|Written by Susan Golis|
Dogs that scratch themselves constantly for no apparent reason may be suffering from an obsessive behavior or they may have a food allergy.¬† Along with scratching the dog may also be licking or chewing on their paw, tail or hind quarters.
This obsessive behavior if left untreated will cause the skin to become sore and a hot spot which is like a cold sore will form on the skin surface.¬† You will know this is a hot spot because of the appearance; red sore with crusty edges, a blister that is wet to the touch and has a fowl odor.
Acknowledge what occurs when your dog is acting obsessive; scratching constantly, biting or chewing on himself.
Does your dog react with an obsessive behavior trait shortly after they eat?¬† If so then the dog may have an allergy.¬† Many dogs are allergic to corn. Read the ingredients on the dog and look for the words corn.¬† Get a grain free dog food that is high in protein with no fillers and this food may put an end to your dogs scratching obsessive behavior.
Another reason for your dog to be scratching themselves is he/she may have fleas.¬† Many dogs are allergic to fleas.¬† Even if you use a monthly topical treatments like revelation or frontline your dog may still have fleas.¬† If that is the case I would recommend a flea and tick collar.
Is your dog showing signs of Anxiety?¬† Many dogs that suffer from separation from their masters will act obsessively and will scratch and chew on their body parts throughout the day.
Correct this separation behavior by buying a thundershirt. This shirt wraps around the dogs body and the dog feels more secure.¬† A thundershirt eliminates stress and anxiety.
Lack of exercise may be a factor for the dog‚Äôs obsessive scratching behavior.¬† If a dog is board they may take to chewing on their paw or tail or scratching.¬† Correct this behavior with natural treatment.
Walk your dog two times a day.¬† Take the dog for a long walk before you go to work and then when you get home.¬† You should walk a minimum of a mile a day.
Train your dog to go into a crate.¬† A crate that is large enough to hold a bed, food and water bowls as well as a few toys will provide your dog with their own safe place.¬†¬† Your dog will feel secure while you are away.
Before you go to work, turn on the TV. Choose a station like animal planet and set the volume at a level where your dog will think that he is not alone.
Provide your dog with entertainment.¬† Give them a rawhide chew, a tug of war toy and other dog toys.¬† This is a good way to divert your dog‚Äôs attention. They will chew on the toys and not themselves.
If you are going to be gone longer than 9 hours then make plans to have a dog walker visit your dog and take them outsides to do their business.¬† A mid-day walk is therapy for a dog who suffers from obsessive scratching.
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