Dry Eczema in Dogs

Dry eczema is a skin condition that often occurs due to allergies, external parasites, weather, chemicals or drugs. The condition can cause redness, itchy skin and the skin will become excessively dry and flaky. Dry eczema can be treated, but the underlying cause should be identified first.

Causes of Dry Eczema in Dogs

Dry eczema in dogs can be caused by several medical conditions or environmental factors such as:

  • Skin infections
  • Allergic reactions
  • Contact with different materials such as copper, plastic or metals
  • Food intolerances
  • Autoimmune skin conditions such as psoriasis or lupus
  • The presence of parasites (fleas or mites)
  • Sunny or dry weather
  • Chemicals (paints, bleach or other household chemicals)
  • The administration of certain drugs which can cause side effects or allergic reactions

Symptoms of Dry Eczema

The dry eczema may be recognized judging by:

  • Dry, itchy skin
  • Redness of skin
  • Flakiness of skin
  • Excessive scratching of skin
  • Hair loss in the affected areas
  • Open sores
  • Secondary skin infections

The dog may also present additional symptoms, which will be linked to the underlying condition causing the dry eczema.

Detecting Dry Eczema and Underlying Conditions

The diagnosis of dry eczema will be done by performing a few tests such as:

  • Complete blood count
  • Skin scrapings
  • Allergy testing
  • Urinalysis
  • Consultation of the dog’s skin to look for external parasites

Dog dry eczema often looks like mange, so the vet will need to differentiate between these 2 conditions. Typically, mange will symptoms that are similar to eczema but may also cause a foul smelling coat and skin.

The underlying condition should also be identified.

Treatment for Dry Eczema

The diagnosis is important in determining the best course of treatment.

The dog will receive parasite treatment such as Frontline or Advantage if he is diagnosed with fleas. There are also topical insecticides for eliminating mites. Get some insecticide to eliminate the parasites from your house and garden. Vacuum your home and get rid of all possible clothes and bedding that contain fleas.

If the dog is allergic, the treatment will focus on reducing the symptoms. If the allergen is detected, the dog can get allergy shots.

Skin infections are typically treated with oral antibiotics.

On top of the treatment of the underlying condition, the dog should receive topical treatment. The ointments may contain steroids or natural ingredients such as aloe vera or neem tea leaves, which are meant to calm the skin and promote the healing process.

Prevent Dry Eczema

Learning about the possible causes of dry eczema can help you prevent the occurrence of dry eczema in your pet in the future.

If you pet is sensitive to the hot or windy weather, you should keep him indoors or make sure to get a rich moisturizing cream and apply it generously before going out. Sun screen may also be recommended.