Stopping the itchies!!

Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your dog. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your dog's hygiene needs.


Slobber that- only a mother- can love!!
Barked: Tue Jan 8, '13 3:49pm PST 
I have a 3 year old Saint Bernard who has an issue with constantly itching and chewing...both in the summer and winter months. I do bathe him about once a month as I thought at first that I was over bathing him, and it really made no difference. I thought too that it was a food allergy,after an elimination diet and removing Chicken entirely from his diet, he did stop itching and chewing for about 8 months, then he was back at it. He itches so much he has sores, scabs and slight hair loss. My vet seems to think it's a flea allergy because I am using Petarmor, and the fleas have to bite the dog in order to be killed by the product, which does basically no good for Zane. I will be switching flea preventatives once my petarmor reserves run out.

In the meantime...Is there a method, shampoo, vitamin, medication ANYTHING I can do to ease the itching for more than an hour? Benedryl is a no go because at 205lbs...he has to damn near take the entire bottle. I will wash him daily if I need to...I just want to find him long term relief, or maybe something I can add to the topical flea preventative to help keep the fleas off of him? I'm really looking for anything.

He is a rough coat(Long hair)Saint, I have had to shave him last summer because our A/C broke for 3 days when the temp was over 100 degrees. I do not shave him on a regular basis.

Thanks in advance!

aka: Barkly- McBarker
Barked: Sat Jan 12, '13 9:59pm PST 
It does sound like flea allergies.
Is it possible for you to go over him daily with a flea comb? Have a bowl of water with a little dish soap in it nearby to drown the fleas in.
Google electric flea traps for something to keep your house free of fleas.
Since he is such a big boy, one of those flea and tick disks might be a good buy for him.

Good luck to you and your boy. Believe me, I know how frustrating it is for both of you.

Member Since
Barked: Sun Jan 13, '13 5:26pm PST 
Food allergies are usually scratching skin and ears and chewing feet. Are you sure nothing has changed in his diet since he seemed to be doing better? You can purchase food grade diatomaceous earth. It isn't the same DE as people use in swimming pools. I can be eaten by people and dogs to kill parasites with no ill effects. Sprinkle it on his coat, in his bed and in the carpets. It kills the fleas by scratching their exoskeleton. There are also food additives the keep the fleas from biting in the first place. A good Neem shampoo will help to soothe his skin. Hope hit helps.

PE's Autumn- On Fire

Oodles of- Poodles
Barked: Thu Jan 17, '13 8:12pm PST 
First of all, if you havent already, check your food for corn and wheat. They are top allergens for dogs and are extremely common in most dog foods, alot of times can be the first or second ingredient. Second, neem shampoo as mentioned earlier, is a great flea treatmemt, but can dry the skin out if used too often. If you are bathing him often, I would suggest a very rich conditioner for after his shampoo. I have also known a dog or 2 who was allergic to common flea shampoo, dawn dish soap is a good alternative. The thickness of the concentrated shampoo suffocates the fleas. If he has a dog bed or blankets around, using a hypo allergenic laundry soap, and no fabric softener could help. Something optional as well, hypo allergenic toys such as elk antlers can help alot. Also check the ingredients of his dog treats, they are just as important as the food. Even the smallest amount of an allergen ingested can give him a serious case of the itches. Good luck.