Doggie Blog

Itchy Dog? It Could Be Seasonal Allergies

Itchy Dog? It Could Be Seasonal Allergies 0

Every dog gets a little itchy behind the ear every once in a while, but if you notice your fur friend is scratching, biting or licking themselves more than normal, it could be allergies. Just like humans, the change in the weather and the increase in pollen counts can spark allergies for dogs, and this often manifests in itchy skin and sudden rashes. Luckily, these issues are very common, and there are plenty of things you can do to help your dog be more comfortable.

Signs of Seasonal Allergies in Dogs

While you may experience post-nasal drip, some congestion and plenty of sneezing when the flowers bloom and the ragweed spreads, seasonal allergies work a little differently for canines. Some common signs of seasonal allergies in dogs include:

  • Red, inflamed skin
  • Excessive scratching
  • Biting at their fur or chewing on a specific spot
  • Excessive licking, especially of the paws
  • Hair loss or thinning in a certain area such as paws, hindquarters, chest and in the armpit area
  • Hot spots, which may show signs of infection in more severe cases

Keep in mind that dogs are generally very stoic when it comes to pain and discomfort. This means if your dog is itching or licking enough for you to notice the change in behavior or skin appearance, it's likely that he is experiencing significant irritation. These signs may also seem to come and go if your dog is outside (or in the house) more for a few days or if whatever is causing the reaction blooms.

Things You Can Do to Help

Any time you think your dog may be suffering from a skin allergy, it's always a good idea to cover your bases with a vet visit. While there are plenty of over-the-counter things you can do to help your dog, itching and skin rashes can also be indicative of a larger issues, such as ringworm or a food allergy, so it's important to make your vet aware of the issues your dog is experiencing so they can rule out anything more serious and give you advice on at-home treatments.

Once you and your vet have determined that seasonal allergies are to blame, some possible treatments include:

  • More frequent bathing: While this may seem counter-intuitive, washing your dog more often keeps the allergen from staying on the skin, and there are skin-calming shampoos that can make a big difference if your dog is experiencing red, itchy skin.
  • Hot spot treatments: These are usually liquids that come in a spray or sponge-topped bottle, and they have bittering ingredients that keep your dog from wanting to lick those spots. Make sure to look for a treatment that doesn't include alcohol and says it's safe for open wounds to ensure it doesn't burn your pup.
  • Fun T-shirts: If your dog is experiencing issues on the belly or the armpit region -- especially common on more wrinkly breeds because the skin folds hold onto moisture -- a doggie T-shirt keeps these areas out of reach. Bonus points for those with cute sayings that show off your dog's personality.
  • Supplements: Multivitamins designed to enhance your dog's skin and coat can help heal from the inside out and supports your dog's overall health. Omega chews are especially helpful for pets with skin issues.

Next Steps

If over-the-counter treatments aren't making a difference or you feel like your dog's symptoms are worsening, a trip back to the vet is the best bet. Your vet may be able to recommend a prescription treatment like Cytopoint, Apoquel or hydroxyzine or refer you to a veterinary dermatologist who can do more testing to determine if the underlying issues might be something like a food allergy.

  • Dana S
7 Common Causes of Dog Ear Infections You Need to Know

7 Common Causes of Dog Ear Infections You Need to Know 0

Ear infections are one of the most common illnesses your dog may experience. But what is at the root of these infections?

The L-shaped, vertical structure of your dog's ear canal makes him more prone to infections in his ear. So, it's important to understand the root causes of ear infections. Discover seven common causes of ear infections in dogs and how to keep them at bay:

1. Allergies

Allergies are often a common culprit of ear infections in dogs due to the inflammation allergies may cause in the ear canal. In fact, the American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation estimates that most dogs that have food allergies (80 percent) and about half with skin allergies display ear infection signs. So, it's important to watch out for signs of dog ear infections, such as frequent scratching, discharge, blood, balance problems, redness or swelling of the ear.

2. Moisture

Wet dog ears is a great environment that harbor and grow yeast and bacteria. The moisture often leads to ear infections. Moisture can build up in your dog's ears from a variety of ways, including swimming, grooming or when you give your dog a bath. That's why it's important to keep your dog's ears dry.

