5 Most Common Skin Issues in Dogs - Causes and Treatment

In this article, you will learn about the most common skin issues in dogs, their causes, and the best possible treatments.

Oct 25, 2023By Ammar Ahmed
most common skin issues in dogs causes treatment

Have you been noticing erratic behavior in your dog, such as itching, paw licking, or scratching? All of these are symptoms of skin conditions, and chances are that your dog might be dealing with one or many of them. Dogs develop skin issues due to several factors, such as allergies to food, their environment, or certain grooming products.

No need to fret, though, because in this article, we will not only address a few common skin issues in dogs but also provide you with effective solutions to treat them.

5. Yeast Infection

yeast infection

If your furry friend has itchy, irritated skin with a distinct odor, it means that he has developed a yeast infection. Yeast infections can develop in your dog’s ear or other warm areas of the body, like between the toes. In addition to an itch and inflammation, yeast infection also causes hair loss in dogs.


A few common reasons for dogs attracting yeast infections are hormonal disorders, weakened immune systems, dog food allergies, and environmental allergies.


You should contact the vet immediately, and they will prescribe an antifungal medication plan based on your dog’s age, health, and breed. It may include medicated shampoo, topical cream, or a diet plan. Avoid treating it yourself because treatment varies from dog to dog, and you might inadvertently worsen the infection.

4. Seborrhea

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Seborrhea is a skin disorder that causes an imbalance in the production of keratin in a dog’s skin. Keratin is a primary protein that works as a protective layer for the skin and is essential for a strong coat.

Research suggests that an imbalance in keratin results in your dog’s skin becoming flaky, scaly, greasy, and itchy.


Primary seborrhea is a genetic disease that occurs at a very young age in some breeds. These breeds include Basset Hounds, English Springer Spaniels, and Cocker Spaniels. On the other hand, secondary seborrhea occurs due to doggy skin allergies to food and the environment. Hormonal disorders and dietary abnormalities can also be the reason for secondary seborrhea in dogs.


Generally, your vet will prescribe the best-medicated shampoo to counter seborrhea. However, correcting dietary abnormalities and using omega-3 fatty acids supplements and antibiotics are also effective in treating this issue.

3. Ringworm

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Hearing the word “Ringworm” might evoke an image of a long, sloppy parasite in your mind. But it is a contagious fungus in which a red circular itchy rash grows on the outer layer of the infected dog’s skin. It usually grows on the dog’s head, ears, front legs, and paws. Ringworm, in medical terms, is known as dermatophytosis.


Coming in direct contact with infected animals is the major reason why dogs contract ringworm. Contaminated objects such as combs, toys, carpets, or brushes can also cause ringworm in dogs.


When you suspect the presence of ringworm in your pooch, immediately quarantine him. If there are other pets in the house, ensure they stay away.

You can treat ringworm with a topical treatment that includes bathing your dog with medicated and antifungal shampoo or lime sulfur dips. Lime sulfur dips tend to be the more effective of the two. While you can do it at home, we would recommend taking your pet to the vet and letting the experts do their job.

Oral treatment is also possible. Your vet will prescribe medication based on your canine’s health and history. Remember that prescribed medications will most certainly have side effects.

2. Ticks and Fleas

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Dogs of all ages and breeds are susceptible to ticks and fleas. These nasty bugs not only bite the dog but also suck their blood. The biting causes enormous itching and makes the dog’s skin inflamed and irritated. Dogs scratch or bite themselves to mitigate the itching. This behavior often gets excessive and results in their fur falling out.


These nasty parasites are present in carpets, bedding, grass, and woods. Your dog can pick them up from almost anywhere. They are also responsible for causing several other skin issues in dogs, such as impetigo, discussed below.


Vacuum regularly and keep your furry friend’s bed clean all the time. This way your dog will not pick these small bugs from indoors. Secondly, talk to your vet to get the best tick-prevention products. Lastly, you need to check your dog for ticks daily, particularly when he comes from outside.


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Impetigo skin infection is widely common in puppies. In most cases, a bacteria called Staphylococcus is the culprit. It involves the appearance of blisters and crusty lesions on the dog’s belly. These blisters can burst if scratched, which can be painful for your pooch.


Not enough evidence is available to suggest what causes impetigo. However, if you notice symptoms of impetigo in your pup, check his living environment. Unsanitary conditions can cause bacterial imbalance leading to your pup contracting this issue. Fleas and ticks can also cause impetigo. They carry diseases with them that transfer to your dog when they bite.


Ensuring a clean living environment can help prevent impetigo from developing. Wash all the spaces visited by your dog and keep your house bug-free. Use tick medication to prevent them from sheltering in your dog’s skin, and make sure you get the best recommendation from your vet.

Ammar Ahmed
By Ammar Ahmed

Ammar is a researcher and writer with 3 years of experience. He loves dogs and has a German Shepherd, Stark. He enjoys long walks with Stark to unwind after a hectic day.