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Old 08-24-2014, 09:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Tansy has extremely dry skin - almost out of nowhere! (pics)

Hi everyone!

So a few days ago, I noticed a lot of dry skin flakes around Tansy's cage. I picked her up and was surprised to see dandruff all over her body, as well as various places in her cage, and in her sleeping area. She also has dry ears (not tattered, just dry), and a little bit of her hair has been falling out.

Nothing has really changed, except that I haven't been able to wash her lining for about a week and a half now. Also, I did change from Tide Free detergent to a generic brand (still scent and dye-free); could something in the detergent be irritating her skin? Also, does not washing the liner as frequently cause dry skin?

I've been putting flax seed oil on her food every 3-4 days. I've been doing this for about a month, and so far, I've seen little to no improvement. Now, she has dry skin, almost out of nowhere! Could it be that she's allergic to it? I'm just trying to figure out the root problem, since pretty much nothing else has changed recently, except for her food (changed to raw diet) and flax seed oil. I'm pretty sure it's not mites, because I haven't really let my dogs near her, she hasn't been outside at all, plus I don't see any noticeable bald patches. I'm assuming she's been scratching though, since I've been seeing a lot of dandruff in her cage, but she hasn't been doing it during our bonding time. Also, I gave her her usual oatmeal baths about a week ago (I usually do an oatmeal bath with an olive oil rinse twice a month).

I've heard of the spray, Humilac, working wonders on dry skin. Has anybody tried this?

Thanks for any tips or suggestions in advance!





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Old 08-24-2014, 10:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Humilac works great with Penny.
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Old 08-24-2014, 10:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I love oatmeal baths for dry skin. I prepare the oatmeal water before hand but just place oatmeal in some water and transferring that water to a rinse cup. Wash her like you normally do, minus any soap if you want, and then rinse her off really good. Then rinse her with the oatmeal water. I move their quills to get it onto their skin and get their bellies too. I find that the first couple of days there doesn't seem to be any change but a few days later you should notice a difference.

My Winter had the worse dry skin. Like Tansy, I was finding dry skin flakes EVERYWHERE! I thought he had mites. But luckily it was just really bad skin and an oatmeal bath really helped him out.
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Old 08-25-2014, 05:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the suggestions! I've been doing oatmeal baths though, which is why this is so surprising. But I'll definitely try moving her quills around to make sure it gets on her skin - that's a really good idea. If it doesn't clear up in a couple days I'll get the Humilac.
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Old 08-25-2014, 06:17 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If you noticed the dry skin after changing laundry soap that could be part of the problem. I'd switch back to the soap you were using before and see if that helps.
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Old 08-26-2014, 11:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks Nikki, I am definitely going to make the switch back to Tide Free; I read the label on the generic brand and it does have a few more chemicals in there, so I'm thinking that's the main culprit. Thanks for all the help!
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Old 08-26-2014, 06:54 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I have a thought related to diet. Sometimes when they switch to a healthier food they get better before they get worse. It's because the damaged hair/skin/quills are replaced by healthier hair/skin/quills. The book I'm reading calls this "raw diet detox" and mentions that it's not common, but that it happens.

Also, the author suggests using fish oil instead of flaxseed oil because the Omega Essential Fatty Oils in flaxseed aren't "activated" and so need enzymes (normally found in the GI tract) to make them usable. But this is mostly a problem with older or sick animals (and I don't know how old Tansy is off the top of my head) so may or may not be relevant.
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Old 08-26-2014, 07:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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They get worse before they get better?
The diet thing makes a lot of sense actually. A change in diet along with the change in detergent could have been a catalyst for the change in her skin
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