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Once upon a time my dog had perfect skin & coat. I had rescued him from a high kill animal shelter, and from his personality I assumed he was probably kept in a cage (indoors -- he was unsure of what rain was) and was bred for backyard breeding and more than likely was a backyard bred puppy himself (he's a bluenose so a bad immune system and possible backyard breeding isn't the greatest health combo). Lucky for him & I, in the end he had no interest in females and was probably set free (the lucky part is this led me to him).

We lived a pretty happy life together for a few years before moving cross-country. The biggest stressor of that was him meeting my parents dogs (although he had grown up with me babysitting friends dogs and then eventually getting a friend for him which he was totally cool with). I kept him on the same food but the things that had changed was his environment inside and outside. Within a couple of months of moving he started to itch himself to the point of irritation and crying. We brought him to the vet who put him on steroids, a heavy dose of daily flea medication, oatmeal shampoo and IAMS Kangaroo & Oatmeal kibble (I wish we had a homeopathic vet within 500 miles of us). This calmed his itching but I hated the attitude he was getting, so we stopped everything but the kibble. The vet had no idea what it was and it took me a year of finally realizing that the smell he had (as well as the greasy-ness he felt was in fact a yeast problem -- also his poops have never been normal. They always looked like mudpie ducks).
I put him on Nusentia Probiotics & Digestives and he started to get better. His fur grew back and he barely itched (he's been living in a comfy cone forever to prevent major bloody scratches, but he managed to still chew his legs and tail), and of course after 3 weeks it stopped working and he became itchy again. I upped his dosage and nothing worked. I switched a month ago to the Mercola probiotics and he hasn't been getting better. Still smells like cheese and has hole-y fur pants, and I can't keep upping the dosage because it's just becoming expensive!

I'm pretty sure it's still a yeast problem. He still gets fed the Kangaroo & Oatmeal kibble, and he gets kangaroo raw meat treats and fish skin (Royal Canin has bought the IAMS recipes/company(?) and they've now officially discontinued the Roo food. I won't be buying RC). Could it be the kibble still causing the problem? I know it's not great for him and he should be raw but I haven't been able to afford raw pre-packaged discs and only just discovered a raw recipe called the Yeast Starvation raw recipe (is it any good? -- http://homemadedogfood.com/yeast-starvation-dog-food-recipe/)


Any thoughts or suggestions on what I can do for him? I feel like he's going to be stuck in a comfy cone forever! :frusty: :help:
 

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I suggest getting a skin scrape done at the vet. One possible cause of itching flare ups, especially at times of stress, is demodetic mange. A strong immune system is what keeps the mites (which all dogs have) under control, so you tend to see it more in puppies, dogs with ill health or bad nutrition, etc.

I have no idea what you mean by "attitude he was getting" in connection with calming the itching. For shampoo, I'd suggest something like Eqyss micro-tek or a benzoyl peroxide shampoo rather than an oatmeal shampoo.

There is no right or wrong food so it isn't that he "should" be fed raw, the best food is the one that the dog does well on basically. You might look into a grain-free, single protein food.
 
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