@Kerrie: Agree with DBL comments! Have found “less is more” as a good approach to life, focus on great nutrition / enough sleep & exercise and then get out of the way so Mother Nature can work her magic healing. “Health of the host” is most important, if the immune system is well-supported, then vaccinations / medications / topical treatments are typically unnecessary.
My dog, Doot, is a long, leggy Retriever/CoonHound (?) mix, about 70#. Although I’m vegan, he isn’t so I HAVE been dealing with the raw food diet. That’s what seems to work best for him (I tell myself to “put on your big girl panties and just deal with it” when handling the raw meat). I was intrigued to learn some bodies can react differently to raw meat vs. a cooked version thereof due to chemical changes brought about by the cooking process. Doot has allergies and apparently a somewhat compromised digestive system. Best management technique is 4-5 smaller meals per day. Feeding too much at a time = vomit, especially just before bed because digestive system shuts down, 6-8 hours later he will have full rice grains in his vomit -- they haven’t been processed at ALL! Just finishing the 2nd month of Dr. Pitcairn’s “Dog Allergy” diets highly, this HAS definitely reduced Doot’s itching (although it’s not entirely gone so now I’m on a mission to figure out what’s contributing environmentally).
Doot’s itching takes the form of rub-the-nose-on-the-carpet-or-door-jam-or-chair-leg, and occasionally he would lick-lick-lick his paws. He gets a very red patch just under his chin and in the middle of his belly, THAT one has little pimply-blackhead-looking spots. This indicates an internal problem, manifesting outwardly. Since switching to this diet & smaller/more frequent meals, I no longer have vomiting unless I mess up with quantity/meal timing. Doot’s nose rubbing is now just a few swipes post-meal (have read this is a “clean-up/get rid of the smell” technique) and his red chin/belly spots are much smaller.
Have found the raw ground turkey + oats recipe work best for him, he really doesn’t like (but will eventually eat) the raw ground lamb (regardless of whether mixed with oats, rice or millet). Rice grains don’t process in his system unless I puree them first. Of course he needs the oil + bone meal (added into the grain/meat mixture) and daily multi-vitamin + sodium ascorbate (vitamin c powder) added fresh daily at the noon meal. I try to buy only organic rice/oats/millet, hard to find organic lamb or turkey so I opt for “natural / grass-fed”. I use NOW brand bone meal (yes, I know it’s from US cattle so potentially higher lead content but haven’t been able to locate any scientific studies proving cattle from countries with fewer cars have lower heavy metal content in their bone meal), NOW brand Sodium Ascorbate, Animal Essential’s Herbal Multi-Vitamin for Dogs & Cats and then unrefined, organic, expeller or cold-pressed sunflower oil (Hain brand is what my local store carries) or canola or safflower oil, alternating each time I cook.
Doot gets brushed a couple times per week and for the rare shampoo I use castille soap (Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap, dilluted) and a good water rinse & towel dry.
Hope your English Bulldog is doing better, best of luck!
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