Why does a Bichon Frise continuously chew at himself.

My mom has a Bichon Frise, approx 7 years old. He has been having ongoing skin problems where he chews at his feet and legs to the point of bleeding. He has been to the vet, is on a hypo allergenic lamb and rice (science diet) dog food. He also has been prescribed Clomicalm for nerves. My mom has exhausted all avenues, vets, etc to get to the bottom of why Buddy chews at himself so much. I was wondering if anyone has had an experience with this breed of dog and if any resolution has been found. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.

Asked by Louann on Oct 24th 2010 Tagged bichonfrise, chewing, skinproblems in Chewing
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Best Answer

Pamela       -    Adopted!!!!

There are other reasons for a dog to chew itself.

One is itching. It may be due to allergies to food, flea bites, pollen or cleaners or carpeting/bedding.

Another is anxiety. If he's bored or unsure of what to do with himself, left alone a lot, or living with an anxious owner.

Exercise can help anxiety. It will relax both the owner and dog. Your Mom's frustration can make the dog worse, she has to relax herself to help her dog.

If it's allergies, see a canine allergy specialist, have him tested. It much easier than guessing and making expensive changes, only to get it wrong.
Science Diet Lamb still has chicken, soy, wheat and corn in it - not a good choice.
Common food allergens are beef, chicken, corn, wheat, eggs and soy. Beef is used to flavor medications (like heartworm tablets). Chicken is used in dog toothpaste.

Pamela - Adopted!!!! answered on Oct 24th.

Other Answers



I just saw a report by a vet not long ago that the Science diet stuff sold at vets really is not any better then dog food you can get at most pet stores. I agree with the first post and find a lamb and rice formula without corn in it.

Dunkin answered on 10/24/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Bichon Frise is a breed known to have sensitive skin and prone to allergies. If you have not gotten an allergy test done by your vet than you may consider going down that avenue. I would also recommend talking to your vet about trying Nutro's Natural Choice Herring Meal and Potato formula or the Lamb and Rice formula that are formulated as a limited ingredient diet for sensitive systems. The Nutro Company believes natural foods are fresher, healthier, safer, and tastier! Unlike other companies we qualify and buy every ingredient ourselves and produce our canned and dry foods in our own factories. We provide over 600 quality tests a day to ensure safety! Nutro puts pets first, we use natural ingredients that have powerful solutions and we make no compromises on quality, freshness, and safety. Check out the website: www.TheNutroCompany.com NONE of Nutro's foods contain chicken by product meal, ground yellow corn, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

Maverick answered on 10/24/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Consider grain free formula's like Taste of the Wild. Reasonably priced compared to others. Also consider a Raw Diet. My dogs are doing great on it. I have one with allergies and his coat looks wonderful. Also, use a flea comb regularly, just in case that is the problem.

Louie answered on 10/25/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer