Dog Itchy Skin Home Remedy Options

Salmon Oil

2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Gina (Duncan, Bc, Canada) on 06/16/2013
5 out of 5 stars

My black lab would have terrible itching and even lose fur on her rear. I started giving her my wild salmon oil capsules that I had for myself. I started by giving her a couple every day for a couple weeks and now she gets a couple caps every few days.

Salmon Oil
Posted by Kathryn4 (Owings, Maryland) on 02/25/2013
5 out of 5 stars

Sometimes the brand of dog food is lacking in nutirents, I found that one squirt of Salmon oil when I feed my dog made his forever itching skin go away and saved tremendous times of bathing him in all kinds of shampoos that did nothing! It works. He was always red and inflamed and now a thing of the past. The vets don't even tell you how to cure this.

Ted's Mange Cure

Posted by Annabel (Mount Pleasant, South Carolina) on 02/06/2013

We have a Bedlington Terrier who had red bumps on her belly and scratched constantly. I tried Ted's Mange recipe and put it in a spray bottle. I sprayed her every day or twice daily for awhile and it worked. She is basically itch free. One important point: The borax is difficult to dissolve so I heat the borax in the water to dissolve and add everything else to that. You will find that the borax will solidify into chunks after a period of time and you will need to make the recipe again. Hopefully the problem will be gone by that time.

Ted's Anti-Fungal and Staph Solution

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Theresa (Mpls., Mn) on 10/14/2013
5 out of 5 stars

I have dogs who have seasonal allergies and other allergies that show up on their skin. They get hives, or crusty lesions on their skin; sometimes the skin is very reactive and they will rub on furniture to relieve their itching and cause the hives to raise. Sometimes they just get small, black looking spots that give way to round areas that would make you think 'ring worm' but they are not. I have taken them to the vet when the itching is beyond what I can manage and gotten the steroid shot and in some cases antibiotics if the skin has gotten infected. I have bathed in the medicated shampoos to no avail; nothing really seems to *work* and I end up down the same road - cortisone shot and antibiotics.

This year I discovered Ted's Anti-fungal and Anti-staph solution. Since I have a quantity of dogs, I was able to do some side by side testing. I had one dog I used the cortisone shot and Sulfadene medicated shampoo, and other dog I used only Ted's Anti-fungal and Anti-staph solution. While neither the shampoo or Ted's solution outright stopped the inflammatory state of the skin, Ted's solution stopped any topical infection from starting and spreading. In the dog I used the sulfadene on, it looked as if it was turning into a greasy seborrhea; when I used Ted's solution on that dog the condition resolved immediately.

Dogs with allergy skin are work -no question. In my case it means I bathe my dogs weekly, sometimes oftener if needed, in Ted's solution. While it is not perfect -again, I need to find a way to halt the inflammatory state - at least it allows me to keep the skin healthy to avoid a secondary infection and the antibiotics that are required to resolve it.

I gleaned this recipe from Ted's the feedback in the pet section; since I tend to have a quantity of dog to be bathed at any given time, I usually make a quadrupple batch. The only possible side effect may be that a black coated dog will suffer peroxide bleaching which will turn a black coat red with multiple uses over time.

Ted's Anti-fungal/Anti-staph solution


  • 1 - 16 oz bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 bottle Milk of Magnesia
  • 1 box Epsom salts
  • 1 box Borax
  • Filtered or distilled water


Dilute the 16 oz brown bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide to a 1% solution by dumping the bottle into a jug and adding 32 oz of filtered or distilled water; I just fill up the empty brown bottle with water and dump it in the jug twice. Now you have 48 ounces of a 1% solution of hydrogen peroxide.

Add 4 table spoons EACH:

Borax, Epsom salts, and Milk of Magnesia.

