5 Common Reasons Your Dog is Scratching Himself

purebred Siberian Husky dog scratching fleas in the backyard – some movement of head and foot

Whether it’s the jingle of their collar or they paws thumping on the floor, we all know the familiar sound of our pets scratching. While it is extremely normal for all of us to itch, it’s always good to know why our dog is scratching. It may just be a small twitch, or it could besomething more serious like fleas. Here are the most common ways our dogs scratch.

Fleas:

Even if there isn’t a big flea infestation, flea saliva from bites are very reactive. One bite can cause what is called Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FDA) which is a hypersensitivity to flea bites. This can make the bite site extra itchy which can cause major irritation on their skin. You can help prevent exposure to fleas by limiting access to places like wooded areas, dog parks, and kennels. Plus, make the most of flea prevention topicals, collars, and oral medication.

Ticks:

Not only do these bites cause inflammation, they also can cause a bacterial infection which leads to further irritation and itching. If you think that you’re dog is itching from a tick make sure to take care to watch the bite. Ticks can carry serious diseases such as Lyme Disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, anemia or paralysis. Similar to fleas, limit access to wooded areas, parks, kennels and check their fur after being in possible tick areas.

Allergies:

Seasonal allergies don’t just affect us. They affect our pets as well. Instead of sneezes and itchy eyes, they get itchy skin. Also like us, it more prevalent during spring, summer, and fall, but it’s possible for your pet to experience them at any time of year. Help your pet through it with regular brushing and baths. Pets can be susceptible to nutritional allergies as well. Some of these include wheat, grains or certain proteins. If you think this may be the cause, make sure to contact your vet for dietary recommendations.

Mange:

This is caused by bites which are tiny insects that burrow into the layers of skin to live. They gnaw their way through the epidermis which causes infections and of course, itching. While it can happen all over the body, the most common areas are ears, armpits, groin and places with less hair. Usually you will need to seek a vet’s recommended care for dips, injects or oral drugs that may be needed.

It’s never fun to watch our pets suffer. We know how terrible itchy skin can be, it’s not pleasant. If you notice your pet scratching more than usual, take a deeper look and contact your vet to make sure everything is okay.

It’s always good to know what to prevent and what to do in case you suspect to keep your pets safe and healthy. Head to our Facebook or Twitter and share how you take care of your furry family member.

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