An expert can ascertain the general health of a pet simply by keenly observing the skin and coat. Dry skin tends to spoil the glossy coat and often leads to excessive itching and scratching in pets.
Before you do anything about it, it is advisable that you ensure that the dry skin and the resultant itching are not a result of a parasitic infection, an immune mediated diseases, allergies or a bacterial and fungal infection. Such disorders require immediate veterinarian attention and are better treated systemically.
Winter dries human skin, especially hands and feet, and we need to keep the skin moist by applying moisturizing lotions. Just like humans, dogs also face skin problems during the winter. To ensure that your dog’s coat and skin remains in good condition, you need to remember certain basic aspects of dog skin and coat care:
- Dogs do not need a daily bath with soap or shampoo. Excessive use of soap and shampoo can dry the skin.
- Bathe your dog only to keep him clean. Human shampoos are too harsh for dogs. Use only mild shampoos meant specifically for dogs, and buy only a reputable brand.
- Rinse the coat with a moisturizer after every bath.
- Dead hair and dander need to be removed from a dog’s coat. Regular brushing will ensure a coat free from extraneous substances.
- Consult with your veterinarian about your dog’s diet. Ensure that you are feeding him the right amount of fatty acids and other ingredients necessary for healthy skin and coat.
- Stay away from inexpensive dog food since these are not likely to contain adequate amounts of fatty acids, and a lack of adequate amounts of fatty acids can result in dry skin. To be safe, buy only reputable brands of dog food. If you are looking to change your brand or try a new brand of dog food, read the label carefully to ensure that it has all the nutrients that are required for the healthy growth of your dog.
- You can also search the market for nutritional supplements that have the required nutritional components that keep the dog skin healthy and looking good.
Basically, healthy skin comes from a healthy body. If your dog is healthy within, his skin and coat are bound to be lush and shiny. Feed your dog with natural foods after consultation with your veterinarian.