Preventing Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats

Help Keep Your Dog or Cat Free of Skin Disease

Golden Retriever
Golden Retriever. PK-Photos/E+/Getty

The best way to prevent skin problems in your dog or cat is to keep your dog or cat as healthy as possible and to keep his immune system functioning normally.

Feed a High Quality Balanced Diet to Help Prevent Skin Problems in Dogs and Cats

One of the best things you can do for your dog or cat is to choose a high quality diet for him. The diet needs to be well-balanced to insure that your dog or cat receives all the nutrients he needs to maintain excellent health.

Fatty acids such as DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) have beneficial effects on the skin, support the immune system and have anti-inflammatory effects and may be useful in the diet. However, excessive levels should be avoided because they can be dangerous at high levels. In addition, attention should be given to providing an adequate ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3 fatty acids.

Keep Your Dog or Cat at a Proper Weight to Help Prevent Skin Disease

Keeping your dog or cat lean is beneficial in many different ways. Fat cells secrete substances that promote inflammation and thus can contribute to skin allergies and other skin diseases.

Prevent Canine and Feline Skin Disease by Preventing Fleas

Keeping external parasites away from your dog or cat is extremely important and fleas are one of the most difficult parasites to control. Fleas may cause hair loss and itchiness and many pets actually suffer an allergy to flea saliva (bites).

Preventing fleas is a very important part of keeping your pet's skin healthy.

Related: Common Causes of Allergies in Pets

Keep Your Pet Well-Groomed to Prevent Skin Problems and Skin Disease

Keeping your dog or cat's skin clean and the hair coat well-groomed and free of hair tangles or matted hair can also help promote healthy skin for your pet.

  • Bathing can remove any allergens (allergy-causing substances) from the skin.
  • Brushing can help distribute oils through the skin and hair coat, promoting healthy skin and keeping the hair coat in good condition.

By following these simple tips, many skin problems can be minimized or even avoided altogether for your dog or cat.

 Please note: this article has been provided for informational purposes only. If your pet is showing any signs of illness, please consult a veterinarian as quickly as possible.