Cheap Natural Remedies For Dog Dry Skin

Does your dog have itchy skin? I know my dog, Henry, often experiences itchy skin. Thus, it’s made me wonder why and what I can do for dog itchy skin relief. Remember to always ask your vet first as I’ve asked Henry’s vet. Personally, I love natural remedies, when possible. So, today let’s dig in and discover the best cheap natural remedies for dog dry skin.

a dog mom know about remedies for dog dry skin and helps soothes her long haired dog's itch.
disclaimer note
Budget tip:

The great thing about each home remedy presented in this article, is that you most likely already have them in your kitchen. Thus, you won’t need to pay anything additional. All it takes is a little time to administer it to your dog and wait for it to work. I know I’ve been pleased with many of these remedies. Not only for Henry’s soothing results, but also for my budget. It’s a win-win!

There could be a multitude of reasons. Some possible reasons for your dog experiencing itchy skin could include:

  • Food allergies
  • Seasonal allergies
  • Chemical allergies (such as an allergy to laundry or cleaning supplies)
  • Flea allergies

Moreover, some dogs have sensitive skin or other skin allergies. Sometimes this will cause them to lose their fur, pull out their fur, or lick until their coat is gone in a particular area. 

Either way, it’s best to consult your vet to determine the likely cause of your dog’s itchy skin. 

Yes! For example, if your dog suffers from pollen allergies like Henry, your dog may also get dry skin. Or dry skin can happen if your dog likes to live in the pool or water. In the winter, Henry really loves to lay by the heat register, which can dry out his skin even more. But thankfully there are natural remedies. Below are 12+ natural remedies for dog dry skin. I think you’ll find a great solution!

Are you not comfortable with your vet? In this article, I share how to find the best vet for you and your dog.

This is a great natural all-around remedy for dry itchy dog skin. 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

Hot spots, rashes, as well as other dry skin issues.

How to use:

Take a small amount and rub it into the affected area(s). For example, I’ve massaged coconut oil into Henry’s fur, which has helped ease his itch. 

Want to learn how to massage your dog at home? In this article, I give you a step-by-step guide.

This can also provide great relief for an itchy dog.  It also has some anti-inflammatory properties, which can be helpful for your dog’s dry itchy skin.

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

Seasonal or just dry skin issues. 

NOTE: Do not use ACV on hot spots or open wounds as it could be a skin irritation. 

How to use:

The general rule of thumb when using ACV is to make a spray of equal parts ACV to water. However, I would even back off the ACV to 1 part to 2 parts water just to be on the safe side. Then you can increase the strength. It’s always easier to increase than to decrease.

This can be a great natural remedy to help soothe dog dry skin. 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

Generally, EVOO is used for basic dry skin caused by a change in seasons (colder to warmer). However, it can be good for other dry skin ailments as well such as dog dandruff. 

NOTE: EVOO is not recommended for dogs with sensitive stomachs. As such, I don’t give EVOO to Henry. 

How to use:

If your vet recommends EVOO for your dog’s skin issues, it will most likely be to add 1t-1T of it to his/her food 1-2 times a week. However, the exact amount and frequency will be determined by your vet and your dog’s needs. EVOO will also make your dog’s coat very shiny. 

If your dog is itchy all over then an oatmeal bath might be the best option. It can provide soothing relief for an itchy skin condition. 

Curious about the benefits of oatmeal for your dog? In this article, I dive deep into the benefits, many of which will surprise you. 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

An oatmeal bath works best for dry flaky skin, a generalized itch, or seasonal allergy itching. 

How to use:

There are oatmeal baths you can purchase which you use as you would a simple bath. Some even come with aloe vera, which can add even more soothing for your dog. Although, you can also make your own oatmeal bath for your dog by grinding plain oatmeal, adding a bit of EVOO, and filling your bathtub with warm water to about your dog’s tummy. Add all oatmeal, EVOO, and your dog. Next, have your dog stay in the oatmeal bath for approximately 10 minutes. Finally, rinse your dog with clean warm water and dry your pup. 