Shake the dickens out of the solution. I usually run a tub full of hot water and set the jug in the tub, and then when the tub cools where I can bathe my dog the solution is by then an agreeable temperature for the dog. Bathe the dog in doggy shampoo or what have you, get all the crusty lesions gently scrubbed up and loose skin and scabs off and rinse well. Now drain the tub and when empty plug it up again and now pour the jug of prepared solution over the dog. I use a plastic cup to scoop up the solution and keep pouring over the dog. I try to keep this up for 10 minutes. If you have multiple dogs with skin issues you may be able to do two at a time depending on the size of your dogs. After 10 minutes I pull the plug and let the dog drip a bit in the tub, and then I take the wet dog with bare hands and put her in a crate with no bedding. Do not towel the dog off - you want as much of the solution to stay on the dog as possible, so it can 'work'. I allow the dog to drip dry in the crate with no bedding. It helps to have the house heat ON, and a nice tasty bone or high value chewy in the crate to distract the dog for a bit. After half an hour I let the dog out and towel dry as best I can and then let them work themselves dry by running all about the house. You do NOT rinse the solution off - you let it dry completely and that is it, until the next bath.

If you have a tiny dog, if you do not wish to make up such a large quantity of solution, the single batch is as follows:

  • 1-1/2 cups of 1% hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 tbsp MOM
  • 1 tbsp Epsom salts
  • 1 tbsp Borax

You may be able to put this into a spritzer bottle and spritz problem areas on your dog, but I find it best to tackle the entire dog with a full body treatment first, before using the spritz bottle for a spot treatment approach.

Tuna in Oil

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Grizzly390 (Iota, Louisiana) on 05/18/2016
5 out of 5 stars

Dog itching, or scratching

Ok, to start, my dog is a long hair chihuahua. I tried the apple-cider vinegar, and benadryl and applied baby oil after the bath and he looked drugged and still itched. Next day, arm and hammer bath. and light shampoo. No good.

Remembered last year, you know those individualize packets, of tuna fish?, with the oil of course, can't stand the smell of it in water, anyway. gave him a packet to eat, next day another packet, tomorrow another. Last year 3 packets did the trick, now this only strikes once a year, go figure, I don't know how it works or why. but it works.

But the tuna fish works for him. Thanks for listening, good luck with yours. Mike

Turmeric, Essiac Tea, Ted's Baths

1 User Review
4 star (1) 

Posted by Om (Hope, Bc, Canada) on 01/25/2014
4 out of 5 stars

Hi Theresa, or anyone on EC that can give feed back.

Late last year a woman came to my door with a large black rescue dog that is part retriever, newfie. His back was one raw piece blood and serum from years of neglect by people who were addicted to alcohol as well he was kicked by a man and abused constantly. By the way, this is a wonderful, intelligent dog that puts us to shame because he has not a mean bone in him . For four years he wore an e-collar, but no serious treatment for his condition.

The dog was screaming with pain and rubbing his back on the floor in utter agony. I immediately went to my kitchen cabinet and poured high quality turmeric on his huge wound till totally covered. The room was full of blood and turmeric which cleaned up well, so no problem. After about three minutes, while we were talking, I noticed the dog lying quietly in a corner, relaxing. Within three days this large wound area was healed! The hair began growing back with small areas that need work to help fill in. Wonderful turmeric!

The reason I am seeking input is that months later after several baths which he endures with patience most of the scabs have fallen off except those at the root of his tail and along the tail. New bumps appear with a type of goose skin and severe itching. He is on Essiac to clean him out which can take months. I am waiting to get out of this small town to purchase a good e-collar, much as I hate it but plan on keeping it on only after a TED bath for mites and so on.

Meanwhile I use Dr. Bronner's lavender kastile soap for another bath, following up with much diluted ACV which both my dogs hate for the smell even though they like it in the food. What I am concerned about is those hard itchy bumps and the lower back and tail not clearing up. Is it detox or what? I am sure he has mites as he scratches his face quite often. They get home made food with lots of raw veggies, turmeric, MSM a little Celtic salt, kelp and VCO. Some raw chicken items, too. Top quality grain free kibbles in a smaller amount than the rest.

Can anyone make useful suggestions without bringing in vets. Thanks, Om

Replied by Debbie
(Bonita Springs, Fl)

Try applying either hemp seed oil or coconut oil to the area three or four times a day. Probably wouldn't hurt to mix some turmeric in with it.

