Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Forum

Any suggestions for an itching doodle? Vet gave him a $60 shot, didn't help. Giving him Zesty Paws which seems to help a little. Bathing him in sensitive shampoo. He's not eating chicken, which someone suggested could be the culprit.

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It would help to know what kind of shot it was the vet gave him. If it was steroids, it would have helped within 24 hours. Of course, that doesn;t tell us what the cause of the itching is, which is what you need to know to deal with it long term. 
I don't know what Zesty Paws is?
Yes, lots of people seem to feel that chicken could be the culprit, but that's rarely the case. 
Here is some good accurate information about itching and allergies in dogs, including how to help with itching:;
From the article:

For temporary relief of inhalant allergies, here are some things that you can do:

Give Omega 3 fatty acid supplements. You want the Omega 3 fatty acids DHA & EPA, which are only found in fish. You can also give GLA in the form of evening primrose oil supplements. In both cases, use human softgel supplements. 

If you feed dry dog food, check the Omega 6:3 ratio. You want a ratio of 5:1 or less, the lower the better, and the Omega 3 content should come from fish.

Give antihistamines. Different antihistamines are more effective for different dogs. Typically, you want second generation antihistamines that do not cause drowsiness, like Claritin, Zyrtec, Atarax, etc. rather than Benadryl.

Use OTC anti-itch sprays on the affected areas. These are available at most pet supply stores.

Wipe the dog down every time he comes in from outside, paying particular attention to the feet. Brush the dog daily.

Keep the indoor areas where the dog spends the most time as clean and dust free as possible. Wash bedding weekly, wash food & water bowls daily. Vacuum as often as possible.

Keep dry foods in air-tight storage containers and don't buy more than you can use in a month unless you can freeze it. Discard the bags the food came in and use ziplock freezer bags. 

If the feet are affected, you can soak them in tepid water with epsom salts. Be sure to dry thoroughly afterwards.

Bathe the dog often, weekly if possible, with a shampoo formulated for allergic dogs. (I like Douxo Calm). Do NOT use leave-in conditioners or other grooming products. Use a cool dryer setting or air-dry. 

As much as I hate doing it, keeping windows closed really helps with pollen allergies. Run the A/C in warm weather especially, the allergy symptoms are exacerbated by humidity. Use a furnace filter with a high allergen rating and change it monthly. 


Thanks for your response!  Yes, it was steroids (didn't help).  Here is a link to Zesty Paws:

I showed the vet Zesty Paws, she wasn't opposed to it.  She did recommend a different brand which we researched and found it to have basically the same ingredients .

Since you have been so kind answering my questions, one more if you have time.  Dog Food!  Kinda freaking out with all the DCM news.  Was feeding Baxter Costco Beef, Sweet Potato, grain free.  I see "taurine" is not in it.  So, in your opinion, should "taurine" be in the food naturally, added to the food in vitamin form, not necessary??????  I have spent 2 solid days researchng food choices.  It's basically impossible to find one without chicken (at least chicken meal, is that the same as having real chicken in it as far as allergies?).  I have found a few brands with taurine, but they include grains. 

I know, I am 100% over thinking this.  Just want to make sure I'm doing the right thing for Baxter. :)

Thanks for any advice you can throw my way!

The DCM issue is a veryn complicated one. We have many discussions about it in the Food Group here that you might want to read. We also have a lot of information regarding your questions about chken. It would be impossible for me to reproduce all of it here, but I will see if i can find you some links.
Taurine is an amino acid that is present in ALL animal proteins, and the body makes it. It never needs to be added to the food, hence it's not listed on the label any more than any other amino is. 
We do have a list of recommended food brands in the Food group; Costco products are not included.
But in the meantime, know that the itching you are seeing has a 1% chance of being related to food, any food.
I am very surprised that any vet would recommend this Zesty paws product, as there is absolutely nothing in it that could possibly help with itching or allergies in any way. And as explained in the link I gave you, the last thing in the world you want to do with allergies is "boost" the immune system. 

Regarding chicken, The reason that it seems that so many dogs are allergic or sensitive to chicken is because in order to develop an allergy or sensitivity to a food, you have to have been exposed to it repeatedly for a period of time. Chicken is what most dogs eat on a daily basis from the time they start solid food, and if a dog is going to develop a food sensitivity (actual food allergies are very rare, and exist in only one percent of all dogs), it's going to be to something she's been eating for awhile, so in many cases, it's chicken. If you started puppies on lamb, turkey, or goat for that matter, and gave it to them every day, then that would be the protein that might cause issues.

Also as explained in the link, the ONLY supplement that helps with itching is fish oil or evening primrose oil, because of the GLA, EPA and DGA Omega fatty acids in those. 

Some links for you to read:

The "Taurine" issue:

And here are our recommended food brands:

But again, I cannot emphasize enough that itching is almost never caused by food.

Thanks again for all of your help!



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