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Is your pet shedding dog dandruff all over the carpet and furniture? Are visitors complaining about dander triggering their allergies? This is one thing you can’t train your cat or dog not to have.
Approximately 10% of people suffer pet allergies, whether they are cats or dogs. Dogs are the most common choice for pets, however, which is they get the blame more often than not. The root cause of people’s allergic reaction is pet dandruff.
To treat this problem, you first have to understand what causes dog dander. With that in mind, here are the most common causes of dog dander and how to treat it.
In most cases, a dog with dandruff only has it in one localized area. It could be on the head, the thighs, or under the belly. However, if you notice dog dandruff all over your pet’s body then it could be from a skin infection.
Infections are either bacterial or fungal in nature. Puppies can also suffer a condition called impetigo (staph infection). Your dog could also have a condition called Seborrhea, which leads to rashes and itchy skin.
A dog with skin infections is likely going to develop sensitive, flaky skin. This leads to dandruff falling off each time they scratch themselves. It can also lead to serious wounds if not treated immediately.
Ringworms, ticks, fleas, and mites can all cause dog dandruff too. They damage the skin each time they bite down to suck on blood. Even parasites within the dog’s body can lead to dander because of the way their activities dry the skin.
You could also encounter “walking dandruff” on your dog. These are small white mites called Cheyletiella mites. They look like dandruff and will settle on your pet’s skin and fur to lay eggs, making life uncomfortable for your dog.
Keep in mind that allergens can also lead to dandruff in dogs. Allergic reaction to food or cleaning chemicals in your home can irritate their skin, causing dandruff. Then there are topical reactions too – this is when your dog develops dandruff after coming into contact with an allergen like dust or pollen in the air.
Discovering what your dog is allergic to can get difficult at times. Dogs can’t speak so you’ll have to observe carefully to check what agents cause the dog to develop dandruff. Visiting a veterinarian to run some tests is still the recommended solution for this.
Low humidity is another root cause of cat dander. This is why it is important to check if your dog’s breed can live comfortably before you relocate. Some dog breeds evolved in certain climates and you might move your pet to a place they weren’t meant to live in.
If you relocated recently to a dry place, the air can soak up the moisture on your dog’s skin. This makes their skin coarse. When your dog scratches on that fragile skin, it will break and this leads to dandruff and skin wounds.
Very cold places can also lead to dandruff. The harsh, cold air makes the skin brittle and susceptible to wounds and rashes when the dog scratches.
Check if your dog gets the right amount of water, vitamins, and minerals they need. You might want to hold out on giving treats to your dog because they might cause harm. If they don’t get enough nutrition, their coat will suffer for it and this again leads to dandruff.
Not sure what to look for? There are main vitamins that every dog needs:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
Zinc is important to boost your dog’s immune system. A healthy immune system fights off allergies, infections, and even parasites. Vitamins A and E are important to promote healthier skin and fur.
Not giving your dog a bath can also cause dandruff. Make sure to ask your local veterinarian about the grooming needs of the breed of dog you have. Make it a habit to brush your dog’s coat regularly to keep it healthy and lubricated.
Also, keep in mind that giving your dog a bath too many times a week also leads to dandruff. Most dog breeds are fine with taking a bath only once or twice a week. If you have to use dog shampoo to get rid of their dandruff, most products recommend doing this only once or twice a month.
My Dog Has Dandruff: What Now?
How do you treat dandruff? The most obvious solution is to first address some of the issues listed above. Give your dog a regular bath, brush its coat, and make sure the dog has a healthy diet.
That may not be enough, however. For some cases, you may have to visit the veterinarian to learn how to treat dander in dogs. Your pet may have parasites or a skin infection and for these cases, you’ll need a vet’s recommendation on medications and dog products, such as specialty shampoo and oils.
If your dog is allergic to certain foreign objects, you have to use allergen blockers. These are topical solutions that you apply to your dog’s coat. These safeguard your pet’s skin from dust and pollen.
Dog Dandruff Shampoo
While you may hear of DIY remedies to get rid of dog dandruff, don’t follow them without the recommendation of a veterinarian. Instead, rely first on tried and true dog food, that comes with all the right vitamins, and dog shampoo products.
Take note that not all dog shampoo is the same. Some focus on treating skin infections and others are for getting rid of mites, ticks, and fleas. Other shampoo products work as anti-allergens or allergen blockers.
You should also check the intensity of the shampoo. Some products are mild and won’t irritate your dog. Others are too strong and may cause more harm than good for your pet.
Discover More Dog Tips and Advice Today
With this guide, you’ll be able to identify why your pet has dog dandruff and what you can do to treat it.
Don’t stop there, however, as there are more important factors to consider when raising a dog. Visit us today and discover other important tips and advice, like how running with your dog is a great way to exercise.