Skin Serenity for your furry friends

Responsible pet parents know how important it is to keep their furry friends’ skin and coat healthy. Follow these tips to make sure your pet’s skin is germ-free and the coat is shiny and radiant throughout the year.

Dr Aishwarya Pai
Dr Aishwarya Pai

Our pet’s skin plays an important role in many different functions such as thermoregulation, immune protection, vitamin D production. The skin also acts as a barrier to protect the body. Which is why a healthy skin and coat is an important indicator of a healthy pet.

Harnessing the power of diet for skin and coat health

A well-balanced diet is of utmost importance. Ensuring that your pet is getting the right amounts of nutrients is the first step to maintaining skin and coat health. Ideally, canine and feline diets should include a good meat-based protein source, fibre source, and vitamins and minerals in the right proportion. If you intend on feeding your pet a home cooked meal, do consult a veterinary nutritionist for your pet’s specific needs. To ensure a healthy coat, your furry friend’s diet should be supplemented with omega 3, 6, and 9. Adding vitamin and mineral supplements is also recommended.

Groom to glisten – elevating skincare with every brush

In addition to a good diet, it is advised to bathe your pet once every fortnight. Do not bathe him too frequently as this can strip of the oils from the skin and make it dry and flaky. The use of good-quality pet-friendly shampoos and diluting shampoos before direct contact with the skin prevents the skin from getting dry. Regular grooming and brushing of the coat also keep the skin healthy by stimulating blood circulation. Do not use medicated shampoos unless prescribed by your veterinarian.

The bane of parasites

A major cause for skin diseases are parasites such as ticks,fleas, and mites. A good tick and flea preventive treatment will not only prevent skin diseases but also prevent systemic illnesses such as tick fever and mycoplasmosis. Chronic skin and gut issues show up in pets who have high cortisol levels due to stress and anxiety. Some pets also suffer from food and environmental allergies leading to severe itching and redness of the skin. A few endocrine diseases such as hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease also have outward skin signs. Breeds such as Beagles, French Bulldogs, Pitbulls etc suffer from diseases such as Atopy.

If your pet suffers from recurrent skin disorders, please do visit a veterinarian to receive the correct line of treatment. Ensure you give your pet a well-balanced diet, regular brushing and grooming is a must, and most importantly a stress-free environment for your pet to grow and glow with happiness is what all pet parents should aim for!

(Dr Aishwarya Pai – Cessna Lifeline Veterinary Hospital, Domlur, Bangalore)