I have been religiously following the treatment plan that I started a couple weeks ago, washing my dog, Dante, 2-3 days per week. This I began after reading an article about Dr. Valerie A. Fadok, who said that many chronic skin problems could be dramatically improved through frequent, sometimes daily, washings with a shampoo containing the antiseptic chlorhexidine. I received my bottle of Duoxo, containing the antiseptic chlorhexidine, the day after my last dog-washing post (prior to that, I’d been using Episoothe). I have been using Duoxo 2-3 times per week over the last 2.5 weeks. I also ordered the Duoxo chlorhexidine spray to use in between washings. I have been VERY happy with the results. Dante is not scratching all of the time, his wounds are completely healed, his belly skin is almost all pink (instead of black), his coat is soft and shiny, and he smells great. I had a vet appointment today for vaccinations and my vet said Dante is looking the best he’s ever seen him, except that Dante’s starting to get a little chubby 😦 My vet also said that his clinic has started carrying Duoxo and that he is very impressed with its results. He said I would likely only need to wash Dante once a week. I will switch to this interval after completing my 4 weeks of intensive washings, as indicated on the Duoxo bottle.
It’s misty and gray here in Eureka so no surprise that Dante (my German Shepherd) was soaked and coated with dirt on his undercarriage when we returned home from our walk. Time for the second bath in my experiment and, as you can see by the picture above, he was thrilled. Mind you, I am currently not using a shampoo with the ingredient recommended by Dr. Valerie A. Fadok, which is chlorhexidine. Her top picks were: Duoxo (biggest thumbs up), Zymox (over-the-counter) and Vetericyn Spray. I am using Epi-soothe, a shampoo recommended by my vet and one that is safe to use everyday. I will use it until my shipment of Duoxo arrives. He’s definitely less itchy over the last two days and his wounds on his back leg are healing and pinkness is returning to his belly skin.
I suds him up and wait 10 minutes, during which time he can ponder how he ended up in this family that keeps washing him.
After his 10 minute meditation, I rinse him thoroughly and towel dry…as much as I can when he keeps shaking the towel off and knocking my knees out from under me. The smell of wet dog permeates my house.
A couple things to keep in mind if you try this and have a big dog: You will get wet and you may use up all your dog towels. I will go in search of a cheap waterproof coverall and wear rubber boots so I do not end up as wet an hairy as my dog. Also, I will need to stay on top of my laundry.
I came across a this post that provides information about how to help your itchy dog. It suggests daily bathing.
I have been dealing with my dogs itchy skin since we was about 2 years old. He’s now 6. I have tried numerous things over the years – changing diet, topical treatments, food additives, a treatment called Nzymes- all without noticeable results. In fact, as I type, my dog is scratching his little heart out. It bothers me that he is so uncomfortable. My own experience has shown that my dog always feels better just after a bath but that the itching seems to get even worse a week or so after a bath, which is where he’s at right now. He has sores on his legs and on his abdomen from chewing and rubs against you so you’ll scratch his back. Perhaps the answer is in more frequent bathing as suggested in the post. I can see this would be a major inconvenience, though a relatively inexpensive treatment. Worth a try.