Question from Shell Cottam:
My Bichon friese keeps goin for his side and making bald patchers, we are have in to keep his cone on to stop it, is there anything you can recommend to stop him doin this please
Answer from Shanika Winters:
Hi Shell and thank you for your question regarding your dog going for his side. I will discuss some possible reasons for your dog’s behaviour and then possible ways to tackle these.
From what you are describing it sounds as though your dog is biting and or scratching at himself to the extent that he is losing his hair. I am sure that both you and your dog would be a lot happier if he did not have to keep a cone on his head long term to prevent his hair loss. The first think we need to do is find out the history of how your dog is in general and how long the condition has been going on. Your vet will ask you some of the following questions:
Is your dog generally well?
By this we mean is he eating, drinking, toileting, happy to exercise and generally acting as normal other than the condition you have brought him in for. We ask this as underlying illnesses can sometime show up in unexpected ways, so something you may not at first think is linked to the hair loss could be. An example of this would be if your dog was generally listless and not as keen to exercise along with hair loss this may suggest an underactive thyroid gland.
How long has the condition been present and has it changed?
Your vet will want to know when the condition first started and if there were any particular changes at this time e.g. getting a new pet, change of food, starting a new job all things that can help us to work out why your dog is losing hair and if the situation is stable, improving or getting worse. It is really important to tell your vet if you have already tried any treatments….