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Dog Has Dry Flaky Skin

Diagnosis Of Scaly Skin In Dogs

Dog dandruff – how to get rid of dry flaky skin

As there are so many possible causes, it is important to bring your dog in for veterinary treatment as soon as you notice a change in her fur, skin, or an increase in itching, scratching, chewing or licking herself. The veterinarian will need your help in tracing the onset of your dogs condition, so be sure to give a detailed account of when the signs began, how they are progressing, and how your dog is behaving. Also, be sure to report on your dogs nutrition, environment, normal behavior , and any grooming products you have recently used.

The veterinarian may conduct standard laboratory tests, such as blood count, blood biochemistry profile and urinalysis to rule out hyperthyroidism, bacterial or fungal infections, or parasites.

The most important tests are those of the skin itself: a scraping of your dogs skin will be analyzed for fungal and bacterial cultures. If the veterinarian identifies any growth on your dogs skin, a biopsy may be taken and submitted to a pathologist for examination in order to determine the presence of parasites, infection, or cancerous cells. If allergies are suspected, allergy testing may be recommended, or your veterinarian may elect to treat symptomaitcally. If a food reaction is suspected, you may conduct an outpatient elimination trial and report your dogs condition to the veterinarian regularly.

Bonus Tip: Winter Protection

The tips above will help to reduce symptoms of dry skin in your pet, but acting preventatively can ensure that your pet is prepared for any seasonal changes. Make sure you have all the tools to keep your pet protected from cold weather.

Winter gear isnt just about fashion. Finding the right coats, dog boots, or paw waxes can protect your pet from frigid outdoor temperatures, as well as ice melters, salts, rain and ice.

Consider seasonal changes and adjust your routines and activities to prevent the effects of cold weather on your pet. Winter means shorter days, so walks may be better scheduled during the warmest, sunniest parts of the day, as opposed to early mornings when the temps are more savage.

What Are The Symptoms Of Dog Dandruff

You’ll notice your dog’s skin looks dry and possibly irritated or inflamed. There will be white specks hooked on their coat, which may come off on their bedding or on your clothes. Depending on the severity of dandruff and the cause, you may also notice scabs, general hair loss, irregular bald patches, and some scratching or itching.

Dog dandruff often appears in puppies, with medium and long-haired breeds at particular risk.

What’s causing dandruff in my dog?

One of the most common causes of dog dandruff is a diet which doesn’t include the necessary or highest-quality nutrients your dog needs to develop a healthy coat and skin. Essential fatty acids, like omega 3 and 6, are crucial for supporting your dog’s skin, and as dogs can’t synthesize these internally, they have to be included in their diet. Similarly, protein is very important your dog’s skin and hair uses 30% of their daily protein intake to grow and develop, so highly digestible and high-quality protein sources need to be part of what they eat. Vitamin A is also key, as it helps regulate the growth of skin cells and the production of sebum.

Dandruff in dogs can also be caused by their environment. Seasonal shedding is normal for many breeds of dog, but if their space is particularly warm or cold it can trigger reactions in their skin and interrupt its oil production, which can then lead to dandruff. For example, a particularly warm environment can dry out your dog’s skin very quickly.

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Discover Delicious Food Your Dog Deserves

Its common for dry skin to appear in the winter months when homes are artificially heated and humidity is low. Air conditioning can also dehydrate the skin.

Beauty isnt just skin deep and your dogs skin needs nourishment from within. Essential oils like omega-3 and omega-6 are key to healthy skin and coat so if theyre not getting enough from their diet, this can cause skin problems.

Frequent shampooing can strip the skin of its natural oils so over-zealous bathing of your dog can actually do more harm than good. Too little attention to their hygiene can also be bad for their skin so achieving a balance is key.

Certain conditions like diabetes, Cushings disease and hypothyroidism can all lead to dry, flaky skin so its important to rule these out as possible causes.

Andy graduated from Bristol University in 2010 and sees nutrition as a foundation for our pet’s wellbeing and takes a common-sense approach. We are what we eat, and it shouldn’t be any different for our pets.

Treating The Seborrhea Itself

Tips for treating dry skin on dogs

To treat the seborrhea itself, your dog needs frequent baths with anti-seborrheic shampoos, typically every 2 or 3 days to start with. These shampoos typically contain coal tar and salicylic acid.

Frequent bathing is continued for 2-3 weeks or longer, until the skin improves. The goal of bathing is to remove excess keratin. Depending on how your dog responds to treatment, bathing frequency may decrease to every 1 to 2 weeks, or it may stay at every 2 to 3 days.

Additionally, you will need to clean your dogs ears with a medicated ear cleaner every 2 to 3 days. If there is an infection in the ears, your veterinarian will prescribe an ear medication as well.

Your dog may also be started on prednisone to decrease inflammation and debris buildup. Regular rechecks with your veterinarian, typically every one to three weeks, are important to monitor how your dog is responding to treatment.

