Although underestimated or even unrecognized as an organ, the skin has amazing properties. For starters, this is the largest organ of the body. Both robust and flexible, the skin has many features, including body temperature regulation, helping to prevent dehydration and protection against trauma and illness. Without fur our pets could not have hair, but everything inside was going to be exposed, which would give a bit more dense sessions!
Dog and cat skin share many similarities with human skin, but there are significant differences. They have three layers of their skin, the same nerves and blood vessels that flow everywhere. Although pigmented skin in dogs contains melanin, dogs do not have the ability to test as humans. They also have apocrine glands (like human sweat glands), but dogs do not sweat like us. Instead, dogs have eccrine glands in the paws that release water as a sweat, although this usually happens only when they are nervous and under stress. Now you know how it is that they can sometimes leave a little damp footprints when they leave the veterinary office!
As the first line to protect the body against environmental factors, the skin is subjected to all sorts of insults and injuries. Crites from all strips, from fleas to ticks to parasites (such as cucumbers) bite and damage the skin. In addition, the skin is subjected to repeated attacks of foreign bodies, tooth fractures, nail scratching, and permanent licking, which can weaken and break the skin's protective barrier. The skin can also be affected from inside out through infections, hormonal imbalance, allergies and immune disorders.
Young pets are particularly suspicious of skin problems because their skin is more sensitive and their immune system is not fully developed. Kittens, for example, are prone to severe infections, and puppies are prone to demodecosis. If your puppy or puppy develops a rash, loses hair or has bruises or warts, consult your veterinarian to determine if treatment is needed.
The end result is that healthy skin is a vital part of pet health and its condition is a reflection of the pet's overall well-being. Vulnerable to attacks on all sides, it is very important that pet parents regularly monitor the health of their pets. The skin usually does its job well as a body protector, but sometimes even the skin needs an extra boost. In this episode of Pet Talk, Dr. Sarah examines some common causes of skin and coat problems in dogs and cats and reveals some safe and natural home remedies that promote overall skin health.