by Cate Burnette
When your dog is constantly itchy and scratching, and your veterinarian prescribes antibiotics and steroids to help, you may want to look at natural ingredients to ease your pet’s suffering as a first line of defense.
Listed below are some super effective ingredients you should look for in products. Deciding what can best help your dog’s skin is a matter of research and, sometimes, trial and error.
Colloidal oatmeal is an FDA-approved all-natural ingredient used to help heal dry, flaky skin, heal bug bites, and stop the itching caused by allergies. Found mainly in canine shampoos and conditioners, oatmeal has been used in human medicine for generations for its moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties.
Aloe vera extract brings immediate relief to flea and bug bites and helps relieve the itching of dry, flaky skin. It contains mineral, enzymes, and proteins that help soften the skin and coat of your dog. This organic product is used in human medicine for burn relief, both in minor sunburn pain, and in more serious, deeper skin burns.
Vervain, valerian, skullcap, and wild lettuce A combination of these organics reduces restlessness, treats anxiety, calms your dog’s nerves, and acts as a natural sedative and sleep aid during time of stress. The perfect tonic for a restless animal with dry, itchy skin, a drop of these all-natural ingredients on your dog’s food or tongue can quell her nerves and give the whole family a peaceful night’s sleep. You can buy it all bottled-up as well. Check out Sleepytime Tonic.
Citronella works on your pet’s skin to repel mosquitoes, flies, and gnats, while leaving her skin’s essential oils behind and not rendering flea and tick products useless. Often times citronella is overpowering, but Dirty & Hairy’s OUTDOOR range seem to have cracked the code on getting the benefits of citronella while minimizing the smell.
Lavender and eucalyptus essential oils act as natural remedies for many skin ailments, soothing irritations and inflammations, and protecting your pup against the allergens that can cause itchy skin. Eucalyptus oils also function as natural mosquito repellents. Check out the essential oil range from Cain & Able Collection.
Shea butter promoted the healing process of damaged skin, helps the cells retain moisture, and protects against the environmental damage of smog and chemicals. Additionally, shea butter is high in Vitamins E and A and rich in the essential fatty acids that keep your dog’s skin supple and healthy. You can find shea butter in products like Paw Rub.
Peppermint oil moisturizes your dog’s skin, and hydrates and detangles her fur. A hypoallergenic essential oil, peppermint leaves the coat soft and shiny and is safe for even the youngest puppy. Pepper oil also works as a natural repellent to most insects, particularly fleas and mosquitoes.
Wheat germ oil, leleshwa oil, and flaxseed oil This combination of essential oils work together to combat pesky biting insects, such as fleas and mosquitoes. Flaxseed acts against the inflammation of insect bites to relieve itching, while wheat germ oil contains the nutrients Vitamin E, zinc, some B vitamins, and other minerals that promote skin healing. You can find this powerhouse trio in Flea the Scene.
Tea tree oil is believed to have antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial properties that function to defend your pet’s skin from infection and disease. This essential oil works actively against Staphylococcus bacteria, the main microorganism behind many destructive skin infections. Note: a little goes a long way to solving the problem.