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Hello!

First post here, really loving this informative forum! Our 3-month-old GSD was recently diagnosed with demodex. He kept itching very soon after we got him last month, and it got steadily worse. He has a few 1 cm-large bald spots around his body, and he cries whenever he scratches his ears. The vet at first gave us an antibacterial soap + shampoo and a vitamin tablet for his coat. They didn't work, and when the puppy finally took a skin test, she said it was demodex.

I've looked through the forums, but most of the posts regarding demodex seem to involve GSDs already 4 months or older. I was wondering if the same treatments would be all right for a 3-month-old puppy? Right now, we're looking into trying to boost his immune system (vet just gave him his last shot today), but aren't really sure how. As per a suggestion in another thread, we're considering Colostrum and vitamin C. We need help on a few things, though:

~ In case Colostrum isn't available locally, what other vitamins/supplements can I give my puppy to boost his immune system?

~ How many milligrams of vitamin C should be given everyday? Should it be given everyday? Is the regular vitamin C from pharmacies sufficient?

~ How long should we keep trying to boost his immune system before we should consider moving on to medicine?

~ Which puppy-friendly medicine should we consider for treating demodex? I've heard of oral Ivermectin, is this all right for puppies?

The vet's a nice person and takes the time to know our puppy, but she tends to make us spend more than we have to. In this case, she was recommending a series of 8 shots, and that makes me nervous since my GSD's still very young, and while she has large breed experience, she doesn't have GSD experience in particular. The itching isn't too terrible at the moment, and his coat's still very healthy, so we're hoping boosting his immune system would do the trick before we consider the shots or giving him medicine.

Here is Ezio, our puppy at almost 3 months old:



Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 

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sorry I don't have any answers....just bumping your post hoping that you will get some advice.

Welcome to the forum and your puppy is freaking adorable
 

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I treated an 8 week old puppy mill Papillon with oral Ivermectin for his demodex that was on his face. It cleared up and he did fine on it. So your pup should do well on it as well.
 

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Welcome to the forum! How bad of a case of demodex does your puppy have? If it's mild it should go away on its own. It's very common in young pups. I would absolutely not use ivermectin. There's no need for it.

It's too bad that your vet would give vaccinations when your pup has demodex. Vaccines can be a big challenge for the immune system.
 

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I did use Ivermectin and it worked well--but that was before I knew about this forum and saw that it may not be necessary. I have to say that it was a pretty serious case and probably wouldn't have healed on its own. There are other threads about this subject and it's recommended that boosting the immune system will do more than treating with Ivermectin. Using NEEM seems to get the best results, but keep searching threads for more info. Hope your pup feels better soon!
 

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Welcome to the forum! How bad of a case of demodex does your puppy have? If it's mild it should go away on its own. It's very common in young pups. I would absolutely not use ivermectin. There's no need for it.

It's too bad that your vet would give vaccinations when your pup has demodex. Vaccines can be a big challenge for the immune system.
I agree with everything said here.

Hard as it is to wait it out, 95% of demodex cases will clear up on their own. I would only consider the drugs if it gets really bad, as a last result. The treatment protocol is usually much worse than the problem, as it involves high doses of pesticide given orally and repeated, extremely toxic chemical "dips". Your vet absolutely should not have vaccinated a puppy with demodex and I would encourage you to hold off on all further vaccines until he is well over it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you for the warm welcome and the very fast and helpful replies! Thanks as well for the kind compliments to the new addition to our family -- he's a handful, but we're trying to give him the best care we can.

I'm not exactly sure how bad his demodex is, because I have no point of comparison. He has two 1-cm large bald spots on his elbow, one on his face, and another under his chin. He itches just about everywhere, but most often on his underside near his armpits, ears, flank, front arms, and near his muzzle. He doesn't itch all the time though, but pretty often - about four times in an hour, usually more. He'd stop and scratch when he's stressed as well. When he scratches his ears with his hind leg, he cries and yelps but can't seem to stop doing it.

I wasn't aware that he shouldn't have been vaccinated when he has demodex. :( I didn't have time to look it up -- he was diagnosed on the same session that he got his last shot, so we had to take the vet's word for it. He seems to be recovering well from the vaccine and not itching more (but not less, either).

Thanks so much for all the info -- we'll be considering the Ivermectin as a last resort and will try to boost his immune system first. The vet gave us a sort of garlic yeast tablet thing with vitamins that she said are good for his coat, so we're giving him one of those every day at the moment. Is regular 500mg vitamin C from the pharmacy okay to feed him once a day as well? The tablet the vet gave didn't mention vit C on the package, and I read in these forums that vit C's pretty essential. We're going to look into NEEM as well, thank you for the tip!

Also, his anti-rabies shot is due in April. Should we wait until he's demodex-free before giving him that one, or is it all right?

So sorry for all these questions!
 
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