The author, Elena Gainoulina, veterinarian, expert in cynology, owner of the canine breeding center “De Panda Charme”
Alopecia in the spitz is a widespread phenomenon. The veterinary checklists do not give a clear explanation of the origins of this problem by simply indicating that its causes remain unknown. This is why alopecia in spitz is often called “alopecia iks” (also called “black skin disease”, “BSD (Black Skin Disease)”, “alopecia X”). The best dog breeding centers in the world are trying to find a cure for alopecia.
As a veterinarian who has been responsible for breeding Pomeranian spitz for several years, I would like to set out my observations on this subject. As a general rule, alopecia in the spitz is a consequence of mistakes made in the diet and bad maintenance of the coat, as well as a lack of walks. Male dogs are more often affected by this disease than females. All these questions are discussed in turn below.
The maintenance of the coat.
The healthy spitz has good jars (cover hairs) and a very dense down (undercoat). The more woolly a puppy’s hair is, the more attractive it is for potential buyers, but very often new happy owners do not know how to properly maintain the thick or “fleece” coat. If bathing and brushing a puppy are rare, or if the disentangling is not deep, it quickly leads to the appearance of inextricable knots called “stuffs”, “catons”, “tapons” … By therefore, molting being hampered, the hair follicles remain inactive. This is how alopecia emerges.
How to avoid alopecia in Pomeranian spitz?
First of all, do not read and follow the advice to wash the dog no more than once in six months. This recommendation is only good for short haired dogs with no undercoat for dogs that live outdoors. It is essential to wash the spitz once a week using moisturizing shampoos and conditioners of the highest possible quality. The washing gently removes dead hair while a good conditioner moisturizes the coat become too dry because of the air in the apartment or heating.
Then, it is necessary to carefully untangle the hair after having previously hydrated with the conditioner diluted in water in the following proportions: ten volumes of water for a volume of conditioner. Sprinkle the coat with the spray solution, wait a few minutes (1-3 minutes), and then gently prune the dog’s hair with the help of the card in the direction of the hair. The skin massage provided during the brushing improves blood circulation, strengthens the hair follicles and contributes to the change of the so-called baby hair. It is recommended to brush 3 times a week.
The spitz is not a house dog, you have to walk it regularly. Every day, whatever the weather, and especially in winter, because the cool weather stimulates hair growth. It must be taken into consideration that male spitz requires in particular greater attention to their walks.
It should be noted here, as a precaution, that the spitz does not need clothes: neither warm nor cold nor beautiful clothes. Exceptionally, a light raincoat may occasionally be used if the weather is particularly bad, although the healthy Spitz is inherently waterproof.
Everyone knows that you have to feed the dog either high quality, high quality industrial food or good and well balanced home food. According to the latest research on metabolism in Pomeranian spitz, about 60% of nutrients are used to build and grow fur! Nevertheless many owners stubbornly neglect the recommendations.
Puppies are fed sweet, fatty, smoked, salty. Every breeder and every veterinarian has heard thousands of times say, “It’s just a little piece,” “He loves it,” he does not eat anything else, “or my favorite phrase,” We’ve always fed our dogs and it has never been a problem. While the puppies, these little manipulators, enjoy them and refuse to eat the croquettes by claiming cheese, sausage, cakes and many other things. We give him more because the little one is hungry. How familiar are you? As a result, the pancreas, liver and all the digestive system are affected. The dog can be followed by diarrhea, metabolic disorder and many other problems including fur problems.
The symptoms of alopecia.
How to identify the disease at the earliest? The first thing that should warn you is the dryness of the coat. If your puppy suddenly starts to look like a stunned hairdresser’s victim and his hair becomes very dry, spoiled, with a “straw” texture, as if burned by aggressive chemical staining, you need to act urgently .
Other symptoms of the onset of disease: the case where a puppy at the age of one year has no jars (hairs) on the back; as well as the appearance of “holes” in the fur on the hind legs or on the tail.
How to treat alopecia?
First of all you have to start by washing a dog once every 3 days using the Nizoral shampoo (you can find it in a pharmacy) for a month (so 10 times in total). Very often during the onset of the symptoms described above, the cutaneous immune system is weakened which consequently leads to fungal infections. Even if your veterinarian has not been able to diagnose the skin condition, I advise you to use Nizoral anyway because on the one hand, many fungal infections are very difficult to diagnose and on the other hand, in no way Nizoral will not hurt your dog.
