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Pet Skin Problems

Pet skin problems can manifest in many forms, from the odd rash to flakey skin. Waldorf Emergency Care in Waldorf has veterinarians ready to discuss your furry friend’s condition and what they need to get back to having a healthy coat.

Signs of Pet Skin Problems 

Cats, dogs, and other animals may have warning signs that they have skin problems. They may have fur loss on parts of their coat, or it could become dry and brittle. They may be unusually sensitive to being handled in certain areas. Dandruff and other visible signs of skin flakiness may occur. When you brush your pet’s fur, there may be chunks of fur coming out onto the brush or otherwise showing signs of ill health. Rashes, raised lesions, and other red and irritated areas could also indicate a problem. One common symptom is that the cat or dog is scratching and grooming themselves more than normal. In severe examples, they could scratch hard enough to break the skin.

If your pet is frequently itching, scratching or biting his skin, he may be suffering from an allergy or skin condition. Veterinary dermatology treats common skin conditions and pet allergies, addressing both the underlying cause for your pet’s discomfort as well as providing immediate relief from painful symptoms. Our emergency veterinarians have experience treating pet allergies and skin conditions.

Treatments for Pet Skin Problems

The exact treatment to resolve your pet’s skin issues depends on the underlying problem. Your cat or dog may need supplements that help promote skin and fur health to get their coat looking shiny and healthy again. In some cases, your animal may have an allergy to a substance in your home, and they could need allergy medication or a similar solution. Parasites and fungi can also cause other skin problems, such as ringworm and fleas.

Our skilled veterinarians will go over the potential causes of the skin problem. We may need to perform some tests to determine exactly what’s going on so it can be treated appropriately. In each step of the process, we make sure to go over everything that you need to know to help your furry family member get better soon. Part of the treatment plan may involve follow-up visits, so we can track the progress of their skin health and make any adjustments to the plan.

Relieve Your Pet's Itching 

Your dog or cat can suffer from the same seasonal allergies that affect humans. Allergic dermatitis is one of the most common conditions affecting pets. Pollen, mold, ragweed and dust mites may trigger pet allergies. Rather than experiencing watery eyes or congestion, however, pets suffer from itchy skin. Repeated biting and scratching creates irritated, moist skin that is susceptible to secondary bacterial infections. Prompt treatment for pet allergies is essential to relieving a pet’s painful itching symptoms and preventing secondary skin infections or more complex dermatological problems.

Food allergies to common pet food ingredients, including beef and chicken byproducts, diary, soy, wheat and corn, also cause pets to itch or scratch their skin. In addition to itchy skin, food allergies can trigger gastrointestinal upset and ear inflammation. Pets with a food allergy may bite or scratch at their skin, frequently bite or lick their paws, and even drag their rear across the ground in an attempt to scratch it. Since pets with food allergies are often allergic to more than one food ingredient, diagnosing a food allergy can be a complicated process.

Our veterinarians have experience diagnosing and treating pet allergies, both those caused by food and by environmental allergens, such as pollen. Diagnostic tests or an elimination diet may be necessary to precisely identify the cause for your pet’s allergies. Once the allergen triggers are identified, our veterinarians can work closely with your family veterinarian to create a custom treatment plan. Depending on the trigger, this may include a dietary change, reduced exposure to a seasonal allergy, and/or medication to manage allergy symptoms.

In addition to treating pet allergies, our veterinary team also treats common skin conditions such as mange and ringworm. Ringworm is a common bacterial infection that can affect both cats and dogs. Pets with a ringworm infection have circular lesions on their limbs and head. The skin will be flaky and some pets may even appear to be “bald.” Ringworm can easily spread to other pets, so prompt treatment is critical. Mange is caused by tiny parasites called mites; symptoms of mange include intense scratching and biting of the skin.

If your pet is itching, scratching or biting his skin, and your pet can’t wait to see his or her family veterinarian we can see your pet and provide urgent care.

Scheduling a Pet Skin Appointment

If you’re worried that your pet has skin problems, bring them in for a vet appointment. Skin problems could be something minor or an indicator of a larger issue that needs to be addressed, but either way, we’ll be able to help. Call Waldorf Emergency Care at (301) 705-9700 to connect with our talented staff and find out what’s going on with your furry companion’s skin. Your pets will be sure to thank you once they’re feeling better.

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