Thursday, April 09, 2009

My Labrador Retriever's coat stinks - part I

Subject: My black Labrador Retriever's coat really stinks.

From: Bev (Canada)

Labrador Retriever Name: Jet

This is part one of a two part e-mail.

Reader's E-mail - Bev Writes:

He swims in the lake all weekend when we’re at the boat and I can’t get his coat to smell nice, it’s like its imbedded right into his skin. I’ve tried all the “dog” shampoo’s was told to wipe him with a bounce sheet but that didn’t work… any suggestions.

His name is Jet (cause he’s jet black J) and he will be 4 in Oct, he also was my ring bearer J at my wedding last year.

Bev

All About Labradors Response:

Hello Bev,

The information given here is to help you learn more about your Labrador Retriever and not to replace your veterinarian's advice. Disclaimer

Continue Reading...
I do recommend a visit to your veterinarian for most problems with your Labrador Retrievers but will also list some suggestions that might help.

How are you? My apologies for the delayed response as I receive many questions at the All About Labradors blog and it does take me some time to answer them all.

Thank you for your question and for the wonderful photos of Jet. How did he do as your ring bearer?

Bev, I need you to make sure of two things. The first thing I want you to check is to make sure it's Jet's coat that smells and not his ears, as infected ears can give off a strong foul odor. If you do determine it is his ears an appointment with your veterinarian is advisable. Let me know if this is the case as I have further information I can give to you to help out with ear infections.

The second thing is to check to make sure the smell is to his whole coat and not just the area around his rectum, as this could be a problem with his anal glands. With this you will notice a strong unpleasant smelling odor (sort of metallic odor). You might also notice some scooting of the rear end on the ground, licking or chewing at the area, or any other sign of discomfort in this region. Once again let me know as I can also provide you with information to help with this.

If you notice no problems with the first two things I mentioned here, there's a possibility that Jet has some sort of skin problem. An bad odor from your Labrador Retrievers coat is often a sign of a skin infection.

What you need to do is to take a look at Jet's skin. Look through his fur to see if you notice any open sores, pimples, boils, or rashes.

Yeast infections are common in dogs that love the water, and who loves the water better than our Labrador Retrievers. Without proper drying of Jet (the quick shake that he does doesn't always do the trick), warm, moist areas are left on his body and in ears where the yeast love to breed.

A good dog degreasing shampoo may be helpful, but if there is an infection on the skin, oral antibiotics or oral antifungals will be prescribed by a veterinarian.

If you suspect a yeast infection, you can try a solution made from equal parts white vinegar and water. This can help to prevent yeast infections, by lowering the skins pH. Spray it on his coat and leave it on without rinsing off.

Do you notice Jet's coat to be dull, dry, greasy or scaly. If so, a cause of the problem can be Seborrhea. Seborrhea is a common skin disorder resulting in excessively greasy or dry skin. Seborrhea can be dry (seborrhea secca) or oily (seborrhea oleosa). Your veterinarian will run test to try to find the underlying cause if Seborrhea is suspected. Shampoos and conditioners can be used to control Seborrhea.

You also want to make sure you're feeding Jet a high quality dog food as odors come from within. Let me know what you feed Jet (brand, flavor, treats, etc)

Supplementation with essential fatty acids can also be of great help to Jet.

Bev, read over the above information, checking the first two things I've asked you to check, answer any other questions I have asked, and get back to me. We will then work from there.

Talk to you soon,

Fay

Reader's E-mail - Bev's Response:

Thanks Fay,

Jet did an excellent job as ring bearer J!

He doesn’t have an ear infection but I do know he suffers from the gland issue you described… his mom has it too, I didn’t know if could make him stink though. Are you going to tell me I have to stick my finger in his anus to squeeze out the puss, I’m told that’s what the master of his mom does… I think I’ll just take him to his vet.

Bev

To read part two of this e-mail visit My Labrador Retriever's coat stinks - part II

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