Remedies for Pets' Dry Skin

September 17, 2011

Our Beagle starts scratching anywhere he can reach by late summer. Other than scratching for him, we found at least a helpful solution. Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of mineral oil at feeding time. It may not stop the itches entirely, but will stop the constant irritation. Happier pet, happier owner.


By sandies from Torrington, CT

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14 Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

I need something for my Chihuahua's, dry skin. I've tried fish oil, vitamin E oil, and just about everything over the counter. It's not fleas; he's on a monthly flea pill. He's the only one effected out of the 4 Chihuahuas I have. I bought some sulfur cream that's for dry itchy scalp and it says I can use it as often as needed. The vet gave me steroids, but that's $50.00 a month, a little costly.

By Ethel Martinez from Boyd, TX


February 27, 20111 found this helpful

I bought an older cocker spaniel whose backside was flaky, something my other dogs never had. Walmart sells a natural treat for skin and coat that's called healthy treats for dogs (skin & coat) in a tan colored bag and it contains Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. The dog receives 1 treat per 10#s of body weight daily. Since putting our newest and older cocker on them her fur has become shinier, softer and the flakiness is gone. The bag costs $2.50 and the treats are soft enough you can break into smaller pieces as long as you seal the bag after each use.

To add to this, she has been eating 1# deer meat cooked and drained along with added rice with either a can of peas, mashed green beans or can of mashed sweet potatoes. You can put the reserve or leftovers in a sealed bowl for another meal to nuke later. My daughter's chi loves this and eats it willingly.

Shampooing the dog I use a good brand oatmeal shampoo and oatmeal conditioner. We got her in Dec. '10 and it's now nearing the end of Feb, so her skin and all over appearance is 100% improved.

Now, after her vet visit, the doctor stated that the flaky skin was caused from allergies and one of her own dogs got this annually. I don't know if the allergy period has ended for our area, but there's no more flaky skin to be seen. I believe it has ended due to the consistency of her caring methods used.
I'll know for sure come next winter.

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February 28, 20110 found this helpful

It sounds like you are addressing this topically. Maybe your dog needs some internal treatment. My mother changed her dogs diet (to Kibble and Bits) and her coat improved radically. Not saying Kibble and Bits is the way to go, just an example.

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September 17, 2013

I have been feeding my dog different foods which say they contain essential fatty acids, but they did not help with the flaky skin they have. I bought hemp seed oil which was recommended by this site, but I am not sure what to do. Krill oil is bit cheaper than hemp seed oil, but does it really matter?

By Mark S. from Berlin

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January 10, 2008

I am looking for a treatment for dry skin for my pet cat.

Deb from Terre Haute, IN


January 10, 20080 found this helpful

Try googling on the internet, I found a lot of help when my Siamese had dandruff. A HIGH quality food (Iams and Science Diet are NOT high quality, I am talking go to Petco, Petsmart or a feed store), some olive oil (just a little) in their food, Omega oils (not sure of the dose, but then a good petstore will know). Hope that helps!

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January 14, 20080 found this helpful

I give my senior cat 1/2 of a Derma-Form tablet every day. They are easy to break in two and taste like treats. Before Derma-Form, she was scratching constantly, but she hardly ever scratches now.

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By (Guest Post)
January 14, 20080 found this helpful

Coconut oil is good for the skin. I know dogs can take it orally. Don't see why cats couldn't take it either but you might want to Goggle that.

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By Joyce (Guest Post)
January 14, 20080 found this helpful

My cat had chronic dry, itchy skin until I changed her food from dry to canned. You may have to try a few brands to get the right kind because some gave my cat diarrhea, which is a worse problem! After the change to canned food, she never had dry skin again.

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January 14, 20080 found this helpful

Try Grizzly salmon oil too!

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By Lynda (Guest Post)
January 25, 20080 found this helpful

All pets wearing fur coats need raw eggs and tuna in their diets. Also, watch that they are not lying down on a heater vent/register, or are too close to the fireplace which definitely will dry them out. Add a pat of butter to their bowl and let it melt a bit for them to snack on. Never use human soaps/shampoos on pet hair. Pet's PH is different from humans and it can truly mess them up, getting their own pH out of balance. I'd back way off from giving more than 1/2 cup of dry food a day, regardless of size of pet until
the hair improves. There is a slim chance the pet may have fleas, as well, which often will leave balding
patches. Go to Gardens Alive and view their pictures, if you can find it. It's not cheap,since it's organic, but it is better than losing the pet. God bless you. : )

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By dlancelot (Guest Post)
February 26, 20090 found this helpful

Oils are important, whether it be coconut, flax, salmon, whatever, always be careful of the amount as they'll make a mess of the litter box otherwise!

Someone else here posted that they now just feed their cats only wet cat food...this can cause gingivitis and tooth decay. The dry stuff builds strong teeth. You must remember that the wild cats will eat mice..they chew the bones, and eat the organs and everything. This is why you can buy raw cat food and they love it.

