Scratch, scratch, scratch! Is that what you hear whenever you’re near your dog? Does your pet stay up all night (and keep you up) scratching frantically? If so, your dog could be suffering from a skin problem. Skin problems in dogs are very common but can turn rapidly into serious infections if not addressed at the right time in the right way. If you find that your dog scratches excessively, has flaky, sore or lumpy skin, and if there is loss of fur, then it’s time to take it to the vet. There are times wherein the problem could be just with the ears and this is quite often mistaken for an insect bite in the ear. However, remember that dogs cannot express their agony the way humans do. It is up to you, as the dog owner, to watch over your pet and take the right steps as soon as you notice something not quite right with your dog. While there are many home remedies that can be used for dog skin problems, if you find that these are not effective, it is better to get professional help for your pet.
Skin Diseases In Dogs
Ticks, fleas and mites are parasites that bite dogs and suck their blood. This leads to swelling, itching and eventual infection. A common cause of death in dogs is Mange which is an infection caused by mites that burrow in the animal’s epidermis.
Allergies include seasonal allergies as well as food allergies and these are a bit tricky to diagnose and therefore to treat. Anything that is around the house could cause allergies – mold spores, dust, household cleaning products, food and even pollen.
Also called Moist Eczema or Summer Sores, hot spots usually happen when the dog’s coat gets wet but does not dry completely. Bacteria get trapped under the coat and cause sores on the dog’s body.
This is a fungal infection that occurs when the climate is hot and humid. It resembles a hairless lesion in the form of a circle, with the center of the circle being scaly. It grows larger as time passes and can be transferred to humans on contact.
Winter causes dry skin and this can become flaky and itchy. This is primarily caused when the dog is exposed to dry heat during winter.
Hormonal changes are reflected in the dog’s skin and there is loss of fur and change in the color of the coat quite often.
Common Symptoms of Dog Skin Problems
- Abnormal patches
- Skin rashes
- Bald spots
- Lump formation
- Drainage of blood or pus
- Unusual secretions
Treatment for Dog Skin Problems
Treatments vary based on the type of skin infection that the dog is suffering from. These include anti-histamines, topical solutions and creams, antibiotics, shampoos, rinses, antifungal drugs and creams, as well as a complete change in diet.