How to Get Rid of Dog Dandruff
Just like humans, dogs can have lots of ailments and infections. There are dental diseases, urinary problems, cancer, and canine parvovirus amongst others. While all of these diseases should definitely be addressed immediately, there is one dog infection that is often dismissed as it is said to be harmless: dog dandruff.
The truth is, dog dandruff can harm your dogs as much as other potentially harmful ailments.
What is dog dandruff?
Dog dandruff occurs when flake-like dead skin cells retain on their epidermis instead of being shed out. This leads to extreme itchiness and irritation. Your dog’s instinct will be to scratch it thoroughly until the itch goes away.
However, scratching can cause severe pimples, scratches, and wounds. These open wounds are likely to then become a breeding ground of various fungi and bacteria, making your dog vulnerable to more serious infections such as distemper, heartworms, and canine parvovirus.
What are the causes of dog dandruff?
One of the most common causes of dog dandruff is obesity.
When a dog is overweight, they tend to have multiple skin foldings. These skin foldings can be filled with moisture which becomes a breeding ground for fungi and yeast, resulting in dandruff. So it’s best to aid the digestion of your dog to avoid obesity.
Another cause of dandruff in dogs is hygiene. Lack of proper hygiene or a dirty environment results in bacteria and fungi build up. However, extended bath time can also cause dryness to the skin, which results in dandruff.
It is recommended that you only bathe your dog every other week, using a mild shampoo.
It is also believed by some that dandruff can be caused by genetics. Some dog breeds like Cocker Spaniel and Golden Retriever are more susceptible to dandruff than other breeds.
How to treat dog dandruff
Because dandruff is a common problem amongst dogs, there are thankfully a lot of ways in which you can treat it.
The most common way to address and treat dog dandruff is to buy a dog dandruff shampoo. However, not all dog dandruff shampoo will work with all dogs with dandruff. The shampoo’s active ingredients will depend on the level of infection, skin or fur of the dogs, their breeds and even their age. So, it’s best that you consult your veterinarian first before buying a dog dandruff shampoo.
On the other hand, if the dandruff isn’t extreme yet or might just be caused by dryness, you can try a DIY dog dandruff treatment.
Apply lime juice to the affected area and soothe it with oatmeal. Vitamin C can treat dandruff, while oatmeal will solve the itchiness and irritation.
Lastly, give your dog a supplement for dog dandruff. It is known that fatty acids, especially Omega 3, improve dogs’ skin and coat conditions. Not only can it treat dandruff, but it can also prevent it from re-occurring.
Aside from this, Omega 3 also improves your dog’s immune system, making him less susceptible to more severe diseases caused by dandruff.
Now that you already know the cause of dog dandruff and what might happen if it’s left untreated, it’s time to give extra effort and attention to your dog’s skin!
Laura Robinson, DMV
Dr Laura practices at the Antonio Animal Hospital in California, where she was born and raised. She is an advisor to Wuffes, ensuring all our products and content is of the highest standard