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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 28936
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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Our 7 year old mongrel (part Staffie) has a severe yeast infection,

Customer Question

Our 7 year old mongrel (part Staffie) has a severe yeast infection, is start hung and raw, sleeping lots, very low. We have changed her diet she is eating mince, cooked carrot no rice, carbs. Taking kelp, multi vitamins and cod liver oil. Has had homeopathic remedy but not getting better. Washing in dilute apple cider vinegar and bicarbonate. Have tried to treat but not working. Possible allergy to fleas and our German Shepherd (15 months).
She had what might be a small cancer on her nose, which seemed to go. What can we do?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin
I'm sorrry for the delay in responding to you. Can you tell me, please, where her yeast is present on her body and whether Malassezia - the common skin yeast - has been confirmed? If you truly are dealing with Malassezia, you're correct, vinegar and bicarbonate won't do the trick. You'll need to bathe her in a shampoo containing either miconazole or clotrimazole and a systemic drug such as ketoconazole administered for a month should be quite effective. You might find the shampoo over the counter in a pet shop or agricultural merchant but ketoconazole is a prescription drug available from her vet. Can you clarify for me, please, what "start hung" means?

Malassezia isn't related to diet. It's commonly found on the skin but will proliferate when the local immunity in the skin is compromised by allergy such as a flea saliva allergy and/or infection. You'll need to control fleas and a flea saliva allergy, if present, if you're to control a secondary yeast infection. An over the counter flea spot-on such as Advantage is recommended and dogs severely suffering from a flea saliva allergy will benefit from short-term low-dose steroid administration such as prednisone.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Sorry that was a typo - she is smelly and raw. We have washed her in a mild baby shampoo as she is very smelly. Thanks for your response - we do already know most of this but have been trying to help her without using drugs.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for the additional information. Yes, I understood from your post that you were trying to avoid drugs. I'm a minimalist and also try to use the least number of drugs possible. Once my patient is seriously affected, however - and "smelly and raw" qualifies as seriously affected - it's time for me to become aggressive for what can result in a chronic condition and lifelong discomfort for my patient.

Please continue our conversation if you wish.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks Michael - understand and will see what to do now. Definitely the next step is to get her treated.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Sounds good. I'm going to check back with you in a few weeks for an update. Feel free to return to our conversation - even after rating - prior to my contacting you if you wish.

Please disregard the info request.