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Best food for westie with skin allergies (not raw)

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by Lorna hamilton, Apr 11, 2017.


  1. Lorna hamilton

    Lorna hamilton PetForums Newbie

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    Hi,

    I hope someone can help.
    My mum has an 8 year old westie who suffers from all sorts. Bad skin, ear infections, dry eye.
    Lately she has been at the vets every other week and all she ever seems to get is steroids.
    She is spending £80 every other week.
    Her dog is really irritable. She has been banned from grooming parlour for biting the staff. She bit another dog on a walk a few weeks ago for no reason.
    My mum was planning on rehoming her tomorrow but my dad has changed his mind and I've been tasked with trying to sort out her diet.
    At the minute she is just on supermarket stuff (not sure what).
    I've looked in to the raw diet but I'm not sure my mum will faf on so I need something that they will both stick to.
    Also any recommendations on anything else (shampoo etc)
    She was bitten by another westie about 8 months ago and while the bite healed fine she has since lost all hair around it.
    I was rubbing coconut oil (cold pressed) into it but it went red raw. Not sure if made it worse.
     
  2. SixStar

    SixStar Banned

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    I'm surprised it's been left this long to look at diet - food allergies are rife in Westies and a change of diet could be an almost immediate quick-fix and make the world of difference to the dogs happiness and welfare.

    Does she eat wet or dry food? I would try something grain free, with a novel protein source (something she hasn't had before, duck as an example). No treats or snacks, just one type of food for a minimum of six weeks.

    However, the dog does need to see the vet again to rule out any current skin or ear infections, as these are both painful and could explain the biting.

    Is she on Optimmune and/or artificial tears for her dry eye? This will not be changed by diet and is a lifelong chronic condition which is very sore if not properly treated.

    Very, very sad that she was due to be rehomed tomorrow - to where? An older dog with such health conditions is not doing to be a sought after candidate I'm afraid - not to mention the bite history.
     
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  3. Kimmikins

    Kimmikins PetForums VIP

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    I think allergy tests should definitely be pushed for! Scrumpy Jack, my 12yo westie, is allergic to chicken, duck, beef, lamb, pork...the only thing he's not allergic to meat wise is turkey. It comes out in his skin and he gets horrible skin infections, ear infections and tummy troubles if he has any of these. He was on immunotherapy for 6 years, stopping recently only because he's on steroids for the rest of his life for a different issue.
    In the meantime you can get Coatex, which have lots of oils, omega-3 etc that helped dampen his flare ups. Also Malaseb, a medicated shampoo that is very soothing and gets rid of nasty yeasts and fungus that can cause itchiness. There's also a product called Cortavance, which is a topical steroid spray that isn't absorbed through the skin so can be used on acute flare ups.

    Since being on the immunotherapy injections his flare ups dramatically reduced. He never had another nasty skin infection, and ear infections were fewer (but not completely eradicated because he also has narrow ear canals).
     
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  4. Lorna hamilton

    Lorna hamilton PetForums Newbie

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    She was going to a westie rescue centre who had an owner lined up once they had assessed her.

    She has wet and dry food.
    The last 2 weeks I've been making her ground turkey mince with butternut squash, apple, carrot and brown rice which I got off a different westie site but I was worried it had no bonemeal in.
    Since read though that westies may be allergic to grains.
    On last visit (monday) the vet suggested chappie (the cheap tinned tripe) but that looks like it also has cereal in.

    I should say that i've seen pictures of other westies and she is no where near their level. Hers flares up but it's getting more often.
    She gets eye drops 4-5 times a day.
    The tablets she is on atm seem to be clearing up her skin but not only are they expensive I didn't think they should be on things like that longterm?
    Apoquel I think it is.
     
  5. Turtle-Dove

    Turtle-Dove PetForums Newbie

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    If your looking for a faff free raw diet have you tried the natures menu country hunter chunks? Their a complete meal, you can buy it in Pets at Home and all you have to do is defrost and feed, might work out a little expensive mind you.
    I also had some success with Yumega Plus though my lad has grass allergies as well so it may be that which its helping but at only £20 a bottle, which lasts my GSD a month, it's worth a try.
    Though I would agree with having her checked over by the vet to double check she doesn't have any underlying infections, mites, ect first.
     
  6. Little P

    Little P PetForums VIP

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    Apoquel is not a steroid - it has a similar effect to steroids but without the side effects and is much safer long term. If cost is an issue you could look at getting a written prescription from your vet and purchasing it online from a reputable online pharmacy, like Animed Direct
     
  7. Lorna hamilton

    Lorna hamilton PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your suggestions.
    Like I said it's not my dog but my parents so only hear from her (and she probably can't remember a lot of it). She's been to vets twice over the last 2 weeks so has been properly checked over.
    I'll pop to pets at home today and get some new food as a starter.
    Thanks
     
  8. wee man

    wee man PetForums Senior

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    My suggestion; I would obviously suggest a raw diet as the best to try but if a dry kibble is the option for you I would suggest that you try "Millies Wolfheart" Duck 50/50 Fantastic !
     
  9. ladyisla

    ladyisla PetForums Senior

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    Anecdotally I have heard people have good results with evening primrose oil. My westie was recently diagnosed as having allergies (thankfully very mild and unsure to what at the moment - my instinct is environmental rather than food but who knows!). We have tried coconut oil both topically and orally but not noticed a huge difference, other than she loves to lick it off my fingers which makes brushing her easier as she's less interested in attacking the brush :rolleyes: I was planning to try EPO next as am keen to avoid anymore drug treatments.

    I second the Natures menu raw nuggets @Turtle-Dove mentioned above. They are v.low faff, you just portion them out and defrost plus you don't need to add anything as they are complete. We don't have freezer space to do 100% raw but I try and get her as many raw meals in there as possible. Whether it helps her skin I'm not sure but she always completely cleans the bowl.

    Wainwrights Grain free range from Pets at Home might be a good option if you don't want to explore the raw route. Good luck, hope things improve soon.
     
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