Henry after scratchy his itchy on the grass.
Henry loves to lay on the grass. But he’s a bit allergic. So, I will generally rub on a bit of coconut oil or give him an oatmeal bath.

There are three herb teas that can be soothing for an itchy dog. These are:

  • Peppermint
  • Chamomile
  • Green tea

Curious about the various benefits of chamomile for your dog? In this article, I go through them all and how it saves you money.

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

Herb teas are more for the beginning of an itch. For instance, if your dog is just starting to itch his leg, then you can try this remedy. 

How to use:

There are two ways to apply herbal teas to help an itchy dog. 

  1. Fill your tub with warm water to your dog’s tummy. Then throw in 3-4 tea bags (plain herb tea with nothing else added). Next, let your dog soak in the herb tea for 10 minutes (but supervised) and then dry. 
  2. Brew a strong cup of herb tea. Let it cool. Transfer to a spray bottle and spray the affected area(s). You can let the tea stay on your dog’s fur. Also, make sure to lay down a towel or spray in an area you don’t mind getting soaked with herb tea.

It will depend on where your dog is itching and the type of skin issue. Moreover, a small amount of baking soda is considered safe for dogs to ingest. However, I’d always want to err on the side of caution if using this remedy and put a cone on Henry to reduce the possibility of licking. 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

Baking soda is best used when the skin problem results in a moist rash. The baking soda will help dry out the rash so that you can apply another remedy such as coconut oil.   

How to use:

Mix baking soda in equal parts with water and gently pat it onto the affected area. 

NOTE: If the area looks as if it’s a skin infection (green, yellow, swollen, warm to the touch, or is an open wound) then absolutely your dog needs to be seen by your vet. 

Great for food or ingested allergies.

What types of skin problems it’s good for:

It may be difficult to determine if your dog has a food allergy. Or even if your dog has ingested something he/she shouldn’t have which is causing an itch. Most times your dog will exhibit a hive or rash. But this isn’t always the case. However, yogurt is great for rashes, hives, digestive issues, and yeast infections. 

How to use:

Generally speaking 1-2t of plain yogurt (no sugar or additives) once a week added to food or given as a treat is considered safe for dogs. However, always check with your vet to verify what’s appropriate for your dog’s needs.  

This is a general immunity helper for your dog, which will help boost his/her overall response to allergies. Thus, itching should in theory be reduced. 

Want to learn about other easy ways to improve your dog’s immunity? In this article, I share great ones that are all super simple!

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

The thought is that this should help all types of skin ailments. Although it may not be immediate, it should provide some relief as it improves your dog’s immunity. 

How to use:

Probiotics come in different forms. Currently, this is the probiotic powder I use for Henry. I add it to his pumpkin, which he doesn’t mind. However, some are in pill or even treat form. The kind you select will depend on your dog’s needs or pickiness to new things. 

Among other benefits that fish oil can provide is it can help with allergies. Henry’s vet recommended it years ago for allergies, heart health, and arthritis. 

Curious about how fish oil can benefit your dog? In this article, I go into the nuts and bolts, or is that the gills and bubbles of it? 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

The idea with fish oil is that it helps to reduce flaky skin and improves immune systems. Thus, it should help most itchy skin issues for dogs. 

How to use:

Much like probiotics, fish oil comes in various forms. Some are pills, oils (liquids), or even cookies. I have an oil I use for Henry and mix it with his morning pumpkin dose. 

This can help a basic mild itch from a grass allergy or a mild insect bite. However, for added soothing abilities try soaking the compress in herbed tea water or even oatmeal bath water. 

Do you know that a warm compress can also help your dog’s eyes? In this article, I share how it can help your budget and your dog’s health. 

What types of skin ailments it’s good for:

More specifically warm compresses generally work best when your dog is experiencing a mild itch from a slight insect bite or a grass irritant.  

