Jenny is once again going through some itchy spells. She sometimes gets hives and sometimes these weird little sores on her belly. It got bad right before the trials so I put her on some Temeril-P. It is a low dose steroid and NOT something I want to use long term. But I needed to give her some relief from the itching and the benedryl wasn't enough so I admit I caved to a fast solution. Once she got better I weaned her off it and she was good for about a week. Then she went swimming so I gave her a bath afterwards and that seemed to make her itchy again. It is fustrating. I hate feeling helpless when she is uncomfortable.
She is better overall right now but not 100%. To keep her busy, and in theory her mind off itching, I got her some extra recreational bones. (photo above) Because they are so big I remove most of the marrow to prevent a diarrhea blowout. Marrow is yummy but rich for some dogs. It does seem to be working though because she has been itching less when she's not distracted by her chewing the bones.*
Because of her issues I am going back to a full raw diet with her to see if that helps. I am fortunate to have a full freezer full of deer meat that my husband saved from meat cutting season just for the dogs. I have been lazy lately and had backslid to feeding kibble full time. It was grain free in case the grain was a trigger for her itching due to her being allergic to grain mites per her allergy testing.*
The first batch is thawing now. My plan this time is to mix it up with the stuff I add (like calcium because it is bone free, pre-biotics, fish oil, etc.) and pre-freeze it into the amounts that each dog needs per meal. Then I can take each days out to thaw in the am and go from there. I thought this might help in the long run. A few days of prep work that should make it easier in the long run. Especially for days when the kids or husband end up feeding the dogs. This is one reason I like Primal brand raw so much. It comes in ready to go nuggets or patties. If I could afford it I'd probably just feed those. Have I mentioned I am lazy?? In my defense I do have TWO jobs on top of kids and all that a busy life brings to the table.
I also signed up to a Natural Healthcare for Dogs e-mail discussion list so I can get some feedback, ideas and hand holding as needed. I second guess myself a lot so having like minded people to bounce things off is helpful. I'm also thinking about a visit to a Holistic vet to get their input. I just need to research the two nearest me to see which one I should go to. Both are about 45 minutes away from me. (in opposite directions ironically) While I do like my vets, I work for them so I know them well, I think it never hurts to get a second (or third) opinion when things aren't working the way you would like. We do differ on the raw feeding debate and have come to a respectful understanding to disagree on the subject. I feel like I am at a point of nothing ventured nothing gained.*
Wish us luck.