What causes my dog to scratch so much?

Last revised:
Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Answer

Wow, now that is a loaded question!  Many things cause dogs and cats to scratch. Fleas can cause itching as well as dry skin.  Some animals who are allergic to food or to something in the environment can also get itchy.  Another thing that can cause itchy skin is shampoo that is not completely rinsed after a bath.

At Pet Quarters, we hear many stories about animals that are allergic to food ingredients such as chicken, beef, wheat, soy and dairy.  For this reason, we carry foods that have alternative proteins such as fish, venison, duck and lamb.  Some foods are wheat and soy free.  Your veterinarian can help your find out if your pet is allergic so you can change the diet.  If diagnosed with a food allergy, it is important that everyone in the household participates in the pet's care.  If your pet is on a beef-free diet, even a small amount of beef can cause a reaction.  If someone gives the dog beef from the table, or gives them a treat that contains some beef, the whole purpose of the new feeding regiment gets spoiled.

Like some humans, some pets have naturally dry skin.  Adding some omega fatty acids to the diet can turn this condition around.  Pet Quarters sells additives to the diet that can help with this.  Among them is wild salmon oil.  Some of the food brands we sell also have omega fatty acids an ingredient.  You will see it listed as fatty acids or linoleic acid.

During summer, some people assume their pet is itching because of fleas, even if they don't see fleas.  Giving a flea bath to a pet with itchy skin that does not have fleas can cause the pet to itch even worse.  Flea shampoo can contain an insecticide that can further irritate the skin.

animalgroupcartoon-characters-126Pet Quarters
486 Payne Road
Scarborough, ME 04074
207-885-5005

petquarters@petquartersne.com