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Om!

My spidey senses are tingling on this one. Mites aren't usually itchy, which if it was mites means that you are dealing with sarcoptic mites, and those can get way bad - like when you first saw this dog.. but then you would see hair loss all over, not just the back, but on the face and legs and groin.

Have you ruled out fleas? The itch pattern IMHO fits the MO for fleas. If this is not your personal pet but a client dog, do you know for *sure* the dog's home is not flea infested? Just something about the issue being at the base of the spine and along the tail makes me think fleas. And no matter how many times you wash the dog, if the dog's environment is contaminated the problem will not resolve.

So, if you DO find fleas anywhere in the environment or on the dog then give a good flea, starting at the nose and working your way back; I use Dawn dish soap when I have to do a flea bath, and follow up with an ACV rinse to neutralize any soap that might remain in the coat and re-balance the PH of the skin. I don't envy you blow drying a huge newf mix and all that coat, but you really should blow him out and follow with a thorough flea coming.

Now, if you have absolutely ruled out fleas then the itch pattern you describe smacks of inhalant allergy - mold from snow melt, cedar tree pollens. The remedies for allergies apply - urtica urens/stinging nettle, Thuja - and turmeric of course to combat inflammation, and certainly probiotics to get the gut healthy which will cut down the immune response/inflammation.

Sounds like the diet you are feeding is tops - but when dealing with a rescue you have to repair the 'back log' of being fed less than ideal foods [which likely created a yeasty gut] so ACV or baking soda in the water to alkalize is indicated as well.

I posted below under the Dog with Fishy Skin Odor my Allergy Battle Plan that is based on and includes Ted's remedies - check it out, as I think the crisis doses for baking soda in the water may apply as well as the anti staph remedy for the particular patch at the base of the tail and along the tail- sounds like that may have a fungal component to it. And then when the dog was all dry, back at with the turmeric :)

Replied by Om
(Hope Bc Canada)

Thanks, Theresa, for your reply.

Of course he was plagued with fleas in an inundated environment for years. But there are no fleas here. I use dry turmeric only on fungal conditions or wet wounds. I plan to use VCO with turmeric to moisturize his skin.

It is just the new and old bumps that I am wondering about. Are they bacteria heavens? Mites do itch, Theresa. I will follow your instructions with the Ted regimen. I used such a bath recently but my little dog caught a cold in the early morning. I was mortified and ran to my homeopathics, dosing him with ACONITE, then with a combo from HEEL and would you believe it: not a cough since; he is fine. However I will be spot treating mainly till the weather gets warmer.

Big dog bit me as a pain reflex when I tried to deal with his tail. It was a tooth wound. As turmeric was right with me, I pressed the powder into the wound and there was no bleeding, swelling or discolourisation. Next day I could hardly discern it. It was not his fault. Right now I am using a med. soft nylon brush to remove dead skin. He does not mind that. Thanks again, Om

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Om!

You said: "Of course he was plagued with fleas in an inundated environment for years. But there are no fleas here."

Perhaps I misunderstood- this dog has been in your custoday since late last year? This is your dog now? You might want to try the lamp/plate of dish soap water trap one night as the pattern of itching is a textbook example for flea issue.

That said....

" Mites do itch, Theresa."

Sarcoptic mange mites itch like crazy - however in my experience demodex mites do NOT itch, not until secondary infections such as staph or funal occur.

"It is just the new and old bumps that I am wondering about. Are they bacteria heavens?"

Bumps upon bumps sound like one or both of two things - hives [allergies and inflamation] and pustules [bacterial staph]. Turmeric is effective on MRSA and inflamation, so I would not hesitate to go at the dog's rump with the turmeric shaker as well as dosing in the food.

