Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Skin Problems

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Skin Problems

If you aren’t familiar with the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever,Opens in a new tab. they can appear to look like their American cousin, the golden retriever, but this Canadian breed has a coppery red coat with white markings.

The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling RetrieverOpens in a new tab., however, is not as outgoing as the Golden, who is friends to all, including a burglar, making a go of robbing your home!

These dogs are very high-energy and active, being more suited to the family that has a love of exercise and the outdoors.

If you are considering adding a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever to your family, but are wondering just how healthy the breed is, look no further. They are a generally healthy breed with a lifespan of twelve to fourteen years. Some have been found to have a few health concerns and conditions that may come from underlying conditions.

They can suffer from skin issuesOpens in a new tab., that other breeds develop and a few develop from underlying diseases that create symptoms that affect the skin.

The following post will contain information about Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever skin problems and causes. Also included will be Tolling Retriever skin problemsOpens in a new tab., symptoms, and treatment.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Skin Problems
Image by Sonja KaleeOpens in a new tab. from PixabayOpens in a new tab.

Common Skin Problems Duck Tolling Retriever

Many skin problemsOpens in a new tab. can occur in any breed of dog and may come about due to the environment, outside forces, and the way your particular breed’s immune system deals with substances that may not affect other dogs.

Below are some common skin ailments that your Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever can develop.

  • Parasites

Fleas and ticks can cause many dilemmas for both your Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever and your family.

Ticks, of course, can cause debilitating diseases such as Lyme disease, babesiosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and anaplasmosis if even one particular tick burrows into your pup’s skin and goes undetected.

Fleas are another concern as they feed on your dog and can cause flea allergy dermatitis just from an allergy that your dog may have to flea saliva.

Fleas just don’t happen as one, they multiply quite rapidly and can leave your pup with a total infestation and your home as well.

If your retriever has a love for the outdoors, as they all do, there is no way you won’t encounter tricks or fleas. Prevention, using flea and tick collars, drops or pills is a must.

There are natural alternative collars if you want to give them a try because conventional flea and tick preventatives all contain some form of pesticide.

To check your Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers’ health status or their DNA checks, please visit the Embark vetOpens in a new tab. website for all the help you may need.

Fleas especially can cause:

  • Itching
  • Scratching
  • Red, inflamed skin
  • Rashes
  • Loss of fur
  • Infection

An infestation will require flea shampoo, powder, or a flea dip, and flea bombs or an exterminator for your home. Washing all bedding and toys belonging to your retriever will also be necessary to get rid of every flea.

Common Skin Problems Duck Tolling Retriever
Image by Sonja KaleeOpens in a new tab. from PixabayOpens in a new tab.

Hot spots

Hot spots are another name for moist dermatitis and can develop in humid and warm weather. Something may irritate your retriever’s skin and they will lick and bite the same area creating an inflamed, red, raw spot.

Most can be found on wrist areas, but can also occur in other places on the body. With all of that licking, the spots can become infected from bacteria in the saliva.

Medication from your veterinarian, most often prednisone, a steroid, will be needed to clear up hot spots, preferably before the infection begins.


Yes, your Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever and any dog can develop allergies. Allergies occur when your dog’s immune system attacks an otherwise harmless substance, deeming it dangerous. Allergies can be food-related from:

  • Grains
  • Eggs
  • Dairy
  • Lamb
  • Beef
  • Chicken

Allergies can be environmental and created by:

  • Pollen
  • Mold
  • Household cleaners
  • Rug shampoos
  • Fabric softeners

Symptoms can be any or all of the following:

  • Red, itchy, inflamed skin
  • Scratching excessively
  • Scabs
  • Licking and biting
  • Runny nose or watery eyes
  • Itchy dry skin
  • Loss of fur or patchy fur loss
  • Ear infections
  • Red, itchy ears
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms; vomiting and/or diarrhea (from food allergy)

Treatments for environmental allergies can be antihistamines, topical steroids, or immunotherapy (allergy shots).

Treatment for food allergies will involve identifying the allergen and changing your dog’s food. This will generally clear up symptoms.

Skin infections

Any of the above-mentioned skin issuesOpens in a new tab. from parasites to allergies can lead to skin infections. Anywhere there is broken skin, bacteria can enter.

Left untreated, these skin infections can become quite severe, even leading to kidney and liver failure.

