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My family is a new owner of a Pit Bull Terrier, Fern, 4 1/2 yrs old. We adopted her from the local shelter. She is very calm and loving. My problem is that after my daughter and I were away for 4 days (Fern was home alone with my husband, who is not her primary caretaker), we noticed that Fern had bitten an area at the root of her tail, and also another area on her foot. The tail has 2 scabs, and the foot has a wet, moist area where she has bitten away her coat. I should mention that she was being treated for a hot spot on her neck, which was 95% cleared up when we left for vacation. I am somewhat distressed because I already spent $200 taking her to the vet for the hot spot on her neck. We are new to owning a pet, and I am finding that is like having a newborn. Right now, I am going to wait to take her to the vet. I have an appt for the Lyme vaccine, and will get counsel then if the condition persists.

My question: why do dogs bite the area on their tail, and the bony area on their foot? (she is on Frontline, and I have checked her for fleas/ticks --- I didn't see any) Do you think the itchiness could be because my husband didn't brush her while we were gone? I read that she needs to brushed every 1-2 days to keep her coat shiny. Do you think she may have just been bored (my husband says she moped around and missed me and my daughter terribly) --- she was in her crate more often than when my daughter and I are home.

Any insight would be appreciated.
 

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…I am no expert and I am interested to hear what the others have to say about this but two possibilities come to mind. Is she more attached to you? She could have separation anxiety or more likely you are feeding her grocery store food. Grocery store food i.e. Pedigree, Purina, Beneiful, etc are sub par foods and can cause itchy flaky skin. I would go to a Pet store and pick up a better food they are not much more expensive and your dog will have better skin/health. Here is a link that rates different foods Nutro is a good food and very affordable, I feed mine Natures Recipe (available at Petsmart $26 for a 40lb bag)http://www.bulldogbreeds.com/discuss/viewtopic.php?t=642
 

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She is most attached to me. I am the primary person that takes her out to do her business, takes her on walks, and my daughter and I are the ones that feed her. Fern went nuts when we arrived home today. We paid more attention/kisses to her, than to my husband when we got out of the car :)

We are currently feeding her Purina -- that's what the Humane Society gave us when we adopted her --- and we've continued to feed her the Purina. I will consider changing her food, at the approx. $26, it is only a few dollars more than what we are paying.
 

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sbaxter133 said:
She is most attached to me. I am the primary person that takes her out to do her business, takes her on walks, and my daughter and I are the ones that feed her. Fern went nuts when we arrived home today. We paid more attention/kisses to her, than to my husband when we got out of the car :)
Get him to play a special game when ya'll leave or have him give her a special treat when ya'll leave. Basically have try to make you leaving a good experience however fits you best get creative that is always fun.

sbaxter133 said:
We are currently feeding her Purina -- that's what the Humane Society gave us when we adopted her --- and we've continued to feed her the Purina. I will consider changing her food, at the approx. $26, it is only a few dollars more than what we are paying.
It is not that expensive for us every day pet owners but when you think of the quanty they have to buy $6 extra makes a big difference. But you will a big difference in her coat, skin, and over time health.

Good luck with everything come back and post soem pictures...Glad to have you here :D [/quote]
 

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Not just her coat, skin etc - but she will actually eat LESS of the quality kibble then the store bought stuff. Which means it figures out to being relativly cheaper per serving so a bag of the "good stuff" should last longer then a bag of the cheaper stuff.
 

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Definitely change her food. I could almost guarantee a stop in hot spots, and chewing if she were fed a quality kibble. Read the sticky on good foods at the top of this section. Yes, you feed less of it as quality food is more easily absorbed and utilized by the dog. There will be less poos, healthy skin/coat, healthier dog. Purina and other cheap brands contain corn, wheat, soy and by-products ..all of these things can cause severe allergic reactions in dogs and have no nutritional value to a dog whatsoever. Make sure and do a gradual changeover throughout a week....an immediate changeover can upset thier tummy and cause gas and/or diarreah.

I would also recommend Fish Oil...you can buy doggie brands in a pump bottle, or feed human fish oil pills (which can be bought at any vitamin store or vitmain section) 1000mg daily to start and increase by 1000mg weekly until maximum dose is acheived. Fish Oil is high in Omega Fatty acids and is essential to healthy skin and coat. Most dog foods don't contain enough.

She may have some separation anxiety or just get bored spending more time in her crate. This can lead to neurotic chewing. Put a Kong or Raw beef bone in for her to chew on or some other bully safe chew to keep her busy.
 
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