When we first brought our dog home as a new puppy we quickly noticed that she would often scratch herself throughout the day. Having had a dog previously for 18 years, I knew this wasn’t the normal odd scratch but ongoing ones that were irritating her, however,I could also see that she didn’t seem to have any skin issues (sores, eczema, flakiness etc) or fleas/ticks. We did take her to the vet who also couldn’t see an obvious problem so it came down to trying out a few things to help her out… And eventually, they worked! Here are the steps we took to remedy our dog’s itchy skin.
Tessa clearly had an intolerance to the food that the breeders had sent her home with which resulted in diarrhoea, weight loss and also the itchy skin. I had a chat with a member of staff at Pets at Home and I tried a variety of dog food types that could possibly help with her stomach issues. After a few back and forths to the store (they do swap food if it doesn’t work out for your dog) we finally settled on AVA which thankfully stopped the diarrhoea. However, after a year on this, we still noticed that every now and then she would have loose stools and she was still scratching more than normal. At first, I was reluctant to go down the path of changing foods again but then I came across a dog food online that was completely different to anything I had seen in the shops before – a food made from insect protein by Grub Club.
You see, dogs can and do get allergies and intolerances just as we humans do and the most common causes for them are grains and meat protein. We had already concluded that Tessa needed a grain free diet BUT was she also intolerant to meat? After a little research I did have my suspicions so I began by trying her on Grub Club’s treats and she loved them. I then decided to take the next step by beginning to add their Insect-Based All Day Buffet food in with her AVA. As I reduced her old food and increased the new food, she didn’t have any adverse reactions and after around a week she was solely on this new hypoallergenic meal twice a day. Over time we noticed her weight was holding better, she had more energy, her stools were normal and her incessant scratching had stopped!
“Naturally hypoallergenic, and planet-friendly, our vet-approved insect-based products deliver all the nutritional goodness of regular meat, but without the carbon footprint and meat-related allergies, which is great news for glossy coats, happy tummies, and the planet!”
She now only eats their food and treats – we certainly notice if she is ever given something else or if she manages to steal a little food from a hand or plate – and she is now a healthy and comfortable dog.
Obviously, when Tessa had diarrhoea, I was having to bath her quite frequently in order to get her cleaned up, which wasn’t great as it was drying her skin out and adding to the itching problem. Once we solved that issue, it meant that her baths could decrease and I then chose to only bath her when she really needed it – she is a stickler for rolling! As I did this I noticed her skin really settled down and her itchy areas weren’t bothering her as much at all. But there was still one little niggle…
I had carefully chosen what was stated as a delicate, natural dog shampoo made with lavender as I didn’t want anything strong or chemical based that would irritate her further and I thought I had made the right choice but after solving the above two areas of problems, there was clearly still something else bothering her. And I quickly deduced that it was this shampoo. The reason I noticed that this was a trigger was because of how much hair she would lose during and after a bath. It was just excessive. Plus she is a border terrier and this breed isn’t supposed to shed. She would also scratch more for a few days after use.
So I chose to go completely natural and opted to shampoo her with Marseille Soap which is an eco-friendly and gentle soap bar that can be used in a variety of ways around the home and on your skin. From the first wash, I could see a big difference and gradually her coat began to look shiny, healthy and thick, and best of all, her scratching ceased! Using a soap bar like this doesn’t strip the hair and skin of its natural and essential oils which means no drying out and NO itchy skin. It does still clean deep down and does remove all the mud and grime that your dog’s coat collects over time, it is just free of any nasties that may irritate some dogs. It leaves their coat in great condition and, on top of this, you hardly have to use much so it does also save you money in the long run.
Our Border Terrier is now an itch-free, fit and healthy dog who is full of energy. If you are looking to remedy your dog’s itchy skin I can most definitely recommend looking into all of these areas to help them and you out.
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