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Millie's Itchy Skin

Millie, wearing a coat for her itchy skin.

A Primetime TV commercial has cute dogs flying through the air with nothing but smiles as they receive a “yummy” soft chew. As is common with primetime drug commercials the Nexguard commercial concluded with that calm voice listing the side effects that include vomiting and itching. Ironically, just an hour before seeing the commercial I was with a lovely mixed breed named Millie. Millie’s story is too common not to share.

While greeting her during a class I noticed that Millie’s skin was flaky and dry. During a brief discussion about Millie’s diet, her owner noted that she had seen the vet and just starting adding an oil supplement to her food once a day. A few weeks later, despite adding a little oil to her food, Millie’s dry flaking skin had become much worse. Millie had been to the vet and was put on an antibiotic for a suspected skin infection. Two weeks later, the dry, flaking skin continued but now there was increased itching. Not long after the training class had ended a call came from Millie’s owner to discuss a diet change for Millie because despite multiple vet visits, two rounds of antibiotics and multiple medicated shampooing Millie was still tortured by excessive dry skin and itching.

Already knowing about Millie’s diet, the next question was what does she get for flea and tick prevention? Millie had been getting Nexguard once a month for more than six months. The treatment plan was easy; no more Nexguard and let’s schedule a spa time for the poor itchy girl who was now showing balding spots from her excessive scratching. Two days later Millie was in the bathtub. First step was a lovely gentle exfoliant vigorously massaged all over her torso. Once the dead skin and hair were thoroughly rinsed a detox mask with an added skin enhancer was applied. Millie was then wrapped with warm towels and rubbed for ten minutes. Again the product, more dead hair and contaminants were rinsed away. The next step was a rich organic avocado and natural antibiotic mask applied all over and massaged in as well. As the avocado mask was rinsed a shiny chestnut coat was revealed. A mineral rich shampooing ending with a pH balancing conditioner rounded out the forty-five minute bathtub experience.

Millie happily jumped out of the bathtub smelling like a lovely salad. Three days later, still no itching. In addition to no more Nexguard, Millie’s diet was changed to something completely different just because her owner wanted to do better for Millie. A non-toxic alternative will be used in the future to prevent against fleas and ticks; Wendy’s Bug Balm. Millie was reportedly continuing to smell like “delicious soup” while still being soft and no more itching.

Five days later Millie’s itching was back. Millie was eating a completely new diet and loving it much more than her previous food. Since the itching was very likely a byproduct of stress to Millie’s liver; a liver detox and regeneration supplement, as well as a little raw liver were added to her meal once a day for six days. Unfortunately, since internal flea and tick products are created to remain in the body for one month or three, any negative side effects of the drugs remain for that long as well. Two weeks later, Millie was itching minimally. Millie’s coat was a lovely rich chestnut once again and in the sun she was very shiny. “The bug balm seems to be working great -- the last couple weeks we were pretty much finding a tick on her head/face every time she went for a walk, and since we've been using the bug balm we haven't found any. :) She has almost totally stopped scratching!! I think the coconut oil in the Bug Balm was really good for her skin.”

There are so many similar stories to Millie’s. Read more about the dangers of internal flea and tick preventatives, diet, allergies and more as The Pet Campus Chronicles continue.

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