Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Heidi's Medical History

I bought Heidi in July 2011 from the Guardian Angel Basset Rescue. Their link is on my left sidebar under "basset hound rescue". It was documented in her medical records and her paperwork that she had skin allergies and would need monthly treatment during the high allergy seasons. I had no problem with that.

July 30, 2011

Here is a list of medicines given to her with a short summary of each.

June 29, 2011
2.25 cc
Steroid - anti inflammatory for allergies and skin conditions.

Given only one time prior to my ownership.
June 2011 - February 2013
Anti fungal for fungus infections

Months Used - Oct, May, Sept, Nov, Feb

Stopped working after 7 days.

March 2013 - September 2014
Dose amount not known

Steroid - Rapid Relief, treats inflammation and skin conditions caused by allergies.

Months Used - March, June, August, October, November, May, September

Stopped working after 7 days.

New Vet
October 2014 - December 2014

Use along with Atopica Treatment. Shampoo was used until the bottle was empty around May 2015.

This shampoo irritated her skin more than it help as if it was too strong.

October 2014 - December 2014
100mg daily

Immunosuppressive to treat skin conditions. Plan to cut dose gradually.

Great results with daily does but bad for long term use and strong side affects.

While trying to reduce the dose to every other day, skin condition went back to where it was when started.

New Vet
January 2015 - March 2016

One time injection to treat demodectic and sarcoptic mange

Was recommended as a "just in case" situation.

No change in skin condition.

February 2015

Her skin was in such bad condition, the worse ever seen, this shot was given only for rapid relief.

It did give relief and reduced the inflammation.

February 2015 - May 2015
.1ml - 1ml
Regionally Specific Immunotherapy

A gradual build up in dosage, weekly shot. After 15 weeks no improvement.

Between September 2014 - May 2015 her weight dropped from 49 to 36 pounds. From May 2015 - March 2016 she has remained at 36 pounds.

After trying all of these different treatments and her skin showing signs of being the worse conditions ever from September 2014 to May 2015 I decided to take her off of any medication. I wanted to cleanse her system. I also wanted to go to a dog food that had just one protein source and off of grain free.

To help her immune system which was obviously out of sync, I bought Probiotic Miracle to add to her food. I told the vet what I was doing and he approved.

I started this supplement in September 2015 and still give it to her today. I am not sure there is any way to tell if it is working. The vet that I had in 2015 and her original vet that I have gone back to in March 2016 both said it would be good for her and wouldn't hurt.

During this time nothing has changed as far as her skin.

When I bought her in July 2011 she had been eating Purina One with Chicken. I moved her to what Sadie and Winston was eating. I was rotating Diamond Naturals and Fromm for Large Breeds ... both with grain.

From July 2011 until September 2014 her skin rashes were only mild due to allergies and most of the time the Ketoconazole and then the Vetalog did work. Her skin rash would go away. It was toward the end where it would stop working about 7 days with her skin going back to being bad.

For some reason that four different vets have not been able to figure out, her skin condition worsened in September 2014 and it has been an ongoing battle every since.

I have tried single protein source food, grain-free foods, grain free without potatoes. Vet #3 in February 2015 recommended duck or venison as a protein source. Neither of those made a difference.

Protein sources have ranged from chicken, lamb, duck, bison, wild bore, salmon, venison.

Different lotions, creams, salves, have been tried with a zinc oxide base. Aloe vera gels, K9 Klearup and now Wounded Warrior Ointment.

I have also checked to see if her bedding might be the cause. She has slept on Mexican wool blankets, flannel blankets, cotton sheets, nylon on the outside of a sleeping bag, fleece blankets ... there were no changes in skin condition.

As of this morning her skin does not look any different than it did in September 2014. Something happened yesterday to take away what little improvement was seen. As always during this 20 month period, her skin always looks it's best first thing in the morning after she wakes up.

Any comments or suggestions are welcomed.


  1. On the blog monetizing, yes I’ve seen a lot of that too. On the one hand, I don’t really care to financially support someone’s hobby, but I’m generally okay with following an Amazon affiliate link to support a blog I enjoy or get value from.

    I just wanted to pass along this article I read a while back called “Understanding Canine Allergies: Treating chronic allergy is a long and winding path; here are shortcuts” by Randy Kidd, DVM, PhD in case you hadn’t seen it.

    He admits how frustrating this issue can be and discusses treatments (both western and alternative) and his experience/opinions with both. He also offers a kind of treatment summary/check-off list (pathway for navigation). There are a couple of comments at the end. He’s retired now but has been a guest speaker at the Natural Canine Health Symposium (online event) put on by www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com.


    1. THANK YOU for that article. I have been on The Whole Dog Journal many times but in all of my searches for dog allergies, skin irritations, etc ... this article never came up.

  2. Are you reasonably close to a university vet school? I realize you have been going to good vets, but sometimes a teaching vet has access to more testing tools and other resources than your local vet. It might be worth at least a consultation. Best of luck to you and Heidi.

    1. Thanks. I am about 2-1/2 hours from the nearest vet school. That is something I have considered and it might now be time to make an appointment.