Fleas! - Page 2 - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 02:57 PM Thread Starter
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Man a few hours napping and I feel a lot better. You guys and ladies are great you know that? Thanks a lot for all the ideas and keep them coming. I really can't thank you enough for jumping right up and trying to help.

OK a lot to answer. If I miss you, I'm sorry, it's not intentional.

@ Jax08 I'm pretty positive it's still fleas. Allergies was my first thought actually. Different pollen here, different grass. But, we've got no nasty looking skin, no runny eyes, no funky frito feet, no red itchy ears. They're eating the same food they always have and it's never been a problem. I don't even see any bites anywhere but that means nothing I know. They're both doing the stand on three legs and scratch the belly deal. Chewing spots are classic fleas. On the back in front of the tail, the tail and the butt. My wife used a flea comb on Wookie and last night she said she got 3 fleas off him and 1 off of Dax. Small fleas and some flea dirt. So, yeah, I'm pretty convinced it's not allergies.

@ Sunsilver thanks for that. I'm going to bathe the dogs again this afternoon to get anything left on them, off of them. I'm hoping that will help. I think you're right and we've got an egg and larvae problem. This seems to be cyclical. We knock it down and about 2 weeks later, boom, it starts up again overnight. The floors are all hardwood. The only carpet in the house is a small area rug in the master bedroom. My wife vacuums that daily but I'm not sure if she vacuums under it. I'll let her know to do that. She vacuums under and inside all the furniture 2-3 times a week too.

@ Jchrest Is this DE the same kind that you use in like fish tank filters? Should I order it or can I get it at like Home Depot? This is something I know my wife will be OK with as long as I'm the one doing it. It sounds like we're just about where you were and I'm hoping all this will be over soon.

@ Sunflowers I'm not against getting an exterminator in here if I need to. When I get the DE, I'm going to get around all the baseboards in the house with it and in the furniture like suggested. My wife washes all the dog bed covers twice a week on "sterilize". If I put some DE on the inner portions before we put the covers back on do you thank that's an OK idea? I'm a little worried about the "don't breathe it" thing. I'll do some checking into that part.

@ e1701dlf Thanks! I'll have to look into that. Wookie isn't really old yet but he's getting up there at 10. More on him in a minute.

@ Magwart, thank you, thank you, thank you for that info.

I'm going to break this up into a second post so I don't lose it again.
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:20 PM
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You need to get DE that is food grade, not the kind for swimming pools.

~ Diane ~

CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
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OK part 2.

Just about everyone has expressed some very valid points and concerns I want to address. Your thoughts and words are heard and much appreciated.

Both dogs had a full checkup, bloodwork done, the whole 9 yards and got clean bills of health in February. I found a vet close to us right after we got here but I wasn't really impressed with them so I'm still looking around. I've heard good things about a few others and I'll be checking them out when I get time. I called our old vet. Hes not comfortable prescribing something now that we're no longer considered in his care. I can't blame him. He did say to call him if I have any worries about anything our vet here prescribes for Wookie before giving it so he can give me a thumbs up.

Dax is on Heartguard, always has been and will stay on it. My wife is fine with this. She's even halfway OK with him being on a chewable preventative for fleas. I say halfway because while she doesn't think it will hurt him, she terrified of Wookie grooming him and ingesting something he's putting off through his skin. Is it nuts considering Wookie could groom off a topical really easy? Absolutely. Can I fix it? No. She's comfortable with older products because she knows from experience what won't cause problems. I can't argue her point that collars can come off, sprays and powders can wash off and she thinks topicals can too within the first day or so. I can't take something back out the dog that the dog ate hours ago. I'm at a loss with this one so if you guys have any ideas, I want to hear them.

Wookie has that MDR1 or whatever it is problem. We had the tests done. Wookie had parvo as a pup, has a mild heart murmur and a past history of seizures. Liver values are normally slightly abnormal. When she was 2, she got into something or possibly some medication didn't agree with. I don't know all the details, we were just dating then. What I do know is Wookie spent another week in the hospital and nearly died from it. The dog is a genetic health mess and probably came from a puppy mill. There's a long list of drugs we have to avoid. We're very careful what goes in or on this dog. Wookie is tested for heartworm every 4 months and has always come back negative.

We have a great relationship with our old vet. He's been very patient, understanding, educational and willing to do whatever he can to keep Wookie happy, healthy and pest free while keeping him safe from side effects. I know the ivermectin dose in heartworm preventatives is supposed to be safe. My wife, our old vet and I decided a long time ago that we wouldn't chance it since the heartworm risk back home was very, very low. I think there's also new stuff out that's supposed to be different.

We're well aware that risk has increased substantially with this move. We had that conversation with our old vet in February and he was very frank about it. My wife knows frequent testing and no preventative isn't a long term solution in this area. For now though, our plan isn't changing. Like it or not, I've got to work with what she can handle. I can't have her terrified and panicking. It's not an easy decision which is why I snuck the capstar. Believe me, I felt like a total tool doing it but with the relief it brought the dogs, I'd do it again. I honestly think my wife might be OK with it so I'll probably talk to her about it tonight and see what she says.

Just to be clear and in full disclosure, my wife knows she's being completely irrational. She's having a very, very hard time right now and we're working through it the best we can. Let's just say that my joke about 3 extra therapy sessions wasn't really a joke.

