Dry skin on dogs is caused by allergic reactions, poor nutrition, parasites, skin infections, or internal problems. Pit bulls, registered by the American Kennel Club as American Staffordshire terriers or Am Staffs, have short coats, which makes the dogs more exposed to dry skin. Puppies, as well as adults, are prone to skin problems, including dry skin, which can be helped through diet, medication, and grooming.
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Typically, the pit bull's skin is glossy, but if the puppy has dry skin, it has a dull appearance. The treatment for dry skin on a pit bull depends on the cause of the issue. Pit bull dry skin is fairly common, especially in low-humidity climates.
Parasite treatment and pit bull dry skin
Often, puppies are affected by external parasites, such as fleas. The treatment of fleas involves the use of insecticides or special shampoos, which can dry and irritate the puppy's skin. Once the parasites are eliminated, use oatmeal baths to restore the skin's normal pH balance. Prevent parasites using veterinary prescribed flea medications or shampoos that are formulated to stave off parasites.
Dry skin on pit bull and diet
Dry skin on puppies can occur because the puppy doesn't have a proper diet or is dehydrated. Many less expensive commercial puppy foods don't contain the necessary amounts of nutrients and supplements that the dog needs to develop, and the puppy's skin health can indicate a nutrient deficiency. Ensure your puppy gets quality food and plenty of fresh water.
Your veterinarian might also recommend vitamins, digestive enzymes, or supplements, such as fatty acids or antioxidants. Fish oils are extremely good for skin in general and can help restore moisture and shine. However, some dry skin is caused by allergic reactions to food. So quality of food might not be the only issue — specific ingredients can be the cause of pit bull dry skin on certain dogs.
Grooming and bathing
Lack of grooming, frequent baths or the use of an unsuitable shampoo can lead to dry skin on pit bull puppies. Bathe the puppy only when necessary and change the shampoo to a gentle, moisturizing formula that won't irritate the skin and is specifically designed for dogs. Avoid using shampoos formulated for human use, because these are too harsh on the puppy's skin and impact pH balance.
Brush the dog to spread the essential oils on its skin, which also moisturize the skin and prevent dryness. Colloidal oatmeal relieves itchy skin and can be added to the dog's bath water. Use a humidifier during the cold months to prevent the dryness of skin.
Medication and ointments for pit bull dry skin
If the pit bull puppy is affected by a skin infection, it will require veterinary care and topical ointments that contain antibiotics. In severe cases, oral antibiotics are also needed. Allergies are managed with antihistamines, steroids, or allergy shots. If your pet is allergic, identify the triggers and eliminate these from its environment.
Also, internal problems such as liver disease or hypothyroidism might be at the root of the pit bull's dry skin and these conditions require medication treatment. Consult your veterinarian if the puppy scratches incessantly, has sores, open wounds, hair falling out, or foul-odored skin.