How to use:

The idea is to soak a washcloth in warm water and apply it to the affected area for 3-5 minutes several times a day. However, for added soothing abilities try soaking the compress in herbed tea water or even oatmeal bath water. Although, if you opt for oatmeal bath water, just make sure you rinse the area clean when done or your dog could itch from the oatmeal residue. 

You’d be shocked at how matted fur can pull the skin. It can cause infections and other skin ailments. Thus, if your dog is itching or licking his paw, leg, tail, look for a matt. Even the smallest ones can drive a dog nutty. 

I’m pretty good at brushing Henry daily. But when he goes outside and plays or digs, he can easily get a mat in his fur. In fact, I’ve found the tiniest little mats that have driven him nuts. He’s generally, fairly laid back, so they must really pull. 

How to fix:

You can try my favorite remedy of applying a little EVOO and gently working out the mat. However, there are times when you will need to trim out the mat and then finish with EVOO for the residual matted part against the skin. 

If your dog has digestive issues, an overall rash, or hives, then you may want to talk to your vet about a diet of fish and potatoes. This should be easier on your dog’s stomach and have less of a chance of causing allergy issues.  

How to fix:

Talk with your vet.

There may be times when you try everything your vet suggests and nothing seems to work. That’s when you’ll need to turn to pet-friendly hydrocortisone cream. In fact, Henry walked into an ant hill not long ago and got bit by a fire ant. I tried everything to soothe his intense itch. But in the end, it was the pet-friendly hydrocortisone cream that did the trick. 

How to use:

You’ll need to apply the hydrocortisone cream to the affected area. It doesn’t need to be much. Basically, just enough to cover the area. I also gently massaged the area as I was applying it. However, if the area is in a spot your dog will want to lick, then you may need a cone or DIY cone. I used a DIY cone for Henry since his ant bite was on his paw. 

There can be a few reasons why your dog has an itchy bum. They include:

  • Food allergy
  • Anal sacs are full, impacted, or even infected
  • Bacterial infection
  • Yeast infection
  • Environmental allergy 
  • Seasonal allergy

First, you’ll want to check with your vet to determine the cause of the itch. Then once that has been determined or at least the bad things checked off you can provide some soothing relief for your dog. 

Many ideas are similar to an itch found anywhere on your dog. However, it’s localized to the hind quarters. These include:

  • Brewed herb tea (peppermint, chamomile, green) in a compress or spray on the bum
  • Checking for mats
  • Warm compress to the bum area
  • Coconut oil (small amount)
  • EVOO (small amount)
  • Oatmeal bath
  • Pet-Friendly Hydrocortisone Cream
  • Simply fish and potato diet
  • Sanitary trim your pup’s privates (to reduce dingle berries and mats)

Some dogs do very well on Benadryl. Heck, Henry did for years. However, he developed a very sudden and severe allergy to Benadryl. I gave him a small dose one morning and 20 minutes later I was rushing him to the emergency with him barely breathing. Thus, while you may never have an issue, it’s too much of a roll of the dice for me. I’ll never give another critter Benadryl or anything like it. 

To read the full article on how Benadryl affected Henry, just go here. 

Absolutely! I’ve saved several hundred dollars by not having to take Henry to the vet or spend money on more pricey prescription drugs just by using home remedies. Of course, the amount saved will vary by issue and location. However, consider the following for a moment:

Vet visit$50-250
Skin infections$118
Allergic reactions causing skin ailments$189

Related articles:

I know when I’ve got an allergic reaction and itchy, it’s frustrating. But I know what it is and I can do something. Your dog, including my dog, Henry, just knows it itches. So, they naturally itch. It’s our job to help soothe their pain.

Thus, first, contact the vet if necessary and then turn to ways to relieve the itch.

I’ve honestly been surprised at how well a warm compress or coconut oil will work for Henry.

