All about pet skin and coat care

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Symptoms of skin and coat problems

Does your pet have unusual skin issues?

Spot the symptoms

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How to treat your pet's skin and coat problems

Sometimes pet symptoms are more than skin deep.

Vet recommended supplements

cat scratching its jaw

Why is my pet so itchy?

Scratching can mean fleas, allergies, or infections. Find the cause

owner caring his pet

Is pet shedding normal?

Top reasons for pet shedding. Good treatments for pet shedding

dog playing with its owner

Dealing with your pet's dandruff and dry skin

Tips for flaky, itchy skin on pets. Natural remedies for dandruff

dog licking a cat

Banfield's guide to skin rashes

Causes and symptoms of skin rashes. Read about rashes

doctor checking the dog

Lumps, bumps, and masses

Are you seeing or feeling lumps on your pet? When to call the vet for help

doctor cleaning the cat

How to apply skin ointment

Was your pet prescribed topical meds? Tips for topicals

doctor cleaning the dog

Home skin and coat care

Hands-on tips for pet baths, tackling fleas, and more. Take care of your pet

dog is bathing

How to give your pet a bath

Follow our handy step-by-step instructions. It's bath time

owner cleaning cat's hair

How to check for fleas

Plus, important next steps if you find them! Check for fleas

doctor checking the dog

How to find a tick on your pet

Ticks can carry nasty diseases. Spot the signs

Commonly asked questions about dog and cat skin and coat care

A:Every pet is different! Although the general rule for dogs is every two to three months, it can help to check with your vet. We can recommend how often your pet could use a bath and even recommend shampoo types for their skin and coat.

Generally speaking, muddy or dirty pets need a good rinsing (with or without shampoo). After that, how often your pet should be bathed will depend on things like their species, breed, size, hair type, and how tolerant you are of pet smells, hair, and dander.
A:You may have heard that giving cats tuna water and mixing fish oil or raw eggs into a dog’s meal will give them a shinier coat. While your pet will probably enjoy these treats, they’re messy and won’t always help their coat. Raw eggs in particular carry a health risk from bacteria.

Instead, ask your vet about trusted supplements that have documented results to improve shine. Some common internet wisdom can actually be dangerous, so please ask first. We’re a great resource before adding any supplement to your pet’s diet.
A:There are a number of reasons that pet nails start to look strange. Any change in appearance is worth mentioning to your vet.
A:Keep your pet away from common triggers like freshly cut grass, pine straw, and mulches. Plus, many of the things we do for human allergies can help pets as well.
  • Using HEPA air filters to help reduce pollen and dust mites
  • Regular vacuuming and dusting
  • Washing their bedding with hypoallergenic laundry detergents
  • Reducing or eliminating fragrances from spray air fresheners, essential oil diffusers, incense, and cigarette smoke
A:Many essential oils are dangerous for pets (the ones used in commercial products are often incredibly diluted). Your vet is happy to answer questions about any specific product. Bring the package in so we can discuss your goals in using it, plus help identify any hidden dangers in the ingredients.
A:Breeds with a “hypoallergenic” coat are reputed to shed less. This means that they spread less dander, which is actually what often triggers pet allergies in human beings

However, being hypoallergenic doesn’t mean that the pet doesn’t have allergies of their own! They are just as likely to suffer from their own allergies as other breeds.
A:Caring for your pet’s skin and coat includes a regular high-quality diet (in the proper serving size), prescription parasite control, baths (as recommended by your vet), and regular coat brushing.
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More about pet health

A cat eating out of a food bowl next to a dog eating food from someone's hand

Diet and nutrition for cats and dogs

Tips for navigating the pet food aisle.

Pet food FAQs

An orange and white cat lying next to a brown dog in the sun

The lowdown on pets and parasites

Hint: Parasites are bad news.

Learn about parasites

A small brown and white dog and a tabby and white cat eat out of metal food bowls

A guide to pet food allergies

Ingredients and symptoms to look out for.

Dog and cat allergies