Canine eczema can be
just as sore and irritating for your dog as any of the types of
eczema are for humans.
It is also known as
acute moist dermatitis, atopic dermatitis and canine hot spots.
It can occur on any
part of your dog's body.
It mainly affects the face or the underside
of the body.
If your dog is carrying some extra weight then it may
appear anywhere there are folds of skin.
It is more likely to affect
dogs in the summer. Especially in long coated breeds, and in dogs
that enjoy being outdoors a lot.
There a few symptoms
that you can look out for to spot if your four-legged friend has
- Skin inflammation.
Redness or swelling
- Signs of itchiness. Itching, scratching or biting at the skin
- Hair loss. It can be
caused by scratching
- Wet, matted coat.
Either from trying to relieve the itch or from the skin weeping
- Blisters. They could
have a crust on them
If your dog has eczema
then there maybe some skin damage from any scratching and biting.
If you notice any of
the above symptoms, go and see your vet. The quicker treatment can be
started the better. It can help to reduce the risk of a bacterial
infection, which can enter the skin through breaks in the skin.
Some of the causes of
atopic dermatitis in dogs include
- contact with an
- content with an
- weather conditions
- fleas, a condition
known as Flea Bite Dermatitis
Allergens and Irritants
If allergens or
irritants are a cause, then you can try and limit the contact that your
dog has with the offender. This is easier to do if you know what is
causing the problem. But it isn't always the case.
To find the cause, you
could keep a diary of
- where your dog goes
- what they have contact
- what they eat
- when their symptoms worsen
This may help to narrow
down what is affecting the skin.
There are many things
that can cause a reaction
- Detergents. Including
cleaning products, be aware of which ones you use in your house
- Soap and shampoo. Ask
your vet for suitable products to use
- Flea collars. If the
neck area around the collar is affected you should remove it. There
are natural products you can use
- Paint. If your dog
brushes against walls, doors or anything painted it may cause a flare
- Wool. You could use a
bed or basket made of wicker or fleece
- Insecticides. Limit the
use of them in your garden, or try a more natural way of controlling
Your dog could be
affected by anything that could affect a human with eczema.
can read more about some triggers of eczema, including weather and stress.
If keeping a diary
doesn’t reveal anything, the next step could be to have an allergy
test done. This will help to confirm any allergies or intolerances.
Treatments For Canine Eczema
There a couple of
things that you could do to yourself to help your dog and their flare
- Limit contact with any
substance that is an allergen or irritant
- Regularly groom your
dog and keep the hair short. This helps the skin to heal and also to see
if any eczema is developing
- When your dog comes in
from being outside pat them with a damp towel. This wipes any pollen
or bugs off of their skin
To treat a flare up
there are several different ways that your vet may suggest
- Topical treatment. This
could be an topical emollient or a topical corticosteroid. One downside of this
treatment is that your dog may lick it off. To stop that you could
try a buster collar
- Glucocorticoids. Also
known as oral steroids. These would be given in a short course. They
would help if there was a large area affected by eczema
- Antibiotics. Fight any
bacterial infection that your dog may have. That will help to clear the
- Antihistamines. Can
reduce any itchiness. Helping to stop the itch-scratch cycle
There are also some
natural ways to help treat canine eczema
- Oatmeal can be made
into a paste and applied to the areas
- Food supplements,
omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E products are great for the skin
- Herbal fusions,
chamomile is a good choice. Make a cup of chamomile tea, leave to
cool, then apply to the affected areas gently using a soft cloth
You can read more about natural eczema treatments here. Just always check with your vet before using them.
If your dog has canine
eczema you will know that it can be quite severe and distressing. If
you can work out what is causing the flare ups and use the right
treatments and precautions, it should clear up in time.
Always get professional
advice from your vet. They will be able to diagnosis the condition.
Then provide treatments and advice to help you to help your dog and
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