Bridget’s Diagnosis: Atopy due to seasonal allergies

To treat her itching, Bridget the Scottish Terrier has been on Prednisone since last Friday. It works, but it’s one of those drugs that send you into a cold sweat just reading about the possible side effects.

The vet said Bridget will most likely stop itching once the first frost hits, which it did earlier this week, so I’m wondering if we even needed the Prednisone.

Also, Bridget is supposed to go in for a medicated bath sometime over the next week or two.

Thank you again everyone for your advice and suggestions. They were much appreciated.

13 thoughts on “Bridget’s Diagnosis: Atopy due to seasonal allergies

  1. Hi Ann!
    My girls are littermates and they both suffer from severe seasonal allergies. Unfortunately we weren't able to use the prednisone, which works great, because of food aggression issues it caused. We are in the process of treating both of them with allergy shots. Mavri, the black one, has had problems since she was a tiny puppy. By the time she was 3 months old she had most of her fur off and was covered with a rash – she's been on the shots since about 6 months and her symptoms are virtually gone. Aspri, the wheaten one, just developed bad allergies this year. I understand skin conditions in scotties are fairly common.
    The allergy shots are a wonderful thing – they work just as they do in humans, by introducing the irritant in smaller then progressively larger doses, the body eventually becomes immune. If Bridget's condition persists, you might want to look into that. Good luck! It's no fun watching them suffer! Oh, and there is another medication, more expensive but less side effects, called Atopica, which seems to work well to relieve the symptoms, too.

  2. Well, that's good to hear – Bridget's allergies are seasonal. I'm struggling with my girl too and her itching. Scout doesn't have any sores yet or anything but as you know it's awful watching them walk then stop and do the 3-legged scratch all the time and the licking – oh my…. I have her on this spray and some antihistamines which at first seemed to help but doesn't seem to be helping as much right now. Shes already on a vet formula food (venison & potato) for her tummy so I can't imagine it's her food unless it's her treats, etc. I just wanted to say I feel your pain. It's awful seeing our fur-kids not themselves. I'm hoping and crossing my fingers and toes that when it frosts here that she too may see some relief. I wouldn't worry too much about the prednisone. We had a dog that was on it for YEARS for her asthma (a labrador) and she lived to a nice age of 12. Under supervision predisone isn't as bad as people believe. Just be sure she's on the smallest dose possible that will give her the relief she needs. Hang in there.

  3. Try changing to a different food. The statement you are what you eat is true. My Donovan has had very bad allergies from the beginning by the time fall arrived his entire skirt was gone. We tried a allergy shots which is just a band aide and where it gives them much needed releif they cause health problems. I tried a new dog food it's NUTRO Natural Choice Lamb and Rice small bites for skin and coat, by the time we were through the first bag I saw a huge inprovement so much so we have not had to go back to the vet AT ALL for any allergy related problems. Yes he has a flair up every once in a while and a Benadryl does the trick usually once a day for a couple of days sometimes one in the morning and one in the late afternoon before bed. And I also only bath my scotties in head and shoulders dandruff shampoo and put a regular very moisturizing conditioner (intended for people)on them blow dry them and they are good to go. I also tried every shampoo and conditioner intended for dogs I could find and I found they are too harse for most dogs especially scotties. My little 10 year old Scottie girl Maddie just had a flair up of Seborrhea, I took her to the vet he gave me a tiny bottle of shampoo (for $20.00)guaranteed to clear it up, I bathed her twice a week for 3 weeks as he instructed with no effect. I did my own research and ran across Selsun Blue , so I tried that and it clear her up on one Shampoo. So if the Head and Shoulders does not work try Selsun Blue and don't forgt to condition. Hope this helps!

  4. I am sure the vet told you to taper down the Pred. Don't just stop it cold turkey. If you are unsure, please call the vet to ask instructions.
    Glad the frost arrived.

  5. Bridget doesn't seem to have had any adverse reaction to the prednisone.

    We wen from two tablets a day to one and, starting tomorrow, to one every two days.

    If the allergies don't stop, I will definitely try some of the other recommended treatments.

  6. Pred is acceptable on short term basis. Went to my vet last night and he said half the dogs he has seen this past week are for seasonal allergies, at it's peak right before the first killing frost. The first time you have to scrape your car window == that's the first frost. Roger is on eye corticosteroids as his eyes were running — seasonal allergies! The antihistimines, he says, don't work that well, but that's the first thing they try because of the pred fear. Don't forget about changing her diet to a premium one, if she continues to have itchies. And do NOT stop pred cold turkey. They must be weaned off.

  7. Hi Ann,
    I too, have been surprised with both my Scotties getting an unusual case of paw licking. Up until now they haven’t had any allergies and have great coats but I’ve been curious as to what could have caused it. Originally, it started about the time I began bringing them to a new dog park where there was a great mulch flooring. I think either they are sensitive to the mold just under the mulch on hot humid days or perhaps there is some chemical treatment in the mulch itself. Lovey started to lick her paws first and Mac join in on his paws about 2 weeks later. I switched to a NO WHEAT formula for food for them to see if that would help as well. It has slowed the licking down as well. We usually go to the beach everyday but with the summer time restrictions, its easier to go for long walks. I do not treat my yard with chemicals so I don’t believe they got anything at home but perhaps that might be something to consider for anyone else . I lost a wonderful scottie 15 years ago to a careless lawn doctor that sprayed chemicals where he shouldn’t and spent a year trying to save her with shots, etc. to no avail. After that, I bought this house and land without any trace of chemical enhancements. Good luck with the new remedy!

  8. I use extra virgin coconut oil a quarter of teaspoon per 10lbs of their weight on their food it works wonders. Buy it at the organic section of the grocery store and get the glass jar.

  9. My scottie (Mary) was also suffering from a rash. My vet thought it was either caused by environmental allerges or she had a flea allergy (which we know!) and was bitten by even one flea before we got the Advantage on her in mid-May, developed the allergy and then developed a bacterial skin infection. Anyway – my vet put her on an antibiotic for the skin infection and benadryl for the itch — worked wonders – and no prednisone! Now she seems fine so far…

  10. my 1.5 yr old wheaton scottie has broken out in a rash under his front legs and dry patches on the skin on his back. the vet is treating him with an antibiotic and it is not doing anything after 5 days. 5 more to go. He eats acana lamb dry food since just a pup so i know it isn’t the food.
    I want to try to give him a benadryl to see if it helps but am not sure how much to give him. He’s 21 lbs. any guidance? these articles are helpful. I’m off to give him a bath in dandruff shampoo until his next vet appt in 5 days.

  11. I used a miticide shampoo from the local pet store,,,Happy Jack brand and avoid the flea spot killers because they cause Mary to have reactions. Instead, I rub diatomacious earth on her every few days that I can get at Ace Hardware. The D-Earth causes the carapaces of the flea shell to split and thus DIE. When she has her semi-regular bath 🙂 , I use an allergy free shampoo for dogs.

  12. Mary’s shots are a LOT CHEAPER than the atopica but the initial diagnoses cost $175 and a years supply of concentrate is $75. The only hitch is that the vet has to mix the formula every month. (no charge). Coconut oil rubbed all over makes their skin feel better and of course the coat looks better.

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