When it comes to our dog’s health and happiness, we’re often ready to spare no expense and spoil them endlessly. However, did you know that in 2020, Americans spent over $30 billion in vet care and another $20 billion in pet supplies and medicine? Vet care and medicine can quickly rack up the bills and expenses, which is why it could be helpful to learn some great home remedies for dogs.
Dogs are man’s (and woman’s) best friend for good reason because they are the most loyal, loving animals that we will ever encounter. Although dogs are generally healthy, knowing a few natural home remedies can potentially save you thousands of dollars in the long run. It’s always better to stay prepared, so check out some of our best tips and tricks for treating some of the most common issues!
What Are Some Common Issues Dogs Face at Home?
No matter how young or old your dog is, health issues can occur at any age. Identifying the most common issues that affect dogs can help you determine whether you need to take your dog to the vet. Understanding how to treat certain ailments early can help save you time and money!
The easiest way to make sure your dog is healthy and safe is to give them consistent grooming and checkups. Remember to take your dog in for a checkup at least once a year to ensure that you haven’t missed anything. These are some common issues you may notice:
Fleas are one of the most common issues that affect dogs. If your dog is active or an outdoor breed, it may be prone to catching fleas. Signs of consistent itching, dark spotting, and flaking in your dog’s fur could be a sign of fleas.
Dry skin is a common condition that can be very uncomfortable for dogs. You might notice your dog scratching excessively due to a lack of sebum or skin oils. This condition can often lead to skin flaking, dandruff, scabbing, or hair loss. Some common causes for dry skin are:
- Lack of grooming
- Poor nutrition
- Allergic reactions (to shampoos, outdoor allergens, food, etc.)
- Fleas or other parasites
Upset stomachs are common among all animals, usually resulting from eating something they shouldn’t have. Other causes may be food allergies or chemical imbalances in the digestive system. Vomiting and diarrhea are common symptoms of an upset stomach.
Many pets suffer from obesity or being overweight, leading to many significant health issues. There is an increased risk of heart disease, joint pain, and difficulty breathing if your dog is obese. However, obesity may be treated with proper exercise and a nutrition plan.
The most common causes of hair loss in dogs are allergies, parasites, infections, stress, or pain. The majority of the time, hair loss is harmful and can be easily treated. However, in some cases, hair loss may result from an underlying condition that needs to be checked out by a veterinarian. If the problem persists, take your furry friend in for a checkup.
Home Remedies for Dogs
Home remedies are an excellent way to provide your dog with natural, organic treatment. You can try out many of these natural remedies using everyday household items. Rather than heading to the store, make what you need from the comfort of your own home!
These remedies are just the first line of defense against some ailments. More severe conditions will need proper medical attention. If any of these issues persist or get worse, consult a veterinarian immediately for further examination.
Dogs can attract fleas from places they visit every day. From daily walks to outdoor playtime, fleas can affect dogs of every breed and activity level. Unfortunately, fleas can occasionally cause worse troubles for your pooch. They can carry tapeworms and pass them off to your dog.
The best way to prevent a flea infestation is to keep your dog consistently groomed and bathed. Fortunately, many natural remedies can help drive those annoying fleas away.
If you suspect your dog has fleas, always start with a flea comb to brush them out. The tightly-spaced teeth of the comb can remove the fleas and their eggs from your dog’s skin. Remember to rinse off the comb after every brush!
Fleas hate citrus scents, so you can try using a homemade lemon spray on your dog’s coat. All you need to do is mix some water with a squeeze of lemons and put them into a spray bottle for an all-natural flea mist. You can even add a splash of pet shampoo to keep your dog smelling fresh!
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is just acidic enough to prevent fleas from inhabiting your dog. Use a 1:1 apple cider vinegar to water ratio and spray the mixture onto your dog. You can also start with a more diluted mixture to gauge your dog’s reaction to the vinegar.
Flea collars are a great way to fend off fleas looking to jump on your dog. Placing a few drops of essential oils onto your dog’s collar can make an excellent flea deterrent. Popular essential oils include lavender, cedar, and peppermint. Some dogs may be allergic to certain essential oils. Remember to test a small amount of the oil or consult a veterinarian to ensure your dog isn’t sensitive or allergic.
A mixture of warm water and dish soap is a popular home remedy for trapping and killing fleas. Fleas are attracted to warmth and light, so place this mixture in a bowl or saucer and put it near your pet’s sleeping areas for the best results. DON’T wash your dog with dish soap, as the chemicals will irritate and dry out the skin even more.
Dry, Itchy Skin
Grooming is often the best way to prevent dry, itchy skin. Daily or weekly brushing can help distribute the natural skin oils for healthy skin and shiny coats. Most dog breeds don’t groom themselves as much as cats do, so it’s up to you to keep their skin and coat clean if any problems arise.
If the dry skin does not go away after a few weeks, you may need to find a way to change your dog’s diet or take them to the vet to get medication. However, here are some great natural remedies to help treat your dog’s dry skin.
A common reason your dog may have dry skin is low humidity levels inside the house. Using a humidifier is a fantastic way to provide extra moisture in the air, particularly during the colder seasons. If you don’t own a humidifier, you can also place a pan of water next to a heat lamp or radiator around areas where your dog sleeps. As the water evaporates, it adds moisture to the air.
Change in Diet
Nutrients like vitamin E, omega-3, and omega-6 fatty acids are essential for keeping the skin moisturized. You can try adding a small amount of fish oil (which contains omega fatty acids), coconut oil, or vitamin E to their food to promote healthier skin. Foods like spinach, avocado, or eggs are high in vitamin E, making great additions to your dog’s diet.
