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Discussion Starter #1
Happy New Year everybody!

Does anyone have any natural remedies for an itchy doberman? Lately Zeus has been scratching a lot, mostly around his neck area. I believe he is irritating the skin on his neck where his ecollar rests when he wears it for training because there are patches where his fur is thin enough that I can see his skin. Its not red or bleeding or anything, but I think the little nubs that press against his skin (the things that can be switched out) are rubbing against his skin when he scratches and have caused those spots. He only wears his ecollar when we are training or when we are out in public. When lounging around with us, it is usually off. We make sure it's not too tight.
He scratches at his neck even when the collar is not on, and he's been scratching at other parts of his body a little more than usual so I'm wondering if its because of the colder weather and he's scratching because his skin is dry or something. I've been wiping his neck patches with Curaseb chlorhexidine antiseptic wipes, the same things that cleared up the acne he had on his chin a while back. I haven't seen it get any better or worse. I was trying a little bit of peroxide at first, but it was causing the fur on his neck to change color (his black fur was turning brownish red) so I stopped and switched to the wipes.

Any thoughts as to what can stop his itchiness? I was going to take him to the vet but figured I'd ask you guys first to see if anyone has any natural ideas like some sort of oil I could rub on him.

And I'm not looking for opinions on the use of an ecollar. I'm sure everyone has their thoughts on them, just like people have their personal thoughts on neutering, prong collars, ear cropping, etc, but I'm respectfully not looking for those particular opinions in this thread. Thanks! :)
 

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Hey Gamer.......good to hear from you.....
Can you send a PIC of the irritated area ?
Is it scaley or an actual sore thats appearing on the neck ....
 

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Hairy Dog, RIP Caesar, Katana, Kip, Capri
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Could be dry skin or some irritation for sure...but I will say that when my allergic dog was just starting with his symptoms, among the first was thinning hair on the underside of his neck.

Most people antihistamines will work for dogs...but you probably should at least check with your vet first about that.
 

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Big Lil pup
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I use a spray that I make. It works very well for temporary dry itchy skin. I mix Aloe and Lidocane in filtered filtered water. Then amounts really are not that important.

I spray it on liberally and let it sit for a few minutes, then wipe it off with a clean white terry cloth towel. This works extremely well on symptoms. The aloe soothes and moisturizes the skin and the lidocaine numbs the itching. Both are safe to use on dogs. This solution has no curative properties. If I want it to smell nice, I add a few drops of essential oil (usually patchouli).

A while back, I ran across a Solarcaine product called Cool Aloe. It is essentially a Lidocaine and Aloe gel. I just dilute it with water to make a spray. It's simple and effective. It is a bit more expensive than just using generic ingredients, but the convenience is worth it.

I by it at Walgreens:

https://www.walgreens.com/store/c/solarcaine-cool-aloe-burn-relief-gel/ID=prod1260-product

John
Portland OR
 

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I just read my last post. LOL

I must be turning into Doc and Beau. Hard to believe that I actually went to college!

I've really got to start reading my comments before I post them... Or then again. Maybe not.

Poor syntax and constant misspellings kind of brings a "homey' feeing to the forum.

John (AKA STJ! etc.)
 

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One of the things that is cheap, easy to get and is often effective on non-specific itchiness. Plain old white vinegar dilute 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water-put in a spray bottle and spray itchy spots.

Try using a round (round, not flat)fabric collar (made from braided rope--usually fuzzy on the surface instead of a metal one. Not sure from your description exactly what kind of metal collar you are using for training but metal, leather and fabric collars can all collect dirt and that can provide an irritant--collars should always be cleaned frequently. Detergent and water for metal and fabric and a good saddle soap for leather.

As far as e-collars go for training--I don't have a problem with them if you are using them AFTER the dog is actually trained--I don't think much of e-collar use for actually training itself--I have used them from time to time on dogs who were fully trained but liked to 'forget' stuff if they didn't really want to work. I use prong collars the same way--I use a micromini or mini prong as a reminder collar to sharpen up performance. My Dobes sometimes get to thinking that they don't have to pay close attention to what we (the team of me and the dog) are actually doing)--a light snap on a mini prong will remind the dog that gawking into space isn't the same as actually heeling.

