When you own a dog, you become quickly aware of all the ups and downs of caring for a canine can bring. From ticks, to preventing fleas, to pulling thorns out of paws, and wiping soiled coats down at the end of the day, a lot of effort goes in to looking after your dog.  Since severe injuries, accidents and illnesses can become quite expensive, it is refreshing to know that there are ailments which can be treated with a few simple items already in your cupboard. So if your dog (or even your cat) seems to be struggling with itchy skin, whether from allergies, changing weather, rashes, or nutritional deficiencies, here are some quick ways to deal with the immediate discomfort your pet may be feeling.

Note: We do encourage pet owners to take a deeper look at what might be causing the surface agitation of skin, since it is usually symptomatic of a worse problem. But for strictly treating the topical issue, here are some great at-home solutions.

Vitamin E: When it comes to skincare, one of the best natural remedies is vitamin E oil. Feeding a dog capsules of vitamin E, or simply pouring a teaspoon of the liquid over his food bowl every day will significantly improve not only the appearance, shine and thickness of his coat,  but it will also help the skin retain moisture better.  Many pets have irritated skin when they lack sufficient oils in their diet.

Chamomile Tea: A beloved remedy for anything from upset stomachs to stress, chamomile tea is a soothing solution that can also be applied to skin. If you keep a strong bottle of chamomile tea chilled in the refrigerator, spray the liquid over a dog’s coat when the itching gets really intense.  The cool tea will actually diminish the bacteria or infection on the skin, and by placing gentle tea bags place on or around the eyes or hot spot will have the same calming anti-inflammatory effect.

Plain Yoghurt:  It might seem counterintuitive to feed your dog a dairy product to address a topical skin issue. We do not insist upon large portions or constantly feeding your dog yoghurt, but an occasional spoonful now and again will actually really help treat an epidermal imbalance. Sometimes bacteria and yeast grows in moist areas causing an infection and itchiness to overwhelm the creature.  Probiotics and the anti-bacterial elements in yoghurt naturally solve this kind of festering agitation.

Electrolyte Beverages: Internal dehydration plays a huge role in skin condition and overall health in canines and felines.   Flavorless, sugar-free sports drinks and pediatric liquids help humans and animals replenish any electrolytes they have lost. Giving your pet plenty of water is important, but hydration can be maximized when the dog is given electrolyte enhanced beverages. Some creative ways to feed this to them is to freeze the liquid in ice cubes that they can lick and suck on continually, or to fill their dog bowls with when the water gets low.

Soaking baths: Sometimes a simple soak in a large basin will help the healing properties of natural ingredients really seep into a dog’s scalp. For these kinds of baths, mix in either Epsom salts or oatmeal.  The oatmeal will soothe and moisturize dry and agitated skin that is scaly and sore from over itching. The salt works as a natural septic to clean the skin and rid it of any bacteria, and neutralize the overall pH of the surface. Your dog will enjoy splashing around and sitting in a cool bath on a hot day, or a warm bath when the weather gets cold.