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What To Do If Your Dog Has Flaky Skin

As we have demonstrated in this blog, flaky skin in dogs can be caused by a wide variety of conditions. Luckily, most of these conditions are able to be successfully treated, but only if a correct diagnosis is obtained. Therefore, if you notice that your dog has flaky skin, you should book an appointment at the surgery so that you can be seen by Dr Rachel Caines who has an Advanced Certificate in Dermatology.

Getting an early diagnosis will ensure that the problem does not develop into something more serious. It will also give your vet the chance to identify if your dog has another more serious illness that could be causing the flaky skin.

What Are The Symptoms Of Dry Skin In Dogs

The symptoms of dog dry skin are:

  • Scaling, crusting, or flaking on your dogs coat surface especially behind the ears or around his nose, mouth, and eyes
  • Redness or irritation in affected areas
  • Chewing their toes
  • Dry patches that may bleed when scratched or picked at by your pet
  • Flaky dandruff-like particles in the fur around your dogs neck, shoulders, armpits, and tail area
  • Itchy skin may be more noticeable during certain seasons, such as summer.

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Keep Your Dog Clean And Healthy This Winter

Bathing your dog in the winter can be tricky, but keeping a consistent grooming routine helps your pup stay clean, healthy, and protected from dangerous winter hazards like chemicals and frostbite.

Check out our selection of organic and natural dog grooming products to find everything you need to make bath time a breeze this winter. From natural shampoos to wet wipes and paw balms, you’ll find everything you need to keep your dog clean and healthy all season long!

Additional Resources

Give A Dose Of Vitamin E

6 Dog Dry Skin Home Remedy Options (Very Easy to Make and Use)

Vitamin E is an excellent treatment for dealing with skin diseases, and it can be used both externally and internally. You can apply vitamin E directly to the affected region. A little massage and even a soak in the bath with this vitamin can have that skin back to normal. When giving your dog this vitamin directly, you should be careful since different dog breeds require a different dosage of vitamin E.

You can also give your dog a high-quality diet that contains sunflower oil, spinach, avocado, eggs, or salmon. These foods are rich in Vitamin E. The change in diet can help improve your dogs health. Vitamin E oil can protect your dog from direct UV light, which is beneficial if your dog spends a considerable percentage of the day outside.

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What Is The Best Option For Dogs With Dry Skin

The best overall option for your dogs coat and skin may be a mixture of these remedies, although we highly recommend CBD dog shampoo. While other remedies can target some of your furry friends symptoms, CBD shampoo also provides relief to the entire body. You can clean your dogs skin on the outside, nourish it, and provide a soothing sensation with CBD suds.

Fortunately, you dont just have to try a single treatment method. Combine different techniques, use essential oils or CBD with coconut oil, and let us know your most effective methods. With cleansing properties, moisturizing effects, and the benefits of CBD oil, youll quickly see why this is product is one of the best for dry skin!

Bacterial Or Fungal Infections

Bacterial infections can cause severe skin irritation and discomfort to dogs. Theyre often called pyoderma and can include papules or pustules on the skin. Fungal infections are also common, the most notorious being ringworm. It can cause dry hairless patches of skin which can sometimes appear in circular lesions. Its common in puppies or dogs with a compromised immune system. Ringworm is zoonotic so quick treatment is recommended.

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Treatment For Dogs With Dry Skin

Just as there are many causes for dry skin in dogs, there are also many different treatment methods depending on what condition your dog is afflicted by. If your dogs dry skin is a symptom of a health condition, a veterinarian should be consulted to properly diagnose and treat the condition along with the dry skin.

For dry skin caused by allergies, there are a few different treatment methods that veterinarians often times use in conjunction to ease your pets allergy symptoms. Dry/ irritated skin caused by environmental allergies may be treated by avoiding the allergen as best as possible, controlling the symptoms , and in some cases, allergy shots.

Food allergies that cause dry skin in dogs may be treated by an elimination diet to single out the food your dog has an intolerance to. Common food allergies for dogs include beef, soy, corn, wheat, dairy, chicken, and eggs.

Can I Wash My Dog With Baking Soda And Vinegar

How Many Dog Skin Problems Can Your Pup Get?

Baking soda works to remove odors from your dogs skin and fur. The baking soda paste should be applied before the shampoo and can be washed off as you lather homemade dog shampoo and then rinse both items off the dog with warm water. In a big spray bottle, put 2 cups of warm water with 1/2 cup of white vinegar.

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Treatment For Skin Problems

Certain skin conditions need veterinary treatment such as antibiotics, steroids, medicated shampoos, immunotherapy treatment, etc. Theres a wide variety of tests and treatments available for the many varied skin conditions that dogs can get. If your dog has other symptoms or if the skin problem isnt resolving, get them checked out by your veterinarian to rule out other skin conditions.

Treating Dry Skin In Dogs

As you can probably guess, treating your dog’s dry skin will depend on the cause. Step number one is to call your vet’s office to set up an appointment. Once theyve diagnosed the cause of your dog’s dry skin, treatment can begin.

