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DIY Home Remedies for Itchy Dogs

Written by: Dr. Athena Gaffud

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Time to read 4 min

Itchy dogs can be a frustrating problem to deal with, but there are plenty of DIY home remedies that can provide relief. In this article, we will explore some natural and effective solutions to help alleviate your dog's itchiness

Common Causes of Itchiness in Dogs

a dog with skin allergy

It's important to understand the common causes of itchiness in dogs before we delve into the remedies. Several factors can contribute to your dog's itching including the following:

  • Allergies

  • Dry skin

  • Parasites

  • Fungal infectious

  • Bacterial infections.

Allergies are one of the most common causes, which can be triggered by food, environmental factors, or even fleas.

The importance of identifying the underlying cause

a dog scratching it

Before attempting any DIY remedies, it's crucial to identify the underlying cause of your dog's itching. While home remedies can provide temporary relief, addressing the root cause will ensure long-term improvement in your dog's condition. If your dog's itching persists or becomes severe, it's always best to consult with your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis.

Natural Remedies for Itchy Dogs

An Owner Petting a Dog

Coconut oil

One option to consider is coconut oil. Not only is it a great source of healthy fats for your dog, but it also contains antibacterial properties that can help soothe irritated skin ( Umate, N., et al, 2022 ). 

Simply apply a small amount of coconut oil to your dog's skin, focusing on the itchy areas. This can provide immediate relief and moisturize the skin.

coconut oil

Oatmeal

Another remedy to try is oatmeal. It acts as a natural moisturizer and can instantly relieve itchy and inflamed skin ( Gunt, H., Levy, S., & Lutrario, C., 2018 ). You can create a soothing oatmeal bath for your dog by grinding plain, unflavored oats into a fine powder and mixing it with warm water. Allow your dog to soak in the oatmeal bath for around 10-15 minutes before rinsing them off thoroughly.                        

oatmeal

Apple cider vinegar

If allergies cause your dog's itching, adding a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to their drinking water can help restore the pH balance and reduce itchiness. Apple cider vinegar also has antimicrobial properties that can help combat any underlying infections ( Prabowo, I., Shaliha, A., & Puspita, O., 2022 ). However, it's important to start with a small amount and gradually increase the dosage to avoid upsetting your dog's stomach.

Apple cider vinegar

DIY Oatmeal Bath for Soothing Itchy Skin

oatmeal bath

Oatmeal is a natural remedy that has been used for centuries to soothe itchy and inflamed skin in both humans and dogs ( Schaible, L., 2020 ). It works by moisturizing the skin and reducing inflammation. Here's a simple recipe for a DIY oatmeal bath:

  1. Using a blender or food processor, grind plain, unflavored oats into a fine powder.

  2. Fill a bathtub or basin with lukewarm water.                                

  3. Add the powdered oatmeal to the water and mix well until it forms a milky consistency.                 

  4. Gently place your dog into the oatmeal bath and allow them to soak for around 10-15 minutes.

  5. Use a soft washcloth or your hands to massage the oatmeal water onto your dog's skin, focusing on the itchy areas.                              

  6. Rinse your dog thoroughly with clean water to remove any residue.

  7. Pat your dog dry with a towel and avoid rubbing their skin, as this can further irritate the itching.

Homemade Sprays to Relieve Itchiness

Homemade Spray  to Relieve Dog Itchiness

In addition to oatmeal baths, homemade sprays can also provide relief for your itchy dog. These sprays can be made using natural ingredients that have anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. Here are two simple recipes for homemade sprays:

Chamomile spray

Chamomile has calming and anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe itchy skin ( Tresch, M., et al, 2019 ). Brew a strong cup of chamomile tea and allow it to cool completely. Transfer the tea into a spray bottle and spritz it onto your dog's itchy.:

Aloe Vera Spray

Aloe vera has cooling and soothing properties that can help relieve itching and reduce inflammation ( Kamr, A., et al, 2020 ). Use fresh aloe vera gel or pure aloe vera juice. Dilute the aloe vera gel or juice with water in a spray bottle. You can also add a few drops of vitamin E oil for additional skin nourishment. Spray the mixture onto your dog's itchy areas. Be mindful however of the region where to apply this spray as aloe vera is toxic to dogs. If the itchy area can be leaked by the dog, use an Elizabethan collar or choose the other natural options mentioned above. 

Essential Oils for Calming Irritated Skin

essential oils

If your dog is experiencing itchy skin, essential oils can be a natural and effective way to provide relief. However, it's important to note that not all essential oils are safe for dogs, so always do your research and consult with a veterinarian before using them. Here are a few essential oils that can help calm irritated skin:

  • Lavender oil

  • Chamomile Oil

  • Tea Tree Oil

  • Calendula Oil

  • Rose Oil

  • Peppermint Oil

  • Eucalyptus Oil

When using essential oils on irritated skin, it's crucial to dilute them properly in a carrier oil such as coconut oil, almond oil, or jojoba oil. A typical dilution ratio is 1–2% essential oil to carrier oil for topical use on the skin. Additionally, perform a patch test on a small area of skin before using any new essential oil to ensure you don't have an allergic reaction or sensitivity. If irritation occurs, discontinue use immediately. 

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