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Dog Dandruff . . . Dog Dander: Is Your Dog A Little Flakey?

Updated on July 26, 2017

Is Your Dog A Little Flakey?

Urgggh, doggie dandruff . . . those flakey, flecks of dry skin that seems to be everywhere: on the bed, on your couch and even on you.

First, know the cause: dandruff (or dander) mostly occurs when a dog's skin cells naturally form, die, and flake off at a very rapid rate. But there ARE ways you can counter-act this.

So you wanna know how to give your pooch some "itch relief" and get rid of doggie dandruff? Here are several tips on how to keep your dog's coat clean and dandruff-free:

Bath Time Tips

Combating Dog Dandruff Starts With Proper Bathing

You may be wondering, "how often should you give your dog a bath?"

Well, it all depends . . . A dog's fur and skin varies from breed to breed. Long-haired dogs for instance, generally require grooming a lot more often than short-haired dogs.

A great article on bathing your dog can be found on WebMD.

But here are a couple of other factors involved in determining how often you should give your dog a bath.

... Is she a yard dog or an inside dog?

... Does she get dirty eating?

... Does she have an odor?

Tip #1: Brush Before Bathing

Before bathing your dog, you need to brush out the entire coat to remove as much dead coat as possible. Remove any mats with a mat comb or coat rake, or cut through them with scissors.

Doing this will also help eliminate tangle once you start bathing your dog..

For De-matting & De-Shedding . . .

Safari De-matting Comb
Safari De-matting Comb

This crazy-popular Safari De-Matting Comb makes de-matting easier especially for medium-to-long-haired coats. Recommended by professional groomers, the blades can be reversed for right or left handed use.


Tip #2: Controlling the Water Temperature Makes Bath Time So Much Easier

It's usually easier to use the bathtub to wash your dog because you can control the water temperature:

. . . Keeping the water warm allows you to give your pooch a full soak.

. . .The shampoo comes out a bit better using a combination of water temperatures.

However, if you have a large enough portable receptacle (e.g. tin tub) with access to hot/cold running water, you can just as well bathe your dog outside.

Did You Know?

Doggie Dander (or Dog Dandruff) . . . is a frequent cause of allergy in humans.

Tip #3: Using The Right Shampoo Can Do Wonders

With so many shampoos on the market, sometimes it's not so easy to decide which ones to use. For most breeds a basic, all-purpose shampoo will do just fine. However, if you want your shampoo to do more than clean, you might also consider a specialty shampoo:

... A hypo-allergenic (or "tear-less") shampoo can minimize reactions experienced by dogs with very sensitive eyes (or skin).

... A medicated shampoo designed to treat itching, allergies or other sensitive skin conditions can be helpful (your vet should be able to recommend a good one).

... Shampoos with extra conditioners can make post-bath grooming easier but also combat dry skin.

Tip: Some say that when you shampoo your dog it can be helpful to mix some water and shampoo in a separate bottle (enough just for that bathing). This has two advantages: the diluted shampoo can be worked into the coat easier and will rinse out better.

Oatmeal Shampoos Provide Soothing Relief

Oatmeal shampoos tend to provide relief from itching and contains emollients to restore moisture to your pet's skin.

Here is a top-seller:

Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Shampoo, Vanilla & Almond, 16 Ounce
Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Shampoo, Vanilla & Almond, 16 Ounce

This hugely popular vanilla-almond scented oatmeal shampoo is soap-free, natural, biodegradable, and gentle. It effectively combats skin irritations, promotes healing, and is formulated to re-moisturize your pooch's dry skin ...


Dah'lin . . . Let Me Enjoy My Bath In Private

Photo used under Creative Commons from: Toronja Azul

After Bath Time

Why not give your dog a treat?

It will help to give her a pleasant association with bath time.

That Wasn't So Bad . . . Was It?

Photo used under Creative Commons from: steveleenow, on Flickr

Nutritional Supplements Can Also Help With Your Dog's Coat

[Check with your Vet, of course.]

© 2008 Dee Gallemore

Let Me Know You Stopped By . . .

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    • profile image

      Mary 2 years ago

      Ah choo my pit mix has lots of dandruff. Good tips.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      There are lots of good ideas on this site. I also like that most are easy to understand. The info on dandruff was very helpful.

    • profile image

      happynutritionist 5 years ago

      Aspen likes me to use a special shampoo for her as she has very sensitive skin. We haven't noticed dandruff, but maybe it's because we use special shampoo already. *blessed*

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      This is a great page with some very useful ideas. Thank you.

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      Wonderful ideas for helping your dog.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I love how your using the do the polka theme, it goes with talking about dog dander. Making bath time lots of fun might not be possible but you sure know how to make it more pleasant. A soak in the tub is treat enough for me (dahling)....but our dog friends do deserve something extra for getting through an ordeal for them.

    • squidoopets profile image

      Darcie French 5 years ago from Abbotsford, BC

      WOOF! Gotta keep us doggies clean and cared for and free of the flakes :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Thank you for the great tips

    • profile image

      esperance 6 years ago

      I'm sure your advice will help people who love dogs but are allergic to them. Regular bathing will help keep down the antigens which bother their owners. (Of course, I mean regular bathing of the dogs!)

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 7 years ago

      Hmmm, well my dog's NOT a little flakey but my husband is ................ argh argh argh! ;)

    • Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Deb Kingsbury 8 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      When I read the title of this lens, I answered, "Yep, she's a little flaky." Not too, too bad, but I've been flicking the flakes off her lately. Thanks for the tips. And I especially love the photos.