Find out about the most common issues associated with scratching in dogs, and most importantly, how to treat those problems.
As a dog owner, you will know that scratching is not a strange behavior for your dog. Dogs scratch as part of normal behavior to relieve a random itch or remove something on their body they do not want to be there.
Sometimes, the scratching a dog is doing is not normal and requires some attention. Something causing your dog to scratch intensely is likely to be causing them lots of discomfort and should not be ignored.
Luckily there are lots of ways to provide itch relief for your dog. The first step is finding out what the problem is.
Signs To Look Out For
Your pet may be showing various signs that they have itchy skin and it is important to look out for those signs so that the problem can be identified. Some of the most common signs a dog has itchy skin are:
- Scratching many times a day
- When scratching, it lasts for longer than a few seconds
- Dedicated licking or nibbling, perhaps in certain spots
- Sore skin
- Red areas of skin or unusual appearing skin
- Saliva stained coat in new areas due to excessive cleaning
- Bald or thinning areas
- Pain when scratching
- Scratching against furniture or other items
Sometimes a dog may do these things away from people, so it is important to watch them all the time to check they aren’t itching in secret.
Common Causes Of Scratching In Dogs
There are a wide range of reasons that a dog may be struggling with intense itching. Some of the most common reasons your dog might be struggling with itchy skin include:
- Flea infestation
- Lumps on the skin
- A reaction to medication
- An allergic reaction
- Bacterial skin condition
- Fngal skin condition
- Immune system issues
- Food allergies
The causes can be very obvious, or they can be less obvious, which is why it is important to seek advice if you do see signs your dog is struggling with irritated skin.
Is It Time To See The Vet?
If you notice that your dog has any issues with itchy skin it is always best to seek professional advice as soon as possible. It can be so uncomfortable for the dog and it may cause further physical problems and emotional issues for them if left untreated.
The vet will be able to diagnose a problem like fleas or mites really quickly, and treatment will be straight-forward.
In some instances, if a more complex condition is suspected such as allergies, then it may take time to find out the root cause of the itching. When the problem is identified it may then take time to see the results of effective treatment.
In all cases, the sooner your dog is taken to a vet, the better.
Helping To Help Your Dog Avoid Suffering From Itchy Skin
If your dog is healthy and shows no signs of itchy skin, that’s great news as you know they are comfortable and happy.
However, as with human health, prevention is always better than cure so it is important to do everything you can to help your dog maintain good overall health.
When it comes to skin health, there are lots of things you can do to help your pet stay in great condition including:
- Feeding them a great skin healthy diet
- Brushing them as regularly as their coat needs
- Avoiding using strong chemicals in the home
- Maintaining regular flea prevention treatments
- Keeping up with regular inoculations
Your Dog Can Be Free Of Itching
Remember to keep an eye out for symptoms of discomfort and to follow any advice and treatment from your vet in the case of a diagnosis. The sooner an issue is identified, the easier it will be to treat.
Using preventative methods and proactive visits to the vet your dog can be free of itchy and uncomfortable skin.