3. Injury

An injury to your puppy's ear can also lead to infection. When your dog injures her ear, she can rupture her eardrum. This can lead to ear infections. Your dog may exhibit signs of trauma to her ear if she constantly tilting her head.

4. Excessive Cleaning

Cleaning your dog excessively may also lead to an unprecedented ear infection. That's because every time you clean your dogs, you expose their ears to moisture. Moreover, if you don't dry their ears properly, you give bacteria room to grow in your pet's ears.

5. Autoimmune Diseases

Autoimmune diseases also often can explain the occurrence of ear infections in dogs. For instance, a common skin disease called pemphigus is common in dogs and often is associated with ear infections.

6. Ear Mites

Puppies are prone to having ear mites, and these mites are notorious for causing ear infections. Watch the signs for ear mites, such as shaking of the head or discharge resembling the color of shoe polish.

7. Bacteria

Bacteria exist in dogs ears. But when your dog has too much bacteria, it can lead to an ear infection. Bacteria-based ear infections can lead to an overproduction of wax and are common among dogs that swim.

How to Prevent Ear Infection in Dogs

If you think your dog may have an ear infection, it's important to take them to your veterinarian. But before

  • Use supplements. You can use supplements from trusted brands, such as Doggie Dailies, to keep ear infections at bay, including the Doggie Dailies Advanced Probiotics Supplements.
  • Use an ear cleanser. A cleanser designed for keeping your dog's ears clean can help you keep pesky ear mites out and prevent yeast from growing. You can use a soothing ear cleaning solution, such as Doggie Dailies' Cleansing Ear Wash for Dogs with Tea Tree Oil and Soothing Aloe Vera.
  • Keep your dog's ears clean (and dry). Use a damp cloth to clean your pet's ears and remove any dirt you can see. Also, avoid overexposure to moisture by keeping your dog's ears dry when bathing or grooming.
  • Inspect ears regularly. Every two weeks, exam your dog's ears for signs of ear infection, such as foreign bodies or a bad odor coming from the ear.

Final Thoughts

While there are several causes behind ear infections in dogs, you can take preventative measures to reduce these incidents. From keeping your dog's ears dry to providing her with supplements, you take several measures to keep dog ear infections at bay. Just watch out for the signs of ear infections in dogs and put these tips to use and you can worry less about dog ear infections.

  • Dana S
Is Your Dog Getting The Proper Nutrients? Supplements Could Help.

Is Your Dog Getting The Proper Nutrients? Supplements Could Help. 0

Your dog may have a glossy coat, a cold nose, and a constantly-wagging tail -- but is he really as healthy as he could be? Just as we humans need proper nutrition if we want to stay well and function correctly, our dogs need to get the right mix of nutrients to optimize their everyday health. You can't always count on your dog's food containing the right quantities of those essential nutrients. But don't worry, because nutritional supplements can step in to fill the gaps where nature could use a helping hand.

Your Dog's Nutritional Needs

Every dog needs a combination of macronutrients and micronutrients in order to stay healthy. Macronutrients include categories such as proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Micronutrients include specific vitamins, minerals, and amino acids (the building blocks of proteins). Like humans, dogs can't manufacture all of their necessary amino acids internally; 10 of those amino acids have to be present in the foods they eat.

The list of vitamins and minerals your dog needs may sound familiar, especially if you take supplements yourself. Dogs need Vitamins A, D, E, and K -- but not C, which their bodies can manufacture. Their mineral requirements include potassium, zinc, calcium, and phosphorus.

When Food Can't Get the Job Done

You might think that a decent brand of dog food would supply all the basic nutrition most pets need -- and in many cases, you'd be right. Pet foods that conform to the AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) standards for nutritional content may offer a balanced mix of nutrients. But if you're feeding your dog meals of your own devising, you may have no idea whether you're really giving him the nutrients he needs.

It's also important to note that some dogs have particular nutritional requirements. For instance, a working dog who leads a highly active lifestyle may need extra portions of calcium and phosphorus for optimal health and performance. Pets who suffer from chronic pain or inflammation may need specific nutrients with anti-inflammatory properties. Dogs who have trouble absorbing nutrients due to a digestive condition may need to ingest more nutrients than a dog who suffers from no such problem.

