Goodness, dog allergies do seem to be a problem these days. But I guess if I am any example, it is definitely pollen season. My allergies are just about to drive me crazy too.
So, I’ve been giving Belle dog allergy medicine every 12 hours for several days. I know I should be patient, but she’s still itching a lot. Just in case it was a flea problem, I got a Flea Beacon to try and trap some of the fleas. I put it right next to her crate. It was on for several nights now, but didn’t catch anything except some flying insects – definitely not a flea.
I use Frontline Plus on Belle every month (though I missed one month this winter), but she surprisingly came down with two short infestations when we had warm weather (70 degree days) in the midst of 40 degree days. I got a pill from the vet to blast the fleas, gave her a bath, and washed her bedding.
The fleas must have come from her pen outside. I just mowed the rapidly growing grass Wednesday, so hopefully that will help. I don’t want to use a broad spectrum insecticide or use any more chemicals than are necessary, so we are trying to manage the itching in other ways.
I’m at my wits end some days she itches and chews incessantly. She has developed some hot spots and one spot at the base of her tail which is now pretty much bald because she has chewed it so much.
So, we went back to the vet for some suggestions and to see if we could figure out what was going on. Even though I wasn’t catching fleas in the flea beacon and hadn’t seen any the last couple of times I checked her fur, when the vet combed through her fur with a flea comb, he found flea dirt! Apparently, when a dog is losing hair at the base of the tail, that is a sure sign that a flea problem is involved. Good to know.
Although my vet tried to convince me that prednisone was a good idea to try and calm down her chewing and hot spots, he did not force it on me, and I refused-for now. If things get really bad, I may allow a very low dose to be given to Belle again.
In the meantime, the vet changed our flea treatment. We are no longer using Frontline Plus, and are using Comfortis instead. My vet thinks that Belle has become immune to her previous flea treatment and that this change will help with the flea problem.
Just in case, I gave Belle a bath with that Itch No More shampoo, and remembered to leave it on for 3-5 minutes this time. It was hard to keep her still, but I did notice some dead fleas when I washed her out. The only good flea is a dead flea. 🙂