Caring For Your Pet’s Skin and Coat”
By Tim DiPaolo
Taking care of your pets’ skin and coat can lead to a happy, healthy animal! Pets having skin irritations scratch, lick or chew leading to hot spots or infections. Irritants include allergies, fleas, ticks and dense fur coats that tend to stay damp. Matted fur can cause sores, and injuries may go unnoticed if covered by a thick hair coat.
Regular brushing of your dog or cat’s coat will help. It removes loose hair, dirt and foreign debris keeping a pet clean, making them look and feel better. Many combs and brushes are available at your veterinarian or local pet stores making grooming easy and fun. A slicker brush, dematting rake or a Furminator may be just what you need.
Dietary supplements can help make your animal friends’ coat stay healthy, shiny and clean. Consider an omega 3 fatty acid supplement like Welactin by Nutramax or a skin hydrating supplement like Dermoscent. Welactin is a fish oil based supplement that is available in either a liquid or gelcap form. Nutramax guarantees it’s palatability. Dermoscent is an herbal supplement that you apply to your pet’s skin. Here at Dehler Animal Clinic we use and recommend both.
While cats groom their coat to keep it shiny and clean, most dogs do not. In order to stay clean and healthy a dog relies on its owner. Don’t bathe your dog more than once a month, it strips the natural oils that condition their skin and coat and keep them water repellant. If your pet becomes dirty often because of play or activities then consider using a detergent-free pet shampoo. This will help to preserve these natural oils. Dehler Animal Clinic uses and recommends Douxo skin care products made by Sogeval.
Increasing the humidity in your home during the winter months may help to alleviate the symptoms of dry skin.
If your pet swims in the warmer months be sure they have a chance to shake off excess water and towel them dry before they go home and lay down. If your dog wears a life preserver while swimming be sure that you take it off when they are done swimming to allow their skin and coat to air dry completely.
Properly caring for your furry friends’ skin and coat may help you avoid unexpected trips to the vet and can help keep them happy and healthy for years to come.