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Consant Licking at lower legs
04storm posted:
We have a doberman that has started to constantly lick at his lower legs (near his dew claw area and around) to where the hair skin is gone and it is raw. we have hed him to the vets and he had done a skin - blood test - it's not cancerous but the word he used is long and he stated what he has is a form of something that itches constantly. we have had him on medicines - a bendaryl type medicine as well, have wrapped his legs with the sports tape and actually wrapped duck tape around that because he would chew that off. We had him back when what he was given did not work and he put him on Steriods - this has not helped - he still continues to lick those areas and make them raw to where one of his back paws he holds up sometimes like it hurts - thinking sore from all the licking. Any thoughts on what that could be or how it can be treated?? He also has two spots one on each side where he has lost some hair. He has been treated for mange - which I don't fully understand how he is getting that - we live in a city not in the country. Sometimes we do see fox and that is what the vet is thinking is causing the spots.
Bernadine Cruz, DVM responded:
There are myriad reasons why a pet may lick its legs. Yes, allergies would be one of the most common. If antihistamines and steroids are not of assistance, skin scrapes are negative for mites, I might suggest having radiographs taken of the area. It is possible that the pet has some form of pain that it causing it to worry the area. Being on both legs makes this a bit uncommon but not impossible. If the radiographs are negative, you may need to be referred to a board certified veterinary dermatologist for a second opinion. To answer your question on demodex, the mite can live under the skin without causing any problem for many dogs. Changes in the immune system, can make this previously innocuous parasite now problematic. Pups can be born with the organism.

Best of luck...
Dr. Bernadine Cruz


William Draper, DVM, better known as "Dr. Will," is a well-known small animal practitioner in the Atlanta, GA area. He grew up in Inglewood,...More

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