Nothing is more frustrating than a pet allergy, especially one that doesn’t seem to respond to conventional treatment. It’s a nuisance for your Fido, but it is also one for yourself since you don’t want to see your dog scratching or licking their limbs, tail, or feet all the time.
Plus, dogs can cause damage to their skin and fur if they scratch non-stop, which would make them vulnerable to a variety of dermatological issues. In this post, we’ll look at several natural remedies that can alleviate the symptoms of an allergy in your dog.
Before we move on, we’d like to point out that, if there’s a more complicated factor at the root of the problem, you should take your pooch to the vet, especially if you see that none of these alternatives work.
Common causes of dog allergies
Your canine friend can be allergic to a variety of things from grass and pollen to the cedar chips that might be in their bedding. You can’t rule out the possibility that a substance in your usual cleaning products is causing an allergy, as well, mainly if you use things like carpet deodorizers.
Some dogs can be allergic to pyrethrin, which is present in flea collars. Other dogs can develop allergies to the food they eat, in which case they might experience digestive distress along with the typical skin symptoms. Last, but not least, if your dog has fleas, he could develop flea allergy dermatitis. There are many other causes.
Natural remedies for dog allergies
Adding a tablespoon of yogurt to your dog’s food once in a while is a great idea if you want him to benefit from an extra amount of probiotics and also make him capable of fighting off yeast infections and bacteria on his own. However, the yogurt that you give to your dog must be xylitol-free and probiotic.
Some dogs are lactose-intolerant, so keep an eye on their ‘bathroom’ habits. Add a small amount per day and start slow to make sure that your dog doesn’t get diarrhea.
As a natural moisturizer, oatmeal is quite gentle on animals’ skin, including that of dogs. Use a blender to make oatmeal flour. Powder it on your dog’s skin while you’re giving him a bath and add some to the water in which he’s soaking.
Many senior dogs actually love soaking in some warm water for a while as it soothes their painful joints. If that’s what your pet wants to do, even better. After a while, rinse out the oatmeal from his coat and towel him dry. If you don’t use shampoo or any cleaning products, you can do this every week or bi-monthly — as oatmeal alone doesn’t modify your dog’s skin pH drastically.
Apple cider vinegar
This inexpensive solution can soothe your dog’s skin and also ward off some fleas. You can clean your dog’s coat with a diluted solution of apple cider vinegar as you are bathing him or you can add the liquid to a spray bottle and use it topically once a day.
Try to avoid spraying it on his fur, though, since that would have no effect on the dermatological condition. Part your dog’s fur and apply the diluted apple cider vinegar directly to the skin.
Fish oil and vitamin E
Fish, such as salmon, cod, pollock, and other types of ocean fish, contain omega-3 fatty acids, which have been found to have a positive effect on the skin. They can also be used topically, so if you buy some fish oil in liquid form, you can apply it directly to your dog’s itchy areas.
The same goes for vitamin E, which is available for humans in a capsule form. Just break one open and apply it to the affected area.
You might have heard that chamomile is a natural antimicrobial, and since it provides a little balance in conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease, it’s often used by vets. But chamomile has wonderful healing properties also when applied on the skin. By the way, this is also true for humans, not just for pets.
Make some chamomile tea, and then let it cool. Pour it into a spray bottle and apply it to the itchy or inflamed areas. Most dogs get some relief right away, that is, unless they have a more complicated allergy.
Coconut oil can be utilized as an oral supplement for bone health and improving a dog’s metabolic function, but it also works as a topical aid for itchiness. If your dog has dry skin and dandruff, for example, providing the right amount of moisture to his epidermis is the right way of going about things.
You can massage the coconut oil into your pooch’s skin, and he’ll get some much-needed relief from hot spots. The same oil can be a friend in need when it comes to soothing sore footpads or skin inflammation.
Baking soda is a cheap and excellent solution to an itchy dog. It calms inflamed skin, and it soothes most of the itchiness. You can use it as a paste or a spray. For the spray, mix one tablespoon of baking soda with eight ounces of water, add it to a spray bottle, and then apply it to your dog’s skin whenever that’s necessary.
For the paste, mix one tablespoon of baking soda with a small amount of water to create a paste. Use it on reddened and itchy areas and leave it there for a couple of hours before washing it off. Try as best as possible to distract your dog’s attention during this time, so take him for a long walk or a play session in the park.
If you have an aloe plant in your home, you might want to know that you can use a leaf (the sectioned gel-like part) to soothe the symptoms of dog allergies. You can even use it for sunburns. Aloe leaves can keep for as many as three days in the fridge, but you don’t have to cut a whole leaf from the plant. Just trim a small piece whenever you need it.
Fresh aloe has enzymes that can decrease inflammation and heal your dog’s itchy skin. The gel that’s available for sale doesn’t contain them because it is no longer fresh.
Curing your dog’s allergy can be done from the inside out. Adding spirulina, nutritional yeast, lecithin, or kelp powder to your dog’s diet can reduce his itchiness over time. However, we advise you to talk to your veterinarian before adding these supplements to your dog’s food, especially if he is suffering from some types of chronic conditions other than the allergy per se.