How To Battle Pit Bull Skin Problems – Informational Guide
Dogs can face various skin problems that can have a lot of different causes and triggers. Any suspicions and unusual skin reaction you notice should be inspected by your vet as soon as possible. Pit Bulls are prone to some skin problems that are not that common in other dogs. They can get sunburned due to their short coat, and they are more likely to get rashes than other breeds.
Some Pit Bulls are more likely to develop skin problems than others. Several different breeds are in the Pit Bull category, such as American Pit Bull Terrier and the American and British Staffordshire Terriers. These breeds are all short haired, and they come in different color variations.
The level and type of skin pigment are believed to be the factors why some develop skin problems easier than the others. Pit Bulls with blue nose color and those with chocolate or cream colored skin are more prone to skin problems than the rest of the breed.
Causes for Skin Conditions
- Skin Allergies
- Dry skin
The most common skin reaction among Pit Bulls occurs due to the improper food they are fed to. Dog food that contains soy, wheat and corn are good candidates to trigger a severe skin reaction. Pay attention to what ingredients the food you give to your dog contains.
Now, to find out if the change in the environment is the cause for skin problems you might need to investigate a little. Try to remember what changes you have made regarding your pet. Maybe you got a new cleaner, shampoo, his bed, there are a lot of possibilities.
Something dogs are extremely prone to, fleas and mites. These little buggers can cause skin irritations in a no time. Luckily, this problem is treated quite easily. There are a variety of shampoos that can get rid of the pesky parasites. To ensure you purged them all, you should disinfect all the areas your Pit Bull spends the most of the time.
Infections are caused by different kinds of bacteria, viruses or fungi. This kind of infections are widespread and are treated with antibiotics. Before you do anything on your own, you should consult your vet for proper advice.
Pit Bulls can have allergies to a lot of different things. They can be triggered by medications, flowers, grass, harmful chemicals ingested, etc. If you use some chemicals to treat your lawn, that might be the cause of the problem. Some other chemicals can be the triggers; such are soaps or detergents used to clean your dog, carpets or anything he lays on. Skin usually reacts in the form of red bumps or rash on the dog’s skin.
While not the most common problem Pit Bulls might have, it might happen to some dogs. Some dogs can have obsessive compulsive disorder which can infuse the desire to obsessively lick or bite their skin until the area gets irritated.
Breeds such as Pit Bulls who are short haired dogs, tend to have a dry skin if they are dehydrated or poorly fed. Dry skin can cause the appearance of hot spots, areas where there is almost no hair left that can become itchy and inflamed.
One more cause of dry skin can be the soap you use to bathe your dog. Try changing the soap until you find the one that suits your Pit Bull. It’s also recommended that you use skin softener, but test it on a small area first, so you can be sure it won’t worsen the condition.
Recommended and Possible Solutions
It’s always the smartest thing to consult with your vet before taking any action by yourself. But some conditions are more easily treated than others. If your dog has a minor irritation or dry skin and you noticed he is frequently licking himself that can cause the skin to crack and dry.
You should try to keep your dog’s skin moisturized and healthy with supplements, best dog food for pitbulls, and various moisturizers. Check if the food you give to your dog has omega-3 fatty acids, if not, consider changing the food or get a supplement to include fatty acids in your dog’s diet.
Omega-3 fatty acids help develop healthy coat and healthy skin, they can reduce inflammation and also support cardiovascular system of the dog.
Reducing the itching
One of the quickest solutions is a hydrocortisone spray. If your pet experiences serious itching and he starts to scratch the area excessively, apply the spray to the area for immediate relief. If the scratching reduces and you notice the rash has started to go away, then you successfully resolved the problem. If the problem is not gone, then you will have to use a different method.
Moisturizing the skin
If cracked or dry skin is the main problem of your Pit Bull, then you should try supplements and moisturizers to help the skin regenerate and get healthier. Some of the best moisturizers are the ones that use coconut and fish oil. Fish oil can be found as a supplement as well, in the form of a capsule. It’s rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and you can break the pill open and put it directly into the dog food.
Coconut oil is a very good moisturizer for the skin. It will keep the skin moist and healthy; you also don’t have to worry if your dog licks it off, cause it will get into his system that way also and it’s harmless.
If your vet prescribed a steroid for your dog don’t worry, he’s not going to get aggressive and gain weight, that’s the first thing that comes to mind of a lot of people. Usually, the steroid given is Prednisone, it will stimulate the skin to heal and clear it up. However, you might notice your pet’s increased thirst and more frequent peeing. Steroids can affect the dog’s liver and kidneys, so this is used as a short term solution and only when your vet prescribed to it. You Pit can also get sick more easily during the time he’s on steroids.
Bathing on a regular basis
There is somehow always this myth the people are spreading that you shouldn’t bathe your dog more than once a month. As long as you use a quality dog shampoo, you can bath your dog once a week. Dogs don’t produce oils like us humans do, so his skin will be just fine.
Cleaning the paws
When you take your Pit Bull for a walk, his paws get exposed to various kinds of potential allergens outside. You might notice your dog licks and chews his paws after you come home from a walk. He might lick and chew them so much that his fur will completely fall off of that area.
The easy and good solution for this is baby wipes. Don’t be lazy and wipe your dog’s paws with baby wipes every time you come home from a long walk.
Flea prevention medication
If you could ask a dog what’s his biggest annoyance in his life, he would probably say it's fleas. People tend to treat fleas seasonally, but you can talk to your vet, and he can recommend a medication that can be given once a month to keep those parasites away.
Grain free food
Food can be the cause of allergies in a lot of cases, as I said above, so it could be a good idea to get your dog food that is grain free. This type of food is known not to cause allergies, and it’s much easier to digest.
Keep your house clean
You should keep your house as clean as possible which can minimize the chance of your dog picking up allergens inside the house. Dust can be a home for a lot of germs and parasites; it’s a heaven for them. Allergens can also be brought home from the outside on your shoes, so keep the area where you store them clean.
Important to remember
Before trying any of the solutions provided, make sure you consulted your vet. Not all dogs are the same, and it’s a smart thing to consult the expert before doing anything on your own. Ask him about the solution you think it will help your dog, and he might agree with you. In the end, you can take your Pit Bull to an allergy test and start the treatment according to the results that come up.