You might consider adding oils to his diet to help with moisturizing. this is Ted's advice on Newfoundland case from the EC pet allergies page:

'A common remedy for a dry skin condition is evening primrose oil, one teaspoon mixed in a dog food. A dog's skin falling off is often insects, but can be certain staph bacteria for example. As an emeergency remedy I used, milk of magnesia (no aluminum) mixed with water at a ratio of about 1: 2 (which means one part water two parts milk of magnesia solution). The milk of magnesia kills off the invading staph and other bacteria whenever H2O2 and Borax [mange remedy] fails to work. As a warning, the milk of magnesia may cause the dog to have a mild diarrhea, but it seems to help some detox. A baking soda 1/2 teaspoon per liter of water will help raise the dog's immune system. On the other hand 1/8 teaspoon only once a week of borax mixed in one liter of drinking water will help the dog raise the hormones.

As to other remedies that may help, the opening of wounds can be healed faster, some aloe vera is applied or in some cases that has helped me was the application of milk of magnesia, than this is followed by a vaseline to prevent further infection in case things do not work out.

In some cases a certain mange can be resistant to H2O2 and borax treatment due to a REINFECTION. If this is the case the H2O2 and borax is redone, but this time the dog is quarantined in a small room or cage that is sterilized and clean during the treatment period. I have found this method to work quite well in case the H2O2 and borax didn't work initially. I suspect that there is a small hives of mange somewhere in the house that the dogs get reinfected, and hence a quarantine the dog in a clean sterilized area, instead of allowing the dogs to roam around a large area seems to do the trick.'

And as sweet and gentle a soul as this dog is, it may be prudent to muzzle him prior to any grooming session were you have to work the dead skin off the affected area. There are simple muzzle you can make with nylon stockings, or simple dish clothes. For that matter, you can google how to make a Elizabethan collar at home as well. You might also consider cutting the hair shorter [NOT shave to the skin] to make treating the affected areas easier.

Replied by Om
(Hope Bc Canada)

Hi Theresa and all Pet Lovers on E.C.

I am glad I remembered neem seed oil. After one treatment the skin looks wonderful. Neem is anti bacterial and anti viral remedy that also helps hair regrow, discourages fleas, kills mites and no-no critters and lice. It has a smell but I can live with that. This will address the staph infection which, I suspect he may have. Also some bare spots may regrow as future will tell.

There are no more dry flakes and he looks clean. He is now my dog and a joy to have around. His bumps are not all over, just here and there. Thanks, Theresa, I will get a muzzle and e-collar tomorrow. Neem is very bitter, so he is not licking now. I plan to treat him generously with this oil which would differ with each dog, I think.. I warm the neem oil a bit as it becomes semi solid; the colour is gold/brown and one can see the seeds.

I have been reading up on it and I also have the powdered neem leaves to fill into capsules. If a dog has diabetes, this and holy basil leaf powder would be best. I plan to use it myself off and on.

In India neem is famous. People eat neem leaves on empty stomach and it is always hard to reach up to the branches as they have been stripped of their leaves by others. Neem is for everything. The tree itself discourages invasive weeds in its vicinity. The twigs of Margosa (neem) tree are used for tooth brushes. Namaste, Om

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Om!

Wow - no more flakes after just 1 treatment with Neem? I have used Neem in the past but never with such stellar results. Clearly this is the right remedy for your dog! I guess its time for me to dust off my bottle and try, try again...


Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Om!

One more idea from EC's Neem page - date unknown, but likely several years old:

[YEA] Marie from Sumter, SC: "This saved my dog's life. Mitaban was literally killing him. Neem oil smells like garlic, but when he's dry, its not too bad. Give the dog a haircut so his fur is ? inch. Mix 8 ounce bottle of 10% benzoyl peroxide (People) facial cleanser with 16-20 ounce bottle of dog shampoo. This will do for several baths. BENZOYL PEROXIDE BLEACHES JUST LIKE HYDROGEN PEROXIDE.

