Dog scratching

Skin irritations

When you think about all the things that dogs do, lick, bite, scratch and eat – and the places they roam - it’s little wonder most of our furry friends have skin irritations or conditions at some point during their lifetime. The great news is that most of the problems are treatable.

What are the most common skin irritations in dogs?

Dogs can suffer from some of the same issues we do, such as:

Dermatitis

Inflammatory itching of the skin that can be chronic or temporary. There are many causes of dermatitis - It’s usually caused by something in your dog's environment eg sensitivity to grass, allergies to fleas, mites, bacteria or poor nutrition. Depending on the cause, the treatment can range from something simple to prolonged medication.

Abscesses

Abscesses are a sac or lump of pus caused by bacteria, parasites or foreign material under the skin, perhaps due to a dog fight or other puncture wound. There’s usually swelling and redness and the skin can get very hot. They are painful and should be treated by your vet.

Warts

Warts usually occur on a dog’s skin, around their eyes, inside the mouth, in their nose and on their reproductive organs. Some warts are benign and clear up by themselves. Others can be dangerous to your dog's health, or even a symptom of a more serious medical condition.

Acne

Yes, even four-legged adolescents have a right to think the world’s against them. And just like in moping teens, acne usually pops up on dog chins and lips. It’s most common in short-coated breeds like boxers, bulldogs and rottweilers. Acne often starts at puberty - around 5 to 8 months of age - and usually disappears after their first birthday.

How do I treat dog skin problems?

Your vet can properly diagnose your dog’s skin condition and let you know the best way to treat it.

If a bacterial infection is involved in your dog’s skin problem, antibiotics may be prescribed by your veterinarian.

Ever had problems giving your pet oral antibiotics prescribed by the vet? Click here to learn about a possible solution.