How to Heal Skin Problems on Dogs
The scratching and licking your dog does may be enough to drive you up the wall. Although some scratching and licking is normal, if it becomes excessive it maybe a way for your dog to deal with some sort of skin problem.
Sometimes the problem is serious, such as an immune disorder or a tumor, and requires veterinarian-prescribed treatments. Other times, the disorder may be something that can be treated at home.
Two common conditions, dandruff and hot spots can be treated at home with little medical intervention, saving you time and money.
1. Clip away any hair that remains around the hot spot using hair clippers. This allows air to reach the area. This will help to dry and heal the infection. Be careful when using clippers around the area to avoid irritation. Do not press the clippers directly to the skin that is infected. Hot spots are bacteria infected areas of skin. The areas are made worse when your dog chews and licks them. The resulting spots will be mostly devoid of hair and have open sores.
2. Obtain surgical soap from your vet. Use the soap to clean the area according to package or vet instructions. Rinse the area thoroughly and towel it dry. Do not rub the area since this may cause more irritation. Instead, use a dabbing motion. Then allow the area to dry naturally.
3. Use all topical medications that your vet may have prescribed, according to package directions.
4. Place an Elizabethan collar around your dog’s neck to avoid her further licking the spot. Elizabethan collars can be purchased at your local pet store. Continue to use the collar until the spot has healed.
1. Bathe your dog using baby shampoo. Massage the shampoo into his skin using warm water. Rinse the shampoo thoroughly to avoid residue irritation. Dry your dog with a towel or blow dryer. Repeat shampoos once a month during the colder winter months or twice a month during warmer summer months. If you find the baby shampoo is not doing the trick, you can purchase pet dandruff shampoos from your local pet store and follow the package directions.
2. Spray your dog with an oil rinse after bathing and drying your dog. Oil rinses are available at your local pet store and will help keep your dog’s skin moisturized. Follow the package directions for application.
3. Groom your dog with a soft bristle brush daily for long haired dogs and weekly for shorter haired dogs. This will help move the natural skin oils over your dog’s skin and help keep it moisturized.
4. Provide your dog with a high-quality dog food. High-quality dog foods provide the essential vitamins and minerals he needs for a healthy coat and skin. If you need suggestions on appropriate brands, speak with your vet or an employee at your local pet store.
Tips & Warnings
Always contact your vet before beginning any home treatment for any condition to discuss your dog’s specific health requirements.
- WebMD Pets: Skin Problems in Dogs
- Bark Bytes: Hot Spots
- Basic Dog Training: How to Treat Your Dog’s Dandruff