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Skin problems are some of the most common reasons we see dogs here at Anasazi Animal Clinic in Gilbert. They can be tricky to diagnose because there are so many different issues that can cause skin conditions. In today’s post we’ll talk about a few of the most common skin issues in dogs and what you can do to help your itchy fur baby! 

Allergies

Allergies are a common source of itchy skin, or pruritus, in dogs. There are three common causes of allergies in dogs: environmental triggers, fleas, and food. 

  • Environmental triggers are things like pollen or mite dander, which are inhaled, or grass, which can be directly absorbed through the skin. Treating environmental allergies may require allergy shots or medication during allergy season.  
  • Flea bites typically cause a temporary irritation to both pets and people. But in dogs with a flea allergy, one bite can be enough to cause systemic itching. Fleas are hard to manage, as they require treating all household pets as well as the environment, but once you get rid of the fleas, the itching will resolve. 
  • Food allergies are usually triggered by a hypersensitivity reaction to a particular protein that the body mistakenly sees as a threat. Food allergies are rare, and the only way to diagnose a food allergy is through a strict elimination diet under the care of your veterinarian here at Anasazi. 

Dry Skin

Here in the hot, dry climate of Arizona, we see a lot of dogs with dry skin. Dry skin can cause a wide array of symptoms you may not be aware of, including itching, dandruff, pimples, scaling, hair loss, odor, scabs, and inflammation. Though the environment can cause dry skin, there are also numerous other causes. They are: 

  • Allergies
  • Parasites
  • Bacterial and fungal infections 
  • Metabolic disorders like Cushing’s disease or hypothyroidism
  • Excessive bathing
  • Harsh soaps
  • Malnutrition 

The most effective way to treat dry skin is to address the underlying cause. Preventing it in the first place is even better. Some of the best ways you can prevent it are by feeding your dog a high quality diet, staying up to date on parasite-prevention medication, regular grooming, and keeping up with your pup’s scheduled checkups with us here at Anasazi Animal Clinic. 

Ringworm

Ringworm is another one of the common skin issues in dogs. Ringworm is actually a fungus, not a worm. It causes circular patches of bald, scaly, inflamed areas of the skin. Ringworm is very contagious and seems to be more common in puppies. Treatment can include medicated shampoos, ointments, dips, and possibly oral medication. If you suspect your pup may have ringworm, bring him in to Anasazi Animal Clinic right away so that we can properly diagnose and treat him. 

Let us Help!

At Anasazi Animal clinic we are passionate about your pet’s health and happiness. And as animal lovers, we know how debilitating these common skin issues in dogs can be for your four-legged member of the family. If your dog has any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with us today so we can help him find some relief. We’ll take care of your pet with personalized TLC and quality professional know-how.

Image by birgl from Pixabay

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