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    Dog's belly skin turning from pink to black -- why?
    ggarden23 posted:
    I have 6 dogs. About a year ago, the belly skin one of the dogs started turning from pink to black. I took her to my local vet. He said she had developed a hypothyroid condition, and then gave me 5mg Socoxone (could be Socoxove) for her to take on a daily basis. Now, I have 2 more dogs whose belly skin is turning black.

    It seems rather odd that 3 of 6 dogs have developed a hypothyroid condition at the same general time. Is there something else that would cause a pink belly to turn black besides a hypo thyroid?

    I have had the dogs since their birth. They are now 9 & 10 years old. I feed them Retriever Mini Chunks (a proprietary Tractor Supply Company product) and have done so for the past 8 years.

    Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM responded:
    Dear Ggarden 23,

    Black skin usually makes me think of chronic trauma of some type with the skin getting thickened and pigmented. Hypothyroidism can lead to thickened, hairless and pigmented skin. Has the Soloxine helped your other doggie?

    I agree, it is weird that three out of six dogs would get hypothyroid. Possible but unusual. And thyroid levels on blood work can be low sometimes due to other conditions. Is there anything in common that all dogs are exposed to? Laying on the same rug, etc? Is the skin thickened and black elsewhere on the body?

    These are great questions to ask your veterinarian. They may want to take some skin scrapings to make sure there is not a parasite problem. Are the doggies itchy? Perhaps a diet change would help them all. Dogs can develop food allergies to foods being fed for years. We try to find something in common when multiple pets in the household have a problem. Hypothyroidism is not contagious but could occur independently in all three.

    Let us know what you find out.

    Dr. Sandy
    ponyrun2 replied to Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM's response:
    My now 6 year old male started life with nice pink skin.... by the time he broke out for about the 3rd (of 6) time with demodex his skin started to turn to a pale grayish color.... even now, having been mange-free for 2 years and with a BEAUTIFUL coat of fur, his skin still remains grayish... his vet believes the color change was from the mange....

    My dog's littermate, a female, went through the mange as well... she had 3 outbreaks and has been mange free since she was 18 months old... she developed pale brown spots (maybe 6) on her belly....
    mcrane2653 replied to ponyrun2's response:
    My dogs get that too, along with black spots in their ears. Hydro-cortisone spray from the pet store usually clears it up in about two weeks. It smells really really bad. I usually spray them with it before bed and leave them in the basement for the night.

    I think it has something to do with allergies. They tend to get it in the spring and fall when my allergies kick in.

    I told the vet my theory and she had me giving them 18 benedril a day each (6, 3 times daily). All it did was make them high.

    Try the spray. I end up buying a $12 bottle twice a year and it's very effective.
    papbouv replied to mcrane2653's response:
    You might do better with a better quality food some times it cost more but you feed less due to it having denser calories. Allot of dogs are allergic to chicken,corn,wheat, soy products.Also less vet bills.
    SteRem responded:

    I have two dogs who got diagnosed two years ago with hypothyroidism within a few months of each other and have been on Soloxine ever since.

    The skin on one of them has started to darken and she's got three other problems that started concurrently, so I'm very curious to know whether you ever resolved the issue you described here.

    Vermont802 replied to Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM's response:
    .I read this two years ago when i was on the verge of putting my dog down. My Dog had developed a strange black honey comb skin color change on her belly it slowley grew to cover her whole underside. My local vet wasn't much help the treetments were expensive and only provided tempory releafe for my dog. She lost all of her hair her skin was verry hot and oily. the itching and licking became Obsessive Conpolsive. she was up all night itching licking and yelping as she did it. I started trying things i read on the internet Benedryl, Antifungle shampoos, Diet changes form dry food, wet food, the Bland Diet, Vitimen E, Vitim C, Tee Tree Oil, Hydrogen Peroxide oatmeal baths, anti fungle shampoos Exc..because the medications were not working. .my missy would start to show inprovement but then the season would change and it would start all over again each time getting worse then the last time. She got so severe i had planed on putting her down after the holidays that same day i notied she had developed ring worm too. great.... with the vets closed and that being extreamly contagous i pick up Blue Star ointminet at my local pharmacy before my sons nurse left and i would not be able to leave the house again untill she returned after Christmas. Blue Start Ointment is used to treat a wide range of skin issues from Ring worm to jock itch. I also bathed her in Head and Sholders durring that week because i ran out of the Shampoo i was trying. A funny thing happened.... her hair grew back, she gained weight, the itching was less and she has done well ever sence. this treetment did not cure missy her skin is still hot under her fur. I am convinced their is no cure for this condition and it is a shih tzu genetic disorder. but for almost two yesrs she has not had much hair loss. when a red patch apears i put blue star on it and Head and shoulders is the only shampoo i use on her now. I haven't shoved any benedryl or medication in my dog for over a year it is fall again and she is itching again but goes away with head and shoulders shampoo. NO HAIR LOSS. I decided to post this in hopes this information helps someone else with their dog. Good luck form vermont.
    Kelly8977 replied to Vermont802's response:

    I just read your post.. My shih tzu/chihuahua mix is havingn some issues and sounds like your dog had the same thing. His underside is black and he itches, licks, chews constantly. I had thought about head and shoulders but wasnt sure if it was too strong for them. What kind do you use? I have also tried many different kinds of food, He is now on a grain free pet food. Help!!!!

    Thank you so much
    LouizaT replied to Kelly8977's response:
    I have a German Shepherd who also had pretty bad skin problems. She would chew on herself, and the fur on her back was almost gone from her chewing herself. She also smelled bad. We found that it is a yeast problem and Brewer's Yeast supplement seems to be helping. Everyone has really good things to say about it and its supposed to be a natural flea repellant. She has been on it for about 2.5 weeks now and seems to be less smelly and less itchy. But the thing that stopped her constant itching was a vinegar rinse (google it) I also add drops of pepper mint essential oil to it. Good luck.
    Tamster51 responded:
    I was told its a yesterday infection and you need to take wheat out of her diet..tractor supply sells the right food that should help
    dblshot50 responded:
    I don't know what causes it but it happen to my 6 year old and then I started giving him 1200 mg of fish oil with Omega-3 twice a day and it cleared up completely. I had a hard time getting him to swallow the gel capsule so I poked a hole in the end of it and squeesed it into his mouth and then he will eat the hole thing.
    dblshot50 replied to Kelly8977's response:
    My 7 year old lab/shepard mix belly started turning black when he was 6. I started giving him my 1200 mgs of fish oil with Omega 3 and it took a couple months but he now has his pink belly back. His skin does not flake when I scratch his back for him either. It was hard to get him to swallow the capsule so I poked a hole in it and squeesed it into his mouth then he decided he liked it and eats it all. If it is goof for my heart it should be good for his too. I started out with 2 tabs a day but now that he is back to his nice pink belly I give him one a day .
    Muskokasmiles replied to Sandy Willis, DVM, DACVIM's response:
    Hi Dr. Sandy

    My female Jack Russel is 8. She has these spots at all four areas where her legs meet her body and a few on her belly/chest. They are black but not thick skin. There is no hair loss in the leg areas but a little on the belly/chest. She does seem to scratch quite a bit.
    Is this the same as you were saying above even though her skin is not thick at all...?
    Is there anything I can do to help her before going to the vet and how long would it take, approx, to see a change..?
    Thanks for your help.
    Muskokasmiles replied to Muskokasmiles's response:
    In I thought it was dry skin, I've been giving her Omega 3 capsules (6 a day).
    hmj19 replied to dblshot50's response:
    Hi! I have a shepard/retriever mixed mutt too(maybe some chow too). I wanted to talk to you in detail about your pups ordeal and compare. He is now also 7. I took his to see two different vets. The first one said it was absolutely an allergy to grass, but I don't have grass in my yard and he has never had this problem before. I couldn't convince the doc it was something otherwise. He said the discoloration was permanent and there was nothing I could do. I needed a second opinion. The second said it was a fungal infection and prescribed some medication and a shampoo. these helped briefly, but seem to have stopped working when the season turned. This has been going on for 6 months now and I am getting very frustrated. I'm going to start giving him fish oils again. Do you have any other tips, ideas, or whatevers? I'd really love someone who is sane to talk to about this.. Thanks

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