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I have a domestic hairless male kitten of 9 weeks age. His skin is very dried and sometimes some powder like substance spreads over it. I think he was a day or two old when I found him in my yard. I fed him milk replacement formula until ten days ago. From that time up to now he eats from his dish formula milk, chicken soup, and chicken.
Some ten days ago he suffered from digestive issues since he accidentally ate from our lunch dish which had green peas mixed with potatoes and cream in it.

The jumping kitty lost energy and could hardly walk, but ate his food well. The vet prescribed one CC of Ranitidine syrup every eight hours, one CC multivitamin syrup per day, and one third of a sorbitol powder pack solved in water at wake up time. The prescription was prescribed for one week. The vet also suggested we mix the liquid of an Omega 3 in his chicken soup for his skin and hair and overall health. And he mentioned not to wash or wet his skin during medication period. The kitty is feeling healthy now, but the same white powder like substance has increased over his shoulders. It looks like dried skin. His skin condition has become worse since his digestive problem.

It's very hard to find a vet around where I live and the one we found, prescribed the medicine through a phone call. I have not been able to reach the vet for sometime.
I attached a photo of the white powder shape like and the kitty's pictures for people who may be a great help to this lovely kitty.

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March 16, 2009

Can you use dry skin moisturizer or dry skin lotion for a dog that has dry skin? Thanks.

Larry from Snellville, GA


March 16, 20090 found this helpful

I am bumping this up so maby we can get a responce.. my dog has dry skin too.

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March 18, 20090 found this helpful

You can give your dog a teaspoon or more of oil every day, or I give my dog one or two fish oil liquid tablets. He loves the taste. He has beautiful fur and hair IMO :). He is very glossy.

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March 18, 20090 found this helpful

We give our dog 1 raw egg with her dry food every other week to help with skin and coat. We used to give it to her once a week but we decided to go to every other week. After 2 weeks, we noticed a difference. We got the idea from a lady we ran into who said she has raised dogs for 20 years and that's what she has always done.

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March 18, 20090 found this helpful

Hi, Larry!
Last spring our 2 little furry terriers had trouble with ticks, even though they've been on Revolution every month for a couple of years. When I contacted 1800PETMEDS, they said that when a dog has dry skin, the medication doesn't spread from the application site as well. Now I use an olive-oil sprayer and squirt 5 or 6 squirts of vegetable oil on their dry food when I feed them in the morning. They love it, and this has decreased their scratching and improved their coats.
Good luck!
Nancy in NC

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March 18, 20090 found this helpful

We have a toy poodle.. he only weighs 7 lbs and eats such a small amount of food (Iams Mini Chunks) that it worries me and I wouldn't have any idea how much olive oil to spray on. By small amount I mean about 2-3 tablespoons morning and night if I'm lucky. But the Vet says hes healthy and in good form. So how much Olive oil would I spray on. He scratches like mad! P.S. hes 11 months old.

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I have three Xolo (Mexican hairless) dogs; two of them, my minis, have recently developed a red rash with dry chapped skin and it's peeling like a sunburn. I've tried coconut oil on them it doesn't seem to help it actually makes one of them look worse.

And I have a Labradoodle chewing and scratching his skin. There are no fleas, ticks, or other parasites on him. What should I do for my dogs? My standard Xoloitzcuintli has excessive blackheads now which have just developed in the last 6 months along with pimples and and hard lumps under the skin.

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August 30, 2014

I have a Chihuahua with chronically dry skin. Is there anything I can do that works to remedy it?

By Carolyn from Jacksonville, FL

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June 1, 2015

I have a standard size Dachshund and a Chi- Winnie. The Dachshund is always licking his paws, they both shed a lot, so would fish oil help with these issues and if so how much do I give and how often?

The Dachshund's weight is 21 and the Chi-Winnie 14.

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September 30, 2013

I have a 5yr old Pit. I have never had a problem with his skin being this dry until we moved about six months ago. He doesn't have fleas and I haven't changed anything. He's always been very well taken care of, with vitamins and a good diet. So I was thinking of using a little mineral oil. Please let me know if this will help my poor baby.

By Telina A.

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August 19, 2011

Can I use sweet almond oil on my dog to help with dry skin?

By Krissy B

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

February 27, 2011

Feed plenty of good whole foods, such as turkey, chicken, beef, black beans, kidney beans, green beans, yogurt, part of bananas, pumpkin (canned), squash, sweet potatoes, Mayo, and infant vitamins.

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December 17, 2009

My dog has dry itching skin to the point that he has begun chewing on him self. Is there a home cure for this?

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November 28, 2009

My recipe is for pets that have dry skin and itch a lot. In a spray bottle (I got at Walmart in beauty supplies) add 1/3 cup of baby oil, 1/3 cup of original Listerine...

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