Why Is My Dog's Skin Itchy?
All dogs can get a little itchy sometimes, but if your pup seems to be scratching quite a lot, you might assume that it's fleas. If you can’t see any sign of the blighters, and if you’ve been giving your pet their regular flea treatments, then it’s likely to be something else, such as food and contact allergies.
But before looking at the main causes of itchy dog skin, how best to treat it, and how to reduce the likelihood of it returning again (and again, and again…), let’s take a glance at the other symptoms to look out for.
What Are the Other Symptoms of Itchy Dog Skin?
Note: if you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, please consult a veterinarian immediately.
Illnesses that lead to itching, also known by the official name of pruritus, typically also cause other symptoms. When you take your dog to the vet, they will usually examine your dog by gently parting the fur where they are scratching the most to see if the skin is red, inflamed and crusty. They will also look for any discharge from the skin.
Other symptoms that sometimes appear at the same time as itchy dog skin could be lack of appetite, restlessness and fur loss. Be sure to mention these to your vet if you’ve noticed them at home.
What Are The Main Causes Of Itchy Skin In Dogs?
It’s important to remember that skin conditions aren’t always a quick and simple fix. Diagnosing what’s causing your dog discomfort can take a long time, and you may never get a definitive answer.
Despite this, there are a few common causes your vet will investigate:
- Fleas, ticks, worms, and mites
These pests can all cause unwanted itchiness for your dog. For example, when fleas bite, their saliva has specific proteins that can cause an allergic reaction in many dogs. Keeping up a consistent prevention and treatment routine will minimise the risk of these little creatures appearing.
- Contact allergies
These allergies often result from pollen, mould spores and dust mites - many of the same substances that cause allergies in humans. Your vet can often prescribe medicine to help with this.
- Food allergies
These allergies are the hidden source of many undiagnosed itchy skin issues in dogs.
We typically assume that dogs will - and can - eat anything, but this isn’t the case. They have sensitive stomachs, and even if a dog has eaten the same food all its life, it can suddenly develop an allergy to it.
How To Soothe Itchy Dog Skin
If you’re looking to provide some quick relief to your dog before tackling any of the main causes listed above, there are plenty of things you can do to soothe itchy dog skin.
You can try bathing your dog in cool water before they usually settle down for bedtime. The cool water will reduce the itchiness throughout the night, letting your friend get a good night’s sleep. Deep sleep is when hormones boost the immune system and damaged cells are repaired, which is vital for any unwell animal.
Some people even recommend using a humidifier to hydrate dry and irritated skin.
How Pets Love Fresh Dog Food Can Help With Allergy-induced Itchy Skin
If your dog’s itchy skin is caused by a food allergy you’ll need to keep up a consistent feeding routine to help prevent your dog’s itchy skin from coming back.
The saying, "You are what you eat", doesn't only apply to humans. Wild dogs eat all of their prey - including their stomachs, which would typically contain lots of greens, such as grass and plants. Without this natural mixture of food groups, dogs are more prone to diseases, allergies and the itchy skin that comes with it.
Matching this natural balance of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals can be difficult to do yourself.
Dogs need just as much good, high-quality, nutritional food as us. Usually, it’s hard to find kibble and tinned food on supermarket shelves that provide this. Compared to the food at Pets Love Fresh, these products are often cooked at high temperatures that reduce the nutritional value inside.
Skin conditions sadly don’t disappear overnight or with one meal. But feeding your dog a fresh, natural and nutritionally balanced diet by Pets Love Fresh can make a big difference. Try one of our Pets Love Fresh adult dog taster packs or puppy taster packs.