Use 'dog' towels and blankets and remove the nice bathroom rug. Wear old clothes. Wet dog completely. Drain bathtub. Lather dog with a generous amount of benzoyl peroxide shampoo mix for 10 minutes. Give dog a shower for 10 minutes to rinse very carefully. Benzoyl peroxide opens the pores-- mites live in the pores. Keep dog in tub. Add ? cup neem oil to gallon of warm water in a bucket. If the dog is small and you can find a container that he fits in, do that inside of bathtub. Soak him for 5 minutes, massage well several times and he's done. For medium to large dog, put each foot in bucket and massage solution into dog's leg. Use a cup to pour over dog repeatedly trying to save as much as possible in bucket to reuse. Massage into the entire dog. Be careful of eyes. Use a sponge for the belly and face. Wash 5-10 minutes, depending on how big the dog is. Do not rinse off. Do not towel off. When he stops dripping, wrap him in a blanket and stick him in his kennel or a small warm spot. Keep dog warm until dry. All his pores are open; he could take a terrible chill. Bathe every week. He can have baths twice a week instead if it is really bad. Every 2-3 days, rub neem oil on afflicted areas, more often if he won't stop chewing. It doesn't matter if he licks it off after a few minutes. They make neem oil pills. My dog also gets the skin yeast infections dogs can get with demodex so we had to soak him in vinegar. No soap, no scrubbing, just soak good. He has a wading pool. We always add a gallon of vinegar to it. He soaks himself in it and that cures his yeast."

Replied by Derek
(United Kingdom)

My dog is scratching & biting her paws due to a pink rash on skin, have been feeding her dried iams for dogs. I have a strong suspision its the food as I have bathed her in special shampoo & used fox mite spot on from vets but still itching so try going back to meat products as manufacturers are using fillers in dried food they also have had many recalls due to toxic substances in production

Replied by Kay
(Jax, Fl, USA)


My GSD at one time also suffered tremendously from itchy skin. I tried everything from prescription shampoos, etc. What helped her the most is I found out she apparently was allergic to Corn meal. So I had to get a dog food which didn't have this in it. Her skin condition cleared up. Sometimes it is an internal thing.

Turmeric, Probiotics

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Kasra (Tehran) on 05/16/2017
5 out of 5 stars


My dog started having

-Ear infections ( which resolved with applying zinc oxide ointment in his ears )

-Biting scratching his feet and his whole body which then developed to deep bloody sores .

- He couldn't stop licking himself, the whole 24/7 he licked his sores ( which he caused himself by obsessively biting himself ) and other parts of his body

-he developed ( from long time before other symptoms appear ) ocular melanosis ( colorful patches ( similar to color of cornea ) in white part of eye

-some sores on his soft palate
all indicators of a weak/malfunctioning immune system, that's what I guess .

-He developed many rigid, nailing-like furs

-Many yellowish spots beside many red inflamed spots on his skin

things didn't help :

- dietary changes ( eliminating gluten, sugars ... no dry food, no canned food, no sweets, no sugar, he has always been on a healthy diet but sometimes we gave him dry food or cookies which we even stopped it immediately)

-apple cider vinegar ( both spraying on him and adding to his food )

which helped :
TURMERIC + Probiotic pills ( by boosting immune system ) but " just after some days we stopped probiotics " so I think which really helped was TURMERIC .

+ Stopped biting himself gradually and just after some days he completely has stopped licking and biting himself

+ all Sores started healing and resolved after few days

-Melanosis is still there in his eye ( not sure if contributed to immune system or food allergies, maybe it's normal! )

-sores on his soft palate are still there, I'll keep monitoring and we'll update the post if anything changed

+his fur became softer

+spots are all wiped out

i think it's useful to add that, we used to boil his food in water containing turmeric but " it never helped ", but " adding one teaspoon of turmeric every day directly to his food " helped, if you mix it with the food ( not dry food ) the dog wont notice it and will eat it, but the ratio of food to turmeric is important .
He is sleeping deeply now, started playing again and feeling better.

Replied by Kasra


just wanted to report back that those 3 sores on his soft palette, completely healed as well ( it took more time though, but they finally resolved ).

Unpasteurized Sauerkraut

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Lisa (Mn) on 05/12/2015
5 out of 5 stars

My Doberman is currently 5 years old and has suffered full body yeast infections and allergies since he was two. For about 2/3 years we had been bringing him to the vet once a month for antibiotics to stop the constant itching. He was itching till he was bloody. We tried: the antibiotics, coconut oil, tea tree oil, tea tree spray, changing his food, bathing in oatmeal, bathing in Apple cider vinegar, and several other things. Everything would sort of help and for a very short periods of time.

