4 Tips For Identifying and Treating Skin Problems on Dogs

Saturday, January 20, 2018
Swan on Lake Against Mountain
photo via

Cats are definitely my thing, but every once in a while I get emails from readers who are looking for some information on dogs. Luckily, my niece is a veterinarian and is my go-to resource for pet-related questions and expertise.

For many pet owners, knowing when something is wrong with their pet comes as second nature. When a pet is sick, it is easy to tell that their personality is different, and many owners are very keyed into this part of their pet’s life. Of course, when something is bothering your pet, it isn't always obvious. When it comes to something subtle, like skin, it can be difficult to know what to watch for. In a lot of cases, though, your pet won’t have a way to show you their problems, and you will have to find them for yourself. So, to help you better identify potential skin issues in your dog, here a few of the things which impact your dog’s skin health.

The Fur: Unlike cats, dogs don’t have an easy way to clean their own bodies. Instead, over time, they will get dirtier and dirtier, eventually resulting in matted and knotted fur. While this is uncomfortable for your dog, and it should be resolved as soon as possible, you have to think about their skin in the process.

The Skin: Along with their fur, if left unchecked, their skin could also start to cause problems of its own. When a dog has a rash, it can be impossible to see it without combing through their fur. Fortunately, though, you should be able to feel something similar to small bumps as it starts to develop. If you ever find any bumps or lumpiness, it will be worth taking the dog to the vets, as they will be able to identify the source better than anyone else.

The Creepy Crawlies: Having fleas bite their skin all day every day will quickly start to become very uncomfortable for your dog. Over time, these bites will become abundant, spreading like a painful wave, but you can stop it. Options like Nexgard for dogs are great for treating and eliminating fleas, as they don’t force your dog to eat something which they won’t enjoy. Instead, they are delivered as a chew which most dogs will struggle not to eat.

The Diet: Like a person, the food your dog eats will contribute to the quality of its skin. It’s worth doing some research to figure out the best possible diet for your dog. A lot of owners don’t put this sort of time into their pooch, and if you don't have the time to research, ask your veterinarian for recommendations.

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