Are you at the end of your rope with your dog’s itching, foul odor, ear infections? Has your vet diagnosed him or her with allergies, but no treatment seems to help?
It Could Be Yeast
Too often, dogs are diagnosed with allergies when they are in fact suffering from a systemic yeast infection which resides in the gut. The yeast/fungus die off and mycotoxins work their way out to the skin surface. Because it is highly acidic, it itches and burns, causing your dog to itch and chew.
Antibiotics and steroids such as prednisone will not clear up the source of the problem (YEAST/FUNGUS). They will only address the secondary bacterial infections and provide temporary relief from itching. Remember: 90% of the dog’s immune system resides in the gut, so when the gut is unbalanced with pathogens and yeast/fungus overgrowth, that immune system is suppressed (in my previous article on lovemydogblog.com I talk about the side effects of prednisone on dogs). When that happens, it makes the dogs more vulnerable for secondary infections and Demodectic Mange flare ups as well. Don’t forget: while we have 26-30 feet of intestinal tract, the dog’s intestinal tract is only as long as the base of it’s head to the base of it’s tail (usually one to two feet).
Yeast problems can be caused by different yeast organisms. One is Malassezia pachydermatitis, which is a common yeast organism found on canine skin and ears. Another yeast organism (possibly the best known) is Candida Albicans, which can be systemic and the root cause of the problem. Yeast found in the body changes to its fungal form and starts to populate the gut, causing toxins to leak into the body and causing a breakdown in the immune system. The exterior symptoms are skin infections, excessive shedding, ear infections, oozing blisters, bladder infections, foul smells and a few more. The reaction takes place in the whole body’s system, hence it is systemic.
Let me ask you a question: which is the biggest organ in the human body? The heart? NO! Liver? NO! Intestinal track? NO! THE SKIN is the biggest organ in the body (human and dog alike)! Added to it’s massive size, it is also considered a FILTERING organ, which means this is where the junk and toxins in the body end up, which consequently causes the issues you see in your pet.
This is one of the biggest health problem facing pet owners today (as well as in humans, if I may add) and the basis for many diseases. There is hope; but it takes time, effort and patience on your part. Unfortunately, there is no magic wand that will cure your dog overnight, so you will have to be diligent in the treatment. Feel free to share and discuss this with your veterinarian. I work with a lot of vets, especially those that don’t know it all ;)
There are 3 types of yeast infection:
- Superficial (most common) characterized by inflammation of tissue linings, GI tract,pharynx, upper and lower respiratory tract, etc.
- Locally invasive pneumonia, cystitis, esophagitis, the most common being ulcerations of the intestinal, respiratory or genitourinary tract.
- Systemic an invasive infection, characterized by lesions of the heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, lung, brain and digestive tract. The infection may be bacterial or parasitic.
When the body (pet or human) is given the best nutritional support with a good diet, the body can keep these “critters” at low levels and they do not interfere with daily life. However, when the body is compromised and fungus/yeasts and other pathogenic bacteria (e.Coli. etc) and parasites (giardia, coccidia, demodectic mange mites) not only do they flourish, the multiply with vigor!
Stay tuned to Lovemydogblog.com for my article on “How to Treat a Debilitated Immune System” for the answer to systemic yeast infection.