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Our almost 12 month old girl has had ongoing skin issues since around 5 months old. Occasionally her skin breaks out into a hive-like rash (bumps that are visible because the fur is raised). Sometimes the bumps develop into dry scabs or spots filled with pus. This is also accompanied by hair loss/thinning down the neck, back and shoulders as well as very heavy dandruff in these areas. Due to this she is very itchy. Sometimes she develops a musty/unpleasant smell. She also has a patch of hair loss on her tail but unsure whether this is due to her constantly biting from the itching or due to the condition.
At around 6 months the vet suspected it was pyoderma and prescribed us with antibiotics and shampoo, this seemed to calm it down but it came back again a few weeks later. 2 months ago we went back when the hives were at their worst and they gave us steroids for 8 days and a similar shampoo but different brand. This hasn't worked either.

Her current vet has not been very helpful and hasn't had her tested for anything. We just pay for consultation fees each time to be prescribed antibac/antifungal shampoos (that do not seem to help) that we could of bought ourselves without a prescription.

We switched her diet from chicken to salmon but this hasn't had an effect either. We have done a DNA allergy test but it has not shown any intolerances to the 126 substances that they tested for.

Dog breed Ear Felidae Carnivore Fawn

Comfort Gesture Grey Couch Carnivore

Comfort Grey Fawn Tints and shades Human leg
 

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If I had to guess from the pictures and your description of what happens (and let me preface this with suggesting that you get the puppy to a vet dermatologist/allergist--they may be more expensive in the short run but in the long run they see this kind of stuff all day every day and can almost always figure out what it is and what is an appropriate treatment much faster than the general practice vet does.

So--the bumps suggest a couple of things--primarily a case of puppy staph. Staphlococcus is a bacteria present as normal on the skin of virtually all mammals including you and me--and your puppy.

Doberman puppies are notorious for having slow to mature immune systems. So staph infections often get out of hand--and when they do--they tend to manifest as bumps (an infected hair follicle) which eventually open, scab over and the scab falls off leaving a small hairless patch. (yes, the hair will grow back) But once in the hair follicle the infection lingers on and it accounts for the musty "dirty" smell on a dog you know is clean.

I would guess that she has a case of pyoderma which has developed into a full fledged folliculitis (infection of the hair follicle). Generally this would be treated with appropriate antibiotics to kill off the skin infection, medicated shampoo and baths to help this process along.

Since this isn't an early case it'll probably take more of the above to deal with it.

About the baths: any time you are bathing a dog like a Doberman (single coated, no undercoat) it's advisable to bathe in cold water--first of all dog skin doesnt do well with warm baths--the dogs hate it but the skin doesn't. And these short coated dogs don't ever really get dirty (the kind of dirty that leads people to scrub them with rubber curries or their finger nails--which isn't needed and not even advised. dilute the shampoo (and usually the shampoo for treating the kind of condition you describe is either a 2% or 4% chlorhexidine shampoo) apply with a clean sponge or wash cloth in the direction of the lay of the hair--you really don't need to produce a lather to make those shampoos work but if you feel you must use only your finger tips to work the shampoo into the coat. Then rinse--also in cold water--rinse many times--rinse longer than it took you to shampoo the dog. And at the point you are at the last rinse make a mixture of cold water and plain white vinegar (one gallon of cold water to about a cup of vinegar) and pour it all over the dog--strip the excess water off with your hands--let the dog shake--wipe him with a towel in the direction of the lay of the hair and let him finish by air drying. He's only going to smell like a salad until he's dry.

At this point it's also worth making up a mixture of vinegar and water (about 1/3 of a cup to a quart of water) and put it in a spray bottle and if the dog is itchy spray that on the areas.

Here's what happens with warm water--it opens up the hair follicle--the shampoo gets into the follicle--it acts as an irritant if if stays there--you rinse with warm water and the follicle stays open until he dries-now you have an infection plus an additional irritant to make things worse and the dog scratches. And you know the rest of the story--by bathing in cold water the follicle stays closed and the antibiotics kill off the bacterial infection that has led to the folliculitis. The cold water final rinse does a better job of getting all the shampoo off the dog without forcing it into the hair follicle and things start to get better.

Things also get better as the puppy gets older and the immune system get more able to hold possible skin infections in check.

Good luck

dobebug
 

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I am not super well versed in skin issues and Dobebug gave great information, but I did just want to chime in and say my last dog (Amstaff cross rescue) looked just like this and he had puppy staph infection. I was devastated and cried because I was young and read it could kill them. Spoiler alert I was being dramatic, and after a round of antibiotics he was perfect. He did develop allergies later, but that is completely unrelated to the staph.

A vet should be able to test, but I have heard sometimes they come back negative when they are positive, like I have had happen with strep throat. I had to basically demand the doctor test again, as it was a recurring issue when I was younger. It's a very distinct feeling so I knew it was strep. Second test confirmed it was, so make sure they are thorough or get a second opinion. Good luck! I hope they can treat it quickly and easily!
 

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I am not a vet but that looks like staph to me too. I would definately try bathing in cool water with a Chorhexadine shampoo called Hibiclens (blue bottle red soap) in the US. Rinse very well. Repeat in about a week. Brush some pure coconut oil on.
 
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