7 Most Common Dog Skin Diseases

“The love of a dog is a pure thing. He gives you a trust which is total. You must not betray it.” – Michel H.

Dog skin problems are among the many reasons why dogs are sent to the vet often. There are a number of reasons why these skin conditions are happening and most can be treated at home. However, if left untreated, these diseases could lead to a bigger problem. 

Dogs have different skin types but in general, a healthy dog’s skin should exhibit the following:

  • Depending on the color pigments dominant with their breed, your pet dog should have black or pink skin.   
  • There should be no scaling, white or black spots, itching, and crusting. The skin shouldn’t be infected or inflamed. 
  • Your dog’s coat should be thick, beautiful, and glossy. There should be no bald spots, ticks, fleas, dandruff, or broken hair. 

Watch out for the following signs of skin problems:

  • Excessive shedding.
  • Excessive scratching. 
  • Poor, scruffy, and dull coat, and bald spots.
  • Redness or discharge in the ears. 
  • Visible scabs, scales, crusts, dandruff, sores, lumps, dry skin, and black or white spots.

Here are the 7 Most Common Dog Skin Diseases:

Food Allergies 

An allergic reaction to food is usually exhibited by excessive itching on the face, ears, anus, and feet. This is mostly caused by a particular ingredient in the food they ate that triggered the allergy and caused the body to fight the offending ingredient. 

To find that ingredient, remove from their diet one ingredient at a time and take note of their reactions to determine which one is causing the problem. The usual culprits are soy, wheat, corn, eggs, and chicken. 

Environmental Dermatitis

This happens when the skin problems occur after your dog has interacted with the environment such as plants, grass, soil, water. 

Nutritional Dermatitis

Nutritional dermatitis happens when dogs get insufficient nutrition from their food. Dogs should eat meat so it’s very imperative that the dog food they are eating has meat as the first ingredient. Supplements with Omega fatty acids and vitamins for canine consumption would be a big help. 

Canine Atopy 

This type of skin problem pertains to a dog’s allergic reaction when dust, mold, and pollen are inhaled. If your dog inhales any of the mentioned allergens and showed signs of discomfort and distress, get in touch immediately with your vet for advice.    

Contact Allergies 

This refers to the allergic reaction of your dog to a substance it had direct contact with such as paint or chlorine in a pool. If this happens, give your dog a bath and use a shampoo that can relieve allergies to wash away the allergen. Take your pet to the vet if his skin got damaged.    

Fleas, Ticks, and Other Parasites 

There are a variety of critters that can cause dog health and skin problems. A number of medicines can be purchased to drive these parasites away. You will also need to clean your house thoroughly several times to get rid of the critters and their eggs.   


Hives are another kind of skin problem that can occur in your dog’s lifetime. Hives can affect both dogs and humans. They are the round, red, and itchy bumps or swellings that appear on the skin. These are usually caused by insect bites, medications, and topical applications. Normally, once the stimulant is removed, the hives will go away within the day. Since the stimulant can be determined easily, relief can be achieved immediately. 

You can wash your dog using a hypoallergenic shampoo and depending on the degree of the hives outbreak, the vet may advise you to apply antihistamine cream or ointment to lessen the swelling.     


If your pet shows any signs or symptoms of any of the skin diseases mentioned above, go to the vet and get professional help.  


You might also be interested to read Keeping Your Canine Cool This Summer and How To Keep Your Feline Feeling Fresh This Summer

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