All dogs scratch sometimes. When the scratching is compulsive and nearly non-stop, it’s an indication that there’s an underlying problem. Compulsive scratching can cause your dog to scratch to the point where the skin bleeds, and there’s hair loss. When this happens, you have to find out what the problem is so you can address it and find an effective treatment option.
So, why is your dog scratching a lot? Most often, fleas are the cause of a dog’s persistent scratching, but there may be other issues, including:
- Contact dermatitis
- Allergic Reactions
- Food Allergies
Dogs can suffer significant reactions like itching and compulsive scratching due to dog food. Many dogs are sensitive to some of the ingredients in their food that can lead to severe skin irritation. Many of the factors that cause allergies in dogs are environmental. Pollen in the air and mold can also trigger severe allergic reactions in dogs. Humans often suffer from seasonal allergies, especially during the spring. Many dogs have seasonal allergies in the springtime that require medical treatment.
Problems With Contact Dermatitis
Contact dermatitis is a disorder of the skin that can affect both people and animals. Hypersensitivity is a characteristic of this disorder. Significant inflammation and skin irritation are two of the worst symptoms of this disorder. Contact dermatitis is caused by a variety of chemical substances and allergens that are in the environment. The condition affects all dogs, but some breeds seem to be more susceptible to the condition than others. The most common symptoms typically include:
- Inflammation of the skin
- Scaly skin
- Severe problems with itching
- Sore areas
Skin Dryness In Dogs
Dogs may have dryness in the skin due to the environment in which they live. Dogs that live in areas in which the humidity is low are more susceptible to having dry skin problems. When your pup is scratching all the time, diagnosing the cause of the irritation is more difficult to determine if it’s environmental. Dry skin is easier to diagnose. One of the most common symptoms of dry skin in canines is more dandruff flakes in the pup’s undercoat. Loss of hair, cracked skin, and inflammation are symptoms in more severe cases. An important point to keep in mind is that all dogs scratch some of the time. When a dog scratches uncontrollably all the time is when there’s a more serious issue. Dogs can get itchy skin when it’s dry in the same way as humans.
Is It A Food Allergy? Does My Pup Have A Skin Infection?
Contact dermatitis is a condition that causes skin irritation from chemicals, soaps, or pesticides. When a dog has a food allergy, some ingredient in the food they eat is causing an adverse reaction. Anxiety, pain, or dry skin can also cause persistent scratching. It’s essential to distinguish whether your dog is suffering from a food allergy or has a food intolerance. Canine food allergies occur when the pup is allergic to one or more of the ingredients in the dog food. Food intolerance is a digestive problem.
What If It’s Food Intolerance?
When a dog has food intolerance due to ingredients in their food, the symptoms are:
- Loss of appetite
- Increased flatulence
- Diarrhea or stools that are funnier than usual
- Gurgling stomach
- Abdominal pain
- Weight loss
Although food intolerance isn’t a serious medical problem, it can cause your dog to have severe discomfort. It’s a good idea to schedule a visit with your veterinarian. Your vet may want to prescribe a special diet for your dog which is most likely one of today’s best dog food for allergies. Major brands produce prescription food for dogs in wet dog food and dry dog food formulas. When you notice your pup biting at the paws or obsessive licking is sometimes symptomatic of food allergies.
Common Ingredients In Dog Food That Cause Allergic Reactions
Foods that are rich in protein are the most common cause of allergic reactions in dogs. The ingredients that most often cause allergic reactions in dogs include:
Some dogs are extremely sensitive to any dairy products and may have lactose intolerance. It’s essential to determine what’s causing the allergic reaction so you can eliminate that food from your pup’s diet. Allergic reactions to food may occur in dogs of all ages. The allergic reaction may sometimes occur after the dog has been consuming the same food for months or even years. An allergic reaction to food begins because the immune system can mistake ingredients in food for something that’s harmful to the system. Some dogs may even develop hives. when a dog is scratching or biting constantly hair loss can be the result.
The Common Signs Of Skin Infections
When a dog has a skin allergy that’s left untreated it can develop into a skin infection. Remedies are available for skin infections in dogs . However, if the infection is left untreated it can take longer to heal. Dry skin that’s not treated can cause infections, but it can be caused by bacteria. The most common indications that your pup has a skin infection are:
- The appearance of lesions, sometimes pus-filled, on your pup’s skin
- Inflammation and an increase of red skin
- Patches of fur loss from scratching or biting
- Crusting and peeling of the skin
- Excessive moisture on your pup’s skin
- Signs that your pup is in pain or discomfort
An essential point to remember is that fleas and dry skin can cause similar symptoms in your pup. Your dog may be scratching compulsively. You may think the problem is fleas when it could be dry skin, and the reverse is true. Here are some suggestions to determine whether your pup has fleas or dry skin.
