A very itchy, erythematous young boxer with very sore ears came in to my consult room.
A normally very docile chap, it really resented having topical treatments applied to its ear canals.
It turned out he was passing stools three to four times a day (two is more normal) and showed signs of gastrointestinal disturbance on an intermittent basis.
Thinking we were heading in the direction of atopic disease, I instigated a food trial, with my personal favourite, Purina HA. Three weeks later, we had a different (much better) dog.
Amazing – particularly given only 25% of cases respond within the first three weeks of a trial. Now I have to persuade the owners we should do a re-challenge to confirm our diagnosis.