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Finn's mom
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Hello everyone!

This is my first post and first golden puppy, so I wanted to try and get some input from all of you more experienced owners :)

Finn is 11 months old and has been having some skin issues recently. It started as some mild dandruff in August and has since become more severe off and on. The dry skin and dandruff is only along his spine and is worse in the shoulder area, lower back and tail. We were washing with Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe shampoo and when this started decided to try Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiparasitic & Antiseborrheic Shampoo. We were using that once a week and it seemed to help initially until the end of the week. Then maybe two weeks ago the dandruff came back almost immediately and the chunks were pretty large. I also noticed a hotspot on the front of his chest, above his underarm area and a few other areas becoming red. I then purchased from the same brand their Hot Spot & Itch Relief Shampoo. It again seemed to help for a few days and the hotspots cleared up, but the dandruff is back. A lot of undercoat came out with that last shampoo and I have not washed him again since. He doesn't have patches of missing hair but the hair along the back seems thinner and missing a lot of undercoat.

Last night he was attacking his tail and seems to be itching more than usual. We will be making an appointment at the vet this week but I wondered if anyone had any ideas as to what it could be? I've been googling everything and am not sure if this seems like a food or environmental allergy, mange, yeast infection, ichthyosis? I uploaded some pictures for reference... other than his flaky back, he has a bit of redness around the lips and what looks like little red bites on his testicles. His left foot has a small area with some crusty, hard skin. There's also a bit of darkness around his eyes and maybe less hair?.. but I could be overthinking that. He was never a really poof ball puppy and his hair is still shorter.

I have always fed him Merrick beef & sweet potato grain-free puppy and just this weekend decided to switch to the adult Salmon version. I don't give him any other food, only kibble as treats or the merrick salmon treats. With meals he gets Grizzly salmon oil, a probiotic and joint supplement. I was using a plastic slow feeder since he gulps down food but have switched it to stainless steel maybe a month ago. I'm washing all of his bowls everyday.

We did purchase a 3 pack of Nexgard that he took from July - September. I saw that dry skin is a possible side effect so I have not treated him this month just in case. I've never seen fleas on him, only ticks twice, which is why we started the Nexgard. In terms of his behavior, there's been no change. He is still 100% crazy, high energy and super naughty. Sorry for the novel... Thank you for your help!
 

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Golden Ret Enthusiast
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It looks like a bit like Ichthyosis. I would have him checked with your vet. A DNA test to confirm it.
 
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