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How to relieve your dog’s itching – naturally!
When your dog is suffering from dry, itchy skin, there are a number of chemical-based pet drugs that a veterinarian can prescribe to soothe and heal the skin. But if chemicals aren't your thing, are there any natural options?
What type of itching are we talking about?
Itching and scratching caused by atopy is the easiest to treat with homeopathic remedies. Atopy is one of the most common causes of allergies in pets, after an allergy to flea saliva. It occurs when a dog's immune system overreacts to substances in the air such as pollen, tobacco smoke or dust mites. Atopy includes seasonal allergies, so if your dog is itching and scratching in the spring or fall in particular, it might be good to stock up on natural products for those times.
Dogs with atopy may scratch at their noses, rub their noses on the floor, chew at their paws, scratch their ears and shake their heads.
That said, there are some causes of itching and scratching that do need to be treated with pet drugs. Bacterial or fungal infections usually need a certain type of medicated pet shampoo to clear them up and heal the skin. Itching from fleas may require medications like Sentinel.
You can relieve most of your pet's external itchiness with Yucca Intensive, a topical supplement that contains a purified extract derived from the yucca plant. This plant is thought to provide relief from itching similar to steroid medications – but it has none of the side effects. Because itching and scratching tends to cause inflammation, this medication works to reduce inflammation and thus also pain and itching. Products like HomeoPet Nose Relief can relieve symptoms associated with the nasal and sinus area because it contains Hepar sulphuris, cough and sore throat reducer, and Kali Iodatum, a natural antiseptic.
There are also a number of pills that you can give your dog to reduce allergy symptoms and restore healthy skin and coat. One of the best is a fatty acid supplement of omega-3s like Nordic Naturals Omega-3 Pet. These natural ingredients are found in high concentrations in fish oil, a natural source. Giving them to your pooch can reduce inflammation and promote the production of healthy skin and hair cells.