Black dog itching and scratching dandruff
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Thread: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

  1. #1
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    Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Hi my black mongrel has a really nice sheen on her coat but she has dandruff and itchiness problems. Any shampoo recommendations? Would not want to use conditioner, and ideally the shampoo is one that does not need to be left in for 10 minutes that sort of thing.

    Her flakes are quite bad, they are as big as human dandruff flakes and can be found on her back. She licks herself a lot, to the point where fur drops sometimes and the skin is red and raw looking. Her fur is usually quite greasy except right after a bath. She bathes about once a week, the recommendation for my country's climate, but I've been trying to bathe her less often, but then the greasiness of her coat becomes a problem.

    We live in a hot and humid country. I've read about adding oil to her diet but are there any affordable ones? Salmon oil is expensive isn't it?

    Okay main thing is the shampoo though - thanks!

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    Senior Member Hiraeth's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Bathing once a week can actually cause damage to a dog's coat and rob it of its natural protective oils.

    It sounds like she potentially has some food allergies which cause skin irritation, which is being made worse by the constant bathing.

    What is her diet like?

  4. #3
    Senior Member Lillith's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    I agree, you are probably bathing her too much. She may be getting greasy because her coat is overproducing oils to make up for the ones stripped from her coat from the bath. Instead, brush her thoroughly to distribute the oil throughout her coat and remove dust and debris. Try bathing her once a month. You could use a shampoo with oatmeal, aloe, or something similar. I use Earthbath shampoo on my dog. I buy it on Amazon.

    You can also buy fish oil online. I use Omegease, which I also buy from Amazon. It is around $14 for 8 oz., but each bottle lasts nearly 2 months for my dog. The dosage is base don your dog's weight. I use it because my dog suffers from environmental allergies, but it has also increased his coat's shine and quality. He does not appear to have excessive flaking.

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    Senior Member Kathyy's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Shampooing weekly is fine for dogs so long as you are doing it properly. Use warm water and rinse it completely out or the dog will have a dirty itchy coat right away. I've never tossed dog shampoo out, they have all been fine. I check for a scent that's not strong. My favorite has been Eqyss Microtek which is for itching. After rinsing until coat is squeaky clean dry it properly. A dense coat that is allowed to remain damp can allow bacterial and fungal infections to start up. I've found that brushing through the coat every few minutes works just as well as a dryer. I prefer to go for a walk and stop to brush. Keeps the fuzz out of my house too!

    Fleas? Is your dog on flea control? I wouldn't think my dogs had any but Sassy would be horribly itchy. I'd put a white wet paper towel on the floor under her and give her rear end a good scritch - right where she was scratching. In the debris on the towel there might be a single tiny dark dot that dissolved reddish. Flea poop. Time for flea control!

    What about food? A poor quality food can be hard on skin and coat. A poor quality fat in particular might be a bad thing as skin is a fatty organ. The fat should be a named one like chicken or beef or pork rather than labeled meat fat, more likely to be fresh enough. You could supplement with a TINY amount of fat from your food if you see the kibble fat isn't a good one. Tiny, a 1/2" cube per day is plenty for a medium sized dog. Too much fat for a dog not used to it can kill her! If you can do that for a month and you see improvement without it bothering her gut too much you can try more but give it time! I agree she could have an allergy to the protein in the food but try feeding the rest of the kibble you have on hand with a tiny bit of fat added just so you aren't wasting and to give you time to research what food to try next.

    Fish oil might help. I just use a capsule supplement designed for human use. The omega 3 fatty acids in fish oil go bad really fast and they are better protected in a capsule then in a bottle exposed to oxygen That's why fish oil in kibble sometimes doesn't work as well as a supplement. Look online for a better deal? My little dogs get one a couple times a week and the larger dogs got 1 every day or so. Only thing to look out for is the use of xylitol which is a dangerous artificial sweetener for dogs. Or feed real fish. Sardines, mackerel, herring, salmon and other fatty fish are good sources for omega 3. Wild fish is better. Small fish are better as they won't be as contaminated with mercury. Canned fish is fine too. Mixing in as little as an ounce a day might be enough for a medium sized dog.

    And last. Get a skin scrape at the vet to check for mites, yeast and bacteria. This is a change for her, could be something nasty has colonized her skin.

