Skin problems – Dog Skin Problems and Treatments

Skin problems are very common in dogs. Why is this?

The reason is because when dogs react to allergens, skin problems such as poor coat texture, itching, and hot spots can begin to manifest.


Your dog’s skin problems may be due to either external or internal factors and, truth be told, they are numerous and varied. Diagnosis should always be made in conjunction with all of the other symptoms your dog is experiencing, and the advice of a vet is highly recommended.

Allergens may cause diverse symptoms. The best way for you to identify them is to spend time with your pet and make careful observations. Some of the symptoms or allergic reactions are:

Skin irritations found near the ears, mouth and between the toes
Red lumps rather like pimples
Persistent itching and scratching of the back and hind quarters
Cystic lumps with holes directly under the skin
Hot spots – red, moist with pus
Insect bites, on the tips of ears
Large quantities of dry flaky skin over the neck and back
Bald spots where the hair seems to have been rubbed off
Small swellings or spots rather like chicken pox
Hair loss
Blisters that turn into ulcers and skin erosions


Dogs will get allergies due to exposure to the environment; this is heightened during the summer months. Some of the more common causes of skin allergies are:

External Causes

Fleas, mites, lice, insects, maggots
Sensitivity to a substance like grass that the dog comes into contact with
Irritants like chemicals and detergents

Internal Causes

Hypothyroidism – excess cortisone
Cushing’s disease an immune mediated skin disorder
Hormonal imbalances – female species


Most skin problems that dog’s suffer from are treatable and remember that dogs, like humans, tend to get eczema, dermatitis, abscesses, warts and acne to name a few. Skin problems are often a sign of other underlying health problems like thyroid and toxins among other things.

The treatment options for a dog’s skin problems can be outlined as below:

Symptomatic Treatment: treat the dog’s symptoms with cooling baths and sprays – this is only a temporary relief method. Opt for natural products with proven results.

Immunotherapy: giving your dog allergy shots is quite a safe and successful method but tends to be rather slow in working and can take anywhere from six to twelve months to show results.

Corticosteroids: a compound that will reduce the itching by reducing the inflammation and has side effects that will make you think twice about using this method.

Antihistamines: a relatively safe method of treating the problem, however it may possibly put the dog to sleep.

Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids: fish oils (Omega 3) and evening primrose (Omega 6) are natural anti-inflammatory in nature they can be helpful but again results vary from dog to dog. Worth trying because there are no side effects.


Avoidance is really the best method if you know what your dog is allergic to. Keep your surroundings clean and dust free. Vacuum frequently and keep windows closed and the air-conditioner on whenever possible.

Keeping your dog well groomed and clean and feeding it a healthy diet is really be the best method of all.

Brandon K Roe – Brandon Roe is the author of

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