Apple Cider Vinegar for Dogs: Skin Problems

Skin Ailments
Posted by Julie (Texas) on 04/04/2017
1 out of 5 stars

I had a bad response to an apple cider vinegar rinse with my Westie. He has a black yeasty skin issue that many of his breed have as well as flea bite allergies. I diluted the apple cider vinegar more than 50% as a precaution and used this very dilute solution after his bath as a rinse.

Immediately he began to cry, shake, and almost convulse due to the intense discomfort. I rinsed him thoroughly with water for several minutes and dried him off all the while he trembled and whimpered.

It took minutes for him (and me) to calm down and he was extra itchy for hours afterwards. Luckily there seemed to be no lasting harm.

There was no evidence of open wounds, broken skin, or even red color on his skin or I would not have tried this. I believe that since his skin was irritated it had lost its natural protection to the acid solution, even though it was very dilute. I had researched using apple cider vinegar before trying this and never found someone with a negative reaction.

We get some relief for him using a Tea tree oil shampoo and conditioner baths every other day and follow with a rinse of chlorohexidine to prevent infections from developing. (you can easily find this as a concentrate and mix it yourself) We also make our dog's food in order to control exactly what goes in there.

Good luck everyone with your little loves. I am posting my negative experience on every website/blog I can to try and save someone else the horrible response we endured with apple cider vinegar. Not saying it can't help some, or that my dog's response is typical, but those who have dogs with sensitive skin should not use this topically.

Skin Ailments
Posted by Joyce (Brookings, OR) on 02/15/2009
1 out of 5 stars


My yorkie has been suffering with a skin condition since getting fleas about a year ago. She wakes us up almost every night moaning as she rubs her back against whatever she can rub it on until areas are sore or inflamed. I found this site last night while researching her condition and just a bit ago tried the ACV. I used a dilution of 1 part ACV to 3 parts water in a spray bottle and sprayed it on her after her bath ( I bathed her with Relief shampoo and let it sit about 5 minutes) as she has always had sensitive skin and reacts adversely to most shampoos. She had one area on her back in particular that she had rubbed until it was inflamed and had a few small sores, which is also why I used a 1:3 dilution. Anyway, I blotted off the excess water after her bath, but she was still quite wet, and started spraying her. Almost immediately she started trembling and I started to notice that a few of the worst spots in the inflamed area were exuding a white foam - similar to what an open sore looks like when you put hydrogen peroxide on it. I grew immediately concerned with the foaming and her (by this time) almost violent trembling, and quickly rinsed off the ACV mixture, blotted her wet coat with a towel and blew her dry. She did not stop trembling until I she was dry and I applied a Tea Tree and E Antispetic cream that i have been using with some success to treat open sores. itching. She seems fine now, and the reaction doesn't seem to have been allergenic, but the area is still somewhat inflamed. My concern is that the ACV, even with a 1:3 dilution, burned her skin. Before applying the cream, the skin in the inflamed area was clearly worse - course and puffy - so now I'm a little hestitant to use it again. In reading some of the other comments, it sounded like some people just spray it on their dogs when they are dry - and used it when their dogs had sores and inflamations...I really wanted - NEEDED - this to work but...does anyone have any insight to offer? Should I dilute it further next time? Should I have not allowed the shampoo to sit for 5 minutes (your supposed to leave it on for 10)? HELP!