What your dog eats has a direct impact on the health of their entire body including their skin. Today our Orange vets share some of the ways that nutrition can have an effect on the health of a dog's skin and the development of various skin conditions and concerns.
How Dog Nutrition Affects Skin Health
A healthy, balanced diet full of nutrients is important for the overall health of your dog. Proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals all play a role in keeping your dog's skin and coat healthy. Feeding your dog high-quality commercial dog food or preparing homemade meals that meet their nutritional needs is crucial for maintaining their skin health.
Poor nutrition can lead to a variety of skin issues in dogs, such as dry, flaky skin, hair loss, and a dull coat. A diet lacking essential nutrients can also weaken your pup's immune system and make your dog more susceptible to issues such as skin infections and parasites.
Changing Your Dog's Diet to Improve Skin Health
It can be difficult to determine which brand of dog food you should be feeding your pup. After all, there are hundreds of options out there. Many high-quality pet food companies have foods specially formulated to promote good skin and coat health in dogs. How do you know which is best for your pup's skin? A good place to start is by talking to your veterinarian and asking for recommendations.
When considering various food options be sure to look for dog foods that contain high-quality proteins, such as chicken, turkey, or fish. The amino acids present in these foods are key for making your dog's skin and coat super healthy and shiny.
Additionally, choose dog foods that are rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which help promote healthy skin and coat. Try to avoid dog foods that contain fillers, by-products, and artificial preservatives, as these can contribute to skin irritation and inflammation.
How Dog Diets & Nutrition Can Cause Skin Issues
While it isn't always the first thing we think of, the food that our dog eats can be the cause of various sensitivities and allergies that cause skin concerns.
Common allergens that can affect your dog's skin include chicken, beef, dairy, and wheat. Switching to a hypoallergenic diet or eliminating potential allergens from their diet may help resolve skin issues. For example, dogs with allergies may benefit from a diet that includes novel proteins, such as venison or duck, to reduce the risk of triggering an allergic reaction.
When it comes to figuring out what the cause is, you may need to go through a process of trial and error. Be sure to switch your dog's food gradually to help avoid gastrointestinal distress, and speak to your veterinarian to find out which dog diet food they recommend for keeping your pup's skin healthy and their coat shiny.
By giving your dog certain supplements, under the care of a veterinarian, you can help to replenish vital nutrients that may be missing from their diet.
For example, adding a fish oil supplement can help provide additional omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation and improve skin health. Whereas, adding a probiotic supplement can help support gut health, which is important for overall skin health.
Water is essential for overall health and hydration, including skin health. Make sure your dog has access to plenty of fresh, clean water at all times. Dehydration can lead to dry, flaky skin, which can contribute to itching and irritation.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.