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Could this be Poison Ivy?
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Could this be Poison Ivy?

I have a roughly 2 year old rescued male Rat Terrier.  I took the dog to the vet oh' about a month ago for what the vet said was allergies.  Been there done this a few times in the year I have had him.  Just this time it was worse, the Benadryl wasn't working.  I mean he was rolling all over the carpet and pulling his fur out.  They put him Prednisone pills for a short period.  The side effect was excess thrist, which meant "go potty" more offten.  The medicine seem to help, even though I ddin't care for the side effect. Not knowing what casuses his allergies, I started a trial an error process.  I research the food "Beniful" which my dog loved. Not to point any fingers, but me personally as a first time dog lover didn't like what I was finding on the food or should I say in the food.  I switched his food to Natural Way Lamb and Rice.  That seemed to trun his skin a little pink again.  I switched the food again to Natural Way Chicken and Rice.  This was working really well for him.  I was all excited, I thought problem solved.  By the second bag my little picky buddy didn't like it any more.  I was back to researching for something of better quality for him.  I found "Welllness" food.  I switched him to Wellness White Fish and Potato.  I was thinking good choice since he has some kind of unknown allergy.  The food was working good for a couple days.  Well, he got a hold of about a pint size carton of Reese flavored Malted Milk Balls.  He had to go again just last week for vomiting and diarrhea.  The vet says it was from the sugar in the candy more likely rather than the new food.  I got some diarrhea medicine, Amoxicillin Antibotic (antibiotic), and some Hills canned i/d dog food.  He is till on the medicine and is being slowly tappered off the i/d food back on to Wellness food.  Well, now his itching is back again, he is lossing fur again and I have noticed a couple red bumps.  The vet or me either one can find fleas on this dog.  I use K-9 Advantix on him monthly even the in cold winter months cause he does have flea bite allergies.  For the allergy to keep coming back it has be something in my home or where he goes to potty.  I noticed this morning where we walk him to potty there is Poison Ivy.  Could this be Poison Ivy giving him fits or something this time from the diarrhea and vomiting?  The Poison Ivy is growing around an old pipe in the ground.  This would be about the right height and right spot where the itching and bumps are.  I love my little dog and glad I was able to rescue him.  Just his allergies wear me out, wear my check book out and I'm sure wears him out.  Is there any suggestions?  Thanks in advance for any help!
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462827_tn?1333172552
I think I can help you....It will be kinda lengthy....I have to go errands right now....I'll get back to you, I promise....Karla
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614564_tn?1238907149
Thanks so much....
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462827_tn?1333172552
Sorry it took me so long...Things kept coming up.  First of all you've done the right thing by switching foods. IMO Beneful has no food in it!  How long has he been off of it? He can stay on the ID for quite some time if it is agreeing with him. I suspect that the vomiting and diarrhea are from the candy AND the frequent food change. Of the food you listed, Wellness would be my choice. Even better would be their "Grain Free" diet. Lots of dogs are allergic to grains. I don't know where you live, but fleas get us (Okla.) for about 7-8mos. of the year (Flea heaven)!  The red bumps are probably flea bites. They look like tiny pin dots. Even if you can't find the flea, all it takes is one bite to trigger the allergic reaction. The reaction can send the dog into a frenzy for about 2wks. Lots of time for another bite in between and the cycle continues. Some dogs are very sensitive to the bite and others do not react at all. It's actually a reaction to the saliva from the flea. One of my 4 is extremely sensitive and I know the nightmare! I spent a couple of years trying to figure out what on earth this was. I didn't think it could possibly be an allergic reaction to a Flea. As it turns out, YES it is! (I never can find the flea, either, but it's been there!) It's also possible that your guy is allergic to his topical flea product. I've seen this happen and one time it was almost critical. You use it year round and his system never gets to take a break. This could be the hair falling out part. No, dogs can't get poison ivy, but you can. He can get it on him and give it to you. Be careful. Yes, the Pred. does work, but I try real hard to stay away from it. Sometimes though, if your dog is miserable,you have no choice. Your dog was probably getting a 5mg. dose. It actually will work at a lower dose with less side effect. My all-time favorite med. for allergies is called "Temaril-P".It consists of a antihistamine with Pred. There is 2mg. of the steroid in each pill. I'm sorry I don't know the mg. of pill. It's not on my bottle!  My "Ginger" is 14lbs. and takes 1 pill a day. I can even get by with a half dose. It works wonderfully with alot less of the side effects of just the prednisone, alone. Ask your Vet to get you some if they don't carry it. I live in a tiny town and my Vet has always had it. Hopefully, yours will, too. OK, back to the flea treatments: I have gone from Frontline (For years) to "Comfortis" oral. Here's my thinking: The topical treatments take around 12 - 15hrs. to kill the flea after they bite. So, thats alot of biting and walking around in between. The comfortis takes 30mins. to kill the flea. And BAM, that's it! Makes sense to me that this would be a HUGE factor with a dog that is allergic to fleas. I have only used it a couple of weeks ,but can tell a difference. She is not bouncing-off-the-walls, so to speak. I think this may be the answer. It is expensive!  $18 a pill, $15 each if you buy more than one or $13.50 each if you buy the box of 6. Also, your shampoo: Make sure you use an Oatmeal based, hypoallergetic one. There are many to choose from. OK, I think thats it. Hope some of this helps you. If any of this is unclear, let me know and I'll respond again. If I think of anything else, I'll let you know.......Good luck.......Karla
