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#92203 - 10/09/10 05:59 AM Missing hair on ears, thoughts?
mjbgsd Offline

Registered: 02/21/10
Posts: 2367
Likes: 13
We have taken Akbar to the vets and gotten tests done on his ears and nothing is wrong with them but we can't figure out why hair is missing around his ears. He has been scratching them on and off since he was 6-7 months. Last month, September, was when he really started itching them and now his left ear is missing a lot of hair around the edges.

They said we could go to a dermatoligist but then it's gonna cost 2000+, I'd rather spend that money on his OFA, classes, etc. We've tried this spray that was suppose to kill any parasites or germs, etc on the ear and it seemed to help but then it made him itch his ears even more.

He has no allergies either. I'm not sure if now it's just a "tick" he does since he's been doing it since he was 6-7 months and so it's a habit he's developed or not. Anybody had this happen?

Cody has severe allergies but he has never scratched his ears like Akbar, actually he's never sratched his ears. And Akbar isn't scratching the base, he's scratching the tips of them.
Akbar RN CGC 8

Cody RIP 2003-2012

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#92214 - 10/09/10 08:10 AM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: mjbgsd]
Götz Offline

Registered: 02/20/10
Posts: 265
Loc: Jersey Shore
Likes: 6
We go through this every winter with Ghost. We've had tests done, scrapings, etc but there is never anything "wrong." Our vet thinks it's allergy/dry air related since it's always worse in the winter when the heat is on.
~ Kris

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#92223 - 10/09/10 09:48 AM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: Götz]
Patty Offline

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 114
Loc: Northern Illinois
Likes: 0
Two of my GSD's are crazy itchy lately and I have noticed hair loss on my 1 year olds ears. I am very interested in hearing thoughts and ideas.
Patty, Mystery, Rocket, Diamond and Mufasa

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#92252 - 10/09/10 10:58 AM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: Patty]
BowWowMeow Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/11/10
Posts: 4748
Loc: Buffalo
Likes: 127
If a dog has an ear infection and/or allergies they will scratch their ears and have hair loss. I can't think of any other reason. Curious as to why you're so positive he doesn't have allergies? This is a classic sign of both food and environmental allergies. When my allergies are really bad my ears itch!

Rafi, the german malaroo, age 9.5ish

Varda & Gio (the crazy cattens)
Warming my heart:
Queen Cleopatra

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#92256 - 10/09/10 11:47 AM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: BowWowMeow]
kaisersmom Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 812
Loc: Northwest OH
Likes: 61
I had a dachshund who started to lose the hair around the edges of his ears and was scratching them quite a bit. The vet couldn't find any infections, etc and said it could be a sign of a low thyroid, tested for it and sure enough, he was hypothyroid. Started him on thyroid replacement and the hair returned and the itching stopped.

Marshall Dillon - 18 months old
Kaiser - 11 1/2 yrs old - At the Bridge
Ray (Radar) - 8 yrs old - At the Bridge

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#92263 - 10/09/10 12:21 PM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: kaisersmom]
TMarie Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 842
Likes: 17
Jarie has hair loss around and on the tips of her ears every year. She does have food and many environmental allergies, and we know that is the cause.

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#92270 - 10/09/10 12:32 PM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: mjbgsd]
mcavan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 27
Likes: 2
Ditto on what many others have said, we went through this every winter with our now passed on Oeska. Did all sorts of tests, scraping, medications etc. and as soon as the heat kicked on the hair on the edges of her ears stated thinning until they were pretty much bare. As soon as the heat stopped running in the spring the hair grew back. She too had many allergies, human dander, many grasses, black walnuts and more. The problem was still there after we switched to raw and added 7000 mg salmon oil a day but to a much lesser extent. Never seemed to itch or bother her though....

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#92303 - 10/09/10 03:43 PM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: mcavan]
MaxaLisa Offline

Global Moderator

Registered: 01/26/10
Posts: 19487
Loc: Northern CA
Likes: 256
With the itch, it sounds like allergies or thyroid or nutritional deficiency. The deficiency can be caused by food allergies too.

Without the itch, there is an immune system glitch, like an autoimmune condition, that can cause this, and I believe that it occurs in GSDs.

I hear you on the cost of the Derm. But why would the derm cost that much? The derm might do a skin scraping, might do thyroid or allergy testing. So if you continue to pursue the same thing a derm would do, you can get away without seeing a derm. If your vet is just shrugging his shoulders and saying "oh well", well then I might consider a second vet or Derm, OR be more assertive about things that you would like to have done.

I took Max to a Derm for his fistula, and she was very good, and worked hard at keeping costs down, in terms of writing scripts, etc. In retrospect, she didn't change Max's treatment much though, though I'm glad we have her.

I would test the thyroid, and also tinker with the food issue as first steps.
MaxaL (aka LisaT)

Jazmine, mini-mix, 10/18/2011
Max, 5/2001-2/2012, RIP my partner, my Regal Boy
Indy, 5/1997-10/2010, RIP my friend, my teacher

Health Index
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#92714 - 10/10/10 04:28 PM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: MaxaLisa]
mjbgsd Offline

Registered: 02/21/10
Posts: 2367
Likes: 13
I'll get his thyroid done just to be sure. The vet said that it could possibly be the heat that's causing him to itch because he never started to scratch until he was 7ish months and that's when the heat started coming here.
Akbar RN CGC 8

Cody RIP 2003-2012

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#93156 - 10/11/10 02:29 PM Re: Missing hair on ears, thoughts? [Re: mjbgsd]
Natalie559 Offline

Registered: 03/02/10
Posts: 1529
Loc: Tallahassee, FL
Likes: 23
This happens to Liesje's Nikon. She puts some insect something on them. Wonder if she'll see this thread. . .

enjoying life with Penny 6/04 & Blaze 11/12
while Sasha 1/05-11/12 watches over us

Swing Sets By Design
Read Allen Carr's The Easy Way to Quit Smoking

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