hoe to get rid of dog dandruff

Do you have a dog that suffers from dandruff? If so, you’re not alone. Doggy dandruff is a common problem in dogs, and can be difficult to treat. In this blog post, we will discuss what canine dandruff is, how to get rid of dog dandruff, and how to prevent it from coming back. We will also provide tips on how to keep your dog’s coat healthy and shiny!


Dandruff in dogs, just like in humans, is caused by a number of things, including dry skin, allergies, poor grooming habits, and even stress. If your dog has dandruff, you’ll notice that the skin at the base of their coat is dry and flaky. They may also scratch more than usual, which can lead to further irritation.

How Do I Know If My Dog Has Dandruff?

Many people think of dandruff as a human condition, but dogs can get dandruff too. Just like humans, dogs have skin that periodically sheds dead cells. This is a normal and necessary process that helps to keep the skin healthy.


However, sometimes the shedding process can become accelerated, resulting in dry, flaky skin – aka dandruff. There are two types of dandruff your dog can have: dry (seborrhea sicca) and oily (seborrhea oleosa).

What Does Dandruff in Dogs Look Like?


So, how can you tell if your dog has dandruff? The first thing to look at is your dog’s skin. Dog dandruff usually looks like small, dry flakes of skin. It can be white or gray in color, and it’s often most noticeable on the dog’s belly, back, and legs.

It also tends to get everywhere!

You may also notice that your dog is scratching more than usual. If you suspect your dog has excessive dandruff, or raw open skin it’s best to consult with your veterinarian. They will be able to rule out any underlying health conditions and provide you with the best course of treatment.

In most cases, basic lifestyle changes and regular grooming will help to reduce the amount of dandruff.

hoe to get rid of dog dandruff

How to Get Rid of Dog Dandruff

Canine dandruff happens when the sebaceous glands produce too much oil. Sebum is needed for happy healthy skin and coat, but when your dog produces too much it causes an imbalance. This causes more oil to be produced than normal and can irritate the skin. Thus doggy dandruff.

While dandruff itself is not harmful, it can be unsightly and, at times, difficult to get rid of. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps that can be taken to combat doggy dandruff.

One of the most effective ways to get rid of dog dandruff is to increase the animal’s intake of omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients help to improve the skin’s moisture levels and reduce inflammation.

Fish oil supplements are an easy way to give your dog the extra omega-3s it needs. You can also try adding more fish to its diet or using an Omega-3 shampoo when bathing your pet.

Another helpful supplement for dogs is vitamin D. Vitamin D helps to maintain healthy skin and fur, and it can also help to reduce itching and inflammation. Unlike humans dogs do not produce their own vitamin D from the sun. Thus they need added vitamin D from food or supplements.

You can find vitamin D supplements at most pet stores, or you can even use low dose human liquid vitamin D (often lower cost than pet store supplements) which is easily added to their water, food, or even rubbed into their skin.

Be VERY careful when giving your dog vitamin D as too much can cause toxicity. And be sure to check your dog’s food because it may already contain supplemented vitamin D. The NASC recommends a minimum of 500IU of vitamin D per kilogram of food, and no more than 3,000 IU per kilogram of food. [source]

Home Remedies for Dog Dandruff and Itching

While dog dandruff may not be a serious health concern, it can be unsightly and cause your dog to itch, which is doggone annoying. (oops, did I just say that?)

Dandruff and itching are common problems for dogs, but there are a few simple DIY treatments for dog dandruff that can help to alleviate these symptoms.

Add a teaspoon of olive oil or coconut oil to your dog’s food. These oils help to moisturize the skin and coat, which can reduce dandruff.

Add a cup of apple cider vinegar to your dog’s bathwater. The acidity of the vinegar helps to kill bacteria and fungus, which can contribute to dandruff.

Mix equal parts water and lemon juice, and apply it to your dog’s coat with a cotton ball. The citric acid in lemon juice has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to soothe itchiness.

Use an oatmeal rinse for dogs with dry skin. Mix 1/2 cup of oatmeal to 2 quarts of water. Boil for 10 minutes. Let it cool, strain it, and apply to their coat massaging it into their skin.

Finally, you can make a mixture of one part olive oil and two parts water, and massage it into your dog’s fur. This helps to hydrate the skin and prevent flaking.

dog dandruff after bath
Photo ©Autri Taheri

Dog Shampoo for Dandruff

Since over bathing can cause doggy dandruff in the first place be careful with excessive bathing.

Dog shampoos are designed to have a pH balance of between 6.5 and 7.5. Using human shampoos, which have a pH of around 5.5, can throw the balance off and cause problems for your dog.

Because of the more acidic nature of human shampoos they can strip out the natural oils your dog needs for a shiny healthy coat. Try using an anti-dandruff shampoo made especially for dogs during bath time. Look for a shampoo that contains tea tree oil, aloe vera, or oatmeal. All of which are known for their anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties.

Preventing Doggy Dandruff From Coming Back

Tips for preventing dandruff from returning once cleared up include:

  • Regular brushing – This helps to remove dirt, debris and dead hair from the coat, and it also stimulates the skin and promotes circulation.
  • Healthy diet – having the proper nutrients is just as important for healthy skin as it is for nutrition
  • Plenty of fresh water – this helps to keep their skin hydrated and their coat looking lustrous
  • Run a humidifier in the home – especially important in dry winter months
  • Bathing with dog shampoo – These specially formulated and pH balanced shampoos are made just for dogs (see above for more info)
  • Don’t over bathe your dog – Stripping out those vital oils is a no-no

In conclusion, dog dandruff is not a serious health concern but it can be annoying for both you and your dog. While there are many commercial treatments available, you can also try some simple home remedies.

Be sure to talk to your veterinarian if the problem persists or if you have any concerns about giving your dog supplements or home treatments. With regular treatment and some preventative care, these simple tips teaching you how to get rid of dog dandruff can help your dog’s skin start to clear up.

dog dandruff treatment options



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