The skin is the largest organ a dog has, and it’s a marvellous, sophisticated piece of kit. It grows hair, feeds parasites and has a nice covering of Candida Albicans (yeast) that peacefully cohabits until something sets it off. However, unlike we humans who can sweat all over, as anyone stuck on the tube or train on a hot day can attest, dogs only sweat from the pads of their paws and the nose.
Dogs pant to release heat and cool down, but that’s not sweating. So their skin, unencumbered by sweat, holds onto stuff – dirt, dander and the like – making it a feeding and breeding ground for all sorts of skin problems and parasites. Dog skin is the gift that keeps on giving.
The time of year really matters when it comes to itching. When I tell you that I sell far fewer products for itchy skin in the winter but sales take off like a rocket the minute the sun comes out and the trees begin to blossom, most of you will not your heads sagely as you mash yet another antihistamine into your dog’s food.
So, while some itching and scratching are normal, it’s when the scratching and paw chewing becomes constant that you know something’s no right.
A big culprit of itchy skin is hay fever.
How Dogs Get Hay Fever
For dogs with allergies, spring can cause misery as it triggers the start of the hay fever season with early tree pollen, and grass responsible for many atopic allergies in dogs. Allergies to grasses start from around May, affecting people as well as their pets.
Dogs affected by tree pollen will often show signs of skin irritation such as itching, soreness and general discomfort. Early flowering trees such as birch, hazel and alder can all trigger pollen allergies that affect dogs from March or April long before the grass allergies kick in, and can make a dog very uncomfortable.
A dog suffering from a tree or grass pollen allergy is likely to scratch and bite its body, possibly pulling out some of his coat. Licking their paws, head shaking and rubbing their face on the floor are also indications that a dog has hay fever. A dog can also develop a sensitivity to being touched.
However, by naturally helping your dog's skin defences work using flaxseed oil mixed with appropriate herbs your dog is less likely to sneeze and cough.
How Flaxseed Oil & Herbs Combat Hay Fever in Dogs
Proflax cold-pressed flaxseed oils contain a blend of herbs to help relieve the symptoms: wild nettle to help with the pollen allergy, milk thistle an anti-oxidant, and camomile, an anti-inflammatory all help with hay fever. They are key elements of the diet for naturally improving skin health to cope with pollen allergies.
At My Itchy Dog, the only oils we stock now are Proflax. Not surprisingly (the clue is in our name), Proflax Skin & Coat is our bestseller and the results our customers have with it are fantastic. Skin is calmed, sensitivity is reduced, chewing and nibbling stop, and eyes and ears no longer itch.
This is because the balance of cold-pressed, UK grown flaxseed and medicinal grade herbs aren’t over-processed. They’re made in the UK from UK ingredients of such high quality the dogs we serve show improvement in a few days. Just the sort of product and company we want to champion.
Dozens of Proflax and My Itchy Dog customers have rated Proflax skin and coat at 5 out of 5 for customer satisfaction and many have commented that their dogs have responded better on the product than on some medications such as steroids.
A review we had a few weeks ago reads thus: “We have two dogs using the skin and coat blend for a few weeks now and the results are fantastic! To have two itchy dogs for different reasons isn’t fun but this oil has made all the difference! Itching and scratching and licking has nearly stopped!! One of our dogs has had pancreatitis and I was concerned about the fat content as we have to be very careful... this dog gets only a third of the usual amount and it still works without any problems!”
And another thing! I’ve been feeding skin and coat to my dog, Nikita, who came as a rescue with no fur. Now she’s as furry as it’s decent to be which means she moults a lot. So she gets skin and coat for that too. The moulting is reduced to such an extent my hoover doesn’t wheeze so much with the exertion, and her coat is in fantastic condition.
Interestingly, the thing we’ve found with customers (and we’re no different ourselves) is we’re not that flexible when it comes to trying new things because we assume an all or nothing approach. For example, “If I deviate from my normal oil over to another and it doesn’t work I’m upsetting my dog.” My answer is always to give it a try and if no good comes of it then to switch back.
So try a bottle, you have literally nothing to lose and everything to gain. If it doesn’t work for you I’ll give you your money back!
Founder of My Itchy Dog