If you got this far, thanks. This wasn't easy to write. I'm going to go love on the dogs for a bit and give them a bath.
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Dogfaeries. I'll find some and pick it up tonight.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:33 PM
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I have this applicator that I got off of Amazon. Pretty handy!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LRMN9ZM...roduct_details

~ Diane ~

CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:57 PM
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I have used Vectra 3D on my cat (the cat version), I had forgotten about it. I have also used it on a dog I had five or six years ago when Frontline and Advantage stopped working for us. I don't know if Vectra 3D is contraindicated in dogs that have had seizures, but I'd definitely look into it if your wife is willing to use topicals. In the past, I was interested in Revolution because it would take care of fleas and heartworm...never tried it though. Best of luck. I hope you get the fleas under control soon. Keep us updated.
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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 05:01 PM
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Ack! If he has a seizure history, you should not use oral flea/tick meds -- NONE of them are appropriate for seizure dogs. Our rescue's vet told me that she wants any dogs with seizure histories to stick with topicals -- be sure and have that conversation with your vet, as the whole class of oral meds is likely to be contraindicated, unfortunately.
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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by junker View Post

@ Jax08 I'm pretty positive it's still fleas. Allergies was my first thought actually. Different pollen here, different grass. But, we've got no nasty looking skin, no runny eyes, no funky frito feet, no red itchy ears. They're eating the same food they always have and it's never been a problem. I don't even see any bites anywhere but that means nothing I know. They're both doing the stand on three legs and scratch the belly deal. Chewing spots are classic fleas. On the back in front of the tail, the tail and the butt. My wife used a flea comb on Wookie and last night she said she got 3 fleas off him and 1 off of Dax. Small fleas and some flea dirt. So, yeah, I'm pretty convinced it's not allergies.
You found fleas and dirt so must be fleas but just to address your comment on allergy symptoms above.

My dog did not have any of those. He itched. Relentlessly. The only other symptom he had, normal pet people would never have seen. That was on the track. He was lost, had no confidence and sneezing by the middle of the second leg and I KNEW he could track like a machine. Tested him and he's allergic to dust mites and grass.

If you get rid of the fleas and they are still chewing, ask your vet about cytopoint.




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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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@ Jax08 That's really interesting about the tracking. Dax is a tracking fiend. His nose is always somewhere. I haven't had time to take him out anywhere since the move but that's something I'll check out for sure when I do. I'm not completely ruling out allergies either. All evidence is pointing at fleas but that doesn't mean there's not an additional factor. I will call our old vet today and talk to him about the cytopoint. Thanks a lot for the info you posted

@ Magwart, Wookie hasn't has a seizure in 4 years and isn't on any meds for them. That's really a bonus. Exact cause was never determined and that's not a bonus. It was always infrequent, intermittent and varied in severity when it happened. The only correlating factor was medication for something or other each time it happened. Once, I know it coincided with an antibiotic. It's something we keep in the back of our minds. Oddly enough, this didn't start until after that one real bad illness at 2 years old. Educated speculation is a very high sensitivity to certain chemicals. We also avoid any kind of blinking lights, laser pointers and stuff like that just in case they could be a trigger. I checked with our old vet about giving him capstar and got the thumbs up for infrequent use with close watching after giving. Wookie's had it before after a stay at a boarding kennel led to an infestation. Besides a little panting, the mad scratching, biting and running around from dying fleas, there were no signs of trouble.

I'm going to ask our old vet about the Vectra3D today too.

Update next
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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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OK so last night was a busy night.

I bathed both the dogs with Dawn and dried them off really well. I got a couple dead fleas stuck in the towels. I tossed those in the washer on sterilize and didn't get caught using the good bath towels instead of the dog towels The kids were happy and spent the rest of the evening running around and rolling in the grass. Minimal scratching last night at bedtime. Some but not an insane amount and I didn't hear any chewing going on.

I guess my wife's therapy session yesterday went pretty well. We had a long, long talk about some of this last night after dinner. I showed her the DE I picked up and explained to her I wanted to use it in the house. She knew what it was, thought it was a great idea and we got to work. We put some under all the sofa and chair cushions and started shoving furniture around to do baseboards. We started wondering exactly how we were going to do that without one of those cool pump things dogfaeries has. BTW, one of those got ordered from Amazon last night too. Thank you! So anyway, my wife, bless her heart, came up with an idea. She had one of those bag things you use for decorating cakes and I used that. It worked great! I'm crawling around on the floor with that putting down DE and my wife was right behind me using a paintbrush to sweep it in all the little cracks and crevices. We were talking about all this the whole time. I think being able to be busy and not have to sit looking at me really helped her.

So here's where we are now.

I reiterated to her that I understand how difficult things have been and how hard she's trying. I still don't think she sees that I'm not exactly having a wonderful walk in the park right now either. I know she's afraid of having something bad happen to Wookie. I assured her I'm not going to let that happen if I can possibly avoid it. She is incredibly attached to that little dog and Wook is just as attached to her. I know why my wife is so attached and to be honest, I am too for different reasons. I mean, I love Dax to death. He's everything I've ever wanted in a dog but he'd be gone in a New York second if I had to choose between the two.

I laid down the law that I'm not going to allow her irrational fears endanger the dogs. Especially Wook. I'll give it another two weeks but come July 1st, Wook is getting retested and put on heartworm preventative with retesting however often the vet feels is needed. I'll compromise if I have to with a half dose for July but a full dose in August. No, I'm not telling her that! She feels horribly, horribly guilty and responsible about the dogs itching and scratching so much. I had no idea. I got permission to sneak more capstar if necessary. She's OK with Wook having it if she doesn't have to know about it. Don't ask, don't tell. I'm cool with that! She's also OK with trying any non-oral flea/tick product our old vet thinks is OK. She knows him and trusts him so I'm green lighted all they way there.

Magwart, thank you again for the info on invermectin and the MDR1. I know Wookie is a double whatever. Our avoid list includes everything from WSU, the things they said is OK to use carefully and a couple others. I printed out a ton of stuff for the wife and she's been reading. She also promised me she'd make a few phone calls herself. I can't ask her for more right now.

All in all, it was a pretty positive night. Not a lot of scratching going on today either. -touch wood-
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