It’s important to note that some dog breeds seem to be more prone to dry skin than others. This could be because of genetics, but the exact reasons aren’t clearly understood.

Hairless breeds like the Chinese Crested are prone to skin conditions including dryness, simply because their skin is more exposed. And it seems that breeds like the Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Boxer, Poodle, English and Irish Setter, Pug, and various terriers are especially prone to having sensitive skin, allergies, and other skin conditions.

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Causes Of Dry Flaky Skin On Dogs

Dry skin is a painful issue for animals. Some of the causes may include winter weather, allergies, fleas, and diet. If you notice your dog scratching frequently and itching from having dry, flaky skin, then you need to address it as soon as possible. Otherwise, it can turn into something much more severe such as infection. Many natural treatment options are available for treating dry, flaky skin on dogs. For best results, stay with one source until the problem gets complete.

Can A Dogs Environment Cause It To Get Dry Flaky Skin And Dandruff

Dry, Itchy and Flaky Dog Skin? Brand New Holistic Remedy

Yes absolutely! There are many environmental factors that can exacerbate skin dryness, leading to dandruff. Examples include dry winter air and central heating causing low air humidity. Good diet is optimal for skin health, so a poor diet can also lead to dandruff, as can bathing with an inappropriate shampoo.

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How To Bathe A Dog In Winter

Bathing your dog is never easy, but the task becomes even more difficult during winter. Rather than wash your pup with the garden hose in your backyard, you’re forced to get more creative with your bathing methods.

Read on to learn why bathing your dog in winter is important, and the best methods and natural dog grooming products to keep your pup clean while staying safe from the winter weather.

How To Treat Dry Skin On Dogs

The home remedies listed above can provide quick relief for mild cases of itchy or dry skin. But it’s important to consult with your veterinarian if the problem persists or symptoms worsen. There are many potential causes of dry skin in dogs, and only a veterinarian can correctly diagnose the problem and prescribe the appropriate treatment.

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Dogs With Dry Skin: Treatment

How to treat dry skin on dogs? The first thing is to have them examined. Treatment depends on the underlying cause, and once treatment begins, the dryness should improve. Other ways to help your pet with problems associated with dryness are:

  • Keep your dog on a flea and tick preventative.
  • Feed your pet a high quality diet and address any food allergies.
  • Use a mild shampoo specifically designed for dogs, as well as a conditioner.
  • Use a gentle hypoallergenic conditioning shampoo and spray on conditioner.
  • Brush your dog regularly.
  • Avoid having your pet interact with dogs with scaling or itching, unless the cause is known to be non-contagious.
  • Use a humidifier in the home.
  • Speak with your veterinarian about your dogs food and possibly supplementing Essential Fatty Acids that improve skin and haircoat.

As always, if your pet is having skin and coat issues, its important that your veterinarian see them to rule out health problems. For more information on helping dogs with dry skin, or to schedule an appointment, please contact us.

What Causes My Dog Dry Flaky Skin And Hair Loss

How to Stop Hair Loss and Itching in Dogs From Yeast Overgrowth

Dry skin might feel quite normal, but at times it could be an important symptom of underlying disease. If your dog has dry, flaky skin and hair falling out, then there are chances that they might be suffering from serious diseases like cushioning disease or hypothyroidism. Your dog might also be allergic to a specific substance, or a parasite might be responsible for the problem.


Like humans, dogs also have to battle it with allergies arising from dust, environmental conditions, pollen allergies, feather allergies, or even grass allergies. Flea saliva and animal dander can also cause your dogs skin to dry. Ignoring dry skin and itching in dogs can lead to serious skin complications, leading to atopic dermatitis, which can further lead to inflammation and redness and can be very stressful to cure.

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If you havent encountered any such problem in your life, you must look at the dogs dry, flaky skin and dandruff dog pictures on the internet, and we are sure that you would understand the complication. Flea saliva allergies are one of the prominent reasons for dry and flaky skins for dogs in the UK. The best treatment option for dry and flaky skin is to give your dog a clean bath and avoid taking them to dirty places, and also keep your home free from fleas.


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How Do You Apply Coconut Oil To Dogs Skin

Coconut oil can add moisture to your dogs skin and prevent flaking. It also helps freshen up a dogs coat if used with a light touch. To use it topically, simply rub a very small amount onto your hands and then gently pat the coat, run your fingers through the fur, and massage a little down onto the skin.

Pet Insurance Can Help

Dry skin isnt just caused by environmental or dietary issues some breeds, like West Highland Terriers and American Cocker Spaniels, are predisposed to skin conditions. Accident and Illness Coverage offered by AKC Pet Insurance doesnt just protect your pet in case of an unexpected accident or illness, it even offers optional coverage for hereditary conditions like dry skin*. Click here for a quote and let the pet insurance of champions worry about the what ifs.

*Available at an additional cost. Waiting periods may apply. Coverage subject to deductible and coinsurance. Pre-existing conditions covered after 365 days.

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