Got a dog with skin problems? Don’t expect to find a “Magic Bullet”
Does your dog itch? Is he scratching, biting, licking or chewing? Is there hair loss, odor, blackening skin problems or ear infections? Have you been led to believe that this is all allergy related? Maybe it’s time to rethink the situation. This problem plagues so many dogs in this country. Anyone can figure that out by the number of internet searches that are done for “dog allergies”. We also know first-hand from the volume of calls we get on a weekly basis from people whose pets are affected by these symptoms. Most of the time, they’ve already been to the vet for a round or two of antibiotics/steroids, only to have the symptoms return after the meds have worn off. Sound familiar? If so, this article is for you – or any pet parent dealing with dog skin problems.
Well, if it’s not allergies, then what is it? All of the symptoms mentioned above are part and parcel of a Systemic Yeast Infection. An SYI stems from a breakdown of the natural environment of the GI tract. In other words, something comes along to upset the balance of the natural bacteria in the gut which allows for the overspreading of yeast – a fungal organism. A fungus is much more hearty and opportunistic than its bacterial counterpart and readily advances into areas that used to be occupied by healthy bacteria. Are you starting to see the picture? In time, the gut becomes over-run with fungal yeast. Its toxic by-products are carried by the bloodstream to the skin where they get filtered out. THIS is what is at the ROOT of the problem.
What can be done for it? Well, we have already touched on mainline approaches, but they never solve the problem. That is because they are aimed only at the symptoms. Antibiotics may clear the skin up temporarily, but at the same time, they also kill beneficial bacteria needed to keep yeast in check. So after a round has gone through the body, the problem is generally worse than before. Steroids “work” by suppressing the immune response to the toxins being released from the skin. But, being an immune suppressant, the whole body can be affected in an adverse way, including the liver and other organs… AND, after a round has gone through the body, the problem is generally worse than before. “Magic Bullets”, as referred to in this article, are singular products that seem to take a one-sided approach to what is clearly a multi-faceted problem. Many of them are good, decent supplements, but cannot wrap up all that needs to be accomplished in one, single product. That is a pipe dream.
What we suggest. Use natural products to reverse the process that led to this imbalance. Because this requires a detoxification process, the dogs will often go through a period of “worse before better”, as their bodies expel the toxins that have been building up over time. Our 4-Part/5-Step program for addressing a yeast problem: If you were to draw a circle on a piece of paper, then divide it into 4 even sections, like a pie, that will begin to help you visualize what needs to be done to correct a yeast problem. Each piece of that circle is very important, but by itself is not enough to provide the complete answer. Please have a look at these 4 important steps:
- Stop Feeding the Yeast – Yeast (Candida) is fed by sugars. Simple starches convert to sugar more quickly creating feedstuffs for yeast. What you feed your dog is critical to help him overcome this problem. Pet foods that use simple starches as the primary carbohydrate are a problem, whether that carb source is from grains or non-grains. Please see our list of recommended foods here.
- Fight the Fungus – In order to reclaim the gut with good bacteria, you must first kill off the yeast to make room for it. Yeast is very tenacious, so this process takes time. Our Ox-E-Drops and Tincture of Blackleaf apply a 1-2 punch to this problem. Ox-E-Drops help to increase the pH in the gut, creating a less hospitable environment for yeast to flourish. Blackleaf is a combination of Black Walnut and Olive Leaf extracts. It is a tremendous immune booster and has natural yeast-fighting properties.
- Antioxidant Support – During a yeast cleanse, a dog’s body can really go through an ordeal. This is the part we emphasize as “worse before better.” Since yeast is now dying off at a rapid pace, the body needs extra immune support for healing and repair. Antioxidants fill that requirement. Our Antioxidant Treats or Sprouted Granules supply the body with antioxidant enzymes, which are nature’s own tools for detoxification. Initially, they are instrumental in helping to carry out the dying toxins. Once the dog turns a corner, they are an invaluable part of the restoration process.
- Re-establish Good Bacteria – Probiotics. They are absolutely essential to reclaiming the gut. Bac-Pak Plus is a microencapsulated digestive enzyme/probiotic combination. The micro-encapsulation protects the probiotics from being destroyed by stomach acids during digestion. It ensures that more viable bacteria survive to populate the upper and lower GI tract.
In a Nutshell: This 4-part approach is all about killing off the bad guys, flushing them out of the system, and bringing in the good guys to replace them, and resume their rightful place as ‘masters of the gut environment’. So, it’s out with the old and in with the new. This process is accomplished little by little, day by day. Overall, we expect a 2 to 5 month period to see the pets turned around with the surface symptoms, and 1 to 2 years to fully restore the natural gut flora. The long-term maintenance is an easy pill to swallow considering the cost is but pennies per day. After such good results, many people choose to safeguard their pets by continuing with these products for life.