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614564_tn?1238907149
Wow thanks for your reply.  The info is pretty helpful.  I will check out there "grain free" food , that sounds pretty good.  My dog I'm sure hasn't been on the "Wellness" food long enough for tell.  He was on it for like 2 days when he had his candy fest.  Now he is slowly getting back on the "Wellness".  I do know shed pills are no longer needed.  On Beneful it's a wonder he had fur left the way he shed.  I'm not for sure how many months out the year we really do have fleas.  I just know the vet said all year round would best since he's  mostly an inside dog.  My little "Nippy" only weights around 12lbs.  You don't want a dog that small left out in the winter cold or the hot summer heat.  It was a snowy day in March when I found him.  My neighbors found him first, but they really wasn't looking for a small dog.  They wanted to take him to the pound and the thought of that made me cry.  My neighbors didn't want the dog in the house while they were gone so they turned him out in a snow storm.  He came to my pourch shivering cold.  He was so cute I had to let him in.  He curled up in my lap by the fire place and took a nap.  I have never owned a dog before in my life.  I have always wanted a dog so much.  I talked to the neighbors and they were willing to let me keep him.  Thank goodness, he's better off with "Mommy".  I told my neighbors, "I promise to love him with all my heart".  That's what  I have done.  I am single with no actual kids, just my little fur kid and I love it!  Well, back to the fleas.  I live in West Virginia in a kinda small town.  It's about 20 minutes for Charleston our capital city.  You can find a Wendy's in town or something, but not big enough to find like a Walmart.  I live off a side road in town up a moutain.  It's nice and prettty up here.  Just it's a moutain and there all kids of creatures in the mountains.  Behind me house is 3 1/2 acers of mountain side.  Being that close to woods we get all kinds of stuff.  Deer, Black Bear, Turkey, Rabbits, Coytees, even have had a Balck Panther.  So, I'm sure we have plenty of fleas and I know we have lots of ticks.  Ticks seemed worse this year for so reason.  I'm betting fleas will be a problem for my dog.  I was using Frontline for a while. but it didn't seem to work as good as the k-9 Advantix has been.  I will look into what you mentioned.  Not for sure if you can find it in WV, but I'm sure they have it online somewhere.  Is it a monthly pill or a daily pill?  I know the Vet has given me CapStar pills before for fleas.  That was when I first got him.  I liked the sound of the "Temaril-P" medicine you mentioned.  Sounded much better to me than the 5mg of Pred..  I will check with my vet for that.  The shampoo I use on my dog is call "DermAllay".  I get from my Vet office.  It's an all natural clear Oatmeal Shampoo.  No dye or anthing like that.  Since he has allergies the Vet thought that would be best.  My dog is doing better.  He is not sick no more.  Just still has some hair loss and scratches him self from his allergies.  I have been using Hydrocortizone spray and that seems to help.  He have noticed on his skin next to his fur in a copule places some red bumps or something.  They look more like scab places.  I don't what that is?  I have been putting Sulfodene (hope that's what it's called)  on those places.  It's a yellow liquid smelly medicine.  Cause I wouldn't want those places to get infected or something by his licking.  Thanks so much for all your help, April :-)
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462827_tn?1333172552
Hi April,  First let me thank you for taking this little guy in; it says alot about your character. You are doing a great job with him and he knows it!  Your oatmeal shampoo is perfect. Be sure and NOT over bathe him. This can lead to excessive drying (Of the skin) and damage to his natural oils. Stay with the Wellness food. If you can find some of the Grain Free , that would be great. I know Wellness makes grainfree canned (It is yummy!), but I don't know about dry. You could mix both. It usually takes at least 6Wks. on a new food to tell a positive or negative difference. If he hasn't been off of his old food for very long, I believe the new food will make a huge difference. Hang in there! Continue to put ointment on his sores. An over-the-counter antibiotic ointment would be fine. What your using is probably Ok, too. I'm not familiar with that, although I believe I've had a shampoo by that name. Can't remember if it was bacteria or yeast or both. When your area is around freezing, has ice and snow and such (whether it be 2mos. or 6mos.), give him a break from the topical flea products. Even a couple of months would help. I have never used them year round, ever! The Comfortis is a once a month pill.  Ok, I think thats it...Let me know if you have any other questions....Good luck to you and your little guy....Give him a kiss for me...Karla
P.S. It sounds as if you live in a wonderful place......I envy that.  :)
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614564_tn?1238907149
Thank you so much, your more helpful than any vet!  There is a website called Drs Fosters Smith that I sometimes order doggie stuff from.  They have those "Comfortis" pills for $67.99 per 6pk. for 10.1-20lbs dogs.  Right now they are offering free shipping on all perscription medicines too.  You can get a scrpit from your vet and have Drs Foster Smith Vet Pharmacy keep a copy on file or you can have it set up for Drs Foster Smith Vet Pharmacy call your Vet and get confirmation over the phone.  It will explain everthing and give you script options when you check out.  They also have those "Termari-p" pills too.  This might be a cheapier deal, I am not for sure.  This website also has helpful tips too on pets.....Thanks again April
p.s. Their webiste has treats and toys too!!!  My little Nippy loves his "Skineez" (stuffing free toy).
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