how to treat dry skin on dogs

How To Treat Dry Skin On Dogs? Reasons & 4 Proven Ways

Parched skin is a big turn-off for anyone. Whether it’s for you or your dog. From texture change to continuous itchiness, dry skin causes the utmost discomfort. 

But the good news is that dry skin conditions are about uneasiness and nothing serious. Anything causing dry skin can be spotted easily. 

But leaving this most common skin disorder untreated and waiting for it to resolve itself can make the situation get out of hand. 

Not only is the poor soul miserable and in irritating condition but it can further lead to hair loss or atopic dermatitis.

For every act-up, there could be an underlying issue that is waiting for your attention and commitment to resolving it. That is exactly what we are going to work out on in this article. 

So here is all that you need to know about what causes this dryness and how to treat dry skin on dogs. Woof!

5 Common Reasons for Dry Skin On Dogs

As much as we shrug off dry skin issues by not considering them a big cheese, the underlying issues should not be given a free pass. 

Spotting dry skin symptoms and tracing back to the reasons causing them is not mind-baffling.

Having said that, here are 5 prevalent reasons causing skin dryness in dogs. 

I. Environmental Changes

Your doggo’s first line of defense against all the bad omens trying to enter the body is his coat and skin. 

Environmental changes can play the evil stepmother role in this whole scenario. The temperature drops, harsh winds, and indoor heating, anything can be a bad ally. 

Extreme flay skin and patchiness followed by itching, scratching and licking can be a hefty sign.

Itchin’ for summer to get back. Like literally!

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II. Allergic Reactions

The weather is awesome but dry skin condition strikes again with your doggo. Time to look for allergies that might be causing the dry patches. 

Yes, allergies are common in doggos too. Allergies can be triggered by anything; the environment-yes, the food-yes. 

Pollen, dust, harsh chemicals, fragrances, grains, soy, wheat, corn, pests– these are just to give you a general idea.

Allergies, if left untreated, can cause worse reactions. Atopic dermatitis is a secondary skin issue that can occur if skin allergies are left untreated for a long time. 

Watch out for redness and inflammation. If you spot any of it, take your fluffer to the vet.

III. Excessive Bathing

Be a clean freak but don’t go overboard. Excessive bathing can be cruel to your dog’s skin. It can rip off essential natural oils from the body. 

Even if you use an all-natural shampoo for cleaning, you can’t avoid dry skin if you expose your dog to unnecessary shampooing. 

You will also notice your pet’s coat losing its shine eventually no matter how many conditioners you use. And sometimes it may make your dog look greasy all the time. 

Reason; the skin tries to cover up the loss by producing excessive oil. This may result in greasy skin and blocking of the pores also.

Tri-annual baths would do just fine.

Pro Tip: Avoid using dry shampoos for convenient bath time. They irritate and dry out the skin more than regular shampooing 

IV. Flea Invasion

What’s an itchy dog’s favorite Christmas greeting? Fleas navidad. 

On a serious note, flea invasion is one of the major reasons why dogs face dry and itchy skin. The real culprit behind this itchy business is flea saliva which dog skin is allergic to. 

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This irritates and leads to excessive itching and skin infections, eventually drying up the skin and making it extremely flaky.

V. It’s A Medical Thing

Sometimes things are not that simple. There is something complex brewing up inside. Two major diseases that are common in dogs cause dry skin problems in dogs. 

If your dog is going through Crushing’s disease or Hypothyroidism, they may have a dull and brittle coat along with patchy skin. 

We don’t want to scare you but cancer also shows signs in various ways. Dry skin is one of them. Better to get your dog examined by a vet for clearer answers.

How To Treat Dry Skin On Dogs –

4 Proven Ways

Dry skin is often synonymous with lifestyle measures. Dry skin problems are not very serious though they can be quite irritating to your pet. These issues can be treated with simple hacks and followed routines. 

Here are four simple remedies for treating dry skin in dogs.

1. Keeping A Healthy Environment

Keeping a healthy environment can not only be beneficial for your dog but for you too. Sometimes dry skin issues start at home. 

According to American Kennel Club, to tackle the dry air that comes with winter, everyone should place a humidifier in their home. 

