Has Excessive Chewing Caused Your Dog’s Skin to Become Inflamed?

If your dog is showing an intense need to scratch, chew, or lick a part of her body to the point that her skin is becoming inflamed, then she may have a skin disease that is causing her to excessively scratch. The medical term for intense itching is pruritus, and if the cause of the pruritus is not treated, it will result in partial to full hair loss on the affected area and/or a skin infection called pyoderma.

Pruritus can be caused by a wide range of factors, but the most common reasons include flea allergy dermatitis, food allergies, contact dermatitis, seasonal allergies, bacterial infections, immune disorders, neoplasia, and sarcoptic mange.

Pruritus can also affect any age or breed of dog, but certain breeds, such as French Poodles, West Highland White Terriers, Cocker Spaniels, and Retrievers are more prone to developing itchy skin conditions.

excessive scratching in dogs

Signs That Your Dog May Be Suffering From Skin Inflammation Issues

If you think your dog might be suffering from inflamed skin due to pruritus, you may start to notice several tell-tale signs. Here is a checklist that you can use to monitor your dog so your veterinarian will have the most comprehensive information at their disposal when treating her.

Simply check the box beside the symptom if you have observed it in your dog:

  • Excessive scratching
  • Excessive licking
  • Biting or chewing her skin
  • Self-trauma
  • Hair loss
  • Skin inflammation

Treatment for Pruritus in Dogs

Once you’ve completed the above checklist, print it out and take it to your veterinarian so you can discuss your dog’s health with the vet. Your veterinarian will perform a thorough physical examination and a review of your pet’s medical history. A skin biopsy and allergy testing will usually be done to help determine what is causing the dog’s intense need to itch, scratch, or lick.

Treatment for pruritus is determined by what is causing the intense itching sensation. This can sometimes be frustrating for pet owners because it can often take a long time and a large number of tests before the actual cause can be positively identified.

In some cases, it can take weeks or even months before the dog’s condition can be managed. It is also important to note that in some cases, no cure may be available, so the pet may wind up needing lifelong treatment to keep her condition under control.

If it is determined that your dog’s diet is causing the inflammatory and itchy skin reaction, then certain dietary modifications may also be called for to help reduce the risk of breakouts.

If your dog’s treatment plan involves any medications prescribed by your veterinarian, you can receive a free quote for your pet’s medications from Diamondback Drugs. We can help you save money on all of your pet medications.

As always, be sure to inform your veterinarian about any medications or supplements your dog is currently taking so your vet can make the best treatment decision for your pet’s unique case and help reduce the risk of a potential drug interaction.


Author: Giano Panzarella