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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 6.5 month chi baby named Boris. I got him and his brother from a very reputable hobby breeder whom I trust very much. I actually got my first chi ever from her, a solid white LH chi spayed female who is now 2.5 years old and perfect. Boris is a blue tri-color LH male and his brother, Dexter, is a blue fawn LH male. Now, Dexter blew his coat around 4 months and it has been growing in very well (minimal thinning and no bald spots that I can see); however, Boris has been shedding a good deal since 4 months and even though it seems to be getting better, I am still very concerned about his thinning back and head. When I got them, I didn't give much thought to the skin concerns that come with most blue chis, they were just so cute (I know, I know). But now, I've been reading a lot about chihuahua genetics and I came across Color-Dilution Alopecia and it's got me all concerned about Boris. Even though his case seems pretty mild as of now, I know that if he does indeed have congenital alopecia it can only get worse. I'm asking the Chihuahua-People community to help me out with what they know, before I go running to the vet asking for some expensive tests.

Some background info on Boris:
- Brother to Dexter (blue fawn LH male); seems fine
- Dam: Bubbles (cream/white LH); Sire: Bojangles (black tri LH; his sire was a black tri LH too)
- Born March 30th, 2013 / 6.5 months old
- Fed Orijen puppy (all my dogs are on Orijen) with some Fresh Pet in the mix for taste. No known allergies
- Thinning along the lower back and back of the head, no itching/scratching. I can see some dryness occasionally after a bath or dry day (I live in Florida), but no flaking. I keep him very clean, but I do not over-bathe and he hasn't had any skin infections. Overall, he seems very healthy and his fur is actually kinda glossy, but it tends to be wiry in some areas.

I will attach some pictures of Boris, Dexter (brother), and his dam & sire

I greatly appreciate any help and thank you in advance :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Some pictures of Dexter (sibling):

P.S. Pictures are about a month old, his coat is better now
 

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It very much looks like CDA to me. You can google it and get lots of opinions on treatments and therapies. I would add a good omega 3 fatty acid supplement to your current food choice. Fish oil (human grade) is good. Or krill. Or salmon. Lots of threads here on that. You can also add in coconut oil which is an excellent supplement.

Some people have reported some success with melatonin. Others have tried Missing Link Professional strength and/or Nupro with some good results.

The bottom line is that it appears he does have CDA. You can keep his skin/coat in excellent condition the best you can with supplements, etc. But it appears that it wil only get worse and he may lose much/all of his coat on the back/sides/ and top of his head.

Pigeonsheep here has a boy, Dexter, who looks very much look like your boy. He is a long coat blue with CDA. There are others here who also have experienced it. I wouldn't suggest expensive skin scrapings, etc. It looks like classical CDA to me. And it doesn't mean he was poorly bred. It is just an expression of the blue gene which is linked to alopecia.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Brodysmom, I just had an intuitive feeling that something wasn't right with Boris and I am afraid you have more or less confirmed it. Like I knew deep inside that he has CDA, but I wanted to hear it from someone else before jumping to any conclusions. I will stay positive and try my best to keep his coat healthy from now on. I will always love Boris no matter how "ugly" his coat gets, I love him with all my heart and he is my baby no matter what.

Do you recommend I take him to vet? or should I just take matters into my own hands and start supplementing him with rich fatty acids and oils?

He's a little one, only about 3 lbs and I feed a little over a 1/3 cup of food per day (2/3 Orijen and the rest Fresh Pet homestyle). He snacks on high quality treats occasionally and raw soup bones. I want to supplement him, but I don't know any dosages or how to get started without overdoing it. Could you give me some guidelines/ideas? I would really appreciate that.
 

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You can take him to a vet if you choose to confirm your suspicions. But if I were to do that, I'd go to a canine dermatologist. Go straight to a specialist. I'm trying to remember who here went to a dermatologist for their dog and they got fantastic results re-growing coat. Hmmmm.... I'll have to do some searching and see if I can bump up the post for you or perhaps someone else will remember.

As for supplements, Missing Link Professional Strength and Nupro are both vitamin/mineral powders. They have the dosage on the container. You can google them both for ingredients and opinions.

Here's a good article on dosing fish oil ....

The Benefits of Fish Oil to Your Dog's Health - Whole Dog Journal Article

I like Fresh Pet, but maybe switch to the Vital line of Fresh Pet which is heavier on meat.

Chicken, Beef, Salmon & Egg Dog Food Recipe | Freshpet

You can also rotate with some good quality canned foods as well.

I would start the coconut oil at just a few licks and go up from there. ;)
 
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