Causes and Treatments of Canine Dermatitis
Canine Dermatitis means ‘inflammation of dog skin’ and it is fairly common in dogs. It can be caused by the following factors, alone or in combination:
- Animal, vegetable or chemical substances that can cause skin irritation;
- Exposure to extreme condition – heat, cold or humidity;
- Self-induced/self-trauma due to biting, chewing or rubbing;
- Parasitic infestation by fleas, flies, ticks, mites, lice, maggots, etc;
- Malnutrition or deficiency of essential nutrients;
- Immune-mediated or auto-immune disorders;
- Infectious diseases – bacterial, fungal, yeast or viral;
- Hormonal imbalances – hypothyroidism, hyperadrenocorticism, hyperestrogenism;
- Skin abscesses, tumours or masses – cysts, haematomas, lipomas, adenomas, melanomas, papillomas;
- Idiopathic or unknown causes.
The hallmark of canine dermatitis is intense itchiness and the consequent scratching, licking, pawing, chewing and/or biting at the skin, rubbing on the floor or ground. Other common signs may include hair loss, redness, thickening, oily and fowl smelling of the affected skin, dandruff, sores.
How can it be treated?
The goals of treating dermatitis in dogs are to control the inflammation and itchiness and to resolve the underlying causes of the disorder.
- Safeguard your pooch from external parasites (such as ear mites, fleas, lice and ticks). An antiparasitic treatment will do. Ask your vet for the more suitable.
- Get rid of internal parasites: Internal parasites, such as tapeworms and hookworms, also can contribute to canine dermatitis by reducing the affected dog’s immune system. Again, consult your vet.
- Be diet-conscious: All companion dogs should be fed a high-quality and well-balanced diet. Essential fatty acids and vitamins can help dogs in maintaining hair coat and healthy skin.
- Choose specific shampoo: Medicated shampoos that contain natural ingredients such as sulphur, tea tree oil, oatmeal and/or aloe can also help in reducing itchiness, moisturise skin and heal skin sores.
- Dogs with severe skin inflammation or skin infections may need to be treated with oral, topical or injectable medications to manage their diseases. Don’t give medicine to your dog without consulting your vet.
For more information, please, contact our vets available online or find one in your town on Dogalize Maps.