A cute dog scratching his head

Skin Sensitivity in Dogs

Often pet companions are unaware their furry friends can suffer from skin sensitivity. Here we review the signs of skin sensitivity, the possible causes and how to keep your dog more comfortable with the correct treatments.  

Signs of Skin Sensitivity in Dogs

Watching for signs of skin sensitivity is important because the itching and irritation can lead to infection. The most common signs of skin sensitivity include:

  • Excessive scratching: Constant, aggressive scratching could mean your dog has some form of skin issue or parasite.
  • Hair loss: Increased shedding when you brush them, fur, and hair all over the house or bald spots are often a sign of skin issues.
  • Dry skin patches: Dry skin or flakiness is also a possible sign of skin sensitivity.  

If you notice any of these signs, it’s best to visit your Little Rock veterinarian.

Causes of Skin Sensitivity in Dogs

There are many things that can contribute to skin sensitivity including:

  • Diet: Your dog’s diet can affect their overall health including issues with their skin. This is often due to allergies, often related to food groups such as gluten found in many corn-based foods.
  • Skin allergies: Some dogs are more sensitive to common allergens such as pollen, grass, dust mites, etc.
  • Dry environment: Homes with poor heating and air conditioning can lead to dryness in the air. This in turn can cause your dog’s skin to become dry.
  • Seasonal factors: Changes in the weather can lead to skin allergies especially in colder months. However, allergies are often triggered in the spring and summer, as well as the fall in some areas. Arkansas has unpredictable weather conditions, which can lead to many changes in your pet’s skin throughout the season. 
  • Parasites: If your furry chum has fleas or other parasites, their bites can irritate your pet’s skin. Mites can cause dry, scaly skin. It is important to get parasite situations under control as soon as possible. 

A visit to your trusted Shackleford Road Veterinary Clinic will determine what is causing your dog’s skin issues.

Treating Skin Sensitivity in Dogs

These helpful tips can help reduce skin irritation and sensitivity for your furry friend:

  • Grooming: Proper grooming can help keep your dog’s coat and skin healthy. However, a trip to your Little Rock veterinarian is the best way to find out what products and treatments are best for your pet’s skin condition.  
  • Bathing with appropriate shampoo: Choosing plant-based shampoos, conditioners and balms can help reduce skin irritation caused by harsh chemicals. Your Little Rock veterinarian can recommend the best skincare and shampoo products to use at bath time to help avoid irritation and dog skin allergies.
  • Proper diet: Shackleford Road Veterinary Clinic can help determine if your pet has any food allergies or sensitivities. Our SRVC pet nutritionist can recommend the right diet to reduce skin issues or clear them up completely.
  • Wipe dog paws: After a walk or romp in the park or backyard, wiping your dog’s feet can help remove allergens that can be tracked into the home.
  • Vitamin E: Speak to your vet at SRVC about vitamin E oil to apply to your pet’s dry skin patches.

It’s always best to consult us at Shackleford Road Veterinary Clinic before trying these tips at home.

When to Visit Shackleford Road Veterinary Clinic

 If your pet has any of the following symptoms, they require medical attention:

  • Sores, bumps, and scabs
  • Pus-filled or crusty blisters
  • Circular patches often located on the head, paws, ears, or legs
  • Excessive hair loss
  • Small areas that look red, irritated, and inflamed

 While skin sensitivity can be extremely uncomfortable for your four-legged friend, getting advice from your vet as soon as possible will help manage or even eliminate their condition.

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