At the end of treatment with Nizoral, it would be useful to switch to shampoo or tarry soap. By cons it is essential to apply after a very good moisturizing conditioner. My favorite conditioner is ARTERO Protein vital.
In parallel with the washing:
– Therapeutic vaccination: the Polivak-TM vaccine (the vaccine contains eight types of Microsporum and Trichophyton fungi), the dosage of which must be adjusted according to the weight of a dog.The vaccine is administered intramuscularly and provides two injections. The injection must be made in one paw and in ten days in the other.
– Give the antihistamine drug (such as Fenistil / Zyrtec / Suprastin) and provide pest control to eliminate fleas and ticks. The use of an antihistamine drug is essential because of a very common allergic reaction caused by the pest control.
In my experience, the safest and most reliable pest control drug is Stronghold (available in veterinary pharmacies, dosage consistent with a dog’s weight). Very good reputation is also maintained by Bravecto chewable tablets for dogs. But be careful, do not give two drugs at the same time, either one of your choice!
– The emulsified denatured placenta (PDE) has also been proven. You can find it in pharmacy for injections which is better or to drink. It is a toning cocktail containing amino acids, vitamins and microelements. This product can be administered by the dermal route. Before rubbing the placenta on the skin, it must first be carefully prepared. For this purpose, take a scrub product of good quality (you can find it in the beauty department shelves in reputable stores), and after washing your little one, erase it thoroughly. Rinse and then wipe your dog with a towel and apply the placenta by rubbing the product on the skin.
– It would be useful to buy a dermaroller (roller needle) and roll on your dog by renewing the procedure once in 3-5 days. It is quite possible that this cure is not too appreciated by your little one but this treatment remains very effective.
In addition to all that is mentioned above, I strongly advise you to give your dog vitamins and probiotics (dietary supplement). Lactis Zoo and FortiFlora are among the best. In addition, vitamin-rich oils are also good for a dog’s health, but they must be used with strict adherence to the indicated dosage.
If the necessary measures have not been taken in time and your little spitz has lost its hair, be patient, the treatment could take between 6 and 12 months. The first results will be visible in about 2 months: on the skin of a dog appear first spots that then peel, and soon after pushes the down.
In the vast majority of cases, the strict and rigorous application of all the recommendations mentioned above contributes to the complete healing of a dog. Even if the condition of your little Spitz remains deplorable and everything seems hopeless, do not give up, it is certainly possible to remedy this situation.
Alopecia also affects dogs in adulthood, very often as a result of the very short cutting of the hair with a lawnmower or scissors.
What else ? In the treatment of alopecia, therapy should begin with the preliminary use of the attenuated methods described above for the recovery of the immune system and metabolism, which is effective in 95 % of cases. Most veterinarians seek first to rule out Kuching’s disease or thyroid problems. Because these diseases are very difficult to detect, veterinary surgeons most often take blind and haphazard measures and prescribe hard hormone therapy to withstand and serious side effects. Do not do it ! Reserve these methods in case all the other measures taken remain ineffective, but I can not stop repeating that the main cause of alopecia is certainly poor dog maintenance and immune or metabolic dysfunction. .
Many veterinary doctors offer to treat alopecia to castrate the dog. The application of this measure is only justified if the undeniable hormonal dysfunction is well diagnosed in the young. It must again be emphasized here that the established diagnosis may be wrong. To this day I do not know any specialists to whom I could give full confidence on this question. Incorrect treatment with hormones can hurt the dog or even cause death. Unfortunately, this fact is not uncommon.
There is another fairly common mistake: if the skin has become dark, it is certainly a black skin disease. If the skin is not covered by the hair, especially in summer, it is browned by the sun and is pigmented black.
The guarantee granted by the breeder does not apply to alopecia X, as well as to any other disease caused by a bad guard and an incorrect maintenance of a dog.
To summarize: feed your dog properly, take care of his fur and walk with your baby every day! All of this will help you avoid developing alopecia on your Pomeranian spitz.