My Australian Shepherd was my first experience with e-collars. He had been running when off leash for years--I often had to get total strangers in dog parks to call their dogs so I could retrieve him and go home. After awhile I gave up ever letting him off leash.

I never used to use e-collars until one of my tracking partners suggested it for cleaning up his act when it came to recalls. He was 7 years old and very fully trained and on a light line would come promptly when called even if the line was 100 feet long.

She brought along an e-collar--showed me the settings and how to use it. We were out on a commercial grass field and I took a deep breath and unsnapped his leash. He took off down a farm road toward a farm pond. I called him--he didn't flick an ear, just kept going. I turned it up a notch and called him again--that time he jumped and looked back--I raised it one more notch and called again--he turned left, yipped and kept going I was about to give up--I felt terrible I was making my dog squeak and he STILL wasn't coming back. My partner said "Don't stop now!--so I up the level one more notch--by this time my Aussie was in a peppermint field--he stopped and turned around to look at me. My partner said "Go get him, don't make him come to you now..."

I went and waded through peppermint--told my dog, once he was at my side, that he was a good dog (he wasn't but I didn't want to get into any arguments at that point.) We walked out of the field. He was off leash but he didn't run. My friend said to tell him it was OK to run--I turned the Doberman loose and she sent the lab she had off and I told the Aussie it was OK to go--he trotted off after the other dogs but kept looking back--she said "Call him and the Dobe now!" I did, and he came with the other dogs and he never ran away again. He came when called--first time, everytime.

Used properly I think e-collars are very effective--but it makes me cringe and yipe watching people try to do initial training on some poor dog who doesn't have a clue what you want him to do.
 

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Discussion Starter #9




My poor baby's neck. He doesn't seem like it bothers him whenever we touch his neck or when I apply the medicine I've been using. There's no scabbing or flaking. It just looks like where the little prong things are on his collar is irritating his skin, and I feel like it's because he's been scratching so much. He's worn an ecollar since June when we first got him in group obedience class. At first it did irritate his skin to the point that it turned red and his trainer suggested we put it up higher on his neck (where his fur is brown) because the bottom may be sensitive. Then it got better and we had no problem until about the beginning of December when we noticed these types of patches. We're on a hiatus from classes due to Christmas break, so he hasn't been wearing his collar as often, though he has worn it. We've been putting it high again.
 

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Mocha
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We used an e-collar for a very short time (on the vibration/noise setting only) to see if we could get Mocha to stop eating the plants and flowers out back. Within a few days of us putting it on her (only when we went out back) she started losing hair on her neck, almost exactly like in your pic. She either had an allergic reaction to it or it somehow aggravated her already sensitive skin. Solution: I threw the e-collar in the trash and put up fencing around our garden and flower beds and everyone lived happily ever after.
 

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Google this...a lot of different articles written regarding.... lesions.....electronic dog collars ....lesions referred to a pressure sores.
You would know best of any of this might apply. Thought this might give you something to work with .....poor boy.
From some of the articles I read briefly Appears pressure sores or lesions ....from collar being to loose, to tight, or even particles that build up on the collar itself causing friction. Hope this gives you some ideas.
 

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Wait...doesn't everyone have to do that with their dog? DT sure teaches me new things! LOL
BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! I only had to do it with the Aussie--even the Afghan Hound had a legitimate first time immediate recall. We used to send my Dobes out to retrieve other people's dogs (including my breeder/handlers dogs.

It infuriated me each and every time he pulled the " what you want big mama--I don't think so" as he turned tail and split.
 

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I'm not a veterinarian, but the spots look a lot like irritation from wearing the collar. It's possible that the metal from the contact points is irritating his skin. I would personally check with a vet. It could be a metal allergy that's developed - I know he's fairly young and some allergies don't develop immediately. Or, it could be something totally different.