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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Thanks for the replies!
    She is currently eating Zignature Kibble Lamb Formula Kibble, 5 cubes of boiled pumpkin (each cube is about 1" by 0.5"), and some meat cooked in soup - either chicken or pork, cooked with dog-friendly ingredients like corn, carrot etc, no salt, about a handful and a half in quantity.

    After I bathe her the itch seems to subside though. And we do let her get dirty once in a while like rolling in grass (sometimes damp), and for our country most dogs bathe once a week to once every 2 weeks. It's really hot, 33 degrees celsius, and really humid all year round.

    I was thinking of Fresh n Clean Medi-Cleen Medicated Shampoo or Earthbath Oatmeal and Aloe Shampoo but a really old thread here (2009ish I think) had quite a few people agreeing that oatmeal was overrated and potentially did more harm than good?

    Thanks for the fish oil recommendation! I'll see if I can buy it!

    Thanks! I'll try the flea test!

    Which capsule supplement do you use?

    Actually the dandruff has been around for the past 1-2 years, I've just been controlling it with a dandruff shampoo. But lately there have been other concerns like increased scratching, and I don't know if she brought in something but when my blanket falls onto the floor and I pick it back up it starts making me itchy too, so I bathed her with a stronger, non-dandruff shampoo just to try and kill anything that might be on her. So after that 1 week of not using the dandruff control I brushed her and the dandruff was really bad, so I'm looking at better solutions.
    I will probably bring her to a vet in case whatever was brought in is still lingering around, but the vets around my area aren't very competent and I'm afraid of a wasted trip. If the problem persists I might start doing those home tests to see what my dog might have, anyone have any recommendations? The thing is likely very small and pretty much invisible to the naked eye, when my blanket started itching I stared at it for a good long while but could see nothing. Nothing in my dog's fur either, and my blanket is white while my dog is black. Thankfully it does not seem to spread very far because when my blanket had it, and my legs had it, it didn't spread further up my bed/my body. None of my other items give the same itchy feeling unless they fall to the floor. Any ideas??
    Last edited by Biddity; 01-20-2017 at 12:59 AM.

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    Senior Member Kathyy's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Perhaps getting in touch with a biologist that knows bugs or googling for 'why am I itching when? would be a help. In the US there are a number of tiny bugs that bite and cause intense itching. There are plants that cause itching too.

    If you get itchy from the floor then something is up for sure. Your dog is much closer to the floor than you are! How is it kept clean? It could even be something you clean with that is not rinsed off well.

    My fish oil comes from Costco. It's cheap that way. Go through the types available on the shelf where you are an compare to how much they cost shipped from Amazon or eBay or an online store. Do google to be sure the brand is reputable, some aren't very good.

    That sounds like a very nice diet to me and she definitely is getting some nice fresh fats. You could stop feeding one of the proteins to see if she gets less itchy then switch and only feed the other. If eggs are reasonably priced you could even use egg as a protein to see how it goes. It takes at least 6 weeks for the irritation to subside so be patient.

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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    We usually wash with water only and a cleaner once a week. We stopped using cleaner after we heard that that could be the cause of dog itching.
    Okay! I think we'll use the brand recommended above, it's afforadble.
    Do eggs and meat provide the same proteins?

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    Senior Member Kathyy's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Added to a complete diet egg is fine. Egg can be richer and cause soft to loose stool so introduce a little at a time.

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    Senior Member animalcraker's Avatar
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    Re: Black dog itching and scratching dandruff

    Any reason why your're opposed to using conditioner? Also what country are you in? I would hate to suggest a bunch of high quality shampoos that you can't even get where you are.

    And what Kathyy said about bathing is correct. My dogs are bathed every 1-3 weeks depending on when their dog shows are. In fact I was went to a continuing education lecture on dermatology and all the veterinary dermatology specialist recommend bathing their patients with known skin problems at least twice a week; and ideally they would prefer daily bathing but unfortunately it's not reasonable to expect most dog owners to follow through with that treatment plan. For dogs that don't have current skin issues or healthy dogs they ideally recommended weekly bathing. As they put it "Clean skin is happy skin". One of the reasons why show dogs then to have beautiful shiny coats is because their skin is kept clean and healthy. The key with bathing so often is using a quality shampoo and conditioner that is formulated for dogs, and throughly rinsing out the shampoo.
    Last edited by animalcraker; 01-23-2017 at 09:19 PM.

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