or something. I do not give her any type of pills or meds.

She has no visible fleas or ticks but does get a few mosquito bites during the normal times of the year. Her food has also not changed over the past few years.

She is in normal hyper moods most of the time and as for the skin flaking and scratching she is fine. I have been bathing her with oatmeal and aloe shampoo but it is only getting worse.

If I can provide anything else please let me know.

Comments for Skin Rash on Inside of Legs - Flea Allergy Dermatitis with a Secondary Bacterial Pyoderma

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Aug 22, 2009
My Online Vet Response
by: Carol Jean Tillman DVM

Hi Ryan,
For Elle, the photo you sent looks like flea allergy dermatitis with a secondary bacterial pyoderma. You have not seen visible fleas because she is busy chewing and licking and has probably swallowed them. (By the way, this will lead to tapeworms, so you should take a stool sample to your regular vet to have a fecal done to check her for parasites.)

You didn't mention what you actually feed her. At 11 years of age, and now she is suddenly showing some skin allergies, with a secondary bacterial component, I would be concerned that her immune system has been compromised. It may be that the diet you feed her is not providing her with the proper nutrients she needs as she ages to give her a strong immune system. It may be that she has been over vaccinated. Did all of the itching start soon after a vaccination?

Also, at 11 years of age, I would suggest a total blood panel for Elle to make sure that she is not anemic, her thyroid level is normal, and that her liver, kidneys, pancreas, blood sugar, etc are all normal. Sort of an 'internal' checkup, because, at 11 years of age, Elle is closer in age to a 70 or 80 year old human! Check our Food and Treats page and our Dog Flea Medicine page.

I would also find a local holistic vet to guide you along with the best diet, supplements, and homeopathic remedy that Elle might need, depending on the blood panel results, her history of vaccination, and her personality, fears/likes/dislikes/cravings, etc.

Using an Oatmeal/Aloe shampoo is fine. She will need to be bathed weekly. And she should also get some Omega 3 fish oil for dogs added to her food, and possibly some other supplements, but those details would be provided by your local holistic vet based on the test results.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

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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 Skin Rash,
- Dog Skin Allergies,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Skin Rashes, Marks, Spots, Lesions & Patches (including itchy skin and mange) Section

Sep 24, 2012
I have the same issue
by: Claudia

My puppy is 7 months old and is a Shar pei Pit bull mix and looks exactly the same way and symptoms are so similar as well, I have seen several vets and no one has been able to help me so far, her back legs are getting bald and she gets pyoderma infections frequently due to the chewing liking, she has been treated for food allergies, flea allergies and all kinds of things but still no complete improvement.

She has been experiencing the symptoms since we adopted her at 7 weeks and used to be on prescription diet foods but that didn't work so I tried grain free food and finally raw diet, her coat looks way better but she still itchy sometimes, I finally got an appointment with a Dermatology Veterinarian hoping that can help my baby.

Jan 22, 2014
2 dog household
by: nicole

This looks like my male dog. He has had a similar skin problem for the last 2 years and no one has been able to figure out what it is. If it is fleas, is it possible for him to be the only one with it? We have a female dog that lives outdoors in the same pen with him, and she shown no symptoms. Our vet just tells us its an allergy but we have tried everything to figure out what he is allergic to.

Jan 28, 2015
same
by: robin

Ever time it gets warm outside like it has been
2 OF MY DOGS START ITCHING'back by there tail legs
I have tried everything'what do I do to help them.
Is it something in my yard?

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