Another option would be to leave the collar off completely for a few weeks and see if the spots heal up. I would NOT use peroxide at all - peroxide actually damages healthy tissue.
 

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Big Lil pup
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What MC said....

No peroxide and also, no rubbing alcohol. Both tend to hurt healthy tissue as the wound is attempting to heal.

Also.. As she indicated. Leaving the e-collar off completely for a reasonable amount of time makes sense.

In fact, I would be inclined to have him go "naked" for a while, including losing his normal collar. If you need a "handle", a bandana is what I use on McCoy. Put the ID tags back on when you take him out.

Best to you and Zeus

John
Portland OR
 

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Forgot to mention, Mocha also reacted to the Seresto flea/tick collar. Not quite as bad, but she started losing hair on her neck about a week or two after we put it on her so that got trashed as well. The only time a collar goes on her neck now is when we go out - for a walk, to the vet etc.
 

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That actually looks quite a lot like a nickel allergy. I've had a couple of dogs who were allergic to nickel-and it's often the overlay metal on steel collars (and over the backing on snaps on Levis--turns out I'm allergic to nickel too).

I made sure after the first Dobe who was allergic to nickel that when I got anything that dog had to wear that it was stainless steel--ss often has nickel in it--sometimes it's what makes the stainless steel 'stainless' but evidently it's not in sufficient quantity to activate the allergy.

I'll just say ditto to the 'don't use on skin'--peroxide, alcohol--not really suitable. And I had one cat who was allergic to the Seresto--the other cats (2 of them) wore it just fine but the allergy boy (I should have expected that--he's the one that was allergic to food and as been on a totally hydrolysed diet since he was two) scratched huge bloody holes in his neck in a matter of days. Made me feel like the owner from hell!
 

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Just looking back over your picture I noticed what look like a few pimples on his chin--has he had trouble with chin acne??
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Hey everyone! Sorry for the lack of responses. Hubby and I moved to Albuquerque, NM on Thursday... 10 hour and 30 min drive with an ornery cat and a whiny Zeus! But we made it, and all is well! We took Zeus to the vet the day before we left and she gave us a steroid spray for his neck to help with the itchiness. They took some samples of his skin by scraping his neck and said that it wasn't bacterial. So she advised washing his regular collar, not using his prong collar (which we only use when we walk him but she said it'd likely continuing irritating his skin even though it may not be the cause of the initial irritation) and to use his ecollar sparingly until his neck clears up. She also recommended Zyrtec for allergies, so we'll see how that goes. He's not scratching nearly as much since we started the spray and allergy medication.
@melbrod, yes he had chin acne! What it looks like now is much better than what it looked like before. His pimples were pink and yucky. We started using the chlorhexidine wipes on them and the vet suggested we use a stainless steel dog bowl instead of a plastic one, and his chin looks much better now. I was super concerned about the bumps because I didn't know what they were, but the vet said they are fairly common. Teenage dog problems, I guess? lol
 

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Even washing plastic bowls in soap and water after every meal still doesn't all the surface bacteria that like to hide in the pores of the plastic. Plastic is very porous and you almost have to run stuff through a dishwasher to have any hope of getting it clean and sanitized.

Ceramic or Stainless Steel bowls will almost always take care of chin bumps--don't leave food in them. Wash in hot soapy water or run through a dish washer after each use.

Good luck on adapting to the NM winter (wouldn't you know you'd arrive just in time for several months. Saw your other post on coats and boot for cold doggies. I've never used boots on any of my Dobes (except for times when someone had a bandaged foot and then it was to keep it dry. Dobes and have always lived in Washinton State, Oregon and California and in areas where cold weather is rarely even down to freezing.

But I'll ditto whoever it said if I'm cold I figure the Dobes are cold too--so they often wear coats when we are at dog show or trials and standing around a fair amount. My house is always cold in the winter (max 65 degrees if I'm home during the day and 50 degrees at night) Dobes seem to deal with this alright--they go sleep on the big Costco do beds which evidently keep them warm enough to be comfortable.

Happy New Year and new location to ya'll.
 
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