Choosing a Dog Supplement for Dry Skin

A dog supplement for dry skin should be beneficial for the possible underlying condition that causes the dry skin, and should also offer protection for the skin. The possible causes of dry skin in dogs may include allergies, dehydration, stress or a hormonal imbalance. The supplements needed by the dog will be prescribed according to the cause of the dry skin.

Canine Dry Skin Causes

Dry skin in canines may be the result of exposure to cold and windy weather, but may also be a symptom of a medical condition. Finding the causes of dry skin is important in establishing the types of supplements recommended for the pet. Common causes of dry skin in dogs include:

  • Dehydration, which can be due to a kibble diet and the lack of sufficient water in the dog's diet
  • Allergic reactions, which will weaken the immune system and the skin can often become dry
  • Lack of fats from the pet's diet
  • Skin infections, which will affect the normal pH of the skin
  • A hormonal imbalance, typically a low level of thyroid hormones

Tests can be performed to detect the cause of dry skin in your pet. If there are no abnormalities found in the test results, the vet will assume the dry skin is caused by diet or the weather.

Dog Supplements for Dry Skin

The supplements the dog needs to improve the quality of his skin may include omega fatty acids and antioxidants.

The omega fatty acids recommended for dry skin include 3, 6 and 9. These fatty acids can be found in flax seeds and tuna oil.

For the antioxidants, the dog may get vitamin A and E, which can be taken internally, but may also be applied on the surface of the skin. Other antioxidants that can be useful for dogs with dry skin include:

  • Gingko biloba
  • Quercetin
  • Coenzyme Q10

Alternative medicine can also offer a few natural supplements such as grape seed extract, St. John's wort, burdock root or Echinacea.

Choosing Dog Supplements for Dry Skin

When choosing dog supplements for dry skin, you should consider his health condition.

If your pet has an allergic reaction or a skin infection, he will need an increase of omega 3 and 9 fatty acids, which offer support for the immune system. The same supplements are recommended if the dog's diet is poor in nutrients and causes the dry skin. Antioxidants may also be recommended if the dog has allergies, because these cleanse the liver and the body, making the dog more resistant to irritants. Omega 6 fatty acids will be recommended if the dog has a thyroid hormonal problem.

If the dog's skin is dry due to the weather, bioflavonoids and vitamin E supplements are recommended. Broken skin requires coenzyme Q10, which is an antioxidant that will repair the skin.