Trying out a couple of new doggie products

October 29, 2011 at 6:50 am 6 comments

1. Freshpet VITAL dog food.

This is the same company that makes those Deli Fresh and Vital rolls that I have been using as training treats. (Thanks to Sarah for the recommendation!) I picked up this bag of Vital Complete Meal at my local pet store, from the fridge where they keep the other Freshpet bologna-type rolls.

At first I was a little concerned that there are so many different proteins in this food … seems like overkill to me… but we’ll see how Boogie does.  I like that this massive bag is only $10 (cheap compared to other  brands, and this stuff is fresh!) and being kibble-sized, they also work as high value treats.

2. Virbac Epi-Soothe Creme Rinse Conditioner

Poor Boogie’s skin is so itchy, dry and flaky.  Our vet recommended Virbac Etiderm doggie shampoo which is what I have bathing Boogie with once a week, but we have seen no improvements. The several weeks that Boogie was on antibiotics for staph, he stopped itching and his skin cleared up. A week after he finished the antibiotics, the itchies came back. There are now dry patches on his back legs, dandruffy bits on his coat, and bald spots on his butt. And his little nub of a tail is completely hairless from all that chewing and scooting on the rug.

My friends (parents of Popeye and Rosie) recommended this Virbac Epi-Soothe Conditioner. I am going to rinse and condition the Boogs twice a week (no shampoo) and hope for the best.

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Entry filed under: Food, Skin issues.

Boogie at The Boston Tea Party Zak George, Cesar Millan, Vladae the Dog Wizard.

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Luisa  |  October 30, 2011 at 2:44 am

    I’m so not a vet, and this happened years ago, but for what it’s worth:

    My first border collie had a problem coat as a young dog — hair thin in spots; dry, dandruff-y skin. My vet advised me to take her to a specialist, a dermatologist in Orange County. The dermatologist told me that she had terrible flea-bite dermatitis, that it would only get worse, and that she’d be on meds for the rest of her life. [She was under a year old then.]

    As luck would have it, around that time I saw a dog-magazine letter to the editor about a dog whose coat problems disappeared after the owner started adding a teaspoon or two of sunflower oil to her dog’s dinner. Within a week or so of reading that, I saw a mention on Dog World’s yellow science-news page about sunflower oil helping the skin, according to some new study. That gave me the incentive I needed to begin adding a teaspoon or two to my dog’s dinner.

    Her itchy problems went away, her coat became thick and healthy, she never took meds for any skin or coat issue again, and she lived a long, happy life — lived to 16.

    Here’s the first link I googled:
    http://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/dog-nutrition-for-a-healthy-coat

    As I recall, I cut back and eventually discontinued the sunflower oil with no ill effects. I remember giving her Missing Link Canine Supplement for a while.

    Again, I am so not a vet. Best of luck with Boogie! Also: your art is fabulous.

    Reply
    • 2. lili  |  October 30, 2011 at 2:52 am

      Hi Luisa, thanks for sharing this! Boogie gets fish oil in his food every morning but this doesn’t seem to be making a difference 😦 I wonder if there is some other nutrient that he is deficient in…. or if I need to take him to a dermatologist.
      I wonder too if sunflower oil would be better than fish oil? How long did it take for your dog’s skin and coat to show improvement?

      Reply
  • 3. Luisa  |  October 30, 2011 at 4:10 am

    As I recall, I began to see improvement soon enough to go, “Whoa — it’s working.” A few weeks, maybe…? I also remember sticking to sunflower oil specifically, which was sold at just one market in town… in fact, I may have stopped using it for good when that market stopped carrying it.

    I told my local vet what I was doing, and he warned me not to overdo the oil or else I’d 1) make my dog fat, or 2) “unbalance” her diet and cause other health problems as a result. #1 didn’t happen — she was always lean and fit. [She was a working border collie, parents imported from Scotland — no show dogs in her family. For much of her life she worked sheep every day.] Regarding concern #2: as I said, she lived to be 16 and enjoyed good health.

    As the Bad Rap rescue folks say, dogs are individuals. BR is talking about temperament and personality, but the mantra can apply to health as well. Maybe at that time in her life my good girl just needed a little more of whatever extra goodness sunflower oil provided. Good luck, and give Boogie a pat for me!

    Reply
  • 4. Luisa  |  October 31, 2011 at 3:36 am

    One other thing… is his thyroid OK? Thyroid issues can cause coat/skin issues… Sorry to bug.

    Reply
  • 5. lili  |  October 31, 2011 at 5:00 am

    Thanks, Luisa. I will try sunflower oil (any specific brand/label?) And yes he has had his thyroid levels checked … though this was a couple of years ago.

    Reply
  • 6. Terry Howard  |  December 10, 2011 at 5:08 am

    Keep us posted! I’m trying to decide between the two shampoos.

    Reply

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