Eric bull terrier/ rescue dog/ anal gland problems, itching and lethargy

LoriW

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Eric has had bilateral Entropian surgery about a year ago. He has chronic dry eye with gunk having to be cleaned out every hour. He scratches and itches constantly and is extremely lethargic for a 3 year old dog. He has nice soft coat but alot of dandruff. He is always biting at his anal glands. I understand it isn't good for the vet to express anal glands manually as it makes them loose their tone? Is there anything to make anal glands express naturally?
 

Dr. Jeff

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Absolutely Lori!

It's wonderful that you'd rather hold off on expressing Eric's anal glands.

The reason being that the scooting, licking or other anal glad symptoms are an important part of his totality of symptoms. Whether the ability to self-express is getting better, worse, or not changing is a great clue to whether he is getting better overall.

From a vitality-balance and homeopathy perspective, the itching, lethargy and anal gland weakness are all because of insufficient internal energy resulting in an energetic imbalance.

The extreme lethargy is a central characteristic of his dis-ease (imbalance).

To begin individualizing a treatment for him, the more details about him and how his body is expressing itself, the better.

When did any of his problems start?

Do you know his "backstory"? For example, was he malnourished, abused, etc.?

What does he eat now, and how are his stools?

In exactly what way is he lethargic?

Regarding gently and safely relieving the anal gland symptom while you increase his energy and healing, consider adding fiber to each meal. Start with just a pinch and work up from there based on his response.

I've had great success with soothing anal gland symptoms, colitis and other stool issues with the Holistic Pet Support Fiber + product. However, even a pinch of Metamucil/meal may do the trick.

 

LoriW

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I dont know much about his history as he was a rescue. Had him for about almost 2 years now. I do know he has no energy and sleeps all the time and he is still very young. His appetite is good. He has had the problems with flaky skin, itching all the time even at night when he sleeps, and severe dry eye. So I was wondering if he might have hypothyroid? and is there something to use if he does rather than the medication? Also any ideas on his chronic dry eye, they are very red all the time. The dog is just miserable. He is such a nice gentle dog and its sad to see him so miserable with his constant biting and scratching
 

Dr. Jeff

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Ah, I see. It's wonderful to hear that he has had two years of a good life with you.

When was his energy last 100%?

Yes. Thyroid testing him with total t4 and free t4 as well as starting some Thro-GO (or similar thyroid glandular) at this time is a good idea.

Homeopathic treatment is also very important to try and prevent future problems.

Yes, you can use Remend, Systane or Genteal eye drops to lubricate his eyes anytime. These OTC drops are supportive and help his eye heal.

Hot compress his eyes just before using the drops. That will help them work better.

HPS Eye Support, Ocu-Glo or similar supplement, is also great support for his eyes.

Ultra EFA from Rx Vitamins along with periodic moisturizing or bathing should also help his itchy and flaky skin.

One last skin care tip would be to brush or comb him as often as possible to stimulate release of natural oils.
 

LoriW

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Ok great, have a thyroid test scheduled next Saturday. Thank you, will keep posted. As far as his diet it is raw
 
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Dr. Jeff

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Good morning, Lori.

Regarding Eric's anal sac challenges, here's the link to a handout about them. It includes both the conventional thinking about anal glands and my notes about the holistic and homeopathic understanding of them:


As far as phosphorus binding is concerned here's some context for others reading this thread. Lori is referring to the elevated phosphorus from another thread about a different dog:


The dose of Phos-Bind is 100mg/kg and each scoop is 1,000 mg. If your other Bully pup is ~60 lb or ~27kg then she'd need 2,700mg/day.

This is around 2 1/2 scoops.
 

LoriW

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Update on Eric, because of his SEVERE ALLERGIES, the vet didnt think I needed a thyroid test. She said that the reason he is so lethargic at 3 years old is because he is having so many issues, red itchy paws, dried out ears, SEVERE DRY EYE REDNESS, LICKING CHEWING, made me feel like I was neglecting him, but honestly he has been like this for quite some time. I gave in and she gave him an injection of Cytopoint, which she said no side effects and works with the body, dont know BUT HAD TO GET HIM RELIEF. I have studied nutrition through courses, however nothing on this planet has seemed to help. Shot a 4 days ago and if this doesn't work, well I guess its Apoquil? I HATE DRUGS, BUT CANT SEEM TO HELP HIM OR GET HIM RELIEF ANY OTHER WAY, MAYBE THESE ABOVE MENTIONED ARENT AS BAD AS STEROIDS, HOPEFULLY
 

Carol

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hi Lori, I am feeling for you and your Eric. I’m so grateful that he has you in his life, just as Dr Jeff shared.
Conventional vet here did not think that my dog Emma was hypothyroid either. When I pushed for test, his words were that he’d guarantee she do not have thyroid issue. But she sure did and does. Quite so.
Your Eric sounds much like my Emma. Anals, ears, eyes (but hers are wet and goopy), biting, scratching, dandruff in younger years. All thought alllergies. Did special diets, even vegetarian for six weeks on recommendation.
I started noticing some blackened areas of skin on the inside of emmas thighs, groin area, way before thyroid testing, which I think was related to thyroid function. So maybe watch that in little Eric?
Wish I could share some positive help for you.
I will share tho, that I’m wondering if emma has had buried grief all these years. She is rescue and I am her fourth placement. We’ve been together about 12 years now. Many remedies tried on emma. I’m now wondering about nat mur. Don’t know if homeo vet will agree!!
If emma and I ever get a good result with anything, I will post you right away.
Best to you.
 

