A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about my dog Jackson and his shedding dry skin issue. After taking him to the groomers he looked great for about a week. Then it all started again, he also started to get this skin/scab type lesions under his armpit's on his front legs. So I spoke with a vet's office and the woman I spoke with was just great. Her first thought was fleas as they are really bad out here, and a year round problem. I really don't think that he has fleas though. So she thinks it possible that it could be a Thyroid issue. She also told me that the food I have him on is a good one. I have been giving him the Pro Plan Chicken and rice flavor. I know everyone has a opinion on what's a better food, but if the Vet says it's ok, then I am good. Although I am not opposed to changing food if my dog needs a different type.
So has anyone gone thru this with there dog? I know they have to do a blood test to see if it's a Thyroid issue, and I also know he will be on medication the rest of his life. How much does the blood test usually run? I know prices can differ but I am just looking to figure out how much this is going to cost. I have never gone thru this with a pet before so I am sorry if I sound like a idiot, but I am nervous. Also how much does the medication run?
I think that on average, a thyroid test will run you around $100-150. This is because the vet must draw the blood, but unlike a chem panel or CBC the actual test isn't done at the vet's office. Instead, it has to be sent away to a laboratory to be evaluated, overnight, in climate controlled packaging.
The good news is that thyroid problems, once identified, are easy to treat with the medication. I have a friend whos mixed breed dog has thyroid problems and you can really tell a difference in him when he's on his meds.
I know you are a fan of your pro plan but given his lesions and skin problems, personally I'd recommend trying another high quality food like Wellness, Canidae, or Chicken Soup before the thyroid testing is done.
I would also recommend you begin adding something like Fish oil or flax seed oil to your dog's food. These oils contain high quantities of vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids, which can be incredibly beneficial in helping condition and heal the skin. Certainly if your dog isn't on a good flea treatment like Advantage, Advantix or Frontline Plus, you should also invest in that as well.
Never trust a tall dwarf... he's lying about something.
Wow, thank you so much for the info. I had no idea how much a blood test was going to cost and that is way more then I thought. I am not sure right at this moment if I can afford that. I need to go and get dog food today actually, but I don't want to just abruptly change his food, so I will do some looking around today for some of the things you suggested. I have been looking into a flea treatment for him. I found this stuff called Sentinel, it's a heartworm and flea treatment. Someone recommended that to me.
If you are going to switch his food. I would by a little bag of the Pro Plan and a medium bag of the new kind (minnyar gave you some good suggestions on food to try). Throughout the week, mix the two together, slowly decreasing the amount of Pro Plan, until he is only on the new food. This will help him adjust to the new food better instead of just going cold turkey.
our thyroid tests run between 45 and 80 dollars depending on the panel that is done. we also have the capability to do it in house so it runs a little cheaper that way. the most common external signs of hypothyroidism in dogs is bilateral hairloss and weight gain. dull dry coats can also be an indicator as well as behavioral changes.
while pro plan may be a good food in general, it may not be right for your dog in particular. there may be one compnoent in that diet that is causing allergy type symptoms. it can range from wheat to soy to rice to the protein source. without knowing what he is allergic to, it is a gamble on what food to switch him to as many brands of food contain similiar ingredients. if you decide to do a food trial, be aware that you need to give the food at least 6 weeks, more like 8-10 to figure out if it will work for him. you may want to switch to a brand that contains a fish and a potato rather than a meat and rice food. or if you can swing it, a pre made or make it yourself raw diet. a co worker has a little frenchie with what sounds very similiar skin issues with him. she switched to a pre made raw diet 1 month ago and has noticed a remarkable improvement in her dogs skin and coat already.
good luck !
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
A lot of dogs have problems with chicken. One of my dogs has that problem. My dogs don't like fish so now I'm trying a potato and duck dog food. Several of my dogs need to free feed to keep meat on their bones so this is what I have sitting out for them to snack on. I can only give the flea in a pill (program) because one of my dogs went bald at the spot where I put the drops. One other dog comes from a breed that has dry skin so I didn't even want to try it on her. I think I remember reading that the drops last for a month, but do wash off so not good for my dog that gets a bath every week.
If your dog has skin problems ask your vet about the pill. He may think it is okay to try until you figure out the reason for the skin problems. Most vets don't even carry it anymore so I buy it on line from pet med.