You will love the effects. Not only will it benefit your dog’s dry skin but the breathing issues as well.

We also don’t recommend excessive usage of cleaning agents for homes with harsh chemicals. These can prove to be extremely unhealthy for the skin. 

Keep your dog’s bedding clean. Dust, mites, and fleas; all can cause dryness and flaky skin. 

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Give them baths but don’t go overboard. Once every 3-4 months is good enough. 

Natural shampoos that are paraben free with good moisturizing qualities have our nod of approval. You can also keep your dogs in when harsh winters come to pay a visit. 

2. Schedule Vet Visits

Whether it’s a dry skin issue or any other or no issue at all, be punctual about your visits to the vet. For skin-related issues, and bacterial and fungal infections, seek help from a vet dermatologist. 

Pet owners can only guess the reasons behind an ailment. The best guidance comes from experts.

Also, we don’t want to scare you, but sometimes the underlying issues for dry skin are big– like life-taking yet curable diseases. 

You wouldn’t want these to get out of hand. Regular vet visits help you pinpoint the issue at the earliest stage. Not only that but the sooner the right treatment starts the better it is for your dog. 

3. Regular Grooming Sessions

It’s the little things that weigh so much. Who would have thought that regular grooming can save your dog from so many skin problems? 

Regular brushing can help reduce hair loss in dogs as well. Just make sure that you choose the best doggo brush which is not harsh on the skin and does its job well.

Routine brushing of your dog’s coat may be the best thing you did for their skin and hair. It helps in removing the build-up from shampoos, dirt, and other things that block the pores. 

Brushing stimulates the oil-producing glands and distributes the oil evenly on every part of the body.

4. Supplement the Diet

The diet your dog eats can show its sign on the skin and fur of its coat. A shiny and thick fur coat shows how healthy the skin is underneath it. 

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If your dog is showing signs of unhealthy skin with prevalent flakiness, it could be the result of a poor diet. 

Let’s be specific; your dog’s diet should have ample amounts of vitamins and fatty acids other than proteins. 

Essential fatty acids like Omega 3 and 6 are miraculous for the skin. If your dog’s diet has them missing, you can always give them supplements in the form of snacks.

To ensure that the supplement you are giving your dog is good quality, we suggest you get one with a National Animal Supplement Council seal.

To keep the skin hydrated, keep a close check on your dog’s water intake. You can give them a mix of wet and dry food for more hydration. This works well with their digestive system as well.


Here is an important fact that most dog lovers may not be aware of; like us, dogs also shed off dead skin. That’s completely ok. 

Skin regeneration is extremely healthy. This happens because the dead skin cells make way for new and fresher ones. 

What is not ok is the excessive dryness and flaking of the skin.

Pinning down what is causing dry skin on your dog may be the first step toward its treatment. It is always recommended to take help from a professional dog dermatologist. 

Only an expert can guide you to move forward with the treatment in the best possible way.

Invested to know more about the dog business? Well here is your great opportunity. Visit our blog for the best advice on the doggo world. 

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Frequently Asked Questions About Dog’s Dry Skin

  • What should I feed my dog for dry skin?

For plump, enriched, and healthy skin, a dog’s food intake plays a pivotal role. So you might want to inculcate a protein-based diet with ample amounts of fatty acids. 

It is also suggested to give a mix of dry and wet feed to your dog for keeping up with the hydration it needs. 

You should also be aware of the food allergies that cause dry skin issues as well. You might want to rule that out by seeing a vet.

  • Is dry shampoo for dogs safe for frequent use?

We wouldn’t recommend a sustained usage of dry shampoo. Dry shampoos without a proper bathing time can be the biggest culprit behind dry skin conditions in dogs

Dry shampoos contain absorbents that are sure to leave behind a build-up. Clogged pores, lesser production of oils that keep the skin moisturized, and dull coat can result from frequent use. 

  • How often should your dog with dry and flaky skin have a bath?

Bathing your doggo once every 3-4 months is just fine. Unless your dog rolls out in Shrek’s muddy bath. In that case, you wouldn’t want a stinky and muddy dog all around your home. 

Make sure that you use a soap-free shampoo with highly moisturizing ingredients.

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