A crucial aspect of being a dog owner is ensuring your dog is happy and content. Whether it’s by providing them with tons of exercise, feeding them high-quality food, or giving them lots of cuddles, your dog’s skin and fur need to be well taken care of. In the summer months especially, soaring temperatures can wreak havoc on your dog’s health and wellbeing. With all that extra fur and heat and humidity to deal with, you need to put your dog’s needs first.
For both of you to get the most out of the summer months ahead, here are some tips on how to keep your pup’s skin and coat healthy.
Do you have a specific question about keeping your pup healthy in summer? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page.
Stay Out the Sun
While we humans are excited to get out and enjoy the sunshine, your dog may struggle to keep up. Depending on where you live in the country, temperatures can soar significantly, making it difficult for your dog to stay cool. What’s more, overexposure to the sun can cause skin burns to your dog or even cancer. The sidewalk may also get too hot for your dog’s paws, so you need to bear this in mind and stick to taking your dog for walks early in the morning or evening.
There are pet-safe sunblocks you can use on your dog, which will offer them protection when going for walks. Hairless breeds, in particular, are more at risk of sunburn, so to avoid any unnecessary pain and discomfort, you must provide your pet with plenty of shade. If you do go out with it in the day, make sure you bring plenty of water to keep the pup’s skin hydrated.
Bathe Your Dog Regularly
While you shouldn’t be bathing your dog every single day, it is essential to keep on top of keeping their skin and fur in tip-top condition. Doing so once or twice each month will be enough, particularly if your pup spends most of its time inside.
Unlike cats, who usually don’t need a bath, dogs can benefit from bathing occasionally. However, if your canine friend has sensitive skin, cleaning them too often can result in skin irritation and dry out their coat. It’s best to talk to your vet, who can give you more information if you have any doubts about it.
Provide Quality Food
What your dog eats can have a massive impact on skin and coat. We all want our dog’s fur to be healthy, meaning you need to give them a diet packed with nutrients and vitamins. The next time you’re at the grocery store shopping for food, take a closer look at the ingredients, so you know exactly what is going in your dog’s mouth. If you wish, you can add a teaspoon of vegetable oil to your dog’s food, enhancing their coat.
Unfortunately, too many dog owners in the country give in to their dog’s demands and feed them what’s on their plate. There are lots of foods that you must avoid giving your pup as it can not only make them ill, but it can also damage their skin and fur.
Give Healthy Treats
You will struggle to find a puppy who doesn’t love a treat. In addition to feeding your dog healthy foods, you should share the same sentiment with treats. There are plenty of healthy options to choose from, including fresh vegetables and apple slices.
Whatever you do, you mustn’t give your dog too many treats as this can do more harm than good to their health. When combining healthy food and treats, your dog’s skin and coat will benefit enormously.
Purchase a Suitable Collar
When you’re next out on a walk with your pooch, pay attention to how their collar fits around their neck. If you purchase an ill-fitting collar, this can irritate your dog’s skin, cause redness and sores and develop skin tags too.
Skin tags on dogs can occur anywhere on the body, including under the armpit, making walking uncomfortable. Checking out Native Pet’s guide on skin tags will help you know what to look out for, as well as other common skin growths to be aware of. Native Pet has years of experience providing organic supplements and omega oil which can help keep your dog’s skin in excellent condition.
Use Coconut Oil
Millions of Americans use coconut oil daily. There are numerous evidence-based health benefits of coconut oil for humans, such as boosting heart health, encouraging fat burning, and reducing hunger. You may not realize how good coconut oil can be for your dog’s skin and coat.
Adding a teaspoon of coconut oil to their food each day can do wonders for your dog’s general health. Coconut oil can be used externally, too, helping to keep your dog’s skin well moisturized. Massaging your furry friend with the oil for a couple of minutes is all it takes to keep your dog’s skin and coat healthy and shiny. Coconut oil can also improve your dog’s digestion, cognitive function and increase energy levels.
Protect Against Parasites
No matter how long you’ve owned a dog, you’ll probably be aware of parasites and the nuisances they can bring. Dog’s love to explore nature, but this means that they’re more prone to fleas and ticks, which can irritate your pooch’s skin. Suppose you notice your dog is scratching and biting itself constantly. In that case, this is a sign that parasites are lingering on their skin. Parasites can damage your dog’s coat and health, meaning it’s vital you take action quickly.
Using flea pills, purchasing a fast-acting chemical treatment, or seeking advice from your vet are all good ways of combating fleas and getting rid of them for good. Many breeds are allergic to flea bites, meaning they can result in red and flaky skin, hot spots, and even hair loss. If you’re not careful, parasites can cause anemia and tapeworms too. Remember, if your dog gets fleas, it’s incredibly common, so don’t feel like you’re doing a bad job as the owner!
Speak to Your Vet
Whether you’ve owned dogs in the past or you’re a proud pup owner for the first time, keeping your dog in the best shape possible can be difficult if you don’t know what to do. With summer on the horizon, it’s normal that you’ll want to spend time outdoors with your best friend. So scheduling a vet appointment is one of the best ways to find out what you can do to keep your dog’s skin and coat healthy. And this effect will last not only in the summer but all year round.
Your vet will perform a thorough checkup which should put your mind at ease. If you notice your dog is constantly scratching, or you have any worries or concerns, don’t hesitate to take them to the vet. Seeing your dog in pain and suffering can be difficult to witness, so getting treatment fast is key to keeping them happy.
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