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Ask the Veterinarian/Reaction to simple guard 3

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Question
I applied the tick/flea topical product Simple guard 3 and the same day my springer spaniel started chewing on his back, rolling and rubbing against furniture, walking with her rear crooked to the side. She also acted quite anxious, pacing and even urinated indoors 3 times which is very unusual. Only today I though of using dish detergent after reading others with the same issue. I didn't have Dawn blue though, so I used Ajax lemon dish soap which is labeled on the bottle to be a good degreaser. Then, because I heard the dish soap is harsh and may dry the coat, I applied vitamin E capsules and coconut oil. Yet, the chewing at the back still happens several times a day. Can I use the Ajax again? Other ideas to help her out? how long will this last? should I use a hydrocortisne spray I have that I got over the counter?  gold bond medicated? thanks!

Answer
When we apply topical flea products, they are usually in some type of alcohol.  The flea medicines in SimpleGard3 are not harmful to the skin, but the alcohol can cause a reaction.  That is most likely what you are seeing.  Washing it off with a detergent once is sufficient.  The damage has been done and so removing any more with a detergent is not going to help.  To treat the skin reaction a steroid shot, pills, or creme may be necessary to decrease the redness and itching to the topical flea medication.  Check with your vet about these.

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Dr. Louis N. Gotthelf

Expertise

Dermatology and ear diseases of dogs and cats

Experience

I am the author of "Small Animal Ear Diseases; An Illustrated Guide" published by W.B. Saunders. I have over 25 years of clinical experience with a special interest in dermatologic conditions and ear diseases.

Organizations
American Academy of Veterinary Dermatology

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Veterinary Forum
Veterinary Medicine
Waltham Focus

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