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Jericho is itching something terrible. I have checked for fleas and didn't see any. I've given him flea meds just in case they are there and I didn't see them. I've bathed him more frequently, about once a week. He's allergic to poultry so he's already been off that. Now I have taken grains out of his diet, but still he's scratching all of the time.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to calm his itchy skin? I found two hotspots on him last night and put aloe on them, which seemed to help for the short term.

He had Demodex when I got him, but this doesn't seem to be following the symptoms of its return. He doesn't smell; there are no thinning or bald patches in his coat. I'm at a loss.
 

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My rescued dog Nadine had the itches something awful when I first adopted her 2 years ago. That's when I found this website. I put her on a grain free diet just like you except that it worked. I was feeding her 'taste of the wild' and the effect was almost immediate. Her treats and canned dog food had to be grain free also. My vet told me to feed her less because grain free dog food is higher in calories and, in fact, Nadine did gain weight.
At that time Nadine was put on a medicated shampoo and I had to bath her twice a week for several weeks. A month ago Nadine got a skin infection and was put on anti biotics for 2 weeks and again was put on medicated shampoo - BPO-3 with 3% benzoyl peroxide and like before I have to bath her twice weekly for several weeks. Because of the increased bathing my vet gave me a sample of nexgard to be given orally for tick control. I had been using advantix II which is an external tick control.
I don't think I've been very helpful here except to caution you about weight gain.
There are a lot of very helpful people on this website and I hope they respond to your inquiry.
 

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Was he stable on the non-chicken/grain diet and then had a flair up or has he continued to itch even though you have limited his diet? That difference could be important in helping you figure out what is going on.

For instance, if he was stable on his diet, perhaps you should double check all the food packaging to make sure a recipe hasn't changed or if you have tried a new treat or chew, double check to make sure those are grain & chicken free. I had this happen with some of the wet food we were using, the oil it in came from a different source than the same brand dry food. Also I have to be really vigilant that no one gives Ollie treats I don't know about (in-laws, neighbor kids) or that he finds crumbs on the floor.

On the other hand, if he his itching only reduced but never went away on the limited diet, you might still have another food ingredient that is giving him trouble. Perhaps you should try just limiting him to a single protein (pick maybe only lamb or only venison) and see if that helps.

Finally, many places have a hospital or other health department that tracks pollen counts for the area. It could be that he has a pollen allergy too and cottonwood or ragweed is super high in your area and giving him trouble and he may go back to being ok when that pollen drops. Your Vet may suggest short term benadryl or Zyrtec if that is the case.

Just a few things to check that might give you an easy answer.

Traveler's Mom is right about apoquel. We use if for Ollie, it does work wonders to calm itching, but doesn't get to the root of the problem and is still in very limited distribution through certain Vets.
 

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Thank you all for your suggestions. His itching seems to be calming. I wonder if the pollen suggestion wasn't right on. It rained a couple of days ago and his itching seems to be down quite a bit. I hadn't put the two together until I read your suggestion.

I know what you mean about changing ingredients in their food formulas. It seems that they put chicken in everything, even if they label it as beef or whatever else. The only one that I have been able to find that doesn't have any grain or any poultry (for real) is Nature's Best or something...oh...I'm terrible. I can't remember the name right now. We only give him pieces of string cheese for treats. It is such a chore to find a dog treat that doesn't have grain or poultry and he seems to be happy to work for cheese pieces.

I thank you all for your suggestions. I talked to our vet tech over the weekend and she suggested Benadryl. I will keep that one in my pocket as a last resort. I kind of like to keep everything I do with him as natural as possible.
 

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Allergies are such a pain when it comes to food and treats. Here are a few treat ideas for you that we use in place of all the stuff he can't eat:

Sam's Yams- Just dried sweet potatoes. Nothing else in them. A very healthy treat and you can cut them up into smaller chunks for training treats. Just like all fruit/veggies remember too many means a mess on the back end.
Amazon.com : Sam's Yams Big Boyz Sweet Potato Dog Treats, 1-Pound Bag : Pet Snack Treats : Pet Supplies


Himalayan Dog chews-again very simple ingredients, no grains. Very hard. Usually last my boy a day or 2. [ame]http://www.amazon.com/Himalayan-Dog-Chew-Mixed-Pack/dp/B004GT6J0Q/ref=sr_1_1?s=pet-supplies&ie=UTF8&qid=1408404503&sr=1-1&keywords=himalayan+dog+chew[/ame]


Finally- Bestbullysticks.com. You can find a ton of stuff on this site that is limited ingredient from bully sticks to other types of chews and treats. Ingredients are listed so you can easily find them. Some exotic stuff like Kangaroo. Really helped us get through the chewing phase.
 

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Thank you all for your suggestions. His itching seems to be calming. I wonder if the pollen suggestion wasn't right on. It rained a couple of days ago and his itching seems to be down quite a bit. I hadn't put the two together until I read your suggestion.

