Itchy skin in dogs can be really uncomfortable for them. Not only can it cause them to need to scratch and groom the area trying to get relief, but they can become low emotionally if the problem persists.
As responsible pet owners, we all want the best for our furry friends. Luckily, itchy skin is often one of the most easily treated issues a pet can have. There are various things we can do to help, including using itch relief shampoo, changing their grooming regime and sometimes even changing their diet.
First, let’s take a look at why itchy skin occurs in pets:
Why Dogs Can Suffer From Itchy Skin
Dogs most commonly get itchy skin because of parasites like fleas. Fleas can be caught on walks, from other pets, on the clothes of people who have been around infected animals, or even in the garden after a flea-infested animal has been there.
Infections and allergies are other common causes of a dog suffering from itchy skin.
Sometimes, itching can come from a secondary infection that follows a medication dose, an issue with food, or another problem that has long since resolved itself.
Signs and symptoms your dog has itchy skin:
- Excessive scratching
- Excessive biting or nibbling of the skin
- Excessive licking of the skin
- Focusing on itching one specific area
- Damp and ruffled areas of fur
- Hair loss
- Scaly skin
- Smelly skin, or pus
- Rubbing on furniture or other items
Sometimes itching may be accompanied by other symptoms like lethargy, vomiting, shaking or obvious emergency issues. If this is the case your dog requires emergency help from the vet straight away.
What To Do When Your Dog Has Itchy Skin
The most important thing you can do when your dog has itchy skin is to find out why they are suffering from the problem. Getting to the root of the problem means you can treat the issue effectively.
If they appear to have an issue with parasites then treatment is straight forward. Treating the dog and the home will ensure the infestation is completely gone.
If the issue is more complex than fleas, then you might want to consider a visit to the vets to help accurately diagnose the problem. Some issues might be apparent to the vet, others, like allergies, might require a little more of your detective work at home.
Sometimes a pet might have an environmental allergy or an issue with one ingredient in their food, so some long-term investigations may be required to fully understand why they are itching. Sometimes writing a diary of what your dog does, including what they consume and what their toilet habits are, can provide huge clues as to what is causing the itching.
Getting to the root of the issue is the most important aspect of treating your pet successfully for itching.
Helping Your Dog Find Relief From Itchy Skin
Helping to remove the core cause of your dog’s itching should always be your first priority. If you are in the process of treating them or finding out why they are itching and want to help them feel better, there are lots of solutions to help including:
- Anti-itch shampoo
- Herbal tea soaks
- Natural sprays
- Itch relief diet
- Cold coconut oil applied topically
You should always approach home treatments with caution and always consult your vet for advice if you are unsure of the safety of a natural itch solution for your pet.
Your Dog Can Be Free Of Itchy Skin
It is never nice to see your dog suffer from itching, especially if the problem is chronic. However, there is usually always a way to resolve the issue, especially with quick help and detective work from you.
If you are ever in doubt, always consult a vet for advice.