The healthy skin of both people and dogs normally has fungus and bacteria living on it. When either begins to multiply and there are any open wounds, they can multiply rapidly and medical problems occur.

When your dog’s skin is irritated with excessive scratching, skin can become broken, leaving the door open for infection. Symptoms can be:

  • Itchy, red inflamed patches
  • Loss of fur
  • Sores that do not heal
  • Pustules
  • Hot skin
  • Foul or yeasty odor

Skin scrapings can be taken by your veterinarian to identify what type of bacteria and the course of treatment.

Treatment for fungal infections may include oral medication, anti-fungal cream, ointment, or shampoo. Prescription meds may be fluconazole, itraconazole or ketoconazole.

Remedies for bacterial infections may be shampoos with sodium hypochlorite, benzoyl peroxide, or chlorhexidine.

Oral antibiotics may be cephalexin, amoxicillin, tetracycline and chloramphenicol, and sulfadimethoxine for parasite-related infections.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Skin Problems Symptoms and Treatment

Other skin problems that your Duck Tolling retrieverOpens in a new tab. can develop may come from underlying conditions and diseases they may be prone to. Those conditions can be found in the following.


Hypothyroidism develops when your pup’s thyroid gland no longer produces enough thyroid hormone. This hormone controls the metabolism and lack of it slows it down immensely.

This disease has become more prevalent in dogs and people over the years. Dogs of middle age are more often targeted.

Hypothyroidism Symptoms are:

  • Sluggishness
  • Lethargy
  • Cold intolerance
  • Slow heart rate
  • Weight gain
  • Dry, itchy, flaky skin
  • Dull coat
  • Fur loss

Hypothyroidism can be diagnosed through blood testing and is treated with levothyroxine which replaces the lost thyroid hormone. Symptoms gradually disappear with the correct dosage and skin will clear as well.


Lupus is an autoimmune disease attacking your dog’s immune system. It has been found in Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers and has many symptoms, some of which affect the skin.

Two types of lupus can occur, systemic lupus erythematosus and discoid lupus erythematosus. Systemic lupus can affect many different areas of the body with a vast array of symptoms and can attack internal organs. Discoid lupus may affect mucous membranes (gums), nasal planum, or areas of the skin.

Lupus symptoms

  • Whining, crying
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Wasting muscles
  • Limping
  • Lethargy
  • Low appetite
  • Thinner skin
  • Red skin
  • Pigment loss
  • Thinning of fur
  • Lip or skin ulcers

Because lupus is an autoimmune disease, the causes are not conclusive. Suspected causes are the environment, a virus, genes, or medications.

Treatments for lupus vary on the type and can range from diet, supplements, and medications, including prednisone cyclophosphamide, azathioprine, and prednisolone.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Skin Problems Symptoms
Image by Sonja KaleeOpens in a new tab. from PixabayOpens in a new tab.

Addison’s disease and thrombocytopenia

Two other diseases found in Nova Scotia Duck Tollers are Addison’s disease and thrombocytopenia. Both have a few skin-related symptoms along with other signs.

Addison’s disease is caused by reduced levels of the hormones cortisol and aldosterone which regulate many aspects of your Duck Toller’s metabolism.

This disease can have many symptoms and is often hard to diagnose as signs may come and go and mimic other diseases. Skin symptoms can be skin hyperpigmentation and alopecia or fur loss.

There is no cure for Addison’s disease but it can be managed by replacing hormones with medication and will take time to regulate.

Thrombocytopenia is a blood disorder that causes clotting issues due to a low platelet count. This is usually caused by an underlying illness or condition and can lead to internal and spontaneous bleeding.

An alarming skin symptom is bruising, especially for no apparent reason. Thrombocytopenia can have many causes such as infections, genetic in nature, cancer, immune-related or drug reactions.

Treatment would depend on exactly what the cause is and may include blood transfusions if there is severe blood loss.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers are a mostly healthy breed. When adding one to your family, get to know the breeder you are using and their operation to ensure they are a top-notch breeder that has healthy breeding dogs.

Always check out your retriever’s skin while grooming and bathing to make sure there aren’t any parasites lurking or skin issues underneath all of that fur.

Early diagnosis and treatment for all health conditions and skin problems Opens in a new tab.will save suffering and long-drawn-out treatment in the long run.

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