Flea dirt is tiny, black particles that resemble dirt on your dog’s skin and fur. One of the most effective ways to find out the cause is to comb the coat with a flea comb to locate flea dirt.
If the flea infestation is severe enough, you may even see fully-grown fleas on your dog’s skin.
It’s a good idea to check around your house for any signs of flea infestation, especially in carpeting and on furniture. You should check the dog bed for any signs of fleas. They could be in your dog’s bed or blankets. Use the best flea and tick treatment for dogs if needed.
Signs Your Pup Has Dry Skin
If your dog is scratching or biting and there are no signs of fleas or flea dirt, it could be dry skin. Symptoms may include:
- Patches of missing fur
- Unpleasant odors
- Skin that flakes
- A lot of dandruff
Effective Remedies For Severe itching
Anti-Allergy chews are effective for internet and external allergy symptoms. The chews are all-natural and contain ingredients to enhance the immune system. Anti-itch chews for chronic itching and hot spots contain Omega-3 fatty acids, prebiotics, and probiotics for dogs.
Anti-itch relief shampoos for dogs contain oils and natural ingredients like lavender that have a calming effect on dogs. Anti-itch canine shampoos provide relief from fleas and other pests, seasonal allergies, and dry skin. Use the best flea shampoos for dogs if necessary.
One of the easiest ways to treat skin infections in dogs is with medicated sprays that relieve itching, dryness, and fight infections. Medicated sprays are effective for paw licking, yeast infections, dry skin, and hot spots.
Can Dogs Cause Humans To Itch?
Bacterial skin infections can be passed between dogs and humans. Yeast and fungal infections in dogs can also be passed to their owners. If your pup has a flea infestation, it can be passed to you. Flea bites can cause reactions in humans including itching and redness in the skin. Here are some helpful tips:
- Have your dog treated for fleas, skin infections, or dry skin as soon as possible.
- Wash your hands thoroughly whenever you’ve been in contact with your dog. Make sure your kids wash their hands after playing with your dog.
- Excellent hygiene is a necessity for your pup and the humans in your home. Make sure to give your pup a bath on a regular basis with the best dog shampoos that’s formulated just for canines. You should also make sure to clean and disinfect your pooch’s dog crate, the house, and sleeping quarters to avoid spreading germs. Make sure your dog is up-to-date on all vaccines. when you’re cleaning and disinfecting make sure to use natural products that are safe for your dog.
More Essential Facts
Like many dog owners, you may want to know if it’s safe to give Benadryl to relieve your dog’s itchy skin. The answer is yes. The key thing to remember is the correct Benadryl dosage for dogs which is one milligram per pound of the dog’s body weight. However, before you give your dog Benadryl, you may want to check with your vet. You should only give your dog Benadryl that doesn’t contain any other ingredients that could be harmful.
Can you put hydrocortisone on a dog? Canine-formulated creams are also a safe remedy for dogs with itchy skin. Hydrocortisone relieves itching and inflamed skin. If your dog is sensitive and has skin allergies Hydrocortisone is an excellent product to have for those times your pup is experiencing itchy skin.
Aloe cream is another product that relieves itchy skin. You shouldn’t apply the cream directly to your dog’s skin. The best way to use aloe is to mix it with a small amount of water and apply it with a cotton ball to the itchy spots.
What can I give my dog for constant scratching?
What you give your dog for constant scratching depends on the problem. If your dog has dry skin you have to determine if the cause is an allergy, fleas, or sensitivity to the dog food you feed. Natural products like creams or sprays are formulated to relieve the itching and help to heal the skin.
Why is my dog itching all over?
If your dog is itching all over, remedies like natural treats can help with skin, environmental, food, and seasonal allergies. Medicated shampoos for dogs contain oils that are soothing to a dog’s skin and help relieve itching. Veterinary sprays that contain aloe are an excellent choice when your dog is uncomfortable from the itching and is fearful of being handled.
What can I give my dog for itching if it has no fleas?
If your dog is itching and you find no fleas after checking your dog’s coat, it’s likely an allergic reaction to something in the environment or a food allergy. You may want to consult your veterinarian for recommendations on the best way to treat your pup’s itchy skin.