Skip to Main Content
Ask About Financing

Please ensure that your pet is either in a travel crate or on a leash before bringing them to their appointment.

Dog Skin Problems: Scratching, Itching & Other Skin Conditions

It signals a potential skin condition if your dog is itching, scratching, or licking. Our Jackson vets will inform you about the possible causes of your dog's skin problems, guide you on effective treatment methods, and advise on when emergency veterinary care is necessary for your dog's skin issue. 

Itching, Scratching & Irritability

Most dogs will inevitably experience itching at some point. Relentless scratching can make your dog miserable due to itchy skin conditions. Although these conditions may be annoying, they typically aren't serious for your pet. However, some conditions require veterinary care and treatment to prevent them from becoming more severe.

    Causes, Symptoms & Treatments

    Your dog may start scratching, licking, or biting its fur for various reasons, but common causes of itchy skin include: 

    Parasitic Bites
    • Bites from fleas and mites are one of the most common sources of itching in dogs and can be one of the easiest to treat. Your veterinarian can prescribe medication to resolve your dog's parasite issue quickly. You can also proactively give your dog medication to avoid parasites such as fleas, mites, or ticks in the first place.
    Environmental Dermatitis
    • Dogs commonly experience skin irritation when contacting specific substances like grass, dirt, and plants. Symptoms of this condition include itchy, dry, or cracked skin, rashes, blisters, redness, or swelling. To relieve these symptoms, consider using antihistamines or administering oatmeal baths. Depending on the severity of your dog's skin condition, your vet may suggest a cortisone cream or another alternative.
    Nutritional Dermatitis
    • Dogs ' allergic reactions to food are uncommon, but your dog could experience one. Nutritional dermatitis may cause skin irritations and scratching, while digestive problems like diarrhea or vomiting can also occur. If your dog shows any of these symptoms, promptly schedule an appointment with your primary care vet.
    Skin Allergies
    • Many dogs suffer from allergies, prompting frequent visits to the vet. Itchy skin can result from allergens like pollen, dander, plants, or insects. In addition to itching, your dog might exhibit symptoms such as excessive grooming or licking, watery eyes, sneezing, rashes, and inflamed skin. The vet can diagnose the allergy's cause and suggest treatment, but severe cases may necessitate specialist care.
    • Hives are another type of allergic reaction that can be seen in dogs. Hives can be a reaction to many things, from medications to bites and more. Symptoms show as a raised bump that causes the dog's fur to stick out or swell near and around the eyes. Using a hypoallergenic shampoo for dogs often helps to alleviate this condition. A dog-specific hydrating leave-in conditioner may also help. Ask your vet what they recommend for your pet.

    Emergency Cases

    If your dog continues itching for more than 48 hours, schedule an appointment with the dermatologist pet vet in Jackson. They will diagnose and treat your dog's skin condition. Persistent itching may lead to excessive scratching, self-inflicted injuries, and, in some cases, infections. Don't let it go unchecked; it can become a severe issue.

    Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

    At Jackson, our veterinary team specializes in providing urgent and emergency care for pets. If your pet needs immediate veterinary attention, contact us promptly or head straight to our emergency animal hospital.

    New Patients Welcome

    North Madison Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of all companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

    Contact Us

    Book Online (731) 664-6200