Loving Your Pets: Skin Care Awareness

Keeping your pet’s skin healthy will help them to live longer, healthier, and happier lives. They love us unconditionally, and we owe it to them to return that love.

Skin care affects everyone, and this includes pets as well. While many behaviors exhibited by your pet may appear to be normal, this is not always the case. Our pets sometimes behave in a way that is attributed to being normal or, “part of their personality”. However, it must be kept in mind that animals do not behave like humans do, and this includes reactions to adverse medical conditions. Your pet’s skin is sensitive, and is prone to many of the same issues as ours. The difference being, our pets may react differently to these issues than we might expect.

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Symptoms to Look For

No one knows your pet more than you, so if you feel they are experiencing any unusual symptoms, you may want to get them to the vet to be safe. Symptoms that may require special attention are things such as hair loss or visible sores. Some skin care issues may be present in the event of constant licking of the foot, rubbing of the face against things such as furniture or walls, and even visibly brittle or dry hair.

Many pets scratch. This has become widely recognized as normal pet behavior. However, according to the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), pet scratching can be a lot worse than you may think. A veterinarian may consider this to be a skin coat abnormality, which is presented in 6 categories. One of the least known is nutritional dermatitis. A prescription diet might be recommended as a part of your pet’s treatment plan, as well as weekly baths, and possibly medications.

Steps to Healthy Skin for Your Pet

According to Dr. Weil, “Pet owners, particularly older adults, are more likely to have lower blood pressure and higher self-esteem, and are less likely to be depressed than people who don’t have companion animals.” So if your pet can do this for you, why not help keep them be, and remain at their best by protecting their health. There are some simple steps you can take to keep your pet happy and their skin healthy. Some of these are:

  • Never use pesticides in your home. These can not only poison your little loved one, but can have adverse effects on their skin.
  • Be sure to try to always clean your hands before petting. This can usually be difficult, but it can help keep your pet from being exposed to germs and bacteria, which could then breed in their hair.
  • Always be sure to vacuum regularly, in order to keep hair and dander from being re-accumulated on your pet. This leads to excessive scratching and possible irritation.
  • Be sure to brush and bath your pet frequently. This will help keep their coat and skin conditioned, clean, and healthy.
  • Keep your grass watered and mowed as often as possible, as this will help to eliminate as many ticks and fleas as possible from your yard.
  • Clean your pet’s bedding every day. This will further help to eliminate pests that may irritate your pet’s skin, and help keep them healthy.
  • If at all possible, feed them organic food. This will help their skin from the inside. Organic foods help detoxify your pet, and omits the use of byproducts and preservatives.

 

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