Relief for Dog Skin Allergies

DogFondQuestion:

My dog’s nighttime scratching keeps us both awake. His skin seems dry and a little “dandruffy” and his shedding is not normal. What can I do to help my dog’s condition?

Answer:

Dogs itch for so many reasons and sometimes they itch for no reason at all. However, it’s not common for your dog to excessively scratch at night when the whole world is fast asleep. Though every dog got to scratch at some point because it’s totally normal for them, excessive licking, biting and chewing, and scratching to the point that your dog’s skin begins to have wounds, then it may be a symptom of an underlying health condition.

Pruritus is the medical term for scratching that is related to too much itching. Excessive scratching is the second most common problem that dog owners take their dog to the veterinarian. Diarrhea, one of gastrointestinal problems, seem to top the list. The cause of pruritus can be difficult to pinpoint but there are two major reasons why dogs itch. The first reason has something to do with the skin itself. Is your dog’s skin too oily or too dry? Dry skin is a common occurrence. The second main cause of pruritus is dog allergies.

Dry Skin

One common cause of excessive scratching and itching in dogs is dry skin. If you live in countries or areas where humidity is low, it is more likely that your dog will have dry skin. Dry skin is easy to recognize. Part your dog’s hair and you will notice flakes or dandruff in his undercoat. The skin may be cracked and tough. A smallest amount of stimulation of the skin, even your gentlest touch could make your dog scratch excessively.

Environmental plays a factor in dogs having dry skin but diet also plays a huge factor. Commercial dog foods process out the good oils that promote healthier skin and lustrous coat. Dry dog food could even have more dehydrating effect on your dog’s skin and it could stimulate increased thirst which only compensates partially for the drying character of these diets. If you feed dry commercial dog foods, add digestive enzymes. They are good to use with any kind of food. These enzymes improve the release of nutrients. It has probiotic bacteria that aids in the digestive process.

Dog Skin Allergies  

Another common cause of excessive scratching and itching in dogs is allergies. Dog allergies can make your dog’s skin greasy, dry, oily, or slightly dry. When your dog develops allergies, scratching, chewing, or licking is frequent. Allergies in dogs are difficult to address and in worst conditions, affected dogs would need strong pharmaceutical drugs to get the relief. Allergies are rarely cured but early intervention and identification can control the problem. In some conditions, it can significantly eliminate them.

One important way of reducing the likelihood of dogs to develop allergies is to provide them with high-potency cultures of beneficial probiotic bacteria like Lactobacillus bifidus and Lactobacillus acidophilus when they are young.

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