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Help New Basset Owner Please!

4690 Views 8 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Mikey T
Hey there. I am new to these forums and found them due to my on going research to help my dog.
He is 100% Basset, English line I believe. His name is Lemmy. About 1.5 years ago, I got him from a kid who could no longer keep him due to his families landlord and threats to possibly kill the dog made by the kid's step-father. I always wanted a Basset so I took him. He has become my best friend in the whole world. He is my first dog and I have taught him many tricks. He is very smart and affectionate. I don't have a lot of money but if it comes down to his food or mine, he gets his first.
So anyway, I got him at about 11 months old and he started developing hot spots. I took him to the vet repeatedly for special shampoo, antibiotics, allergy shots, allergy meds, and yeast medicine. He is now 2.5 years old and the spots have gotten worse, yeast. I first tired Iams Lamb and Rice and after much research have found that I can find and afford California Natural Lamb and Rice. I did my research on food. So 2 weeks ago, I started him on it. Anyway, his yeast problems and hotspots are under his arms, under his thighs, and under his neck. I read read read but I can still not figure this out. Any help would be much appreciated, my dog's vet bills are going to send me to the poor house. I have tried everything I can find.
I just want his skin problems to get better and go away.
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Murrays skin problems are in the same places.He's five. With him, it's just a chronic condition that I monitor and treat daily.

He was at the vet last week to have his anal glands expressed, and I mentioned that the skin problems seemed a little worse over the past month. He said it's probably seasonal allergies due to mold and dust, and to just continue what I've always done.

This is what works for us:

I look at his skin every morning:

If the skin is raw, I use Genticin spray (cortisone and antibiotic) twice daily- that normally heals the sore within a day or two.

If I am just seeing dark yeast spots,and nothing is raw, I wipe the area with Malaseb Flush, which I also get from the vet.

If nothing is going on, I dust lightly with Gold Bond medicated baby powder, which seems to dry the area, or I leave it alone.

I don't give him any antihistimines- I gave him Benydryl on the vets instructions 3 years ago and he had a horrible reaction- super hyper, panting, running around, so no more Benydryl for Murray.

Anyway, that's what we do. Hope something I said helps.
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Has it been established that the underlying problem is allergies, and not some other disorder that may present with skin problems, like hypothyroidism?

If allergies are the problem, remember that a minority of allergies are actually food-related; most are environmental (grasses, pollens, dust, etc.). If one is going to spend an arm and a leg on dog food, first establishing that allergies are food-related would make sense.

From Canine Allergies and Symptoms,
How is food allergy diagnosed?

The only effective way for your veterinarian to diagnose a food allergy is to put your pet on a "hypoallergenic"� or "exclusion"� diet for a minimum of 8-12 weeks. Such a diet contains ingredients to which the animal has not been exposed in the past. Because the source of protein causes most allergic reactions, exclusion diets use proteins (often venison, fish or duck) that are normally not found in regular pet food. An exclusion diet may comprise home-prepared food or prescription commercial hypoallergenic products.

If your pet has a food allergy, there should be a significant reduction in the symptoms after the recommended period on the exclusion diet. To identify all the food allergens, your veterinarian will recommend adding a single protein back into the diet every 1-2 weeks, while watching for a recurrence, or worsening, of symptoms. If this happens, the veterinarian will recommend removing the offending ingredient from the diet.[/b]
For additional information on food allergies, see also:
Allergic and Non-allergic Food Reactions
Food Allergies

If his allergies are not food-related, it's not necessary to spend and arm and a leg; decent, healthy food is available at moderate cost, and limited funds might actually be better spent on other modalities that would keep him more comfortable, like the great suggestions in murraysmom's post :)...

Additional information on atopy (environmental allergies):
Atopy (Environmental Allergies Affecting the Skin)
Atopy: Inhalant Allergies--discusses various treatments, including desensitization ("allergy shots") and various topical treatments.

Finally, discussion of hot spots:
Secondary Skin Conditions Resulting from Allergies: Pyotraumatic Dermatitis (aka "Hot Spots")

I know how hard it is to watch a dog suffer with allergies. :( One of my bassets had horrible allergies her whole life. We tried everything and then finally put her on year-round steroids which made a huge improvement in her quality of life. She stopped the around the clock scratching, no more hot spots or ear infections, and she lived to an advanced age. :)

Good luck; hoping you and Lemmie find relief. :)
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Has it been established that the underlying problem is allergies, and not some other disorder that may present with skin problems, like hypothyroidism?[/b]

Another common skin problem in bassets is Seborrhea While in most breeds it is a secondary condition which requires treating the primary condition first (like allergies) but in bassets it appears often to be a primary perhaps genetic condition in which there is no other underlying cause. Shampoo therepy is about the onlyu effective remedy. For budget minded selsun blue is often effective, but what many fail to realize is the shampoo must remain on the dog for at least 15 minutes to be truely effective.

White distilled vinegar (acetic actid] Has anti bacterial and antifungal (yeast) properties there are wipes specifical made for dogs and other mix 50/50 with water and make there own than can help control these problems between baths.
I use the Gentamicin spray alot on my bassets. It seems to help the under arm area if you spray at least once a day. When it has cleared up I just monitor and use the gold bond powder like was suggested above. My younger basset Bette has always had some skin problems and we have tried many foods to see if it is a food allergy. We haven't seen any foods that work better but we try to stick with the more expensive food without all the corn and stuff in it. HTH


Is your basset at a good weight? Jasper is a small basset and he has not had any yeast or fungal infections, he did have some 'hot spots' last winter. I used Brewer's yeast pills at a friends' advice. Jasper ate four pills a day and I used Sulfodene lotion, this combo seemed to work. It took about 2-3 weeks to clear him up. Another friend suggested I add some fat to his diet, so I put a little olive oil in his food the next time he had hot spots and this worked also. I feed him Purina kibbles and he loves it and is very healthy. He also loves milk and gets some on occasion for a treat. Good luck with your basset, they are the best, aren't they?

jasperspet aka colleen
Ruby has a lot of problems with this and mostly it's due to her being allergic to grasses etc (guess she inherits this allergy from me). ;)

Anyway, we use Malaseb shampoo which really helps a lot, along with the malaseb wipes. Also like me, she's sensitive to a lot of foods, so we make sure to check ingredients etc.

Because Ruby is very baggy, we check the folds of her skin daily. Especially in Ruby's case, the skin and folds around her vulva...she gets pockets of yeast there. I should own stock in the malaseb company! We get her shampoo in bulk at fosters & smith (catalog) and the pledgettes at the vet.

Janice and little Ruby ("who are you calling baggy?)
I switched Hub to California Natural, too. Initially, it seemed to "fix" the hot spots. After 6 months, they were back.

I know have both dogs on Natural Balance "red. calorie". It's not even their special "allergy" formula.

It's been over 1 1/2 yrs., and not a single hot spot.

Good luck!
I just want his skin problems to get better and go away.[/b]

Skin problems can be difficult to solve because of multiple underlying causes. Often it is best to get a referal to a specialist in dermatology

American College of Veterinary Dermatology Find a Dermatologist
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