Has your dog been scratching a lot lately?
At Frank and Jellys, we have been getting inundated by fur mums and dads asking us for help and advice on itchy, scratchy fur babies.
If your dog has been suffering with the itchies, then it’s really important to know and understand that most skin itchiness is caused by an allergy or parasite. The result of an allergy or parasite for your dog is loss of hair and lots of scratching!
We decided to give you some insight to some common parasites and allergies as well as give you some remedies to stop your dog from scratching!
Fleas: At this time of year fleas enjoying jumping out of the long grasses over to our beautiful pets. Like head lice in children, they thrive in lovely clean pooches. So before you go out on a long meadow walk make sure to put some coconut butter on your fur baby to deter any unwanted fleas. Another natural and holistic approach against fleas is Fenugreek Powder.
Ticks: Again spreading Organic Coconut oil or butter on your pooch will protect them on their walk against these little beasts. However, should you already find a tick in their fur, pull it out slowly. Be gentle, as you need to get the head out. Generally, all you can see is the body only. If you do not want to use your tweezers or hands, use Tick Twisters. Spray afterwards with some Leucillin as a disinfectant on the wound and watch out for symptoms of tick-borne diseases.
Allergies: Humans are no stranger to allergies and neither are our dogs whose immune system behaves very much the same as ours. Some dogs being more prone to allergies than others. When we talk about allergies we distinguish between seasonal and food allergies. Seasonal allergies can be caused by blooming plants and trees. Regular brushing and bathing, as well as air filtration and limited exposure to the elements, helps and could prevent the risk of your dog developing an allergic dermatitis. Food Allergies are also a cause for itchy skin. Some dogs may be allergic to certain proteins like beef, dairy, chicken while other dogs may be allergic to grains, rice or wheat corn. Skin redness and itching are often the first signs of an allergic reaction. Eliminate certain foods for one or two weeks and see if the itching stops and the red skin goes away.
Yeast Infection: This is the most common skin infection for dogs, after fleas and ticks. Dogs have a natural healthy amount of yeast levels in their body but these levels can be kicked out of balance if your dogs starts to itch, scratch and chew their paws excessively. Vets usually prescribe steroids to balance out the yeast levels, however, once your dogs overactive immune system is turned off from the steroids, the immune system can’t do its job of regulating and balancing the normal flora. THis often leaves our four legged friend with yeast bloom.
Secondary skin infections are then often treated by vets with antibiotics. Antibiotics are well-known to destroy all good bacteria along with the bad, wiping out healthy yeast levels in the process.
So what’s the best way to balance and strengthen your dog’s immune system and regulate their yeast production? Frank and Jellys strongly recommend trying natural and organic products. Something like coconut butter, apple vinegar or Immuboost (an Echinacea based product). Add these to your dogs food or give them directly to your dog to eat or drink – a spoonful should be enough. Change to coconut flakes if the oil or butter is too rich for your dog to digest.
Bacteria skin infections and viruses: A bacterial infection often turns into a virus and alongside everything else we have recommended in this article, we also suggest trying colloidal power spray to treat these infections and viruses. If you find these natural treatments aren’t working, it’s best to seek advice from your vet.
Mites: Mites are the reason for mange in dogs. Mange causes skin irritation, causing your dog to scratch themselves non-stop. There will also be hair loss and scabs. Puppies and older dogs are at great risk with mites. Keeping your pooch in good health can help prevent mange. Boost their immune system by spraying Leucillin occasionally on their skin.
Leishmanial: This is an external parasite transmitted by a mosquito bite. Leishmanial causes itchy skin, hair loss, and injuries. To prevent this happening use Oz Oil Soothing Tea Tree Cream as it has insect repellent properties.
Fungi: Our four legged friend might have some areas without hair, usually with some scaling of the skin. Fungi is contagious both for other animals and humans. Even if the injury goes away with treatment, it is important to do some check-ups. The fungi may still be there and come back. In some cases, the problem is solved with a topical ointment. Our Doggy Detectives and Frank and Jellys have had very good experiences with Colloidal Silver.
Bad cornification of the skin (seborrhoea): is excessive scaling skin, like dandruff. It is usually caused by a bad diet or stress. Sometimes it can be solved with a specific shampoo or by avoiding stressful conditions.
Atopic dermatitis: is an inflammation of the skin caused by certain substances common in the environment. It is a genetic disease that will be with your dog for their entire life. Please speak with you vet for the appropriate treatment.
Hormonal imbalance: Thyroid, adrenal glands, ovaries or testicles. Any alteration of the glands that regulate fats, proteins or hormones may cause skin problems. Again, consult your vet for best series of treatment.
We could go on but we wanted to touch on some of the more common reasons your dog might be itching and scratching! It’s also good to know that there are so many result based, natural remedies out there to treat your dogs.
If you have suggestions for alternative remedies to help with itching pooches, we’d love for you to leave a comment below and share your wisdom!
Paws of Love,
Sarah (fur mum to Frank) xo
P.S. Are you in the Frank and Jellys ‘Doggy Detectives’ Facebook group? It’s a place where fur mums and dads go to make friends, test doggy products and share stories on best products. PLUS we always share tips and tricks as well as offering advice and sharing experiences when one of our furry friends is not well or not behaving! It’s great fun and it’s absolutely FREE to join! Come join the fun HERE xo.
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