Dr. Christina

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Lori,
There is never a "right" treatment. I am so glad you have joined HA! as you will see from the forum that some animals regain health easily and others, like Carol's Emma, do face continued challenges.

Some dogs get a single "allergy shot" of one sort or another, and then are fine for years. Others seem fine for a short time and then develop more serious symptoms (suppression).

Many dogs, however, need more and more drugs to keep the symptoms away, as with Eric. Homeopaths call this palliation.

Skin problems, even severe ones, often indicate a healthier energy field, or that the dog is more rather than less balanced because skin problems are very rarely lethal. When the itchiness is quickly stopped with drugs, more serious problems may develop.

There are many gentle ways to decrease the itchiness to a tolerable level while working with a veterinary homeopath (or an excellent Chinese Medicine veterinarian) to restore balance. This can resolve the symptoms of the itchiness, the dry eyes, the anal glands and if hypothyroid, even restores that endocrine function.

The low energy and other symptoms may definitely indicate hypothyroidism, so insist on thyroid testing, as Carol did with Emma. You may want to begin working with a holistic veterinarian for your hands on care, even if you also work with a homeopathic veterinarian.

One temporary help for anal glands is to get some Calendula lotion or tincture and some rescue remedy (the human one is fine). Put a few drops of each in some very warm water, soak a cloth in it and hold over the rectum/anal sac openings for as long as Eric tolerates it (10 minutes is good). Do this 1-2 times a day on a regular basis until he has improved.

Dr. Christina
 
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LoriW

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Thank you Dr Christina and Carol for sharing experiences and help advice, appreciate it. It can be very frustrating.
 

Dr. Christina

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Yes, it can be frustrating.

Keep reminding yourself it is better to have skin problems along with lethargy and maybe low thyroid than cancer or other problems.

You main clue that you have selected a good treatment approach is that the lethargy will begin to resolve.

We call that part of BEAM - behavior, energy, appetite and mood. If those are good, at least much of the time, we know we are on the right track.

Dr. Christina
 

Dr. Jeff

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Thanks so much Lori, Carol and Dr. Christina for your posts!

Carol, thanks as well for sharing your experience with Emma. You're so right about testing for hypothyroidism. The underlying imbalance can indeed cause both hypothyroidism and allergies.

Here's a few resources to help you decide about your next steps:



I hope that Eric gets relief from Cytopoint.
 

Dr. Jeff

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Also, you might want to try 1/2 cup of the wild blueberry-kale smoothie/meal:

 

LoriW

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Thank you Dr Jeff for recommendation on Remend for the severe dry eye and
thyro go, cant wait to receive and start him on it. I did notice something has been going on for awhile. HE DOESNT DRINK MUCH WATER AT ALL. Maybe once or twice a day. Luckily he's on the fresh raw diet for moisture but will not drink water, Any suggestions?
 

Dr. Jeff

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You're welcome, Lori.

Yes, raw fed dogs and cats rarely drink water as they get it from their food.

Did the thirstlessness coincide with a change in diet?

Also, if your pup likes goat's milk, try adding a little of that to the water.

Another tip to stimulate drinking is adding a pinch of Himalayan salt in the food. It's also a wonderful source of minerals.

 

Dr. Jeff

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Does he like it on its own?

Answer's Fermented Goat's Milk is also great for allergies in some dogs and cats.
 

LoriW

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Yes , he loves goats milk. Question though, what are your thoughts on fermented vegetables? Answers has a lot of good products. Do you think that type of food would be good for allergies. Nika, the one with the elevated phosphorous levels, I have now switched her to Answers Patties. I am now afraid of giving her too much bone, like in chicken quarters, so I switched her to Answers
 

Dr. Jeff

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Yes! Fermented foods like Answers are wonderful.

Even little bits of sauerkraut, kimchi, etc, added to the food can help digestive balance and allergies.

Billy from Answers has an archived Empower Hour! webinar that you might enjoy over in the member area of the website. In addition, after you log in, there are other webinar courses about allergies.

On Monday 8/3/20 board certified specialist dermatologist and homeopath extraordinaire Dr. Stephanie Chalmers will share a webinar with us about itchy pets, allergies and skin.

Feel free to post any questions for her on the forum.

 

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