There can be several causes for dry skin in dogs. For example, medical conditions such as metabolic or hormone imbalances, parasitic/bacterial yeast infections, allergies can play a huge role. Poor grooming, lack of grooming, under bathing, or overbathing with detergents and soaps that dry skin can also be factors, and environmental conditions such as exposure to heat and low humidity can cause dry skin in your dog, much the same as it does in humans. It is important to determine the underlying issue of the dry skin so that you can address it accordingly.
How do you know if your dog has dry skin? If you notice that they are constantly scratching, chewing at the skin, or even licking, this very well may be the case. Below are some tips on how you can help.
- Brush often! Make it a goal to brush your dog daily (we suggest a slicker brush). This will help remove debris which will aid in better air flow.
- Massage. Grab a rubber glove and massage your dog. This will increase blood flow to the skin which provides nutrients to skin tissues.
- Bathe it up! Aim to bathe your dog at least 1-2 times a month, but not more than 1-2 times per week. Build up of oil and dirt can cause dry skin, but so can excessive exposure to water and soap.
- Use moisturizing bath products. Be sure to use a moisturizing dog-safe shampoo. Do NOT use human shampoo or conditioner!
- Air dry! Pat your dog with a towel to dry. Avoid using a blow dryer as this will cause the skin to dry up.
If you try all our tips and still run into issues, we suggest that you contact your veterinarian for further advice.