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Discussion Starter #1
Hello from Canada!

This is my first post on this forum, i have been to two other dog forums, but was bashed for my choice of how to get a dog so i never got true opinions or experiences from them :(

So here is a quick sum of how I got my lovely dog Chase, please read everything before commenting, the other forums jumped the gun and thought i bought from a BYB.

Basically the person who owned him didnt know much about the breed and didnt have the lifestyle for him. He wanted to sell the dog to a breeder (lost his papers and no medical history) so i told him i would breed and show him (little white lie:wink:).

Im so happy i got him, i stopped a potential BYB, and took in this wonderful dog. The only problem was that he was just an overgrown puppy who needed some training in manners inside the house.

Fast forward 8 months and he is doing really well. It was a REALLY good thing that I got Chase and neutered him, his blood tests show he is Hypothyroidism and he has a pronounced left sacral tuber (possible hip problem).

So now onto his skin issue:

Starting in late october he started breaking out in small pimples on his back, as the months went by, it got worse and spread to his neck down to his tail. In december i took him to the vets, got a scraping, blood test, antibiotics, and shampoos. Scraping came back neg. for mites. It did show its bacterial. Blood tests came back all normal except for the hypothyroidism. The antibiotics didnt work that much but i did see some improvement.

As December went to January, nothing really changed so i changed his food to grain free. The pattern of the skin problem and the blood tests does not suggest an allergy of any kind, but it was worth a shot. I also dewormed him, and gave him some revolution...just in case.

As we went into March warmer weather came, so off came his winter coat for walks. Im also waiting patiently for his thyroid medication to kick in (been on them for two months now). Then as if it was magic, his coat cleared up! I was SOO happy, I thought the Thyroid pills did the trick. Colder weather came, so I put on his coat again for 2 days. His skin just broke out like crazy, lumps on his back with pus coming out. Im so devastated.

I really do think its the coat causing the problem. But you never know. Has anyone experienced this?

I have attached some pictures, not sure if they worked though...
Two pictures show his skin issue, the other is just to show his handsome face :)

Picture 004.jpg

Picture 003.jpg

Picture 012.jpg
 

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What kind of material is the coat, and have you washed it/what do you wash it in? The coat might not have anything to do with it but it's certainly possible. Some dogs are sensitive to different fabrics or to scents/ dyes in laundry detergents or fabric softeners. Also certain types of bedding (especially dog beds with cedar or other wood chip/shaving fillings) can irritate the skin.

Also, if his thyroid isn't under control yet that may be a big part of your problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for your reply. His coat is made out of cotton, and is washed regularly with hypoallergetic detergent, and is air dried. His bedding is also made out of cotton and washed the same way. However, if it is the material of his bedding, wouldnt the skin problem be mostly on his stomach legs and chest? He doesnt sleep on his back.

He is on Thyroid medication, and he went in for his monthly T4 check, it came back really good (34) and the vet was pleased by the results.
 

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Well you've certainly got all your bases covered. :) I agree it's very tempting to blame the coat with the timing. At least it's something that you can test out, like if he's fine all summer and it starts up again when you use the coat again.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Im hoping that is the route problem, something so simple. But if it is, im not sure how to protect him in the winter time, there is no way he can be walked without a coat :( Any suggestions?
 

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If you have not yet consulted with a board certified veterinary dermatologist, you may find that they can readily diagnose the problem. Dermatologists are also more experienced with breed specific skin conditions and Dobermans like so many other breeds, have their own issues. Pustules usually mean bacterial infection, so if your dog isn't on an antibiotic already, he probably should be.
 

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Im hoping that is the route problem, something so simple. But if it is, im not sure how to protect him in the winter time, there is no way he can be walked without a coat :( Any suggestions?
Well maybe it's something about how the coat lays on the skin or how tight it is? Or you could try a different material if it seems like the coat really is the problem (which it might not be).

Sorry you're dealing with this. Skin stuff in dogs can be maddeningly frustrating.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Im thinking of finding a dermatologist for him. He has been on two types of ABS for two months and the skin scraping confirmed it is bacterial. As of right now, there are no new outbreaks on his skin, just crusts from the previous outbreak (two weeks ago). He went to work with me today and the vet checked him over, he said he sees no new outbreaks and to closely monitor his skin over the next month without his coat on. If there is no improvement, we will have to move onto more tests, or see a specialist.

Sassafras: I do think his coat is a little big, where his skin broke out is right where the end of the coat rubs from side to side as we walk (near the tail). I should try a smaller coat in the future.
 
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