Dog dandruff is the white flakes that appear on your dog's coat. Yes - dogs can get those unsightly, annoying tiny flakes too!
Just like people, dog dandruff is merely an accumulation of dried, dead skin cells and it is actually a rather common condition in dogs.
Our dog's skin is constantly replacing old cells with new ones.
However, when this skin-replacement cycle is out of sync, dandruff will appear on the dog's coat, mostly around the neck, the back and the rump.
This page looks at some possible causes of dogs having dandruff, and how to use natural home remedies such as herbs and supplements to alleviate this problem.
There are many possible causes for dogs to have dandruff. The most common ones (and the easiest ones to fix) are:
In addition to the above, sometimes dog dandruff can be caused by some underlying physical health problems. For example, hormonal imbalance (such as hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism) can lead to dry skin.
Diseases that cause the dog to lose a lot of bodily fluid through excessive urination or defecation will also result in dryness of the skin, causing dandruff to appear. Such diseases include:
Dandruff in dogs may also be caused by some sort of skin irritation. Skin irritation usually will speed up the skin reproduction rate, causing dandruff to form.
One common skin irritant is a mite that lives on the outermost layer of the skin. This mite is minute and appears as a white speck if put on black paper. It is called "cheyletiella mite" and since it moves around and looks like dandruff, it is commonly called "walking dandruff".
If you can rule out that your dog's dandruff is caused by some underlying health problems, then try the following to improve your dog's skin condition:
Commercial dog food such as kibbles are typically cooked on high heat. However, omega-3 fatty acids are very sensitive to heat (and light). Therefore, during the cooking and processing of commercial dog food, the omega-3 FAs in the food are rendered inactive and they are no longer beneficial to your dog.
Dr. Harvey's Health & Shine Supplement
This formula is a combination of borage oil, flaxseed oil, fish oil and natural Vitamin E. This combination of oils provides the perfect balance of the Omega 3-6-9's and contains all the EFAs needed for healthy and shiny haircoat.
Another great natural product is a soft chew which your dog would love to have:
This natural product has a lot of herbs that support skin health (e.g. burdock, red clover, yellow dock, calendula) and the soft chew is a perfect way to supplement your dog!
This shampoo contains soothing herbs (such as oatmeal, aloe vera, green tea, goldenseal) and can be used for itching, dandruff, and certain types of dermatitis such as hot spots. You can also use it to regularly bath your dog to help control body odors.
We can do several simple things that can prevent our dogs from getting dandruff:
As mentioned above, regular brushing can remove dead skin cells from the dog. In addition, grooming helps distribute the oils on the dog's skin and coat.
Get into the habit of brushing your dog every day. It is also a good opportunity for you spend some quality time with your dog. While brushing your dog, you can also check to see if there are any abnormalities in your dog's skin and body.
Regular exercise is also essential to maintain the dog's health and immune system. Exercise such as walking, free-running and visits to new areas can stimulate good health. When a dog is healthy, her coat will be shiny and problem-free.