What to Put on Dogs Skin to Stop Licking: Home Remedies
As a caregiver, it can be distressing to watch your furry friend incessantly lick or chew at their skin. While it’s normal for dogs to groom themselves, obsessive licking could indicate an underlying issue. Here are some home remedies you can try to help alleviate this issue.
1. Use of Bitter Sprays
Bitter sprays are a common deterrent for dogs who can’t seem to stop licking their skin. They work by making the area taste unpleasant, discouraging your dog from licking.
- Purchase a pre-made bitter spray from a pet store, or make your own at home using ingredients like apple cider vinegar or lemon juice.
- Test the spray on a small area first to ensure it doesn’t cause further irritation.
2. Herbal Solutions
Herbs can often provide a natural remedy for skin irritation. Two beneficial herbs include:
- Aloe Vera: Known for its soothing properties, aloe can help calm inflamed skin.
- Calendula: This plant has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, helping to heal wounds and soothe skin.
3. Diet Adjustments
Sometimes, the cause of skin irritation can be diet-related. Consider adjusting your dog’s diet if you notice they are licking or chewing at their skin excessively.
- Try introducing omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce inflammation.
- Remove potential allergens from their diet, such as wheat or dairy.
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4. Regular Grooming and Flea Control
Regular grooming can keep your dog’s skin healthy and free from irritation. Keep fleas at bay with preventative treatments.
- Regular baths with a mild, hypoallergenic shampoo can help soothe irritated skin.
- Regular flea treatments can prevent flea bites, which are a common cause of skin irritation in dogs.
5. Provide Distractions
If your dog is licking out of boredom, providing them with toys or engaging them in play can help divert their attention.
- Chew toys can keep your dog occupied.
- Regular walks or playtime can help expend excess energy that may otherwise be spent on licking.
Q: Can excessive licking be a sign of a serious health issue?
A: Yes, in some cases. If home remedies don’t help, it’s best to consult with a vet.
Q: Are there any side effects to using bitter sprays?
A: Some dogs may have a reaction to bitter sprays. Always test on a small area first.
Q: Could my dog’s diet really be causing their skin irritation?
A: Yes, many dogs have food allergies that can manifest as skin irritation.
Q: How often should I groom my dog to prevent skin irritation?
A: This can vary depending on your dog’s breed and lifestyle. Aim for at least once a week.