Animal Health Foundation Blog

6 Natural Remedies for Your Dog’s Itchy Skin

Skin allergies are a common problem among dogs and owners and veterinarians alike are constantly fighting to make dogs more comfortable. Dogs, like people, can be allergic to just about anything, from their food to the environment. While there are many different medications to help deal with allergy symptoms, many of us prefer to go a more natural route first to make sure we’ve tried all of the safest options. Always consult with your veterinarian before giving your dog any treatments or supplements, but if you’re looking to try some natural allergy remedies, consider these.

#1 – Proper Bathing & Grooming

This might not seem like a “natural” remedy, but if your dog suffers from environmental allergies, frequent bathing and grooming is going to offer much needed comfort. Using soothing ingredients such as oatmeal in the shampoos will help your dog’s skin feel softer and will relieve the itching they feel. Depending on the severity of your dog’s allergies, bathing once a week will greatly improve your dog’s condition. Brushing and combing will also help remove dead skin and coat, promoting new growth and removing allergens on top of the skin and fur.

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IMAGE SOURCE: MAUREEN_SILL VIA FLICKR

#2 – Feed a Wholesome Diet

Your dog’s diet might be completely overlooked if your dog only suffers environmental allergens. But the more natural your dog’s diet, the better their bodies are able to fight off and heal from allergies and external stressors. If your dog is allergic to certain ingredients, you’ll want to avoid those ingredients and replace them with something else. Grain-free diets are highly recommended for dogs with any type of allergy (or no allergy at all!) but if this isn’t possible, consider feeding organic, whole grains. The better your dog’s nutrition, the better their overall health and their ability to fight off allergens.

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Image source: Oleg. via Flickr

#3 – Try Apple Cider Vinegar

Organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider offers many benefits to dogs suffering from allergies. If your dog has hot spots or itchy skin, you can apply a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar and water to your dog. Put the solution in a spray bottle for easy use. This same spray will help repel fleas and ticks – a common allergen for many dogs. You can also use it to clean out your dog’s ears. The acidity of the mixture makes for an environment that yeast can’t live in – and yeast infections are typically caused by allergies. Make sure that the acidity isn’t too strong for your dog – some prefer a different mixture than the 50/50 suggested.

#4 – Manage Heat & Moisture

Your dog’s environment plays a large role in the health of their skin. Be sure to keep your home appropriately cooled and use a humidifier in dry conditions. When grooming, avoid using a high heat blow dryer, which might be faster but wreaks havoc on your dog’s sensitive skin.

Make sure your dog always has access to fresh, filtered water. Dogs on a dry kibble diet are in need of more moisture in their diets than dogs that eat a home-cooked, raw, or wet food diet.

#5 – Consider Applying Calendula

Calendula is a member of the sunflower family and offers several benefits to dogs with allergies. Either made into a tea or gel, applying calendula to your dog’s skin will help relieve inflammation from allergies. It also has natural anti-fungal and anti-yeast properties. It also helps improve your dog’s immune system when taken internally, so consider this as an allergy treatment as well.

#6 – Add Omega-3 Fatty Acids Supplementation

Omega-3 fatty acids are extremely beneficial to dogs with allergies. These oils help improve your dog’s skin and coat by keeping the natural oils present in healthy amounts. Omega-3s also work as anti-inflammatories and greatly reduce the intensity of allergens. There are many Omega-3 fatty acids on the market, and you’ll want to look for something that works quickly to support a soft, silky coat, minimize normal shedding, and maintain the skin’s normal moisture content, such as Project Paws™ Omega-3 Select soft chews.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional. 

12 Responses to “6 Natural Remedies for Your Dog’s Itchy Skin”

  1. Jessy says:

    I have a 5 year old Maltipoo, he has developed a bad yeast infection that has being hard to control with food and medicine. I have being giving him plain yogurt, but I’m willing to try more natural things for him. I will definitely try the “apple vinegar, calendula and Omega-3. Thank you for such helpful information.

  2. Jeff Reynolds says:

    I have an Australian Shepherd and he’s recently getting dry skin and chewing like crazy. Any ideas or reccomendations what I can do for my little buddy? please email me

  3. Lacey says:

    I have a 11 month old Staffordshire Terrier Male and he is mainly white with black spots. He got a hot spot about a month ago and I got that cleared up with antibiotics. Now he has really bad hives the vet told me to give him benadryl which isnt really helping cuz hes scratching himself practically raw. I don’t know what to do I think he has really bad allergies and I dont know what to do to get them under control?

    • Dixie says:

      Only happens in summer

    • Barb says:

      Have you tried Zyrtec or a Claritin? My dog suffers franc is allergic, to mostly everything. I’ve found a raw diet with grass milk yogurt has helped. The processed dry dog foods are not not working for him.
      I also would have his thyroid tested.

      Good luck!

  4. Uncle Benjamin says:

    My dog is named OToole. Otoole just wants to sit on the couch all day and scratch. These suggestions are perfect.

  5. keri says:

    I have found that organic cold pressed coconut works wonders for yeast. It kills the candida virus in a couple hours. I use it for 5 days. Its cheap also.

  6. robin anders says:

    hi im robin I have a minature full bloodied 16 year old chihuha she has started sratching like crazy is there a special hypo allgerric lotion for very srnstive skin for dogs.

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