Dog Rashes, Staph Infection Symptoms, Common Types of Allergic Reaction, Skin

Dog Rashes

dog rashes

Dog Rashes…the facts…

It is currently much more common for dogs to develop an allergic reaction or skin infection like scabies, demodectic mange or symptoms of a staph infection (Staphylococcus) either due to fleas or other causes.

Veterinary Pet Insurance currently estimate that 1 in 7 dogs are taken to the vet’s by their owners due to skin allergies!

Below we have given a complete guide to some of the rashes that your beloved dog or puppy may get.

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Dog Allergies

An allergy is an allergic reaction to a specific inhalant, food or something in their environment that has caused your dog to have specific symptoms like a skin infection.

An allergic reaction will not happen in dogs after their first experience to the specific allergen as the first experience will cause the dog’s immune system to produce antibodies for the specific allergen. It is the second exposure that will  trigger a reaction between the allergen and antibody which will then release a histamine.

Although an allergic reaction in people will often produce rashes or effect the respiratory system, in dogs it is very common for the reaction to produce a skin infections.

Allergies in dogs are often caused by the following…

  • Something your dog has inhaled i.e molds, grasses or dust mites.
  • Fleas, mites or insect bites.
  • Food allergies.
  • A specific irritant that has had contact with the skin

Common Dog Rashes & Skin Infections



  • Hives is an allergic reaction that will cause your dog to get a nasty skin infection, producing itchy raised circular wheals on the skin, face, stomach and other places. It is also not uncommon for the dog’s eye lids to swell up.


  • Causes of hives can be due to insect bites, they may appear after a vaccination or even due to specific allergens in their environment.


  • Vets will often begin treating hives with antihistamines like benadryl.



  • Your dog will itch, scratch and your pooch may develop a red bumpy rash, which may concentrate in one area, particularly on your dog’s rump or tail.
  • Your dog may lose some hair where he has been scratching.
  • The area where your dog has been bitten may appear scaly and dry.


  • Fleas are a common cause of dog rashes and subsequent skin infections.


  • You need to remove the fleas from the environment, take a look at our section on flea bites on humans for specific advice on this.
  • Medicated shampoo or anti-histamines may be needed in severe cases.

Dog Yeast Infection


  • Your dog may (but certainly not always) have very itchy skin and he will need to scratch.
  • Your dog’s coat may smell.
  • The coat may have a greasy feel to it.


  • A yeast infection or candida albicans can normally live in your dog’s body within the intestinal tract often controlled by friendly bacteria and is a common cause of dog rashes and skin infections.


  • You will need to take your dog to the vet and he or she will probably take a swab from your dog’s skin.
  • After taking a swab your vet may decide that an anti-yeast shampoo may be appropriate.
  • It is possible for your dog to get a yeast infection in the ear, take a look at our section on treating a dog ear yeast infection for more advice on this.

Scabies and Demodectic Mange in Dogs

dog rashes

Dog Scabies or Sarcoptic Mange


  • Your dog may will scratch and itch incessantly
  • Your dog may lose hair around the ears, legs and face
  • Your dog may develop a crusty skin.


  • scabies can be passed from dogs to humans and is cause by the Sarcoptes Scabiei mite.
  • The nasty parasite will feed on it’s host i.e. your dog.
  • Highly contagious


  • Your dog may need to have weekly injections of ivermectin from your vet, this can be for up to 4 weeks

Demodectic Mange in Dogs also known as Red Mange


  • The symptoms of demodectic mange on dogs can be loss of hair.
  • Cracked skin.
  • Fever.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Red scaly skin that may ooze a liquid.


  • Demodectic mange on dogs is caused by the demodex canis mite.
  • This mite is worm like and normally affects young dogs from the age of three months up to 12 months.
  • The skin infection is passed from mother to her puppy or puppies but they must have been in direct contact.
  • The mite cannot live off of it’s host.


  • You vet may use an insecticide like mitaban and after this your dog may need to be clipped and then treated with a benzoyl peroxide shampoo like.

Dog rashes can include the nasty Staph Infection

Staph Infection in Dogs or Staphylococcus


  • Staph infection is often caused due to your dog having an allergic reaction to dust,  food or fleas.
  • A bad or weak immune system.
  • Hormonal problems or Hypothyroidism.
  • Your dog may have been under some stress.

Staph Infection Symptoms

  • Dog rashes are very severe.
  • Rapid hair loss.
  • Your dog may appear tired and lethargic.
  • Your dog may get discolored spots on the skin.


  • You will need specific advice from your vet.
  • Your vet may give your dog some antibiotics.
  • A prescription of benzoyl peroxide shampoo may be given by your vet.
  • Your dog should always remain as this can help when treating staph infection symptoms.

We hope you found our page on common dog rashes and skin infection useful. However, remember dog rashes and skin infection should always be treated by a vet before you attempt to treat your dog from home.

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