Specific Supplements for Specific Needs

The first step in making sure that your dog's nutritional needs are being met is a consultation with your veterinarian. If nutritional supplements seem like a good idea, you'll find a wide variety of products right here at Doggie Dailies. For instance:

  • If your dog has trouble with arthritis or inflammatory joint pain, our Hip & Joint Formula contains nutrients such as glucosamine, chondroitin, and omega-3/omega-6 fatty acids to help those aching joints feel and move better.
  • Dogs with malabsorption or immune system issues will get a welcome boost in function from our Probiotics for Dogs product. This product fills your dog's gut with healthy bacteria to aid digestion and ward off unhealthy bacteria.
  • If your dog just needs some all-around nutritional enhancement, our 5-in-1 Multivitamin for Dogs will fit the bill nicely. This peanut-butter-flavored product includes a full complement of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes, as well as premium-quality fish oil for skin and coat health.

Nutritional supplementation for dogs can make good sense under the right circumstances. Do the right thing for your beloved friend by making sure he's getting those building blocks of health!

  • Jennifer M
Dogs On The Silver Screen - The 10 Best Doggie Flicks

Dogs On The Silver Screen - The 10 Best Doggie Flicks 0

The silver screen has always been one of the best places to celebrate our love of our four-legged friends. From the very beginning of filmmaking, Hollywood has brought dogs to life on screen in films full of humor and heart. Just this year, the box-office hit A Dog's Way Home brought the journey of Bella to cinemas around the world.

If you enjoyed that film, try checking some other pooch-related flicks out! Here's our list of the ten greatest dog films ever made.

  1. Lady and the Tramp
One of Disney's greatest animated films, this 1955 hit is a lovely, charming tale of romance between an upper-class Cocker Spaniel (Lady) and a streetwise mutt (Tramp). It's sure to have a special place in anyone's heart, both young and old. Take a look out for a live-action remake of the film premiering soon.
  1. Marley and Me

One of the great tearjerkers of all time. This 2008 film is an adaptation of the fine book by John Grogan, which tells the story of one family's beloved and mischievous yellow lab named Marley. With an exceptional cast (Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston are the leads) and some fine direction, this is a worthy and emotional watch.

  1. Best in Show

Christopher Guest turns his satirical mockumentary eye to the dog show circuit in this uproarious and incredibly quotable movie. The cast is incredible - especially Fred Willard as the joking and off-kilter dog show commentator.

  1. Beethoven

The great John Hughes wrote this 1990s hit about a beloved St. Bernard wreaking havoc on a straight-laced suburban family. It's got a tremendous comic cast - Charles Grodin and Bonnie Hunt play the parents - and the family-friendly humor of Hughes at its heart. It was followed by a boatload of sequels.

  1. Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey

A remake of a 1960s film, this 1993 film follows three creatures - a bulldog, golden retriever, and Himalayan cat - as they adventure through the Sierra Nevadas to get back home. It's a well-made, heart-warming film, with plenty of great celebrity voice acting from Michael J. Fox and Sally Field.

  1. White Fang

There are two filmed versions of this film, with the more popular being the 1994 American version (the 1970s Italian one is also worthy if you can find it). This adaptation of Jack London's story of friendship between a Yukon gold miner (Ethan Hawke) and a wolfdog is bolstered by a great cast and some amazing cinematography.

  1. Where the Red Fern Grows

Another classic tearjerker. This 1974 adaptation of the classic children's books is an epic and emotional story of one boy's love for his two coonhound hunting dogs.

  1. Benji

The first in a hit series of movies, this 1974 film is a light-hearted tale of adventure and family with the lovable golden mix named Benji at its heart. Fun fact - the same dog that starred as Benji also starred in the Petticoat Junction TV series.

  1. Lassie

The classic TV series got an acclaimed reboot with this 1994 feature film. This version brings the fabled golden retriever to a struggling rural family and into a face-off with an evil sheep farmer. Look out for a very young Michelle Williams in one of her first roles.

  1. 101 Dalmatians

You can't go wrong with either of the fantastic Dalmatian movies. The 1960s animated film or the 1990s live-action film are both superb adaptations of the classic novel, following two Dalmatian parents as they save their puppies (and loads of others) from the evil Cruella De Vil. Glenn Close (having a wonderful time) plays De Vil in the live-action film.

            • Jennifer M