DANDRUFF in Pets, Causes and Treatments

Just like in humans, dogs and cats naturally shed dead skin cells called dandruff. Dandruff can be a minor sign that your cat or dog has dry skin, but it can also be a symptom of a larger problem such as allergies, skin parasites or fungal skin infections.

Causes of Pet Dandruff?

  • Dehydration
  • Allergies
  • Skin infections
  • Poor Nutrition
  • Hormonal Conditions
  • Improper Bathing/Grooming
  • Underlying Health Conditions

Tips for Relieving Pet Dandruff

1. Grooming

Regularly groom your pet.

Brush your pet daily to remove skin flakes and dead hair. It also helps distribute the natural oils from their skin through their hair coat. Brush daily while your dog is having an outbreak of dandruff, and weekly for general maintenance grooming. It's a good idea to make this a part of a regular care routine.

2. Bathing

Use a soothing oatmeal shampoo.

Using human shampoos can make things worse as the pH value of pet skin is different from the pH value of human skin. Oatmeal shampoos tend to have soothing and moisturizing effects on the skin. Also pay attention to how often your pet should be bathed, as bathing too often can dry out your pet's skin.

3. Healthy Diet

Look into their diet.

Skin conditions like dandruff may be a sign your pet is not getting proper nutrients in their food. Protein plays an important role in the development and maintenance of pet skin and fur. A high-quality, and highly digestible protein in the diet helps cover the protein requirement necessary for proper skin health.

4. Supplements

Give supplements of omega-3 & 6 fatty acids.

Since our pets can't synthesize their own essential fatty acids, adding an omega-3 & 6 fatty acid supplement to your pet's diet can also promote skin and coat health, resulting in less dandruff. Speak with your veterinarian before feeding your pet any supplements or vitamins, it is important to see if there are any underlying health issues or allergies. There are typically in liquid or capsule form.

5. Humidifier usage

Raise the humidity in the house. It may be beneficial to use a humidifier in your house during the winter or if you live in an arid climate. The steam can help soothe and hydrate his dry skin to make your dog more comfortable and less itchy. Also, stay hydrated! Provide your pet plenty of fresh water and be sure your pet is drinking enough water.

If you notice they have dandruff coupled with redness or scaling, irritating and even have an odor to the skin, consult your vet for further medical treatment. Else, minor dandruff problems can be cured easily and probably nothing to worry about.

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