Here’s a question that may be on your mind if you see strange bumps on your trusty canine companion: do dogs get acne? If so, what can you do to treat it? Obviously, you can’t take him to one of those mall kiosks and buy him the latest and greatest acne treatment, right? So just what do you do to get rid of dog acne, if anything?
What is Dog Acne?
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Dogs can get acne just like humans (although I am sure they aren’t quite as self conscious about it as we are!) Just like us, some acne is to be expected when they go through their adolescent phase, which is about 5-8 months of age. Other than that, acne can be related to poor hygiene or bacteria. He might even have a food allergy. So what does acne on a dog look like and what can you do to get rid of it?
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What does it look like? Dog acne shows in the form of red bumps or blackheads (same as us!). They show up on the chin, lips and belly of your dog. It can be bothersome to him, so you might find him scratching the area. You can try to discourage this by using a bitter spray, but just watch and make sure it is not irritating the area. You certainly don’t want to make it worse!
How to treat dog acne:
Let it be: One option you have is to just let it run it’s course. If he is going through that adolescent stage for dogs, it will clear up on it’s on.
Baths: If your furry friend is past adolescence, then he might need to be bathed more often. If you aren’t bathing your dog at least a couple times a month, start there. You can even bathe him once a week to help him stay clean. You can use a medicated shampoo found at the pet store. Try an antibacterial shampoo that has aloe vera or echinacea. Be sure to use shampoo made for dogs, not humans, we have different needs and they can be harsh for your pet. Keep an eye on the acne and make sure the shampoo you purchased isn’t making the problem worse.
Trip to the vet: If you can’t seem to clear the acne up on your own, you may want to take him to the vet. Especially if you see the area getting infected! He can give you a prescription for ointments, or oral medication to treat it if it is not going away. Think of it as acne in an adolescent, sometimes they need prescription grade stuff to clear it up.
Related: How to Treat and Prevent Hot Spots in Dogs
Dog acne is more bothersome to us than it is to him. It’s not noticeable to his other k-9 friends, I promise! If you are really worried than I would speak with your vet to make sure he is taken care of.
Have you treated dog acne before? Do you have a good shampoo to recommend that helps to get rid of the acne? Share your stories below!