When you have a dog, you get used to finding dog hair everywhere. With some breeds, the hair even travels with you. But what you shouldn’t get used to is finding dandruff in your dog’s coat.
In most cases, dog dandruff occurs when your dog is going through a health issue. Resolving their health problem is your first priority, but you also need to keep them comfortable in the meantime. So, in addition to taking them to the vet and getting your dog groomed, you can relieve your dog’s itchy, flaky skin using colloidal oatmeal shampoo.
Is your dog shedding more than hair? Here’s what you need to know to help protect your pet’s skin from irritation and infection.
What is Dog Dandruff?
Do you see white bits floating around your dog’s coat? Are they ending up on your clothes or sofa? There’s a good chance it’s just dandruff.
Dogs get dandruff just like humans do. And just like humans, the cause of dandruff can be hard to identify. One thing is sure, though. Dandruff is the presence of dead skin, and it’s also a sign your dog’s skin is very irritated.
A dog can get dandruff for a variety of reasons. Some of the causes are behavioral, and others are symptoms of nutritional deficiencies or even illness.
To get to the heart of the matter, you need to take a closer look at their coat. Do you see dandruff all over your dog’s body? Or is it limited to a particular area of their coat? When dandruff is widespread, it might be because they’re missing out on essential nutrients, battling an infection, or reacting badly to humidity or the temperature. When it’s localized, you might be looking at an allergy or even a parasite. Some of the most common underlying causes of dog dandruff include:
- Bacterial infections
- Internal or external parasites
- Reaction to their diet
- Endocrine disorders
No matter what you suspect, it’s essential to take your pet to the vet for a check-up. Because dandruff is usually a symptom, it’s vital to rule out or treat any underlying medical conditions.
Could It Be Walking Dandruff?
Doggy dandruff doesn’t need to be a big deal. If you spot it, you can take your pet to the vet and treat it the problem at home. However, there is one type of dandruff that is much more difficult to handle.
Walking dandruff is the product of a parasitic infection caused by mites. It can not only spread quickly between animals, but it can also affect humans.
You can tell the difference between ordinary dandruff and walking dandruff because your dog will be uncomfortable and likely scratch, bite, and lick the affected area. If you see dandruff and those behaviors, take a look at their coat. A tell-tale sign of walking dandruff is red, scaly skin and hair loss.
To kill walking dandruff, you need to kill the mites using a topical treatment provided by your vet. If you have walking dandruff in your house, all pets (including rabbits and hamsters) need a trip to the vet for treatment.
In severe cases, you may even need to use a chemical to kill fleas and mites in your home to avoid reinfection and further spreading.
How to Use Colloidal Oatmeal Shampoo to Soothe Your Dog’s Skin
Once you get to the root cause of your dog’s dandruff, it’s time to help soothe their skin.
How do you help your dog manage its dandruff? The answer is much more straightforward than you think: colloidal oatmeal shampoo.
Colloidal oatmeal is a fine powder of oats. When combined with water and other soothing ingredients, it treats all kinds of skin conditions, which makes it a popular ingredient in soap, lotion, and shampoos for both humans and animals. Unlike other shampoos, it’s perfectly formulated for sensitive skin so that it won’t irritate your dog’s red, itchy skin any further.
What Are the Benefits of Oatmeal Dog Shampoo?
Why oatmeal? As it turns out, the oat plant is a bit of a wonder plant.
One of the most essential benefits of oatmeal dog shampoo is colloidal oatmeal has anti-inflammatory properties that also help control itchiness. The plant’s natural properties stop skin inflammation and redness in their tracks. Colloidal oatmeal also includes vitamin E. The combined ingredients encourage the skin to heal. As the skin heals, dandruff begins to go away.
Colloidal oatmeal’s benefits go beyond soothing the skin. It also helps form a protective barrier to prevent further irritation and infection. The barrier also helps promote healing as well as keeping the skin moisturized.
Another benefit of colloidal oatmeal is its cleansing properties. It removes dead skin cells and sebum through gentle exfoliation and the foaming action created by the powder. Once again, it helps prevent further inflammation and wards off infection to allow your dog’s skin to heal.
All in all, colloidal oatmeal is one of the best treatments you can give a dog suffering from itchy skin because it not only relieves the itchiness in the moment but helps prevent it from returning later.
Can Your Just Wash Your Dog with Oats or Oat Flour?
You’ve likely seen lots of articles detailing how simple it can be to pour some oats in your dog’s bath and scrub him.
A gentle oatmeal wash is the best treatment for dandruff, but colloidal oatmeal is a much finer grind than what you find in your kitchen. What’s more, colloidal oatmeal tends only to include the varieties of the oatmeal plant best suited for skincare. As a result, the oats you cook for breakfast are unlikely to heal you or your dog’s dandruff.
You can bathe your dog with oats from your house. It’s unlikely to do any damage, but if you want real soothing action, you need a colloidal oatmeal shampoo specially formulated for dogs.
How to Give Your Dog an Oatmeal Bath
Once you choose your preferred dog shampoo, it’s time to bathe them.
Most of the time, you shouldn’t bathe your pet more than once every two weeks, but the real schedule depends on your dog’s breed, age, health, and activity level. Over-bathing can cause dandruff and other skin issues because it alters the pH balance of your pet’s skin. However, if you’re bathing them to soothe skin irritation, you might try twice a week. Ask your vet what the most appropriate schedule is for your dog.
The good news is that a bath with colloidal oatmeal shampoo isn’t much different from your regular bathtime routine. All you do is swap out your other pet products for a colloidal oatmeal dog shampoo. You rinse your dog and then apply the shampoo according to the manufacturer’s instructions. You will likely find the shampoo lathers quite a bit, which helps make bathtime less distressing for a dog with irritated skin.
It’s crucial to be careful when your dog’s skin is irritated, itchy, or even broken in places. Avoid rubbing, scratching, scrubbing, or using hot water on your dog’s skin. Working too hard will not only cause your pet discomfort, but you could do more damage to their already fragile skin unintentionally. Trust that your shampoo will do all the heavy lifting for you.
Once you wash your pet down with the soothing shampoo, rinse your pet and condition (if appropriate). Make sure your dog conditioner is vet-approved to avoid causing a reaction. Then, rinse your dog again.
When it’s time to get out of the tub, you need to dry your dog’s coat thoroughly. Again, be careful not to irritate your dog’s skin. Start by patting your dog with a towel to absorb the water, but don’t rub. You should also avoid using heat to dry their fur because a hairdryer will cause further irritation. If you do need to dry them, use the cool setting, and keep the dryer on low. Another option is to put your dog in the kennel and use a fan.
Just make sure you don’t leave your dog’s fur damp because it contributes to the irritation.
Once dry, brush your dog to redistribute their body oils. Don’t forget to brush regularly between baths to remove debris and help them heal!
Soothe Itchy, Irritated Skin with Colloidal Oatmeal Shampoo
When a dog gets dandruff, there’s usually something else happening beneath the surface causing skin irritation. As a result, it’s essential to take a two-step approach to soothe their skin: a trip to the vet to find the root cause and baths with colloidal oatmeal shampoo to keep them comfortable in the meantime.
Colloidal oatmeal is finely ground oatmeal that delivers anti-inflammatory, moisturizing, and cleansing benefits to relieve your dog’s red, irritated skin. All you need to do is lather up and carefully wash your dog’s first to start seeing benefits.
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