Is your dog’s scratching keeping you awake at night? Are you tired of the incessant shedding around the house? Your dog may be suffering from dry skin! Just like us, our pets are also prone to this skin problem.

One of the most common symptoms of dry skin is itching. Dogs would rub against furniture to combat the itch, but it doesn’t end there. They’re likely to bite or scratch vigorously as well. In this post, let’s take a look at what causes dry skin and find out how you can treat this ailment naturally.

Dry Skin Causes & Symptoms

It’s hardly uncommon for our dogs to scratch themselves but when it becomes excessive to the point of injuring themselves, it could be more than just instinctive scratching. It’s not easy to diagnose dry skin as there are many probable causes that range from simple allergies to complicated health issues.

1. Diet

Dogs who don’t get the nutrients they need are more susceptible to diseases, including skin disorders. The dog food you’re feeding them might be low quality, causing nutritional deficiencies that lead to dull coats and bad skin. Healthy fats or commonly known as essential fatty acids are important to our pet’s diet. If you spot itchy, flaky and red skin, those low-fat meals you’re feeding your pups might be the culprit.

2. Parasites

One of the most common causes of dry skin is the saliva of parasites. When fleas bite, our furkids can develop an allergic reaction to their saliva. Not only will your dog scratch himself vigorously, but he’ll also be biting himself excessively as well. Mite bites, however, cause dry, flaky and scaly skin called mange. This skin disease results in hair loss, scabs, and even sores.

3. Allergies

Our pets are no different from us when we come across something we’re allergic to. From food to seasonal allergies, it can be quite hard to pinpoint the exact allergen. Some are even allergic to other animals’ dander! Allergic reaction in dogs includes scratching excessively, sneezing or wheezing, runny eyes, severely irritated skin, swelling, and paw biting.

4. Shampoos/Grooming Products

It’s good to be clean, but while humans are advised to take a bath at least once a day, dogs shouldn’t bathe more than once a month. You should also use grooming products that are specifically made for dogs. Using human shampoo may be a little too harsh for your furkid and will dry out his skin.

 

5. Bacterial and Fungal Infections

When it comes to skin-related problems, bacterial and fungal infections like ringworm are the culprits. A ringworm infection can cause “bald spots” or patches of itchy, scaly skin that can be spread to other pets and humans. It’s important to treat ringworm as soon as possible as it’s highly contagious. Although it’s not a serious skin problem, it can complicate illnesses in people who have weak immune systems.

6. Systemic Diseases

Dry skin can be the result of systemic disorders — diseases that affect the whole body such as hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease. Hyperadrenocorticism, better known as Cushing’s disease, is the excess production of cortisol in adult and senior dogs. Canine hypothyroidism, on the other hand, is low levels of thyroid hormones that typically affects older dogs as well and has no cure. Both diseases cause dry skin, hair loss, dry and brittle hair, and skin infections.

7. Weather

We all know the effects of the dog days of summer (days when the heat is quite unbearable and when everyone is feeling lethargic): rashes, dehydration, exhaustion, and of course, dry skin. But summer is not the only time when conditions are harsh. When the chill sets in, both humans and animals find themselves suffering from dry skin again. But it’s not just the natural cold and heat that increases our dogs’ risk of dry skin. Air conditioning and heating systems cause itchy and flaky skin in animals as well. So, even if you try to protect them from the harsh weather conditions outside, your heating and cooling systems can still dry your pets’ skin.

Combatting Dry Skin With Natural Home Remedies

For us humans who don’t have major health issues, it’s fairly easy to fight off skin problems by simply lathering on extra moisturizing lotions or by infusing essential oils. With dogs, you have to take extra care, especially when using these oils. Lavender, chamomile, and thyme are good for relieving stress, skin irritations, and rheumatism pain, respectively. Essential oils that are bad for dogs are tea tree, citrus, and cinnamon. Make sure to steer clear of those oils!

You can also try our Ruff Relief Moisturizing Nose & Paw Balm, a safe, non-toxic, hypoallergenic and all-natural solution to your dog’s dry skin. We know it’s really uncomfortable for dogs to have dry skin, sore paws, and flaky noses. So, we created this moisturizing balm filled with all the good stuff that’s not only natural but also make sure your pooch need not suffer from the pain and uncomfortable feeling brought on by dry skin. Ingredients include:

Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil – No more dry, flaky skin when one of the ingredients includes olive oil. This essential ingredient brings life back to your dog’s dry and dull coat.

Organic Coconut Oil – Want your dog to smell good? Coconut oil fights off that “dog smell” and keeps your furkid’s coat smelling good and soft to touch.

Organic Beeswax – Summer is one of the worst seasons for our furkids. The pavement, asphalt, synthetic grass, and sand gets too hot for their paws. Beeswax helps in protecting and healing your dogs’ paws during extremely hot (and cold!) days.

Organic Carnauba Wax – Aside from providing the added protection against the harsh elements, carnauba wax is great for smoothing the skin and texture of your dog’s skin and paws.

Jojoba Wax – Found an itchy, inflamed and reddened area on your pooch’s skin? That’s probably pyotraumatic dermatitis, commonly known as a hot spot. Many pet parents recommend using jojoba to protect your pooch’s paws from winter and summer dryness and hot spots.

Non-GMO Vitamin E – And to top it all off, we included vitamin E in our moisturizing balm to promote healthy skin and coat, and get rid of flakiness. This essential vitamin is often found in your dog’s shampoos.

More ways to treat dry skin in dogs naturally

Aside from using essential oils and moisturizing balms to combat your dog’s dry skin, consider the following solutions as well:

1. Change their food to high-quality meals. If essential fatty acids are missing from your dog’s meals, they’re most likely to develop skin problems that result in itching and flaking.

2. Get rid of shampoos that irritate their skin. Ran out of dog shampoo just when you needed it the most? It’s better to just bathe your dog with water than use shampoos that are not meant for our furry friends.

3. Give antifungal medications and antibiotics. After your vet has diagnosed fungal and bacterial infections, make sure to give medicine to your dog on time. Even if your furkid is starting to feel and look better, don’t stop the course of antibiotics as prescribed by your vet.

4. Rid your home of flea and mite infestations. We love to take our dogs everywhere we go, and sometimes those little trips can result in flea infestation. Make sure to use all natural antiparasitic shampoos and collars on your dogs to prevent fleas.

5. Soak your dog in an oatmeal bath to relieve him of dry, itchy skin. Oatmeal contains avenanthramides and phenols which prevent inflammation. Your dogs are immediately relieved of itchy, inflamed skin!

If you want to know more about our Ruff Relief Moisturizing Nose & Paw Balm, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. Do you have an effective dry skin treatment to share with us? Leave a comment below!