The general condition of your dog’s skin and coat are good indicators of its health. A healthy coat should be shiny and smooth, not brittle or coarse, and healthy skin should be supple and clear, not greasy, flaky or bumpy. Although health and nutrition influence the luster and texture of your pet’s coat from the inside, regular grooming and skin care on the outside will help keep your dog’s coat clean and free of tangles, no matter what type of hair coat he or she has.
This month, we will discuss the many reasons that could cause your pet to have abnormal skin conditions, particularly allergic dermatitis. The main symptom of allergic dermatitis is itchy skin. Some licking and chewing is normal, but if it is excessive, or there is loss of hair or a skin rash, then intervention is needed.
One other common reason we see pets is for lumps in the skin. Many pet owners wonder whether they should be concerned about a new lump they recently noticed. Our rule of thumb is this: any new lump greater than 1 cm or ½ inch in diameter is worth checking out. Please call us for an appointment if your pet has any new lumps that size, is itching excessively, or has any other skin or coat abnormalities.