Dog Dandruff and Cat Dandruff : Causes, Treatment and More!

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dog sniffing cat dandruffHas Christmas come early this year in the form dog dandruff or cat dandruff showering flakes all over your house? Our pets are as susceptible to getting that icky dander getting out of control! Luckily there are a couple of easy ways to prevent or treat this condition!

A Close Look at Dandruff Flakes aka Dander

Dandruff in dogs and cats is pretty much the same as it is in humans. All animals naturally regenerate and replace their skin cells on a daily basis.

Dandruff, animal dander, cat dander, or dog dander – all names for the same thing – is dry and flaky dead skin that the body has shed. It clumps together and will look like very small white flakes on your pet’s skin or in their coat.

Dog Dry Skin: It’s Not Always Something to Worry About!

If your pet is showing signs of dog or cat dandruff, it is often a sign that their skin is getting a little dry. Their skin is either lacking in nutrition, hydration or their skin needs a little more stimulation with additional nutrients or oils.

Dander can make your pet’s skin itchy and uncomfortable – it’s no fun for them. This means you do need to treat dandruff if you see any signs of it on your pet. However, a mild case of dandruff is usually fairly easily remedied.

Cat Skin Problems: Bad Dandruff and Severe Dandruff Might Be Serious!

If they are showing signs of severe cat or dog dandruff, get them to your veterinarian for a health check. Flaky and irritated skin can also be caused or related underlying issues.

Your pets may, in fact, have bacterial or fungal skin infections, flea infestations, mite infestations, allergy symptoms, hormonal conditions or other diseases.

kitty scratching cat dry skin and having cat skin problems

Vets Preferred Products That Will Prevent or Help Get Rid of Dandruff

Vets Preferred makes a range veterinarian grade natural products and supplements designed to help keep your pets in optimal health.

Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil for Cat and Dog Skin Issues!

Vets Preferred Wild Alaskan Salmon Oil is a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids. This supplement is made from wild Alaskan salmon oil and is a fish oil that will help your dog’s coat stay healthy and shiny. Omega-3 oil can help with inflammation, allergic reactions, and the overall condition of their coat.

Vets Preferred Premium Turmeric Curcumin!

Vets Preferred Premium Turmeric Curcumin is a chewable supplement with added coconut oil. The oil in these chicken flavored tablets will help keep your pooch’s skin and coat in good condition. The other ingredients have been developed to help with their digestion, immune system, inflammation, and joint discomfort.

What Causes Dandruff in Cats and Dogs?

Most often, dandruff in dogs and cats is caused by either nutritional deficiencies such as a lack of vitamins and minerals being obtained in their diet. The other main causes are grooming issues (too much or too little), or environmental conditions (too hot and dry).

An Unbalanced Diet

To keep your pet’s skin healthy they need to eat nutritionally balanced food. Preferably on developed and formulated for their specific breed.

A diet that is deficient in the vitamins, minerals and fatty acids can result in a flaky and dry skin.

Dogs and cats also need to be able to access fresh water at all times! Water keeps their bodies and skin hydrated as and when they need it.

Too Much or Too Little Grooming

Giving just the right amount of daily or weekly grooming is important for your pet’s skin and coat. Grooming helps to distribute the natural oils on your pet’s skin and throughout their fur.

Too much grooming can cause the skin to become dry and flaky. Not enough grooming means that the dead skin cells may not be exfoliated properly. They will stay where they are and won’t be removed from your pet’s body.

my cat has dandruff on brush


Living in a very dry environment with low humidity can also cause your pet’s skin to become dry and develop an excess of dander. Using an air purifier and humidifier can help with keeping humidity and airborne allergens such as dust mites at healthy levels for both you and your pet.

Underlying Medical Conditions

There are a few medical conditions that can also cause dry and flaky skin. These include ringworm, bacterial and fungal skin infections. Food allergies, seborrhea dermatitis, and hormonal conditions such as Cushing’s Disease and Hypothyroidism all also have symptoms that include dry skin or flaky skin similar to dandruff in cat dandruff and dog dandruff.

Flea and mite infestations can also cause pet dander flakes. Cheyletiellosis is a mange-like skin condition, caused by Cheyletiella mites, which is often referred to as “walking dandruff”. Yes, mites are literally carrying skin around on their backs! Ew!

Always get your pet to the vet for a check if you have any concerns about other symptoms they may be displaying! Especially if you are unsure about the best method of treating them.

