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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a nine year old bichon/lhasa mix. He has started licking and scratching and pacing at night, keeping everyone awake. I have tried the boiled chicken and rice diet, we have been on immunosuppressants, cortisone both po and injections, we have tried topical sprays and creams including genesis, we have been on benadryl and claritin. We even tried antischizophrenics (vet idea) with no luck. We've used every bath soap and conditioner there is. I am so tired and need to sleep. If I crate him, he barks, with breaks to lick and scratch. If I put him out of the room, he scratches the door, put him outside he scratches the door, crate him in a different room he barks. I have tried correcting the behavior and offering an acceptable alternative with chew toys to no avail. He is obsessed with the licking now, which started with allergies. He has progressively gotten worse. Does anyone know anything that will work for this? I'm at the end of my rope!
 

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Sounds like both you and the dog are pretty miserable - I'm sorry. Have you looked on the food and/or health sections of this forum? Lots of folks there have found relief by switching foods. Maybe they can recommend one you haven't already tried that will help.
 

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Poor guy- he sounds really uncomfortable.

The first thing I'd do is board him at the vet for a few days so you could get some sleep!

Next, I'd see about finding some tougher anti-itch meds- even if that only treats the symptoms, it'd let him- and hence you- sleep. It also might be worth talking to a vet who specializes in immune stuff and allergies. Are there veterinary allergists? Have you done any of the testing (I know there's a blood panel and a skin test for testing for allergens) to determine what he's allergic to? I know one o fmy friends with a bichon was doing elimination diets for a while but once they actually had her dog tested, it turned out that she was allergic to every single meat and grain they'd tried! (Dog is now on rabbit and quinoa and doing okay.)

There's a spray called Schreiner's Herbal Solution (http://www.schreiners.com/) that I've used very successfully for super-itchy dogs (I've used it on a dog with allergies, one with demodex, and one with scarcoptic mange!) - and while it stings going on, it has the side benefit of tasting REALLY foul and discouraging licking. It also is VERY good for healing up the skin. I can't tell you it'll work for sure, but we had really good luck with it.

Cait

When you tried the elimination
 

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What kind of food are you feeding him (other than chicken/rice)? I'd try putting him on a grain free diet w/alternative meat source, like Fish and sweet potato dog food. I have 2 dogs that used to scratch/chew like crazy (one more than the other). I switched to Taste of the Wild Prairie formula, and no one itches at all now.

I'd also try keeping him off grass for a couple of weeks (bathe him with something mild for dogs first). So many dogs have allergies to certain grasses.

It would be worth having him allergy tested.
 

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Does his normal kibble have chicken in it? If so, it could be the chicken that he's allergic to (my Jaia is). I agree with spotted nikes. Switch to a grain free, alternative meat diet. Look over the ingredients in his food and get a dog food that doesn't have any of the meat sources listed on his current food. Natural Balance Sweet Potato and Venison did the trick for us. They have several limited ingredient foods. Good luck!
 

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What did the vet advise? I know you can do tests on humans to figure out what they're allergic to. Don't know if you can do that type of thing on dogs or not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I meant that I actually fed him boiled chicken and rice made at home, lol. It was not effective. My vet has recommended that we learn to live with it, which is not great advice. I cannot keep him off of grass, he won't go to the bathroom unless he is on grass. He now runs for 45 minutes on the treadmill instead of with me, to alleviate it some. None of these have worked. I have tried grain free, meat alternative foods to no avail. I have tried cooking food for him, every expensive science diet there is, I live in a small town and so I guess allergy testing is not available. I do not have a vet in Durham yet. Still using the one back home. He now does not sleep in the bed, and I suspect that something in our new house is worse than what was at the old house as to irritating his allergies. The vet thinks that it may be related to my long work schedule and that he has become obsessed with the activity of licking and that it is not necessarily medical. Although, she was not interested in prescibing medications to assist with this condition. The vet said that we have exhausted all anti itch medications (benadryl, claritin, genesis, hydracortisone), steroids (which ideally want to use sparingly because he has had some pancreas issues in the past and supressing the immune system causes lesions to spread all over his body.) I understand that he is complicated, if it had not been a hard case, I would not have come to you! I am impressed and touched by the responses. I think I will try the sweet potato and venison and taste of the wild foods, see how Schreiner's Herbal Solution will work for him. I do not want to part with my oldest friend. Sleeplessly yours, Thank you.
 

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I'm sure your vet is very good but I would take him to a Holistic vet to see if a different approach would help. You can find one in your area by going to the AHVMA website.
 
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