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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,
I have a wonderful 8 year old GSD puppy. About 6 months ago, he started developing a large infection on his back, about 3 inches across. We took him into the vet and we were told it was just a hotspot that was full of puss. The vet shaved it and gave us antibiotics and pain pills. Neither one of those really helped as he kept licking it. He also started getting some new open sores on his legs from licking. We put a cone on him and the spot on his back went away within a few days, but the one his leg stayed.

We also started noticing lots of small scabs all over his skin where he couldn't reach. We took the drastic step of shaving him very close all over. Once we did, we discovered that he was covered in small bumps that are extremely itchy to him. Lots of them have small scabs. It has been 2 weeks since he was shaved and they don't seem to be going away.

He stays inside most of the time and only goes out to use the bathroom or for walks. Since he was shaved, outside time has been very limited to prevent heat stroke. He is on flea and tick prevention (The drops on his neck). I inspect him almost every day and have never seen anything except for 2 fleas several weeks ago.

He has been on the same food for over 6 years. He gets Whole Earth Grain free with chicken and turkey. There have been a few occasions where we ran out of food and we didn't notice till after the store was closed and had to get Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero grain Turkey and Potato, but 95% of the time, it is Whole Earth.

We started giving him regular baths with oatmeal shampoo. If he gets too itchy, he also gets benadryl.

I am not sure what else to do and am looking for some suggestions.
 

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It kind of sounds like MRSA. My GSD had it once but she also has an auto-immune issue. Not saying that's what your pup has but you might get a second opinion from a different vet or reach out to an animal dermatologist.
 

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That's interesting that you would say MRSA. My daughter has MRSA. I checked and it can be passed from humans to animals. I hadn't even thought about that being passed. I will check with our vet to have a culture done and see if he needs antibiotics.

Thank you,
Brian
 

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In dogs it is a slightly different strain called MRSP, not easily transmitted to humans and dogs don't get the human strain. Definitely this should be cultured by the vet and treatment begun. Most common antibiotics do not work on MRSP. It can be treated by frequent baths with chlorhexidine shampoo and topical ointments but needs to be dealt with promptly. If your vet is not confident in treating whatever it is ask for a referral to a dermatologist and save yourself time and money.
 

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He is on flea and tick prevention (The drops on his neck).

I inspect him almost every day and have never seen anything except for 2 fleas several weeks ago.

We started giving him regular baths with oatmeal shampoo


If it is not MRSA here are some other possibilities:


Flea/Tick topicals per petmed.com:
Topical flea treatment side effects
Symptom and Types
Allergic reactions -- hives, congestion, itching, extreme sensitivity


1 flea bite can reek havoc on a dog if he has sensitivity to it:
Per petmd.com: When a flea bites your dog or cat to draw blood, it injects saliva into your pet's skin. Flea saliva is irritating to most animals, including humans. But the compounds in it can trigger an allergic reaction


IF you have a dog that is sensitive to grains, beware of other GLUTEN BASED ingredients, which could make a dog itch: names that we do not recognize, that could be in the Doggie Shampoo that you are using!
WHEAT: hydrolyzed wheat protein or triticum vulgare (wheat) or stearyldimoniumhydroxypropyl (hydrolyzed wheat protein) or hydroxypropyltrimonium (hydrolyzed wheat protein).
OATMEAL: or avena sativa
BARLEY: hordeum vulgare or maltodextrin (can also be from barley)
RYE: secale cereale
Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein can be derived from: Soy, Corn, or Wheat
Sodium cocoyl glutamate is a mild vegetable-based surfactant (foaming ingredient) derived from from coconut or palm kernel oil and glucose from corn.


Natural Shampoo’s:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01HNFJUDW/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s02?ie=UTF8&psc=1
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B011ESJXRW/ref=sxr_pa_click_within_right_aps_sr_pg1_2?psc=1

Rub on topical:
Midoricide: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MZCI3BF/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1


Moms :)
 

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In dogs it is a slightly different strain called MRSP, not easily transmitted to humans and dogs don't get the human strain. Definitely this should be cultured by the vet and treatment begun. Most common antibiotics do not work on MRSP. It can be treated by frequent baths with chlorhexidine shampoo and topical ointments but needs to be dealt with promptly. If your vet is not confident in treating whatever it is ask for a referral to a dermatologist and save yourself time and money.



100% agree about both the suggestion of culturing and asking for derm referral! Culturing a skin infection is not terribly expensive (maybe $100 or so in lab fees), and you shouldn't hesitate to do it. It is far better to know what you're dealing with (and whether you have abx-resistance).



I've had to treat rescued dogs who had staph deeply colonized because owners didn't deal with it properly in time and then gave them up because they didn't want to fool with it. These dogs were nearly hairless -- gray skin covered in sores, and so miserable. It took 2x weekly chlorhex baths and at least a month or more of antibiotics to knock it out once it got that bad. They all recovered beautifully eventually.



The mistake many vets (and owners) make is not hitting it hard enough to knock it out (too short a course of abx, or not doing topical treatments consistently). Many owners aren't willing to do the frequent medicated baths because it's a hassle. However, those baths make a HUGE difference -- if you start them early enough, you can even avoid oral meds entirely.


I buy 4% chlorhex shampoo by the gallon for the rescue, and smaller bottles of it go out to all of the foster homes. We go through lots of it with itchy dogs, as it is the most cost-effective, useful tool in the arsenal for skin issues. It's a lot cheaper to buy it from Amazon vs. the vet:
https://www.amazon.com/Dechra-TrizChlor-4-Shampoo-8-Ounce/dp/B00K4X8TF6 (note the reviews about how it helps itchy dogs).
 
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