I know what you mean about changing ingredients in their food formulas. It seems that they put chicken in everything, even if they label it as beef or whatever else. The only one that I have been able to find that doesn't have any grain or any poultry (for real) is Nature's Best or something...oh...I'm terrible. I can't remember the name right now. We only give him pieces of string cheese for treats. It is such a chore to find a dog treat that doesn't have grain or poultry and he seems to be happy to work for cheese pieces.

I thank you all for your suggestions. I talked to our vet tech over the weekend and she suggested Benadryl. I will keep that one in my pocket as a last resort. I kind of like to keep everything I do with him as natural as possible.
Also, check the ingredients for Flax Seed Oil or Ground Flax , and Yeast. These can also make dogs itch.

Some have found a rinse of 50% Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar (this contains the "Mother Tincture" floating around in it which has the medicinal properties. Found at a health food store.) mixed with 50% Purified Water will help. After bathing make mix, pour on small areas and rub into coat. Cover entire dog and let drip dry. Be careful around raw opened sores. You can also wipe down his paws/legs/belly with this mix when he comes in from the outside.

Here are some grain free/chicken free, real meat treats:
Bravo Bonus Bites: are 100% all meat, and made from all natural, antibiotic-free, grain free meats and organ meat protein sources.
Example: "Dry Roasted" Buffalo Liver: Ingredients Grass-fed buffalo liver.
"Freeze Dried Treats" - Venison Liver: Ingredients Grass-fed venison liver.

Bravo Training Treats:
Made from 100% muscle and organ meats and real Vermont Cheddar Cheese. Contain no grains, fillers or unnecessary additives of any kind. Perfectly sized to be held between two fingers for easy hand-to-dog feeding.
Example: "Turkey Bites" - Ingredients: Turkey thigh meat.
Example: "Trail Mix" - Contains the following - Ingredients: Turkey Bites: turkey meat Buffalo Bites: buffalo heart Hot Dogs: beef*, water, sea salt, celery juice and/or celery powder, sodium lactate, spices, Onion powder, garlic powder, paprika. *beef used was never administered antibiotics or growth hormones. Vermont Cheddar Cheese: Pasteurized milk, cheese cultures, salt, enzyme. Usually available at "Pet Supply Plus" chain stores. Find a location: Pet Supplies Plus : Home Page OR at Amazon: Amazon.com: bravo dog treats

The Honest Kitchen Treats Locate a store: Where to Buy Honest Kitchen - Honest Kitchen Stores | The Honest Kitchen
Beams: a natural dehydrated fish dog treat! They’re made from pure, wild-caught Atlantic Catfish* skins, from the clean ocean waters of Iceland, dried into savory, chewy sticks. They’re guaranteed to satisfy the pickiest of pups and are the perfect treat alternative to dried chicken snacks or bully sticks. Beams, like all our products, contain no Chinese ingredients!
Nuzzles: made with duck & cherries.

Good Luck!
Moms:)
 

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I don't like to bath them too much, my 6yo girl has had about 4 baths in her life and my 3yo boy has had 2 baths. Using shampoo regardless of which brand strips the natural oils from their coat and can affect their skin, they do need a good brush a couple of times a week though. With itching I have found by giving organic virgin coconut oil once a day has really helped with the general overall itches that dogs have, make sure it is organic and virgin, start with a teaspoon and build up slowly to a couple of tablespoons. If it is allergy related, it might be worth doing an allergy test.
 

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Could be mange?
That's what Demodex is (which she said he had previously, but this doesn't look the same).

I actually think you should take the dog in for a skin scrape, just to make sure the mites aren't starting to come back. Demodex can recur. Or it might be chronic yeast or staph -- the skin scrape will rule all that out.

For demodex dogs, or dogs with recent history of demodex, it may be helpful to focus on supplements that boost the immune system and skin so that the dog can better fight off the mites itself -- bovine colostrum, probiotics, coconut oil, vit. E (mixed tocopherol), fish oil, zinc.
 

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Could also be Sarcoptic. Very common on GSD's

I don't a skin test twice at the vet and it was never picked up. my breeder assured me it was sarcopyic even though there was no hair loss.
One dose of revolution and the itching stopped within an hour.
Cortisone steroid could also help relive the itch whilst his body is healing.

If he had one type of mange chance is he has a low immune system at the moment. So there's a chance he can get it again
 

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Could be allergies, could also be a yeast infection. Malassezia was literally a pain in my my dog's butt (he was gnawing at the base of his tail). A skin scraping will tell you for sure (mites vs. fungus vs. just itchy skin)

You can bathe with anti-fungal shampoo (check Valley Vet Supply or Omaha Vaccine Co), or even Selsun blue - that might help.

The best thing I did for my itchy guy was switch him to Royal Canin Skin Support dog food. It's prescription, so you'll need to see a vet about it. It's mainly rice and fish meal, and it contains anti-inflammatories like curcumin. It's expensive, but it's worth every penny - we've not had any itchy episodes in over a year, and we're in nasty humidity/pollen season here.
 

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Following this post, as Bob is going through the same thing right now.

I haven't read any of the other comments yet, but where abouts are you living? I'm wondering if our climate is similar and is having an affect on them?
 
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