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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-25-2019, 11:08 AM Thread Starter
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Avril luck granuloma

Help! I have a 5 yo male dobie with a lick granuloma. I am desperate for a solution. I’ve had him to the vet who prescribed an ointment spray that was useless. I followed up with the vet and he does not seem to have anything to help. I’ve tried various antibiotic ointments, every spray ointment available. I’ve cleaned and bandaged and actuall put red pepper on the bandage to deter and at first opportunity he chews off bandaging. Monitoring and correcting. However at night he takes to the licking again. I am at my wits end. His granuloma grows in size. I’ve read and tried everything I could read online. Hoping a dobie owner here may have a tried and true way to correct this behavior.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-25-2019, 11:50 AM
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Hi Randy and Welcome from Indiana

First off - Where is the lick granuloma at ? I will take a wild guess that it's on a paw or on one of his legs . Ali girl had one and I hate to say this for your little boy - but the only way we got her to quit was to put a cone over her head to keep her from licking that - I think it was on her for 2 weeks - Spocksdad - A poster on here went threw it not long ago - He will probably be on here and add advise as well of lots of others . If I remember right - we also had to treat it meds to keep it from getting infected . This is a hard one to stop , but you will get it !
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-25-2019, 01:04 PM
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Lick granulomas are so tough to treat.

I dug up this old post of mine. The links to threads given in the text have additional info:

Lick sores can start out with an irritation of some sort--cuts, rubbed spots, even an allergic itch. A dog licks too much, the place gets more irritated, the dog licks more, the place gets more irritated....you can see where this is going. Some dogs will lick out of boredom. But there is an obsessive component to the dog’s behavior which can make him fixate on the sore....and dobes are known to be prone to OCD.

Some dobes suck on blankets, or even their flanks in an obsessive way...others lick at irritated areas enough to make a granuloma.

Lick granulomas are VERY difficult to cure, and very difficult to prevent. As you’ve found, the place will *almost* heal. Relax your vigilance; the dog gives the area a swipe and, hey presto! the sore is open again.

You can treat the underlying condition, you can try to cover the area, you can keep crate time or time spent alone to a minimum. The best way to work with a lick sore is prevention..... once you know your dog reacts to irritations by licking too much, you’ve got a chance to try to forestall the behavior.

Vets will suggest anti-lick sprays, strips or ointments, numbing compounds, antihistamines to treat an underlying allergy, antibiotic ointments, maybe steroids, anti-anxiety medications, and/or bandaging the problem area, but keeping on top of a lick granuloma is just very difficult. One relatively new treatment is cold laser treatment. Actually it maybe not be so new anymore--my experience with it was a few years ago. Researchers initially reported success, but I don’t know what the final verdict was. The laser is used to treat just the area of the granuloma over the span of a number of days or weeks. I tried that with my problem licker and maybe? it helped. At least, I eventually managed to break the cycle.

My particular dog who tended to develop lick granulomas was not too bad about ripping off bandages. Most dogs will rip off bandages, and then you run the risk of obstruction if they eat them. Because my dog usually was safe with bandages, I had the most luck covering the area with a sock (he generally went after his legs), treating the sore area with ointments, etc, and being absolutely religious in keeping the bandage on at all times. I’d make sure I kept the area covered until the area was totally healed, and even a few weeks after that.

We used to call him a “closet licker”. If he got up and disappeared, chances were I’d find him somewhere licking obsessively. I learned to watch for those times when he snuck away, and call him back into the room I was in.

These threads might give you some insight about the behavior and ideas about how to heal the spot:


The problem has been around forever...and as is the case with any problem that has no easy answer, you get a lot of suggestions and treatments for lick granulomas. Those of us with problem dogs have probably tried all of them. It is just a very difficult behavior to stop.
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Last edited by melbrod; 12-25-2019 at 01:09 PM.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-26-2019, 09:25 AM
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The first thread Mel linked for you is mine - we really struggled with Simon's lick sore, and if you read through that thread you'll see we tried a lot of things!

The only thing we eventually found that worked was 100% preventing access to the sore. For us, that ended up being a basket muzzle (some people use a cone, but that didn't work for the location of the sore for him). He had to wear it until the sore was FULLY healed - completely covered in hair again. We did cold laser treatments to facilitate healing. Everything else we tried was a FAIL. He'd pull bandages off and it was a risk of him eating them. If he had ANY access to the sore he'd re-irritate it.

It really is a nightmare. I'm sorry.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-26-2019, 09:44 AM
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I've had a couple of dogs who created lick granulomas and the only thing that worked on either of them was to bandage (and I used mupiricin--presciption ointment before bandaging if they had managed to create an open sore before I caught them licking)--used the ointment until it was not an open sore and then just a bandage AND a cone plus a muzzle. And as MeadowCat found--the sore not only needed to be healed it also, in the case of my lickers had to be fully covered with hair.

THAT WORKED--and it was only thing that worked.

Good luck--granulomas are just a giant pain...

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-26-2019, 10:16 AM
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Yup! Hoss was a sneaky licker........always the hind lower leg.
Dog love meat ! Even their own.......so the only thing that worked for us was a
Kong...cone...........velco to attach..........loved the Kong version of cones.
I know...we all hate to cone our dogs BUT........this is the only way you will break the habit and allow that wound to totally heal.
Hoss was allowed to have cone off when supervised closely......but if not ...cone on.
After several days they get used to the cone.......yup...you will get the sad eyes......and even the evil eye.......but it is a must do to for wound care.
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Last edited by LadyDi; 12-26-2019 at 10:18 AM.
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