Itching in dogs is a common problem that is bothersome for both the dog and the owner. Fortunately, there are ways to relieve and treat the itch. It is important to work with your veterinarian to determine the cause of the itch so that you can choose the appropriate approach. In this blog, you will learn more about the causes of itching and possible treatments.
What are the possible causes of itching in dogs and their associated symptoms?
Bacterial skin infection: red spots and often crusts, often circular.
Flea allergy: biting and licking around the base of the tail, sometimes visible flea dirt (black specks) in the fur.
Food allergy and environmental allergy: general redness (in the groin area, between the paws, etc.) and frequent ear infections. In the case of food allergy, vomiting and diarrhea may also occur.
Disrupted skin and gut microbiome: recent studies have shown that a disrupted skin and gut microbiome are associated with itching in dogs (1,2,3).
What are the treatments for itching in dogs?
The treatment for itching in dogs depends on the cause. Below, we list the 4 most important ones.
Bacterial skin infections: these should always be treated with medication (antibiotics).
Fleas: treat your dog with flea products such as a flea collar, tablet, or spot-on treatment.
Food allergy: switch to a hypoallergenic diet for your dog.
Environmental allergy: if contact with the allergen cannot be avoided (often the case), you can enhance skin resistance with supplements such as Immune & Tune from Curafyt, combined with medication.
Discuss the appropriate approach for your dog with your veterinarian.
Can your dog become stressed due to itching?
Yes, itching can increase the stress hormone, making your dog even more uncomfortable. It is important to work with your veterinarian to find a solution to this problem.
Do supplements work for itching in dogs?
Supplements for dogs can contain beneficial nutrients to support a healthy skin in dogs. Choose a dietary supplement with Zinc, Omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins. Make sure there are no animal fillers in the product, as they can cause food allergies again. Immune&Tune is a plant-based supplement that contains important nutrients for the skin in dogs, without animal fillers.
1.Rostaher, A.; Morsy, Y.; Favrot, C.; Unterer, S.; Schnyder, M.; Scharl, M.; Fischer, N.M. Comparison of the Gut Microbiome between Atopic and Healthy Dogs—Preliminary Data. Animals 2022, 12, 2377. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12182377
2.R.D. Bjerre and others, The role of the skin microbiome in atopic dermatitis: a systematic review, British Journal of Dermatology, Volume 177, Issue 5, 1 November 2017, Pages 1272–1278, https://doi.org/10.1111/bjd.15390
3.Rodrigues Hoffmann A, Patterson AP, Diesel A, Lawhon SD, Ly HJ, Stephenson CE, et al. (2014) The Skin Microbiome in Healthy and Allergic Dogs. PLoS ONE 9(1): e83197. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0083197.