Cephalexyn is a very-often prescribed antibiotic for staph skin infections (and if the skin is red & sore there is infection and infection won’t heal without antibiotics). It’s hard on the gut so give it with food.
FINISH THE ANTIBIOTIC. Don’t stop if the skin looks ‘better’ because the infection will come back. And often unless you do the anti-inflammatory (prednisone is a steroid – it IS an anti-inflammatory) you won’t get the skin to heal either.
pred doesn’t work fast – typically it takes a couple of weeks unless you flood the body with super high doses (which isn’t good either).
Every doctor or vet has their own way of using prednisone. But typically once it’s been given for 3 days to a week you have to ‘wean off’ -- and a 2-3 wean-off is typical. But that way you don’t have to give extremely high doses, so what the vet has done is pretty typical.
You might want to go ahead and give milk thistle as well – for a boxer give the adult human dose of milk thistle 2-3 times a day.
Pred can be nearly a ‘miracle’ drug but it can also be damaging if used unwisely. To get the dog back ‘level’ so the skin is ‘whole’ and not open to all sorts of secondary infections, you’re probably going to have to give it to him.
ALL slr2meg has said is true – pred has a ton of side effects so expect them and COPE with them. It can make them moody or downright bad tempered - they can NOT help it. It makes them drink like fiends – THEY MUST. Don’t deny water – pred is hard on the kidneys and the body is trying to make an attempt to wash itself out. Just get used to taking the dog out **a lot**.
Pred can also interfere with muscle use – meaning, it can make it so they can’t ‘hold it’ like normal. So don’t get upset if the dog has accidents – they truly can NOT help it. It’s frustrating stuff to take sometimes because you’ll know you have to ‘go’ and then you can’t do it!! Try and try ... and then walk away and lose control. It happens to humans, dogs, old and young.
The milk thistle (just use a really good brand – go to a health store and ask their advice) is important – that will keep this from damaging the liver longer term.
ALSO you need to figure out how to deal with a dog with allergies. Likely it can be both environmental allergies (like hay fever, dust, pollen, mold, dust, etc.) AND it can also be food-related. Usually it’s both. LOTS of folks on here have allergy dogs (including me) -- there’s no one miracle cure. You have to learn to keep the skin in as good shape as possible and keep the damage minimal. You treat the allergies ALL the time – not just when it gets ‘bad’ because when it gets bad it’s six times harder to deal with.
Is your dog altered?? That will relieve the stress load on the dog and help deal with the allergies. But if this dog has allergies that are this bad, then honestly the dog never ever should be bred. I don’t know you at all - I’m not hollering at you. It’s simply that this is one of the side effects of the fact that boxers are ‘tough looking’ dogs and so many people think breeding is just a matter of letting them have puppies.
Having to do antibiotics and steroids to get some relief for the skin is not unusual with an allergy dog. It can be unrelenting at times. But there ARE things to do – good luck.
You're probably right in that it showed up on that flap of skin because there was no hair - but take a look in the ears as well -- they are prime targets. And allergies in dogs tend to worsen as they age.
Just please don't stop the pred, nor stop the antibiotics. Essentially you have to learn to lessen the bad effects of the drugs and deal with them -- you can't just 'stop' them of you will create a re-bound. Meaning, the original problem will come back -- about 3 times as bad as it was!! A pred re-bound is dangerous.
"The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart." Helen Keller