Archive for March, 2012


You are a conscientious dog owner, aren’t you? When she started scooting across the floor, you looked at her rear end and saw that it was crusty, red and inflamed. You did a little Internet research and realized Paloma’s anal gland was infected. You took her to the vet who confirmed your suspicions. The vet cleaned out her anal sac and gave you a tube and told you to apply it to the affected area twice a day for a week.

Remember the time that Paloma and you were hiking and she ran after a wild animal and when she finally came back, she was bleeding from her paw. Upon examination, you noticed her paw pad had a perfect crescent shaped cut. You can’t recall the last time Paloma yelped out in pain, so this seemed serious to you. Once you got her in the car, it didn’t look like the kind of cut that would heal on its own, so you took her to the vet. The vet stitched her up and asked if you had any more of the tube he gave you for her infected anal gland. Surprised, you wondered how an ointment for a bacterial infection and inflammation would also be indicated for a cut.

Well, the ointment in that tube is no ordinary antibiotic, anti-inflammatory and pain cream. It’s called Animax and many vets hail its healing abilities because it is commonly used as an almost “cure all” for many things that plague dogs.

Whether acute or chronic, at some point, most dogs will present with some form of dermatitis. Dermatitis is a general diagnosis given when the vet notices Paloma’s skin is inflamed. It can be the cause of an allergy, perhaps to wheat or other grains, or something more serious.

Contact Dermatitis usually presents with red and swollen skin that could also have blisters. Frequently itchy, it is not uncommon for the infected area to seep or ooze. Often the result of brushing up against something, thus the name, symptoms usually occur within 48 hours of Paloma coming in contact with the culprit.

Seborrheic Dermatitis, although less common in dogs than humans, is obvious because the affected area can be scaly, greasy, yellowish, swollen and could be either moist or dry to the touch. Can show up near her genitalia, on the muzzle, top of the head, or Paloma’s stomach.

Eczematous Dermatitis is also an uncommon skin condition for dogs, but they do occur. It presents in the same manner as Eczema does in humans. In between their toes, near her anus, and on the inside of her elbows, these circular patches are crusty, flakey and extremely itchy. They are easily inflamed and often painful. Just as in humans, Eczematous Dermatitis can lay dormant and out of the blue flairs up can occur.

Depending upon the severity or frequency of the Dermatitis, your vet might prescribe Animax to be applied as flair ups occur or as a prophylactic.

Another catchall phrase that describes inflammation or an infection, Otitis is most often found in or around the ears of dogs. Flair ups can be considered acute or chronic. It is not uncommon for the inflammation to turn into an infection. It is quite common if the Otitis is not just itchy but inflamed and painful that your vet will recommend you apply Animax both in the ear and around it.

It isn’t the pretty part of dog ownership, but dogs are scavengers. We may have domesticated them, for all intents and purposes, but there are some things that are just hard wired into their being. They eat all sorts of things that are disgusting: feces of myriad animals, including their own, cats’, chickens, and sometimes some animal that left his droppings long before you arrived on the scene to determine what it was. Parasites are the inevitable result of dogs eating feces.

In the case of parasites, while your vet may prescribe an anti-parasitic in dropper form, usually a three day course, if they are left untreated for a few weeks – perhaps because you don’t make it a habit to check Paloma’s bowel movements each and every time – they can cause acute dermatitis. The vet will likely prescribe a few days of application of the wonder drug for Paloma.

Pregnant females should not ingest Animax as it can cause miscarriage. Some dogs may have sensitivities to neomycin, which is the active ingredient in Animax. If Paloma has an allergy to neomycin, her infection will not only not clear up, but it will also worsen or you will notice a reaction on another part of her body. In some instances vets prescribe Animax orally, but the majority of indications are for topical use.

Whatever you do, if Paloma is ever prescribed Animax, don’t throw away the tube when she’s finished using it. There’s a very good likelihood your vet will prescribe it again and again and again.