If you have a black Labrador or a dark breed it may be quite easy to spot those annoying little white spots referred to as dandruff. However, it's a lot more difficult to detect dandruff in light-colored breeds. Therefore, you must understand additional symptoms so you can learn how to treat dandruff in dogs.
What many don't know is that dog dandruff tends to be a secondary, therefore it's a smart idea to consult your veterinarian for additional help. However, if your dog is experiencing dandruff there is a likely chance, they may have allergies, dry skin, small infection, or environmental influencers that are causing dandruff. Therefore, if you continue reading, you'll begin to understand what to look for in your dog and how to treat dandruff in dogs as well.
Causes of Dog Dandruff -
When it comes to learning how to treat dandruff in dogs, you must first understand what causes the condition. Therefore, we've evaluated the top three most common causes for dogs to have dandruff.
Changing Climates -
The first and most common cause of dandruff in dogs is climate change. As seasons come and go especially from summer to fall and winter. The climate can change from an abundance of moisture in the air to fall and winter when the humidity and moisture begins to get dry. As a result, and the climate changes from humid to dry your dog’s skin goes through the same changes. Therefore, your dog’s skin can begin to dry and crack causing dandruff to become visible on the surface of their coat if they have dark fur. However, if they have a light coat you may find dandruff on a dark dog bed or blanket, they sleep on.
Poor Dietary Intake -
The second most common cause of dandruff in dogs would be a poor diet. The days are gone when you go down the dog food aisle and see just two brands and pick the cheapest. Now if you walk into your local pet store you may find two, three, or maybe even four isles dedicated to just dog food. Why? Because dog owners such as yourself demand a high-quality diet for their dog. However, with that said there are dozens and dozens of food manufacturers and not all are created equal. It's easy to look at a bag and assume it's a good diet for your dog. However, you must dig into the ingredients and know exactly the quality of diet you're providing your dog. Because dogs can get dandruff due to a lack of vitamins, nutrients, fat, protein which can cause unhealthy skin and coat.
Health Conditions -
The third most common causes of dandruff are health conditions. There is a wide array of conditions dogs can contract from mites, to auto-immune diseases that can cause poor quality skin and lead to dandruff. Some of these health conditions can be avoided by taking proper care of your dog, but some health conditions are hard to avoid if they're due to conditions the dog has from a puppy on.
How To Spot Dandruff Symptoms On Your Dog -
Spotting dandruff in your dog can be a very easy task if you have a dark-colored dog with short to moderately short hair. However, this can be a bit more challenging if your dog has a light-colored coat. For starters, you're looking for small white flakes of dried skin that occur on the surface of your dog’s coat. For example, I have a black lab whose coat makes dandruff easy to identify.
However, some other signs and symptoms to look for in all colored fur are quite easy. The first way to look and identify dandruff symptoms is to look for your dog scratching more than normal. If your dog is consistently scratching their coat throughout the day, it's a good time to exam their coat for dandruff. The second way to look for dandruff or if you've identified some abnormal scratching is to use a brush or a comb. Give your dog a thorough brush and look in the clumps of hair for dandruff as you brush. Another great way to look for dandruff is to examine your dogs’ bed, blanket, or kennel and if they have a light-colored blanket or bed you may want to put a darker blanket to make it easier to identify dandruff.
How To Treat Dandruff In Dogs -
Now that you know the causes of dandruff and how to spot dandruff in dogs it's time to learn how to treat dandruff in dogs.
Brushing Your Dog –
The easiest method when learning how to treat dandruff in dogs is to brush your dog on a regular schedule. Maybe plan on brushing your dog two to three days a week. Try and plan on a realistic schedule. However, by brushing your dog's coat you’ll remove the dead hair and help spread the oils from their coat across their skin and coat. This oil helps protect the skin and keeps it lubricated and avoids dandruff occurring.
Balanced Diet & Vitamins –
The second method for learning how to treat dandruff in dogs is to promote a healthy diet in your dog. Be sure to do your homework and select dog food that meets your dogs’ size, breed, and activity level. As most foods can lack some active ingredients such as Omega-3 fatty acids that help promote healthy coat and skin, you may want to investigate an Omega-3 oil specific for dogs such as Vitality.
Shampoo Prevention –
The third most popular way for learning how to treat dandruff in dogs is to purchase specialized shampoo designed to help dandruff. The main active ingredients are moisturizers that help soften the skin and promote a healthy coat. Shampooing your dog or giving regular baths can be a great way to achieve healthy skin and coat to prevent dandruff. However, be careful to not over shampoo and remove the natural oils that a dog creates on their coat.
Consult with a Veterinarian –
The last and most advisable approach is to ask your vet for treatment and prevention options if you have a dog with persistent dandruff that can’t seem to be treated. This is a great step to take in treating your dog’s dandruff as dandruff can be an indicator that there are other needs your dog may require that a veterinarian is trained to treat and diagnosis.
Dandruff In Dogs –
Discovering that your dog has dandruff is a common occurrence that many owners face. However, knowing when and what to look for may allow you to prevent the dandruff and the discomfort it may cause your dog. Plus, it’s always a great idea to stay aware of your dogs’ condition and health in the event you have an upcoming visit to the veterinarian and can be treatable with some simple methods.