dander build up on dog

angeldogAugust 18, 2009

I have an 11 year old English Springer Spaniel. In the last 2 years or so, she's started having a build up of dander and oilyness. When she walks past curtains or upholstery, you can actually see the white pastiness that has built up over time. On rugs, you can feel it and see it too. And when I pet her, I can feel it on my hands; if I wipe my hands on black pants, I can see the chalkiness there too. She never had this before. I have her shaved and groomed about every 3 months. She's an inside dog, so doesn't have dirt or fleas on her. She stays clean mostly except for the build up on her fur. Of course, she plays outside when we're out and goes on walks with us, so she has some dirt. I bathed her last week with an oatmeal shampoo and she looked beautiful. Very shiny and clean and bright. Am I just not bathing her enough? Or could this be some type of allergy? She IS scratching a lot lately too.

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You may be bathing her too much. Do you use a conditioner? What is her diet like? My friends Chihuahua had really yekky feeling fur, we started her on a new diet and now she does not produce so much oily stuff.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2009 at 11:48PM
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I actually dont think she's being bathed enough. Even though she's an inside dog, her body starts to smell when the oiliness builds up. But the diet thing might be it. I remember our other Springer developed allergies in her older age and she would start smelling horrendously, but through her mouth, and sometimes her pores. We had to put her on Science Diet gold formula food to control it. I'm not smelling that on Angel yet, just a skin/hair smell, but maybe she needs better food. Right now I usually buy something like Kibbles and Bits. Do you recommend something else? I hope to not have to spend the $ that the prescription food costs. Thank you for the help!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2009 at 8:10AM
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Angeldog I've tried to convince my Mom to feed her pup better food. Finally she changed over, and in one month you could definitely see a glossy coat with less shedding. She is now a convert. She is on the Innova. Natura Brands makes various lines, but what is great is their products are ISO certified. A lot of dog foods make claims, but after the dog food fiasco, it's nice to have outside verification that they are doing what they are suppose to do. So check out the dog food you decide to purchase, but also check who/where it is being manufactured.

If you are not willing to pay for the premium dog food, Costco's brand is also suppose to be rated very high. This would be an improvement over your current selection.

Another thing is spray on conditioner. I use this on my pup. It protects the coat from sunburn (fading) and gives it shine and softness. It also gives the coat a protective barrier. It's called Ice-on-ice and was developed for show dogs. It's a Chris Christensen product and he also sells beautiful brushes and combs. The brushes are not cheap but very well made. Unfortunately the only way I've been able to get this product is to order online.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ice-On-Ice

    Bookmark   August 19, 2009 at 12:27PM
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I think 99% of Rx dog food is crap anyway (and I'm a vet) so save your money!

I usually recommend Natural Balance because it is not hideously expensive and it is readily available in the big box pet stores. Costco food is not bad. Other decent brands are Nature's Recipe, Nutro Max. Kibbles and Bits has artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, all of which you want to avoid for the general health of the dog.

As far as the dander goes, it may indicate a problem other than allergies, such as seborrhea (which requires specific treatment) or other diseases. I'd go to a vet who likes dermatology (not all do- they can be very difficult cases) and is good at it. The vet doesn't necessarily have to be a dermatologist, just someone who can take the time to do a thorough exam and knows what tests (if any) to recommend. I personally love dermatology; I know vets who hate it and just give out medicated shampoo and steroid shots to get rid of the patients.

A diet change will be good. You can add fish oil for the essential fatty acids to help her coat too. But if the problem continues, she will need a vet.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2009 at 11:19PM
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Personally I would NOT feed the Nutro line. Mine is a personal reason. I had a dog die last year of bladder cancer. In Jan of 2008 she began having issues. Her hair was looking bad and she was throwing up. She had always been fed the Nutro Natural Choice. Below is a link listing problems being reported about this brand.

I changed her food and she immediately quit throwing up. Her hair also became glossy. She is a breed known for a high rate of this disease. However, since this is all she ever ate, I wonder if there was something in the food that helped contribute to her problems. Possibly a questionable food distributor? With everyone so eager to make a buck, and so few ethics, it makes a person very cynical.

So I am just wanting to give you warning. Hopefully they have investigated their manufacturing process and put in tighter controls over their products.

All food you should question if they actually have their own plant or do they "farm out" the work? If they own the plant they have a more vested interest in making sure the food is not contaminated. You also would not have the issue of cross contamination with another cheaply made brand. One bad product recall would put them out of business. Who verifies that they actually are doing what they are promising? They can all write glossy ads, but who is making sure a company stands behind their statements?

A neighbor's dog is a victim of the dog food fiasco. He is still in litigation with the dog food manufacturer. His pup recovered, after hefty vet bills, but still has ongoing problems.

Stepping off my soapbox. I am still upset that my pup died. Especially if it was caused by the food that I was feeding her.

Here is a link that might be useful: Nutro-fed Pets

    Bookmark   August 20, 2009 at 1:48AM
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Housefairy, I am so sorry to hear about your dog.

I was just at the pet store and realized I didn't like Nutro, I was thinking of a different food and now I can't remember what it was. But you're right, the Nutro isn't good. I don't see what the other food was.

My own dogs eat Eagle Pack holistic select, natural balance, solid gold, and taste of the wild.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2009 at 9:56PM
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Meghane we have a new pup that is now over a year old. She has helped with the loss of our other pup. I wasn't going to get another dog, but I really missed the company. She is just a delightful dog who seems to love everyone. She is the same breed with just a little bit of a different coloration. A sable opposed to a sable merle Sheltie. The neighbors really can't see the difference. LOL.

Of course, right now I'm like a Mother Hen about her food. I switched her around quite a bit, just because she wasn't really fond of my food choices. And since my Nutro problem I was questioning if there was something in the food that was making her not wanting to eat. So I went the Castor and Pollux, Blue Buffalo, Solid Gold, Wellness, and finally the Natura Pet brands. I had her on the Evo, which she liked, but it just seemed to be too harsh on her system. So I moved her to the Innova dry with just a teaspoon of the Merricks and extra water in the mix. I had read somewhere that apparently dogs sometimes don't drink enough water with their dry food, especially if it's a high protein, highly concentrated brand. Since she's not a big water drinker, I figure it can't hurt her to get a little extra in her system. Anyway she looks good, is bouncing off the walls, and her bodily functions look good. So I will probably stay with this combo.

Here is a picture of her and this is before I started putting the Ice product on her coat. As you can guess, she has a rough life.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2009 at 12:46AM
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