Top tips for treating dog skin conditions

Posted by Dr Dog. September 24th 2013.

Here are 10 top tips to help ease dog skin problems

  1. Salt water bathing can be very soothing to the skin. Dissolve one teaspoon salt into a pint of cooled boiled water and bathe the sore/affected areas.
  2. Always regularly check for and prevent parasites e.g. fleas. They are a very common cause of skin allergies. Just one or two fleas are enough to spark off a reaction; it does not take a full infestation, as your pet is allergic to their saliva.Dogs licking stuff can be a perfectly normal behaviour
  3. Do not allow your pet to lick, scratch or rub at sore skin. The tongue is abrasive and saliva irritating. An Elizabethan collar purchased form any reputable pet shop or vets and fitted correctly, will help prevent this.
  4. If a pet is scratching, consider clipping the nails short or dressing the foot used with a child’s sock.Alternatively, a ‘body dressing’ can be created using a child’s T-shirt Both can help reduce trauma from the scratching, until a long term solution is found.
  5. Do not use human products on your dog’s skin. They are not meant for animals and could be an irritant or even toxic if licked off and swallowed.
  6. Use any shampoos provided by the vet as directed. These are often medicated and as much part of the treatment as any tablets provided.
  7. Always finish a course of treatment given by your vet and regularly attend any appointments until given the all clear.
  8. Ensure if using any floor cleaners or carpet cleaning/fresheners at home, that the area is avoided by your dog or is rinsed thoroughly with fresh water.
  9. Consider trying non-biological soap products on your pet’s bedding.
  10. Most skin conditions are made worse by heat, so keeping your dog cool, especially in summer is generally useful. A cold compress on an isolated area of irritation can also be useful in keeping the dog comfortable.
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