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bob asked in PetsDogs · 7 years ago

Are skin conditions common with Mini Schnauzers? Are these common?

My 6 year old male mini schnauzer has had skin problems for 2 years now. I've gone to 3 vets and the problem doesn't seem to ever get resolved.

A little background, the first problem that showed up was about 2 years ago when scabby, pimple looking growths showed up on his back. It was only on his back, nowhere else. I was told it could be allergies and was given antibiotics...or dry skin and was suggested to feed him fish oils etc. But on my 3rd visit to a new vet, he said he believed it was allergies as well and suggested I change his diet to a strict Natural Balance Sweet Potato and Fish diet..which I did. After a few weeks his back was clear.

Two weeks into a clean back, occasionally I would find 1 or 2 of those pimples on his back but definitely not to the severity like before. But he also developed a black scaly patch on his belly near his groin area. The vet didn't know what to tell me and said his skin looks normal and there are no problems he can see. He told me to use medicinal shampoo to massage the affected area daily. He said he didn't want to prescribe antibiotics as it did not seem necessary and he did not want him to build immunity. Now what has happened is they've appeared in other places, but the original spot has disappeared...and then come back. So theres a few spots on his groin area (new spots), theres one on his chest, as well as one on the side of the paw that is especially sensitive to touch as he won't let me touch it or feel it.

As well, he's developed a habit of licking his front left top of the paw that now it's red. He's been going at it for a month or so now. I again went to the vet for this and he didn't have anything to tell me as well. He did a swab and didn't find any fungal or bacterial concerns, and didn't seem like it was painful to touch so he eliminated arthritis. He also said overall, it didn't look like it was infected other than the redness from licking. FYI, my dog does not dig, and he's an indoor dog aside from his walks.

I don't know what else to do, I've spent quite a bit of money with all these vet visits, and I am essentially paying a vet to tell me nothing. Please help! Thanks.

3 Answers

  • 7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The most common reasons for skin issues (i.e. itching, skin irritation, hair loss, etc.) include:

    - Allergic reactions to flea bites, food/treats, grooming or house-cleaning products, etc.

    - Mites

    - Fungal/Bacterial infections (ringworm, yeast, staph etc.)

    - Steroid use (also called prednisone, cortisone or the so-called 'allergy shot')

    Scratching opens the door to skin infections.


    For sensitive dogs just one flea can cause havoc. Even if not visible, you can always see the debris fleas leave behind that looks like finely ground coffee. If placed in water, they will turn red.

    You can get rid of the fleas with natural methods to avoid exposure to the toxic chemicals of Frontline, Advantage and other popular flea medications which will cause harm sooner or later. For recommendations see Also, you can dust your yard where your dog roams with inexpensive diatomaceous earth. For more info see


    The dog's digestive system is not designed to handle grains well. Discontinue any food/treat with corn, wheat, etc. Get ones with no grains and with meat as a primary ingredient – chicken, lamb, salmon, etc. If possible, raw meat diet is best

    Discontinue use of grooming or house cleaning products that can be allergens. For a while, use white vinegar as the cleaning agent for your floors, counters, etc. Vinegar has strong cleaning and antiseptic properties and the smell disappears quickly after use. See


    Three types of mites attack dogs most often: demodectic (not contagious and may itch or not), sarcoptic (very contagious and extremely itchy) and cheyletiella (contagious and mildly itchy). This condition is known as mange. The typical symptoms of mange as the condition progresses include hair loss and scaly or crusty skin.

    Avoid the medications most often prescribed by vets that contain toxic chemicals which will harm your dog sooner or later. These are Ivermectin (also known as Ivomec) and Amitraz (also known as Mitaban). Instead, I recommend the use of natural products. Search the Internet to find them. I prefer the spray type treatment which is effective, easy to use, and inexpensive that will kill the mites but is harmless to pets and humans. You can get it at


    As Dr. Karen Becker, DVM states - "Steroids (also called prednisone, cortisone or the nondescript “allergy shot”) are the least optimal treatment choice, as they work by suppressing your pet’s immune system. Not only can steroids have a negative effect on your pet’s liver, adrenal glands and kidneys, but suppressing your pet’s immune system with steroids also allows for opportunistic yeast and bacteria to grow on your pet’s skin..." Please read the information below: 'Steroids The Great Pretender - Even Low Steroid Doses Can Be Trouble'.

    Many vets assume that pet owners just want to see their pets get better at all cost and prescribe steroids knowing the risks. Steroids are very dangerous and do not cure anything, they just mask the symptoms temporarily but the underlying cause remains and result in undesirable health complications, including skin problems.


    For many skin issues I recommend a powder called 'Flowers of Sulfur' (also known as 'brimstone' or 'sublime sulfur').

    This substance has been used for thousands of years to cure all kinds of skin ailments including fungal and bacterial infections and if there is itching, it will stop within a few days. Google it to learn more about its healing properties.

    Even vets have forgotten about this wonderful and inexpensive remedy but fortunately you can still purchase it at your local pharmacy for very little money. You can also buy it online at

    Flowers of sulfur is safe to apply to your pet's skin but take care not to inhale sulfur powder.

    You can dust this powder and rub on your dog's skin OR mix it with an oil to rub on the skin. The dusting can easily be accomplished if you use a powdered sugar duster or an empty talcum powder bottle. Separate the hair as you go around dusting to expose the skin until you have covered it.

    Alternatively, mix 2 tablespoons of flower of sulfur with 1 cup of Jojoba oil and put it in a bottle. Always shake to mix well before applying to the skin as it tends to separate. This method works well for smaller skin areas. You do not need to wear gloves as it is not toxic to humans either.

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  • Anonymous
    7 years ago

    wow .. yes. My dog has a condition very very similar. I've been to the vet on a few occasions and they only treat what's in front of them instead of looking at the whole picture.

    Allergies can cause those things on the back but it will be accompanied by an ear infection. ok .. my dog eats raw and I've eliminated beef and chicken to allergies.

    But .. he got those bumpy scabby scaley things again.

    This time his ears very often got an accumulation of wax. That coincides with sebborhea which is a yeast thing. So I am treating him for that. Combing the fur before shampooing can loosen the scabby flakes of skin. I give him a bath with Nizoral but I don't leave it on as long as they say because I think it burnt his skin. Then for a cream rinse I put on a brand name product like vagisil (which is too highly perfumed). I massage it in and let that sit for as long as possible. The recommendation was to do this 3x per week for 4 weeks. My dog isn't fully recovered yet but is well on his way. I was shocked at how well it's working. Sometimes I dab on a bit of the vag cream during the day if he's got bad spots.

    My dog licks his paws and underarms and is making that worse. Don't put the Sebborhea shampoo on any areas that are tender or open sores. My thoughts are that he is itchy and licking to either scratch that area or licking because he's uncomfortable. I'm hoping that when I clear his skin he will stop licking.

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  • 6 years ago

    These are typical symptoms of Schnauzer Comedone Syndrome aka schnauzer bumps. Most vets don't know about them as it's a disease totally isolated to the schnauzer breed. It's not life threatening, or even serious unless the bumps get infected and then treatment becomes needed. According to the web site around 50% of schnauzers have this inherited condition but many owners are confused as the symptoms can be vague and vets are not well informed about it.

    Source(s): Research whilst looking for a cure for my own dogs bumps.
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