Seeing your companion scratching all day long, sometimes with hair falling in clumps, is not particularly pleasant… And in the absence of external parasites like fleas, you wonder without understanding where your dog's discomfort comes from.
Our only desire: to relieve it as quickly and efficiently as possible, without risk to its health. Hence the temptation to research how to stop dogs from itching with home remedies. What are they really? Is this an effective solution? Continue reading to find out!
- 1 Understanding Canine Dermatoses
- 2 How to Stop Dogs from Itching with Home Remedies
- 3 Limitations of Home Remedies for Itching Dogs
- 4 Itching in Dogs: The Importance of Health through Food
Understanding Canine Dermatoses
If your dog is scratching inadvertently, but without having fleas, he is probably suffering from dermatosis, a general term for a skin condition.
There are several types of dog dermatosis, including:
Overall, whatever the term used, the main manifestation is clear: the dog suffers from almost permanent itching (pruritus) and, as a result, compulsively itches. Here are the other signals to look out for in your companion:
You should know that the treatments prescribed by veterinarians against itching in dogs are not specific to the type of dermatosis from which the animal is supposed to suffer.
In other words, from the moment your dog suffers from pruritus (itching), the medicinal solutions and other treatments are, by and large, the same; the most common being the use of corticosteroids and other anti-inflammatory drugs, acting only on the itching itself and not on its origin.
A number of dog owners are therefore wondering about the relevance of such treatments, and are looking for natural solutions, or home remedies to fight against the itching of their companion, an option much less expensive and harmful.. What is it really?
How to Stop Dogs from Itching with Home Remedies
Just enter a few keywords in your search engine to find a plethora of home remedies to fight or soothe dog itching. Here is a quick overview of the most common and what we think of them right after.
Home remedies for dry skin dogs
It is often noted that a dog suffering from dry skin is more prone to scratching. It is sometimes suggested to install a humidifier, to maintain a correct level of hydration at all times, supposed to calm or relieve your dog's itching.
Dry skin is itchy, and the dog is no exception. Hence the advice, often given, to massage the dog's skin with olive oil, emollient and natural, to nourish its skin, but also to restore shine to the coat and stimulate regrowth.
You will notice that at no time here is the question asked: why does my dog have dry skin?
Another regularly cited, simple tip is to brush your dog. It is often explained that regular brushing helps the dog to get rid of dead skin and excess hair which, if not removed, can cause itching, and therefore scratching, but also block the pores. When these pores are blocked, the oils naturally produced by the dog's epidermis to hydrate and protect its skin and coat cannot work properly.
The theory is good, but it is a decorrelated example of reality and practice. Yes, it is good to brush your dog, but a dog will have no trouble removing dead skin on its own. The origin is indeed elsewhere as we will see a little further on.
Home remedies for dogs with oily or parasitic skin
Conversely, a skin imbalance in dogs can manifest as oily and shiny skin.
Apple cider vinegar is one of the “flagship” remedies for lovers of so-called natural treatments. The acidic nature of vinegar makes it a natural antifungal and antibacterial. To use it, we recommend that you mix a little water with a few drops of vinegar, and then apply it to your dog's skin and hair, in order to cleanse them.
Essential oils, and in particular the essential oil of lavender, antiseptic and healing, is also often recommended; it also neutralizes bad smells or at least camouflages them when the origin is elsewhere. However, a dog suffering from skin problems sometimes gives off an unpleasant odor.
Lemon juice is regularly cited as an antifungal and antibacterial, which seems indicated in the case of a dog suffering from untimely itching, and in particular from parasites. This liquid would help restore the pH of problem skin areas, in addition to neutralizing ticks and fleas.
Limitations of Home Remedies for Itching Dogs
However, you should know that these home remedies for a dog who is itching are not miracle treatments.
The first thing to consider is that in order for there to be any effect, these adjunct treatments must be done very regularly to calm the dog's itchiness. This is time-consuming, and depending on your dog, his tolerance to being handled and/or being treated with substances with sometimes invasive smells, it can be a real chore.
Also, these home remedies focus on your dog's itch itself, and its consequences, not their causes. Indeed, have you wondered why your dog suffers from peeling, dry or oily skin, recurring parasites, hair loss… in the first place?
When it is not a parasitosis as in the presence of fleas, dermatosis or canine dermatitis are above all the manifestation of a more general internal imbalance in dogs. It is, therefore, a problem that is necessary to identify and solve at the source. What is it, and is there a lasting solution for the itching dog?
Itching in Dogs: The Importance of Health through Food
Why is my dog itching?
As often when the dog suffers from a recurring affection, whatever it is, this is the manifestation of a struggling organism.
In other words, your dog may react to an irritating external element (herbs, product, parasites…) or to an unbalancing factor (atmospheric humidity, personal sensitivity…) by itching. However, experience shows that these factors do not lead to compulsive itching if your companion has a healthy immune system.
So where does the development of such skin conditions come from? You must first know that the skin, like the kidneys, the liver or the lungs, is a so-called “emunctory” organ; that is, it serves as a route for the elimination of toxins. When these are present in too large quantities in the body, and even more when the other emunctory organs are saturated, the skin will eliminate them; which then explains the appearance of itchy skin in your dog.
In our domestic carnivores, we find that these toxic substances are abnormally high. Why? When the intestinal wall is healthy and functioning properly, it serves as a protective barrier between the inside of the dog's body (internal environment) and the external environment (intestinal lumen).
When the diet is unsuitable and/or rich in toxic substances, this causes irritation of the intestinal wall and subsequently intestinal hyper-permeability; large molecules or toxins, usually released by the body, are found in it, especially in your dog's blood and lymphatic system.
It is, therefore, a food rebalancing exercise that must be taken if you want to treat the itching and pruritus of your dog at their root – when they are not linked to parasites (fleas or mites for example). Here are the 3 main responsible elements in your dog's bowl:
Now you know where your dog's dermatitis and itchy rash mainly comes from. How to restore their digestive and skin balance? We give you the procedure to follow.
How to permanently solve the problem of itching in dogs?
Being passionate dog moms and dads, the guys over at Ollie have teamed up with canine nutritionists to develop cooking methods and personalized formulas your dog needs.
They have developed a food program that meets their organic and natural needs as closely as possible. By experience, the majority of canine ailments, including itching, can be permanently cured by quality and adapted diet. Here are their quality criteria:
You will understand: the basis of optimal skin health is the quality of your companion's diet. Once this essential basis has been established, the odds are in your favor that your dog stops itching… and this, without resorting to home remedies with too occasional effects and in no way eliminating the problem of itchy skin.
The guys over at Ollie are running a promotion where you can get 50% off your first box of human-grade dog food. I highly recommend that you try their chicken or turkey recipes.
Important: This article is for informational purposes only. We always recommend that you go to a trusted vet with your pet first.