Dry Skin on Dogs and Cats: Is Dandruff Contagious?

Dandruff itself is not contagious. If, however, your pet has a dry flaky skin caused by mites, fleas, ringworm, bacterial or skin infections, these can be contagious and should always be treated appropriately.

4 Things to do When Your Cat Has Dandruff!

  1. Take care of their nutrition: Look after your cat’s diet and make sure you feed your cat good quality nutritionally balanced cat’s food. Giving your cat Omega-3 fatty acids in the form of fish oil can also help with the prevention and elimination of cat dandruff.
  2. Provide water: Make sure cats always have access to a source of fresh water to keep their body and skin hydrated, particularly if you feed your cat dry food as their main diet. Giving your cat good quality wet food can also help with keeping their skin and body hydrated. Cats often prefer running water (those of you with a dripping tap may already know this!). A cat water fountain can be a good water source if you want to encourage your cat to drink fresh water.
  3. Groom your cat: Cats usually love a little gentle brushing and grooming from their human’s with a soft pet brush. This will help cats with dandruff! Brushing helps with distributing the oils on their skin and fur, removing skin cells, and their overall circulation. You can also bath your cat with a cat shampoo to control dandruff (but don’t use your human shampoos!)
  4. Get a vet check: If your cat has severe dandruff or any other symptoms, get your vet to check and establish the cause of the dandruff so you can find the best treatment method.

owner washing off dog dandruff and dog dry skin

4 Ways to Treat Dandruff in Dogs

  1. Good food equals good skin: As with cats, if you make sure your dog is eating good quality dog food and provided with fresh water, you will help prevent and eliminate dog dandruff. Check the nutritional content of your dog food to ensure it provides a good balance of healthy ingredients.
  2. Brushing: Regular daily brushing will massage your dog’s skin, distribute the natural oils in their coat, and remove any dead cells. Just remember not to overdo the daily brushing, as you can potentially cause the flaking to get worse.
  3. Bathing: Use an anti-dandruff shampoo developed for canines when you bath your dog. Alternatively, use a medicated shampoo prescribed by a veterinarian. There are also many dog grooming products which contain moisturizers and essential oils to help keep your dog’s skin and oil levels healthy.
  4. See your veterinarian: If the dog dandruff doesn’t improve with a good diet and daily grooming, take them along to your veterinarian. They can check that there is no other underlying medical issue causing the problem.

How Honest Paws Can Help Dog and Cat Dry Skin!

Honest Paws are producers of another range of natural products for dogs. They are made with pet-safe CBD oils and other nutritional ingredients.

Honest Paws CBD Oil for Dogs!

The Honest Paws CBD Oil for Dogs is a range of tinctures that can benefit your pet’s skin, particularly if they have any allergy and inflammation issues.

Rated 5.00/5.00 by Certapet
Honest Paws CBD Oil For Dogs$39.95
Honest Paws CBD Oil for Dogs features 100% Full Spectrum CBD Oil, straight from the sun-grown Colorado hemp farms. Available in 125, 250 and 500 mg potency solutions.

Yummy Restore CBD Dog Treats!

The combination of ingredients in Yummy Restore CBD Dog Treats can help with your dog’s and even cat dandruff, any itchy or irritated skin, dull coats, and allergies. These tasty all-natural treats are made with CBD oil, coconut oil, barley, peanut butter, and eggs.

Rated 5.00/5.00 by Certapet
Honest Paws Wellness Coconut Flavored CBD Dog Treats$24.95
Wellness CBD Dog Treats are rich in Omega 6 and fatty acids and perfect for your irritated dog's dry, itchy skin. Made with 100% Pure CBD Oil & Luscious Coconut Oil, our treats contain only the best, all-natural ingredients.

Whether Cat Dandruff or Dog Dandruff: Your Pet Needs You to Step in!

If you can see signs of cat or dog dandruff, they do need your help. It does cause them to have itchy skin and a level of discomfort.

To treat and prevent mild dandruff start with making sure they are eating good healthy food, are regularly groomed, and adequately hydrated. If you have concerns about other symptoms or the dog or cat dandruff is severe, get your pet to your vet.

Common Questions on Cat Dandruff and Dog Dandruff

What is walking dandruff?

My dog has dry skin. How often should I groom him with dandruff?

My cat has dandruff. Is it supposed to make her itchy?

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