I'm not a vet but what I knew about my dogs was around 3/4 years ago both of our dogs ended up with a bug that made them vomit for a few days. They were both given a strong dose of antibiotics. After the bug went away, they both had these spots of flakey skin. In the one dog it went away and in the Doberman that was the beginning to a 3 year battle of bumps, itching, yeastie ears/body, flaky skin, and massive hair loss....

What we FINALLY found that worked is, unpasteurized sauerkraut. Giving the dogs extra probiotics, replacing the good bacteria that was killed off with the massive dose of antibiotics. Now, the dogs don't like the taste of the kraut, so, for an extra bonus to promote healthy skin oils.... I melt some coconut oil and pour it over the kraut and they both go crazy to eat it.

This is was a great combo for them. The Doberman's skin has clear up.... It's not perfect but 98% better and I'm so happy with the results!!!!

It might be worth a try for someone out there. It HAS to be unpasteurized sauerkraut or it won't do anything. You can NOT cook it or you would kill the probiotics off...

I hope this helps someone who is devastated by watching their dog suffer!!!!!

Replied by Oldmatelot
(Elgin, Ontario)

I am probably in the wrong place but I am old and not used to these machines -- can you use any apple cider vinegar or is there a special kind - we live rurally and the choice is small -- thank you.

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Oldmatelot!

I'm with you - sometimes with these machines it is hard to know just what topic you are responding to; do you have a dog with itchy skin?

There are a couple types of apple cider vinegar; if you want to take it in a drink/medicinally/internally then the kind you want is raw/unpasturized, organic, unfilitered and 'with the mother'. There are brands of ACV that are either white vinegar with apple added, or the pasturized filtered type; these kinds can be used externally - for bathing and cleaning.

Replied by Fran

Lisa, how often did you give the sauerkraut to your dog, or do you make it a regular part of the diet regime? Also how much did you give to him? Thanks very much

Replied by Cydne

I have a 9 month old female dobie. Which has itched the whole time I have to give her benandryl at night once the dose wears off she itching again. No sleep here. The vet said when she was younger she had yeast. Ok? To young to test what other allergy. I bath her with puppy shampoo for her problem. Then itching really starts bad. She eats the best dog food for her condition I add coconut oil. White bath room with black and tan dog hair rug!!!!!! Help Please

Replied by Jane
(Adelaide, Australia)

Hi, You must be so worried...I know I was when my poodle pup was itching like crazy for the last few days. He's even taken some of his wool off and there are red itchy marks on his side. I feed him a totally raw diet - mince beef mixed with minced kangaroo with a raw egg, sardines, coconut oil, diatomatious earth, garlic, ground flaxseed, ground pumpkin seed and apple cider vinegar. I make about 2 kilos which lasts for 2 weeks. He also gets a chicken neck every day for extra calcium. Eating like this I was surprised he was even itching but there you I bathed him in a solution of luke warm water with a capful of pinetarsol in it and some epsom salts. I then used a rinsing solution of more luke warm water with organic apple cider vinegar and left it on him with no extra rinse.

On his sore areas I smeared some aloe vera gel mixed with some turmeric powder and in his itchy ears I wiped with a cotton ball soaked with apple cider vinegar and then smeared some aloe there too. Tonight he's like a new boy - a little itchy around his mouth which I might have missed but I'll do it all again tomorrow and then every two days and then every four until it's better. Then back to once every few weeks or once a month.

Try to keep any grains away from his diet if possible - raw food is really easy once you make lots and freeze each portion. And chicken necks are easy to feed even from a raw state. From what I've learned dogs only need raw meat and bones and occasionally eggs and 2/3 times a week some offal. The aloe I grow in the garden in a pot, it's easy and cheap to grow. In the summer I use the cider vinegar mixed with water and spray on him to keep the mozzies away and to help with itchy skin. Hope this may be of some interest.

All the best.

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