Often I will think he has a rash or hive, but it’s really dry skin because he’s licked from an itch. As such, when I apply the remedy, it helps to soothe the itchiness and the skin heals. Home remedies can be effective and very cheap when applied appropriately. Henry has responded well and my pocketbook has as well. It’s saved me a few vet trips and that means a few hundred dollars. 

a husky pup benefits from her mom learning about remedies for dog dry skin

Does your dog have itchy skin or dry skin? What do you do to help remedy your dog’s itchy skin?

About Terri Rodefer

Terri Rodefer is the founder of Tail Wag Wisdom, a blog focused on affordable pet care. She likes to say helping pet parents afford and love their animals even more, makes her tail wag. As a lifelong lover of all animals with a background in economics, biology, and marketing, allows Terri to bring a unique spin to pet care. 

10 thoughts on “Cheap Natural Remedies For Dog Dry Skin”

  1. Fantastic post and I am blessed that we have outgrown the itchies but what I was using on Layla which you did not mention is the Veteracyn Skin products which are fantastic also. Love your natural information as always

    • Oh my! I didn’t realize about Veteracyn skin products. I’m going to look into them as well. I may need to do an update quicker than I thought. Thank you so much for this information. Pets to Ms. Layla!

  2. Who knew so many common items could help relieve dry skin for our furry friends?! Thanks for sharing this comprehensive list. I love that not only are these natural and safer, but they help you save money as well!

    • Yes, I love that these are natural remedies and be using them, you prevent a more severe bill arising. It’s always my goal to have a very happy and healthy dog (or pet) while staying within budget. I truly believe it’s possible as you can see from my articles.

      Thank you so much for all your kind words! I really appreciate it!

  3. I always thought you had to ‘throw’ medication at an issue to finish it off, how wrong I was. Herbal teas seem to give so much help, and oatmeal.

    I gave our Harvey coconut oil and it transformed his coat! Honestly! It made him look even more handsome!

    • Honestly, if I can avoid chemicals, I will simply cause I think they have to many side effects. Or the long term side effects are unknown (that goes for me too). But there are often times, when medication is needed. Which is great to have to solve any issue that the vet thinks is best solved with medication.

      I love coconut oil as well! It really is good stuff! I bet Harvey was very handsome with a bit of coconut oil. Thank you for sharing and for being so supportive. I greatly appreciate it!

  4. These are great natural remedies for dry skin in dogs. I knew about most of these but the Apple Cider Vinegar is a new one to me. It has so many uses, doesn’t it!

    • Yes, Apple Cider Vinegar is one of those amazing miracle items. Not quiet like duct tape, but it’s close. I’m so glad you found this useful and I could give you some new information. Thank you for your continued support!

  5. Excellent information as always, Terri! My “queen” Harley began with all kinds of skin issues when she turned 14. Always a full beautiful coat, no issues, she suddenly developed horrible hot spots and dry areas. Coconut oil and Benadryl were constant supplies in my first aid kit…and even a cbd salve. Some helped a little, but nothing really truly irradicated it all and she had this bare spot that spread down her back, so much so, I could no longer use traditional flea and tick preventative on her and went with a natural lemongrass one (which worked great and no irritation, thankfully, which led me to changing them all at that point). But…poor Henry…developing an allergy to the allergy relief medicine! I have heard that happening. He certainly looks so very handsome and healthy in the photo, so what you are doing is working!

    Letting these go is a no go for sure. As you stated, prevention can help keep the dog healthy and pocketbook not so empty! Skin infections are horrid.

    Great info and sharing and Pinning to my readers!

    • Awe, thanks, Dorothy!

      Oh, I didn’t know about lemongrass. I’ll have to look into more alternatives. My mom used a CBD salve. Those do work well. I hadn’t thought about it for dogs. That’s a great idea. Thanks.

      You know, I can’t disagree on Henry…he is pretty stinking cute!

      Thanks for your continued support. I greatly appreciate it!


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