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Why Your Dog Just Can’t Stop Scratching

Updated on April 6, 2015
Does Your Dog Scratch Most Of The Time?
Does Your Dog Scratch Most Of The Time?

Dogs and Their Skin Problems

Many dogs suffer from different skin conditions which often times are unnoticed until it’s too late. Have you recently notice you dog scratching and licking certain parts of its body? If yes, there is a big possibility that your dog is suffering from skin problems.

Your dog skin condition may reflect its overall health. Most skin problems on dogs are not emergency cases but it is not an excuse to let your dog endure the pain and itchiness of its condition. Some skin problems might be cause by other serious medical problems that needs attention immediately, so when you notice your dog’s not-stop scratching, it is better to know the underlying cause in order for you to find proper medication. Here are some common causes of skin problems in dogs.

Watch out for allergens from the environment.
Watch out for allergens from the environment.

Skin Disorders Due To The Environment

Skin disorders due to the environment are not something you should really worry about but it still needs medication. Dogs enjoy the outdoors so much that most of the time can cause them to have skin disorder. Here is some common skin disorders cause by the environment.

  • Seasonal Allergies

Seasonal allergies are allergies cause by environment factors like trees, pollen, grass, dust, feathers and many more. This kind of allergies can cause allergic dermatitis which commonly happens during springtime where flowers are in full bloom and the plants are starting to grow. Spring cleaning products like perfumes, fabrics, rubber and plastic materials and cleaning products can also cause skin problems in dogs.

  • Bacterial Skin Infection

Bacteria that cause skin infection on dogs usually come from the environment. Your dog skin is a home of thousands of commensal bacteria which live in balance with the dog’s skin defenses. Infections happen when the balance is disturbed by pathogenic invaders due to dog’s activity with the environment like playing on the grass and with other dogs. Pathogenic bacteria are bacteria from the environment or commensal bacteria from other dogs that come in contact and transferred to your dog. The commensal bacteria of your dog can build a protective effect against pathogenic invaders through establishing themselves deeper on the skin until they circumvent your dog’s immune system. Impetigo and folliculitis are the most common skin diseases brought by bacteria.

  • Fungal Skin Infection

Fungi are everywhere and although it has little effect humans, it can bring several skin problems to your dogs. There are many ways for fungi to infect your dog; it can be inhaled through a respiratory tract, oral intake or through skin contact. Your dog can develop fungal skin infection when the fungi find its way to your pet through skin or mucus membranes. The most common type of skin infection cause by fungi are yeast infection, ringworm and seborrhea.

Only healthy and high quality food for your dog.
Only healthy and high quality food for your dog.

Skin Disorders Due To Poor Nutrition And Diet

Many dogs can have skin disorders because of malnutrition or lack of nutrients in the food they take. In this case, there is typically no need for medication. What you must do is to correct your pet’s diet and let your animal companion eat healthy food. On the other hand there are some skin problems that are also caused by their allergic reaction in the food they intake.

  • Food Allergies

Food allergies on dogs are often hereditary but often get notice when the allergies are triggered by the food they eat. Most common allergens are beef, dairy, wheat, egg, chicken, lamb, soy, pork, rabbit, and fish. Allergies on dogs commonly differ from one breed to another. Symptoms of food allergies are chronic ear inflammation, chronic diarrhea, gastrointestinal problems, chronic gas and itchy rear end.

  • Alopecia

Alopecia is the shedding or excessive loss of hair in areas where they are normally present. Although, other types or allergies can cause hair loss, the common reasons why alopecia in dogs are stress, poor nutrition and illness. If you let alopecia ignored, it can result to abnormal shedding and patches of missing fur.

  • Dry, Flaky Skin

Most of the time, dry and flaky skin are nothing too serious. But it can still cause discomfort to your dogs. Dry and flaky skin is sometimes caused by lack of water intake by your dogs. It is important to give your dog high quality of food and enough water to get hydrated.

  • Anal Sac Disease

When you see your dog scooting across his bottom is could be symptoms of anal sac disease. When your dog poops, there is fluid that is squeezed out in the anal sac which when not emptied completely, that’s when a problem can occur. This usually happens because of constipation and it is suggested that you let your dog eat food that is high in fiber.

Get rid of those pesky creatures.
Get rid of those pesky creatures.

Skin Disorders Due To Parasites

When pet owners noticed their dog’s not-stop scratching, one of the most common thing they suspect are parasites and most of the time it is correct. Parasites bring several skin problems to your dogs. Here are some of the problems your dogs might experience because of these pesky creatures.

  • Sarcoptic Mange

Commonly known as scabies, this skin disorder is caused by microscopic parasite called Sarcoptes scabiei. When these microscopic mites invade the skin of dogs, it can create various skin problems including severe itching, red and sore skin. This disease can spread easily from one dog to another and even to people.

  • Skin Issues Caused By Fleas

Fleas are tiny insects that inhabits in dogs that can also cause severe itching and sore skin. Fleas if not treated early can lay thousands of eggs and can cause severe problems other the common skin conditions.

  • Skin Issues Caused By Ticks

Tick is another pesky parasite that feed on the blood of your dogs. It can bring several skin problems and these ticks must be removed immediately before they start affecting your dog’s immune system

Stop Your Dog Bad Habits
Stop Your Dog Bad Habits

Skin Disorders Brought by Dog Habits

This is probably of the of most difficult skin condition to treat. It happens when your dog creates a habit of licking and scratching specific area because of boredom, separation anxiety, new environment, frustrations and other mental factors. There is no specific medication to this but to keep you dog happy and active. Here are some skin conditions on dogs that often occur due to this situation.

  • Hot Spot

Scientifically known as acute moist dermatitis, hot spots are tiny lesions that get irritated, moist and grow to an alarming rate because dogs tend to lick, chew and scratch the affected. As a result, it can’t be healed over a short period of time and it can be painful for dogs.

  • Acral Lick Granuloma

Just like hot spot, acral lick granuloma or acral lick dermatitis is a frustrating skin condition that is usually seen in the lower leg. The irritated area becomes more irritated because of the compulsive, relentless licking of your dog on the affected are. If it is unable to heal it can cause too much pain and itching.

Final Words

Dogs can experience several skin problems and if not address properly can lead to serious problem. Proper grooming and clean hygiene is probably the first step to keep your dog free from these skin problems. Also keep in mind, that as a pet owner it is your responsibility to choose a veterinarian to watch for your dog’s health. With enough knowledge you will be able to know the right thing to solve skin issues to let your dogs live comfortably.

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    • profile image

      Avinash 

      3 years ago

      hey there! checked out your wetbsie and am very interested in your assistance. We have a year old lab X greyhound (so we found out afterwards!) and all in all he is an amazing dog, we got him at 8 weeks and he has been around our daughter who had just turned 3 and is amazing with her she lays on him..pushes him is kind of in an aggressive stage right now and we try really hard to stress to her NOT to be like that lol but anyway he has never growled, snapped, bit or snarled at her..or anyone for that matter.. he is a very loving and affectionate, licky/kissy dog.however, we have a baby on the way, and my husband was just called into the military and will be going away for quite a while. Bentley(dog) seems to listen to my husband more than me they are BFFS. And Bentley has and always has had an issue with jumping up, and pawing at people lol not aggressively but its still super frustrating, and we are concerned with the baby on the way and such and just want to get him under control while hes still young.Let me know what you think and We'd love to meet!

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