Grooming can stimulate the skin to release natural oils that fight dry skin. Brushing also spreads the natural skin oils around to prevent them from drying out. You also want to avoid bathing your dog too much, which can dry their skin out even more.
Oatmeal is a popular, well-known home remedy that can treat various skin conditions. Draw a bath for your dog, blend up some oatmeal, and let them soak in the bath for 10-15 minutes. Oatmeal contains antioxidants that can help balance the natural skin oils and remove dandruff flakes from the skin.
You can buy vet-approved conditioners to help keep your dog’s skin moisturized the next time you wash them. Remember to dry your dog thoroughly to prevent “hot spots” from appearing, which can cause significant skin irritation. Brushing and blow-drying are excellent ways to distribute the skin oils and dry your dog completely.
Hair loss in dogs is a tricky situation since there could be many potential causes. In some cases, it could be a symptom of a more severe ailment (like Cushing’s Disease). If you have tried these natural remedies with no success, talk to your vet to properly diagnose the condition.
Fleas or mites can lead to significant irritation and hair loss if not treated soon enough. For more detailed information, refer to the section above on fleas for great tips on how to get rid of those pesky pests!
Dogs are typically more active than cats and need consistent grooming to keep healthy skin and coats. Though, sometimes our lives can get a bit busy. When this happens, we may forget to groom our dogs as regularly as we should. If you notice your dog has itchy skin, they might need a few extra baths than they’ve been getting. Brushing can also remove any matting so that the hair can grow properly.
Food allergies are often the cause of hair loss in dogs. Try to give your dog low-ingredient, hypoallergenic food that stays away from the most common food allergies like corn, wheat, and gluten.
A pregnant dog can go through hormonal imbalances that can cause its hair to fall out. However, this is an entirely normal process that you don’t need to worry about. The hair should start growing back overtime after the puppy is born!
Upset stomachs can be uncomfortable for your dog, which can lead to vomiting or diarrhea. In some cases, your dog may even be constipated due to improper digestion or a lack of fluids. Keep a close eye on your dog in case of chronic vomiting or diarrhea, which could be a symptom of bacterial or fungal infections.
See if these natural remedies help calm your dog’s stomach. If symptoms continue, take your dog to the vet for treatment. The vet may prescribe probiotic supplements or laxatives to ease the stomach and allow the feces to pass.
A lack of fluids can often lead to constipation. Wet food is a fantastic solution to help boost your dog’s hydration! Wet dog food usually has around 75% water content, which can go a long way in boosting your dog’s fluids.
Eating foods high in fiber can help soften the stool and make it easier to pass. Most high-quality dog foods should have enough fiber, but you can also safely feed your dog the following foods to boost fiber levels:
- Pumpkin (highly recommended)
- Beet pulp
- Chicken or beef broth
Mixing healthy oils — like olive or coconut oil — into your dog’s food may help constipation. Coconut oil is beneficial for skin health, and it can also aid digestion. Olive oil can increase intestinal contractions and also softens the stool. Try adding a teaspoon of olive oil into your dog’s food for about a week or so to alleviate constipation.
Chamomile is a popular relaxing agent for both humans and dogs. It can help decrease muscle spasms and stomach cramps if your pooch has an upset tummy. You can brew some chamomile tea and add it to your dog’s food or inject it into their mouth with a syringe.
Most dogs need some form of daily activity or exercise to stay healthy. Exercise can also tire out more energetic breeds so they’re not as restless at home. Try these tips at home or consult a vet for more specific weight loss plans!
If your dog tends to be lazy, encourage them to play at home with some toys. Fun exercise options can include walking on a treadmill, toys, or play sessions to help them burn more calories than they are consuming. Encourage them to run around a bit more when you walk them or go to the dog park and let them play with other dogs.
Introducing a low-calorie diet can help the weight loss process immensely. Low-calorie dog foods are usually high in proteins that help the dog burn off some fat. Remember to keep your dog consistently active instead of relying solely on a low-calorie diet!
Don’t Leave Food Out
Many dog owners leave food out all day for their dogs to eat, but this practice can lead to obesity. Leaving food out can tempt your dog to overeat and gain weight. Set regular feeding times every day with controlled portions so you know how much your dog is eating.
Limit Treats and Table Scraps
It may be tempting to give your dog extra treats when they flash those big puppy eyes. Though, after you give in once, your dog will be coming back again and again for more. It’s essential to limit the number of treats and leftovers you give your dog so you can keep their weight under control.
Can I Use CBD for My Dog?
Yes, CBD has many incredible benefits that can help your dog feel stronger and happier!
CBD has many soothing and relaxing benefits that can aid in relieving discomfort or providing calming effects. Many pet owners have started using CBD because it can calm anxious behaviors while having very few side effects.
Our HolistaPet CBD oil for dogs is made with hemp seed oil, which is high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to boost skin and coat health. Hemp seed oil is also a superfood ingredient that contains many vitamins and minerals that can improve your dog’s health.
Final Thoughts – Home Remedies for Dogs
Home remedies are not meant to replace the vet or checkups, but they can provide a fantastic way for you to ease some of the discomforts in your dog. Going to the vet can get quite costly over time, and these remedies can help you avoid an expensive trip to the pet hospital for what may turn out to be a minor ailment. It doesn’t hurt to stay prepared and ready for anything that can happen to our best friends!