Natural Cures For Dog Skin Allergies

Published: 09th May 2011
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If your dog is itchy and scratching, he probably is suffering with one of the dog skin allergies. The symptoms can range from a mild discomfort to a really intense itching and major skin irritation. Left untreated, infections and open wounds can occur.

Dogs, like people, have allergic reactions to various irritants. The irritants cause the body to produce histamines. It is the histamines that cause the itching and irritation.

The first culprit to look for when confronted with an itchy dog is the common flea. Some dogs are sensitive to the anti-coagulant found in flea saliva. Just one bite can cause an intense, full body reaction, Without medication or soothing ointment, the itchiness will persist for days.

The second major culprit is the dog's food. Many dogs have food allergies. The task now is to find out which of the ingredients in dog food are the culprits. The first ingredients to weed out are corn, wheat and grain products. There are many dog foods for sensitive dogs on the market. They usually substitute sweet potato, rice or barley for the suspect grains and will have a limited variety of protein sources. Beef is usually eliminated but even lamb or chicken can result in an allergic response. The most extreme and sometimes most effective foods for a sensitive dog have a single source protein, such as fish, bison, turkey or rabbit.

Veterinarians can recommend steroidal medications, lotions and baths to calm the irritation. If you are lucky enough to live near an ocean or other body of salt water and have a dog who swims, then a weekly trip to the beach is a fun and effective solution. If there are fleas, they'll not survive the water and salt. The salt helps heal the skin and the exercise will allay some of the dog's anxiety. Oatmeal baths are another aid. Aromatherapy with sweet orange oil and massages with an almond oil and sweet orange oil combination are calming and the orange oil is a natural pesticide.

Once you find the food your dog can eat without suffering an adverse reaction, keep him on it. Never finish one bag and start a new one. There may be slight changes in the proportions of ingredient between one batch and the next. A new bag may provoke a response unless you gradually mix and replace the old food with the new.

Fleas are easily dealt with and can be removed from your dog and home with a few natural ingredients. Orange oil is a great repellent and there are a number of orange oil cleansing products on the market. Also, as noted above, the orange/almond massage oil makes your dog flea-free. Get borax and sprinkle it into any rugs you may have in your house. Borax is deadly to fleas. Push it into the nap of the carpet and then vacuum it out. Lavender and peppermint leaves are also unpleasant for fleas and also leave your house smelling wonderful.

When your dog has an allergic skin response, you have two tasks. First you want to alleviate his suffering and stop the itching as quickly as possible. Then the source of the irritation must be located and dealt with.

I'm a canine health guru who specializes in dogs hot spots.

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