Skin is one of the most complex organs of the human – and canine – body with direct contact to dust, pollen and other substances we encounter in our everyday lives.
Luckily, compared to other organs we have much more control over the condition of skin.
We can use different types of products directly on the skin to reduce inflammation and improve texture, depending on the skin issue you’re dealing with. We can then monitor the effects of these products by simply keeping track of behaviour, feeling the skin’s surface and lifting a canine coat for a quick visual examination.
Why Do Dogs Get Itchy Skin?
You might notice that your dog has itchy, dry patches due to redness in the skin, swelling, bald patches or through a compulsive behaviour that your pet is displaying like biting, itching and scratching.
Once you find out about your dog’s itchy skin, you need to determine the cause.
There are a number of reasons why your dog can develop itchy skin. The most common are:
- Behavioural factors
Your dog can be allergic to certain types of food, as well as have other environmental allergies like aversion to pollen or dander. This can cause the skin to become irritated and inflamed, in turn, creating dry “angry” skin.
If the allergy is related to food, switching your dog to hypoallergenic food usually with fish as the main source of protein will help.
Environmental allergies like pollen can be treated with prescription medications, as well as supplements like salmon oil which help to reduce inflammation. If your pet is exposed to pollen in the height of summer, make sure to wipe their coat down with a damp towel after each walk to remove the initial layer of pollen on the fur, paws and ears.
Dogs with upright ears and large ear canals are prone to ear infections as this pathway is exposed to the environment. To prevent itchy ears, you’ll want to inspect your dog’s ears frequently, as well as add a small amount of olive oil to the inners of your dog’s ears. You should rub the olive oil into the skin of the ear as well as allow a few drops to travel down the canal to loosen any wax or debris.
Fleas are small insects that latch onto a dog’s coat and cause your pet to itch.
Especially during the summer months, fleas are a common form of parasite that can easily jump onto your pet during a walk. To prevent – and treat – fleas, you’ll want to use a flea treatment like a spray, oil or specially designed collar to avoid flea infestation.
All dogs are vulnerable to catching fleas but you’ll decrease the chances of fleas if you avoid walking through long grass and stick to short mowed lawns for daily walks. Plus, dogs with large, floppy ears like Daschunds and Golden Retrievers should be inspected more regularly as these warm places are ideal hangouts for insects.
Noticing a change of behaviour in your dog could indicate that there is an underlying lifestyle issue which is causing them discomfort.
Itching when the skin is not irritated and therefore causing problematic skin can be a result of boredom, anxiety or separation anxiety. You may notice all of these behaviours in a rescue dog but they can also become apparent in family dogs that are left alone too often, have experienced loss or trauma.
To solve these complex issues you’ll often need to consult an animal behavioural therapist that your vet can refer you to. Most of the time, dogs in this situation will require patience, as well as small changes to their routine and more frequent socialising and playtime.
Lastly, your dog could display compulsive behaviour due to something as simple as being overdue for a groom. Specific breeds of dog require large amounts of attention when it comes to their coat. Afghan Hounds are a good example where there is a long, fine silky coat to contend with.
Dogs can develop dry, itchy skin as a result of changing climate.
In cold weather – or as a result of frequent air conditioning – dogs coats can dry out leaving hard-to-reach spots to get irritated and form bald patches.
Dry skin should be treated with salmon oil to introduce Omega-3 fatty acids into the system. You may also want to use a gentler non-drying hypoallergenic shampoo to avoid any dandruff-like symptoms. Hypoallergenic shampoos are made from natural ingredients and may be enriched with something like chamomile to calm the skin’s surface.
A dog’s diet isn’t really a cause of skin problems, yet a bad diet will definitely contribute to the genetic or environmental skin conditions that your dog already has.
If you know that your dog has sensitive skin, you’ll want to stick to hypoallergenic dog foods and treats to keep the palate as clean as possible. Again, the addition of salmon oil and salmon-based foods is one of the easiest – and quickest – ways to improve the texture of your dog’s skin. As a result of this, you’ll begin to see noticeable changes within the first four weeks of treatment.
Salmon Oil for Dog’s Itchy Skin
Provided your dog doesn’t need a prescription for a specific skin condition, salmon oil can be seen as a miracle cure for restoring dog’s skin.
You should always consult your vet if you’re concerned that your dog has a long-term skin condition. Yet for dogs with temporary discomfort salmon oil is a quick fix that has plenty of other hidden health benefits.
Relief from arthritis, superior mental development and promotion of weight loss are just a few of the many benefits of fish oil.
In terms of skin, the Omega-3 fatty acids in salmon oil aid in the repair of dry, itchy skin and form a layer of moisture that protects the surface from future irritation. Omega-3 is ingested through natural fish foods such as fish skins. Still, salmon oil is the purest form of Omega-3 and has a much more dramatic effect because of this.
You should give your dog salmon oil in conjunction with their regular meals. Feeding your dog twice daily with a few drops of salmon oil is enough to allow this skincare saviour to work its magic.
We sell 100% Scottish salmon oil with no added ingredients to give your dog a softer, shinier, scratch-free coat in just 4 weeks. Shop our Scottish salmon oil now with free delivery and the opportunity to buy in bulk.