View Full Version : Can dogs get poison ivy/oak/sumac?

Brenda in SC
29th May 2009, 03:28 PM
My husband was cutting up a large pine tree that fell in our yard after a storm recently. He has some very itchy red splotches that showed up on his legs which the company nurse identified as either poison ivy, oak or sumac exposure. (We thought they might be ant bites, but she says no.) He's using a cortizone cream to help heal. Rudy has started licking/scratching his hindquarters as well, but in an area that is very thick with fur and hard to see. Is it possible he has it too? And if so, what to do??

Cathy Moon
30th May 2009, 12:49 AM
I would check to see if he has any matted hair on the backs of his hind legs and crotch area, as this could cause discomfort. Do you know how to check for flea 'dirt' and flaky skin in his tail area? Also, do you know how to check his anal glands? If they are full, you'll be able to feel two hard little 'peas' in that area. If his anal glands are full, if he has flea dirt or flaky skin, or if he continues to scratch, I'd take him to the vet before it develops into anything serious. :flwr:

Brenda in SC
30th May 2009, 08:09 PM
Tks Cathy.

I bathed him last night with a calming lotion/shampoo. He seems to be feeling better already, but while drying him I found THREE LIVE FLEAS! :jmp2:

I was surprised as we have him on the monthly Advantage Heartworm Multi which is supposed to kill live adult fleas. All I can figure is, we apply it at the first of every month (which will be Monday) and perhaps I didn't get the last dose completely applied directly to skin. We went ahead and did June's dose this morning.

I brush him several times a week as his coat finally seems to be growing in. He did have a couple small mats below his tail on the legs (I swear, those things form in the dark of night!). Since he seemed so sensitive, I gave up brushing and just clipped them out. He's acting a bit better today, but still licking around the areas where the mats and fleas were hiding. Am hoping it will just take a whilie for the irritation to subside.

Cathy Moon
30th May 2009, 09:19 PM
That's good you found the problems so quickly. :thmbsup:

Fleas are a complicated problem - they carry tapeworm, so he will most likely need a prescription for tapeworm treatment. There is also an inexpensive prescription drug called Capstar; one pill will immediately get rid of every flea on his body for 24 hours. You might want to call the vet and quickly get these two things for him. I'm fairly certain they'll need to know how much he weighs.

If he continues to lick, scratch, or look uncomfortable, he'll need to be seen by the vet. Many dogs develop 'flea bite dermatitis' or 'flea bite allergic reactions', and these conditions are usually treated with an antibiotic, a pain reliever, and a prescription medicated shampoo. You'll want to get him in before he develops open sores or an infection. :thmbsup:

Brenda in SC
31st May 2009, 04:20 AM
I'll keep a close watch. Thanks again for the tips. With flea season getting in full swing now with the warm/hot weather, we'll have to be extra vigilant.

5th June 2009, 04:25 AM
It is VERY rare for dogs to have an allergic reaction to Urushoil (poison ivy/sumac/oak oil). My friend has 2 labs that run through it all the time and have never had any problems. They can however get the oil on their fur and then pass it to humans. It was probably just the flees.