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Biting People Medical Related?

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by catelee2u, Sep 4, 2013.


  1. catelee2u

    catelee2u PetForums Newbie

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    My Mum got her dog a male chinese crested as a rescue dog. He has a number of issues possibly caused by either medical issues or his past ownership or both. He is attracted to strange foods and things dogs wouldn't normally want to eat and likes junk food and I think he might have lived on it previously.

    He is fairly lethargic although he does go out for walks okay. He doesn't really understand play. He has a lot of skin issues and dry patchy excema-like areas that Mum has tried various shampoos and treatments for. His paws get sore and he tends to try chewing them leading to soreness. He is now taking tablets for this from the vet and it does seem to have helped a lot. The vet has put him on a diet of food that is vegetarian because he cannot tolerate meat well without getting runny bowels.

    He has a lot of behaviour problems and has bitten a number of family members drawing blood. The last couple of people he bit was very strange because he went to sit on them and nudged them for a fussing then when the person went to stroke him he bit them. When he first came to my Mum a number of years ago he was extremely jumpy and anxious and had to be on tranquilisers during firework season. He seems to be over that and has given up being twitchy. He always likes company and doesn't want to be left but accepts it if he is.

    My Auntie is a bit of an expert on dogs and thinks he may have Addisons disease but I'm not so sure because he doesn't have most of the symptoms but I know very little about dogs. My Auntie said he is quite a dominant dog and that could also affect his behaviour.

    My Mum has had several dogs previously with no problems so is not new to keeping dogs.

    After the latest biting my Mum is at her wits end with him so I wondered if anyone had any advice please or possible ideas as to the cause of his behaviour.

    Thanks
    Catherine
     
  2. hippymama

    hippymama PetForums Senior

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    i would suggest that your mum needs to contact a good dog behaviorist as it sounds like she needs someone to come and asses the dog in person try : About the APBC | Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors or CAPBT - COAPE Association of Pet Behaviourists and Trainers .

    make sure whoever you talk to uses only posative methods and no dominance rubbish , chinese cresteds are fairly sensitive dogs , i have two myself and they are lovely dogs but treated in the wrong way can become skittish and fearful :(

    its very possible if he's a rescue that he's been ill treated in the past and is reacting out of fear , i would highly doubt it has anything to do with 'dominance'

    re the skin issues , mine do better on a cereal free diet currently they are on a mix of Purizon Adult Dry Food Mixed Trial Pack | Free P&P on orders £25+ at zooplus! < purizon and raw meat
    i have seen an improvement in my hairless boys skin since i changed his food , but he still has oily spots on his back which we are treating with aquerious cream on the advice of the rescue we got him from
     
  3. newfiesmum

    newfiesmum Banned

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    There is only one way to check if he has any medical issues and that is to take him to a qualified vet, not auntie who is an "expert" on dogs. Nobody is an expert on dogs, one can only be an expert on the dogs one knows well. It sounds to me as though this dog is scared and bites out of fear. It would be a good idea to keep him away from visitors, put a lead on him or a tether attached to your mum's waist when visitors come. That way he can get used to them without feeling scared.

    And be very careful of infections. If any of your bitten people develop an infection they will need anti biotics.
     
  4. catelee2u

    catelee2u PetForums Newbie

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    Thankyou Hippymama for the help....sounds like good advice. I think someone probably would have to see him to assess him properly. I will pass it on to my Mum. Hope you have fun with your little rascals!!
     
  5. catelee2u

    catelee2u PetForums Newbie

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    Perhaps I gave the wrong impression on my Auntie....she deals with a lot of dogs daily as she has a dog rescue and helps dogs with behaviour issues. If she lived closer it might be easier for her to help but she doesn't.
     
  6. Sled dog hotel

    Sled dog hotel PetForums VIP

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    There are a couple of endocrine problems one in particular that can cause, behaviour problems, skin problems and a host of other things and that is Hypo Thyroid. It can manifest and show symptoms in different ways. The only when you can tell is to test with a blood test for a thyroid function profile nothing really shows up on normal blood tests to speak off.

    Full symptoms here.

    Clinical Signs of Canine Hypothyroidism

    More details on how it can effect behaviour here, ignore the mention of seizures in one article it can cause those too in some dogs. Both articles are on behaviour associated with hypo thyroid

    Are your dogs seizures caused by Canine Epilepsy or Autoimmune Thyroiditis?

    http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/bizarre_behavior.htm

    Its caused by the thyroid gland not producing enough thyroid hormone its easy to treat with daily thyroid hormone replacement.

    The addisons you aunt mentioned is an adrenal problem, the body doesn't produce enough cortisol and other things. With addisons very little again can show up on a normal blood test sometimes. Again diagnosis is with a special test called an ACTH Blood test.

    More details on Addisons on the link, but as symptoms often include diarrhoea vomiting and lack of appetite amongst other things, so from what you say doesn't particularly sound like it.

    AddisonDogs | What Is Addison's Disease

    There is also the opposite of addisons, which is cushings the body produces too much cortisol, with that you see things like, increased appetite to the point they are always ravenous, usually increased thirst and drinking more, they will also urinate a lot in frequency and quantity, that can affect the coat too, and cause panting they often have a pot bellied appearance and exercise intolerance too. With cushings a lot does tend to show up on normal blood tests too, to give a possible indication there is a problem, the diagnostic test though is an ACTH specific blood test, ACTH will diagnose cushings and addisons.

    More on cushings here.
    Cushings Disease Information

    I actually have one that is both cushings and hypo thyroid. Neither can be cured but is managed on medication for life as is Addisons.

    Medical problems even pain or discomfort can tend to make dogs more reactive and effect their behaviour. Sometimes though behavioural problems can be just that.

    Only suggestion is to maybe get him a full medical MOT to rule out medical or physical problems as a cause or contributing to it, and/or think about getting in a behaviourist to assess him and identify areas causing problems and help you with retraining and management. Especially if you are all at a loss how to proceed.
     
    #6 Sled dog hotel, Sep 4, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
  7. catelee2u

    catelee2u PetForums Newbie

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    Many thanks!! :D I'm going to show Mum these posts.
     
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