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Discussion Starter #1
My black lab is now 10 1/2 yrs old and i am not happy with her coat. I havent changed her dog food or routine but this year her coat has not been great. She usually has such a black gleaming coat it has a blue sheen and this year it has been very brown, and it is falling out in handfuls and her skin is all flacky. I have put her on to cod liver oil and gave her a wash with cold tar shampoo and i have been brushing her every day for a couple of weeks. the coat is starting to get very thin in places now and the hair is showing no sign of stopping. She never used to cast like this and if she did when she was younger it was usually around dec time. Is there anything i could give her to help with her coat or anything i could do your help would be much appreciated thanks
 

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Have you taken her to a vet? Sounds like it could be hypothyroidism given her age.
 

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And is the "cold tar shampoo" specifically formulated for dogs?

Human skin is about 100-120 degrees or steps more acid than dog skin (which is much more neutral). Using a shampoo formulated correctly for humans will be very incorrect and irritating to dogs' skin; for dogs, use only a shampoo specifically formulated for dogs -- no human baby shampoo, etc. -- otherwise it's too irritating.

Here's a copy of a post I've often made:

I'm sensitive about using human shampoo on dogs because I made that mistake with my black Lab, Bess. I used baby shampoo on her in the misguided belief it was gentle. As a result, she had fairly constant dandruff -- no doubt from the skin irritation caused by the shampoo (which I didn't realize until Puff).

The link below describes the pH scale which is the scientific measure of how acidic or alkaline a substance is. The scale ranges from 0.0 (most acidic) through 7.0 (neutral, like distilled water) to 14.0 (most alkaline AKA base/basic)

http://www.elmhurst.edu/~chm/vchembook/184ph.html


The graph in the link below compares the pH values for humans and various animals. You'll note that human skin has a pH value around 4.8 (acidic) while Labrador skin has a pH around 6.8.

Since pH values are on a logarithmic scale, a value on the scale that differs from another by as much as 1.0 (say 6.1 and 7.1 or 8.6 and 9.6) is 10X that of another that's 1.0 distant. So, since the skin of humans and Labradors are 2 whole integers apart (4.8 to 6.8 ) that's 10 x 10 = 100; so human skin is 100 times more acidic than Labrador skin.

http://publications.royalcanin.com/...102343&com=27&animal=0&lang=2&session=6478160


 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
thanks bob pr yeah it is dog shampoo, I will probably take her to the vets as she needs her teeth cleaned and her stomach has went a bit hard and bloaty and she has been tormented by male dogs again she is spade and has had a problem before where they hadn't spade her properly. smelt in season every 6 months in her normal pattern and dogs were tormenting her to the point she was turning on them. We insisted she was still comming into season but vets wouldnt listen. she also went so sore she couldn't even jump in and out of passenger side of the car with out yelping insisted she had hip displacer and only 4 years old. So went to another vet said next time you think she is in season take her to the vets insist they open her and if they dont they would do it and charge other vet if something came back.
Well they opened her and what did they find they had infact left a bit of ovarian tissue and it had produced 6 egss for the 6 seasons which had no where to go so had attached onto the tissue and turned to cysts so she had 6 cysts which we were told if they had not opened her when they did it would have turned cancerous very quick. she has had no bother since, untill last sept and again their in march, dogs which dont usually bother were annoying her so i am worried incase their is another problem. They did also x-ray her hips while she was out for the operation which came back 100% fine. She still seems active but it still on the back of my mind

Baloo317
I never thought about he thyroid gland When she was younger the vets that spade her checked her thyoid gland just after they spade her and said she had an under active thyoid gland and she was on 300mg of thyroxine a day which we questioned other vets as she was very lean and had no signs of an underactive thyroid. We were told to take her off them as she was so young and i think it was checked again and came back fine. She was also on steriods when she was younger but again she took a turn one day when she was two and after that we weaned her of all her tablets she was on antibiotics, steriods and throxine as she had itchy skin when she was younger and often rubbed her self into sores on her stomach. But it has been 8 years since she was on any of them and we have just kept her of grass as it was a grass allergy which caused it. And managed her through routine and she never looked back. sorry for such a long post But i think i will just take her to the vets and see what they think
 
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