Fleas, ticks, fungi or dryness can cause itching, as a result, dogs often scratch themselves in certain places. Excessive scratching can lead to physical problems as well as depression!
You’ve probably already noticed that your dog sometimes spends a lot of time scratching. Maybe it itches behind the ears, on the stomach or he just scratched in the air. First, you think of fleas or skin problems. But there are other reasons why dogs often scratch.
You should not just consider this behavior as normal, but look for possible causes, because the itching could be due to parasites or a skin infection.
Every sixth veterinary visit is due to skin complaints. You should not just accept the scratching, because the mental health of the dog could also be at stake.
Various studies show that skin problems are very uncomfortable for dogs and therefore often lead to depression!
You want to know why dogs scratch?
- The most common cause of itching are parasites: fleas and ticks are the main culprits. They hurt the skin and suck blood, which causes itching. If your dog is also allergic to flea saliva, it can be a more serious problem. As a result, it can also lead to allergic dermatitis.
- To find out if a dog has fleas, it has to be watched first. Check coat and skin or stool to see if fleas are present. Especially happy to hide the unpleasant roommates behind the ears and in the folds of the paws. Often, redness can be seen on the skin of the dog.
- Both fleas and ticks thrive on the blood of the host but can transmit various very serious diseases when they are pierced. Therefore, you should regularly bathe your dog with special antiparasitic products and take other precautionary measures.
- Are you fiddling with your fingernails when you are nervous? Or you constantly go up and down to calm you down? Dogs often scratch themselves to relieve nervousness or stress!
- The movement also plays an important role here. You should give your dog sufficient exercise because it can reduce pent-up energy. You can also prevent boredom and attention problems that could cause the dog to scratch.
Diseases, fungi and dry skin
- The classic mange (referred to as scabies in humans) is a skin disease that is common in animals and causes itching. The causative mites make it comfortable on the skin and provoke injuries that can be very annoying. In particular, in those areas of the body that are less hairy, the mites like to spread: groin, armpits, joints of the legs, ear edges …
- Allergies can also cause itching. It can be a seasonal allergy, for example in spring or summer. However, the allergy can occur all year round. Pollen, seeds, flowers or other allergens can affect the skin of a dog.
- Food intolerance can also be manifested by skin complaints. Some dogs react to certain types of meat or cereals, or even to a very special feed brand. See if the dog is scratching frequently after eating, as this could be a sign of it.
- In addition, if there are bald spots, it could be a fungal infection. In this case, the veterinarian must initiate the correct treatment.
- Dry skin can also cause frequent scratching. Skin lesions, tears or scabs are a sign of dryness. The climate, lack of water or certain care products can be responsible. Also, nutritional deficiency or hormonal problems can cause skin dryness. The vet will then prescribe the right treatment to relieve the symptoms.
We’ve just listed a few examples that can persuade a dog to scratch itself constantly. If this behavior happens only occasionally, you should not worry, but if scratching becomes a habit, you need to seek advice from a veterinarian.
If the dog has a health problem that is not treated, it can lead to wounds and infections that can cause serious consequences. Therefore, it is better to be attentive and seek professional help in case of problems to ensure the well-being of your pet.