Dandruff, called dander in animals, is a common occurrence. In the case of squamosis, the superficial skin cells of the animal peel off. As with humans, your dog may have them. And you go straight away to check his coat: “If my dog has dandruff, I don’t know what to do! ”you think aloud.
On the other hand, it can become a real health problem for the animal when the amount of dander becomes too important. It is therefore important to recognize certain signs and to know how to relieve your pet.
My dog has dandruff: what causes it
The role of the sebaceous glands is to produce sebum which in turn nourishes and protects the skin. Dandruff appears when the glands start to overproduce. The appearance of dandruff in dogs can be due to several causes.
Often, a dog with dandruff is a dog whose diet is deficient, especially in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, essential for maintaining skin health. But also, grooming your coat too often can sensitize your skin. On the contrary, poor coat care can also cause choking on the skin. A excess coat maintenance with too frequent shampooing prevents the sebum layer from regenerating. As a result, the surface of the skin becomes sensitive and irritated.
Also, the use of a brush which is not adapted to its coat can irritate and dry out the skin of the animal. It is also important to use gentle products for your toilet. When maintenance is not frequent enough, dandruff can appear, because the skin suffocates from an excess of material on the skin.
Other reasons can cause this inconvenience to your pet, including illness. Indeed, the presence of parasites such as mites, ticks, biting or sucking lice can cause a parasitic dermatosis and thus create itching. Scabies, leishmaniasis or an endocrine disease causing hormonal imbalance can cause dandruff. The environment and the climate have an impact on the skin of the animal. In addition to the seasonal moult, which is normal in dogs, sebum production can be affected by an environment that is too hot or too cold. A too hot environment dries out the dog’s skin.
The genetic background must be taken into account. Indeed, the primary seborrhea is an inherited skin disease. Skin cells multiply rapidly and excessively, causing dandruff to develop. The skin is oily and has an unpleasant odor. Puppies of certain breeds are particularly affected, including Westies, Dachshunds or Labradors Retrievers.
Parasites in the animal’s coat are very itchy, resulting in dandruff, hair loss and skin damage. Indeed, the intensity of the itching is such that the dog cannot prevent himself from scratching the area, thus creating scratches and sores on his skin. The area is red and hot, crusts form or papules. The lesions that form on the skin are the source of bacterial infections and yeast infections.
In case of dietary deficiency, the dog loses its hair, the skin becomes dry and dandruff appears. The itching also causes discoloration of the skin as well as white spots that can appear on its coat. Alopecia, which is characterized by partial or total hair loss, is also linked to this intense itching. Thus, irregular bald patches are formed. A dog that has dandruff gives off a bad odor.
Anti-dandruff and preventive remedies
As protein is very important, it is essential to choose a varied and balanced diet for your pet. High-quality, highly digestible kibble and a supply of vitamin A will aim to strengthen the formation of skin cells and regulate the production of sebum. Essential fatty acids (omega 3 and 6) play a vital role in your dog’s skin health. In addition, his coat will be more shiny.
It is also important to maintain a ambient temperature between 20 and 22 ° C for your pet so that its environment is neither too hot nor too cold. This correct temperature will prevent her skin from drying out or becoming irritated.
The choice of toiletries should not be neglected, be sure to choose specific and gentle shampoos and especially not to use your own shampoos which would be too aggressive for your skin. Moreover, it is advisable not to wash it more than once a month. Brushing his hair regularly with a brush suited to his coat will eliminate dead skin and thus air out his skin. If your dog has short hair, you can brush him once a week. On the other hand, if his hair is long, then daily brushing is recommended as well as a regular appointment with a groomer.
Finally, seek advice from your veterinarian to review your dog’s diet, if necessary. Cod liver oil or fish oil are ideal for better skin health.
Dandruff in dogs is not necessarily a sign of illness, especially during the moulting season. However, an intensive and frequent itching in the animal should alert you. Several factors can be the cause: food deficiency, invasion of parasites, poor hygiene or on the contrary too frequent maintenance.
Knowing the preventive measures is essential to maintaining the good skin health of your dog. In fact, special attention should be paid to parasites to avoid an invasion. But also, keep your environment at the right temperature and adopt good hygiene.
Make sure he has a balanced diet. A visit to your veterinarian can help you remedy the problem, he can prescribe food supplements in case of deficiency, for example.