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Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 32738
Experience:  16 years of small animal internal medicine, surgery and preventive medicine.
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My 4yr old collie has a very itchy face. She rubs her forehead

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My 4yr old collie has a very itchy face. She rubs her forehead aong the edge of the sofa as though her eyes and brow area are driving her mad.
The hairs on her brow are going white like an old dog.
My vet said its an allergy and prescribed Piriton half tab daily. She has taken this daily for 4 weeks but there is no improvement. I can't find any insects on her. Her coat is glossy and she looks healthy. I think it might be a demodex infestation. Please advise.
Welcome and thanks for asking your question. My name is***** am a licensed veterinarian. I am happy to answer your question today. First I need to ask you a few questions so that I can be well informed and give you the best advice.
1- Are you seeing any abnormalities in the skin like: Crusty, scaly, bumps, etc.?
2- How much does she weigh?
3- How many milligrams of piriton are you giving?
4- Have you tried changing her diet to a hypoallergenic diet?
5- Did your vet do any testing like skin scrapping?
There may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies as I type out a thorough reply for you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Her skin is normal. She had 2 pimples on her back when I took her to vet for booster shots. The vet was concerned in case they were something worse so he removed the largest and examined it. Decided it was not serious. He squeezed the other pimple and expressed pus. I have been washing it with Hot salty water and squeezing. It is now nearly gone And the wound from the surgery is completely healed. Otherwise her skin looks good and her coat is glossy.
2/ 25kg.
3/. 2mg.
4/. No. She gets Burns dried dog food (expensive food made by veterinary surgeon) and I add about 300g home cooked chicken (meat and skin only) and cooked whole grain rice. If I don't have any of this ready, I sometimes give her about 250g of tinned dog food along with the dried food.
5/. No he did not do skin scrape. He says she has not got demodex because it causes scabies and she has not got that. But I believe there are lots of different kinds of demodex mites and some can't be seen without a microscope. The hairs on her face are going grey like an old dog and I think her eyes are itchy as well as the skin. The vet looked at her eyes. but could not see anything wrong. Rubbing her over the eyes ang forehead seems to soothe her.
Jane, if Willow does not have any lesions on the skin in her face I doubt this is related to demodex or scabies. I agree with your vet that this could be related to allergies (food or environmental). Dogs usually become allergic toward protein they have had a lot of in the past. The first place to start is doing a food trial during 6-8 weeks. This is what you can do:
1- Change her diet to a prescription food called Hill's z/d or a grain free diet with a different source of protein then what she normally has had in the past. For example: If she seldom ate fish then put her on a food that has fish; avoid common proteins like chicken, beef, etc. When on this diet she should not eat anything else or she will not improve. Needs to be on this diet for 6-8 weeks before you see significant improvement. For treats you can give veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, baby carrots, etc.
2- I would increase the piriton to 4mg every 8-12 hours.
3- Supplement with Eicosaderm (omega 3 fatty acids); you can buy this over the counter in any pet store or online. Give at label dose.
4- If after doing the above there is no improvement I would discuss with your vet about a referral to see a board certified dermatologist.
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