The Importance of Looking After Your Dog’s Skin & Coat

Posted by wormers-direct on 21st Jul 2023

The Importance of Looking After Your Dog’s Skin & Coat

Most dog owners tend to forget to look after their furry friend’s coat, other than sending them to the dog groomer every couple of months. There is quite a bit that can be done in between their regular trims though, in order to keep your dog looking & feeling their very best.

Good coat health for your dog actually starts from within; being nourished with high-quality dog food, that meets their individual requirements. First, let’s look at why dogs have coats, and their overall purpose!

The Purpose of a Dog’s Coat

A dog’s coat is a defining characteristic, and with so many different colours and textures, it all depends on the breed of your dog as to what coat they have. For example, a border collie will have a much denser, waterproof coat that will help protect them whilst herding sheep in the countryside. Whereas on the other end of the scale, greyhounds barely have any coat to help keep them cool and streamlined while running fast!

Beyond looks, dog coats have very important roles:

1. Protection

Both the skin & the coat on a dog provide a protective barrier between the animal and the external environment. They can both help to protect the dog from extreme weather conditions, parasites, UV light, chemicals and more.

2. Regulating Temperature

If your dog’s coat is healthy, this can help with temperature regulation. Just like with human hair, dog hair will stand on end when temperatures are high, to allow for the flow of air closer to the skin. Similarly, when it is cold outside, your dog will use its coat to trap hair and provide a layer of insulation.

3. Nutrient Storage

A huge 35% of a dog’s daily protein intake is used solely to maintain a healthy skin and coat! The skin can also store essential nutrients including fatty acids and minerals such as copper & zinc. These nutrients are then used when the dog requires extra help carrying out bodily functions.

Arden Grange Dog Performance

Signs of a Healthy Dog Coat

You may be looking at your dog’s coat whilst reading this blog, and thinking yes, my dog has a really healthy coat. However, do you know exactly what you are looking for? A healthy coat should be smooth, shiny, grease-free and hydrated & not coarse or brittle. Even things like stress and a change of diet can affect your dog’s coat, so here are some warning signs to look out for:

  • Itchy skin (or the onset of dandruff)
  • Dull, dry coat
  • Excessive shedding / moulting
  • Matted hair
  • Patches of hair loss
  • Changes in texture or the smell of the coat
  • A coat that is more oily than normal.

It is really important that you know your own dog’s coat, and how it feels when it is healthy. Any small changes in your dog’s coat could indicate an underlying health condition.

How To Keep Your Dog’s Coat Healthy

There are lots of different things you can do in order to keep your dog’s skin and coat nice and healthy. Here are a few of our own suggestions:

1. Ensure your dog has adequate nutrition

In order to keep your dog healthy, it should receive a balanced diet consisting of high-quality protein, carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. Protein is really important with dogs as this provides them with the energy they need. When it comes to your dog’s coat, fatty acids will help as this supports cell structure.

Eden Gourmet Salmon and Pheasant Wet Dog Food

2. Carry out regular grooming

Brushing your dog regularly will help to remove any dead hair or skin cells, as well as spreading their coat’s natural oils around. Grooming is also a great way to check your dog for external parasites such as ticks and fleas.

Bamboo Groom Soft Slicker

3. Bathe your dog on a regular basis

Some dog owners take their pooches for regular grooms, but you can also give your dog regular baths at home instead. Just be sure to give them a brush first, to get rid of any tangles before you start massaging the shampoo into their coat!

WildWash Shampoo for Sensitive Coats

Taking care of your dog’s coat is a great way to bond with them, and while regular grooming and bathing will help, focusing on high-quality nutrition will make the biggest difference. Have a look through our selection of dog food, and if you have any questions regarding your dog’s diet, our team are more than happy to help.