Dog scratching can be very irritating and frustrating, especially when you do not know what problem is causing this situation. Many pet owners are unaware that there are almost 500 reasons that can lead to this behavior in their pets.
Though fleas and allergies are some of the common reasons, there are a few other causes too. If you notice that your dog is scratching constantly, then you must consult a veterinarian at the earliest and get the problem diagnosed.
★ Dog Fleas: Flea attack is one of the most common causes of scratching in dogs. The itching caused due to fleas is basically because of the saliva that is secreted by them. They multiply on the dog's skin and cause severe itching and scratching. They can cause allergic problems in dogs and hence, should be treated at the earliest.
Their eggs can spread in your house environment and hence, if you suspect that your dog is infested with fleas, then take immediate action and fix the problem. Certain grooming tips could help prevent this attack on your pet.
★ Food Allergies: If you notice that your dog is scratching but has no fleas, then the possible cause of discomfort can be a food allergy. Almost 20% of scratching cases are due to dog food allergies. Studies have shown that ingredients of certain food products can cause allergic symptoms in dogs. These include dairy products, wheat, soy, meat, beef, etc.
Constant scratching, itching, and inflammation of the skin are some of the common signs and symptoms of food allergies in dogs. Diagnosing it can be difficult, but certain blood tests and diet changes under the guidance of a veterinarian could help detect the causes.
★ Mange: Mange in dogs is basically due to parasites called mites that grow on the dog's skin. The symptoms of mange are scratching and hair loss, blisters, red spots, etc. There are two types of mange, sarcoptic and demodectic.
- Bacterial infection
- Medication reaction
- Ear mites
- Skin cancer
- Tick bites
The treatment completely depends on the cause. Certain causes like parasite attacks are easy to diagnose, while certain problems like food allergies cannot be detected easily. Thus, exact diagnosis of the problem is a must so that the dog can be treated properly.
It is always wise to consult a veterinarian when you are unable to find out the cause that is leading to this problem in your dog. The veterinarian will study the medical history and the environment where the dog stays to diagnose the cause.
Certain home remedies like bathing the dog with oatmeal twice a week, feeding it with a hypo-allergic diet for at least 4 to 5 weeks, using fatty acid supplements to reduce the inflammation, etc. can be followed to reduce the symptoms. Thus, we can conclude that figuring out the underlying cause is a must to treat scratching in your dog.
It is recommended that you consult a veterinarian and get the cause of scratching diagnosed at the earliest, since some causes can be very fatal to your dog.