Our lovely fur babies are cuddly and natural balls of fur, fluff and fun however there will come a time when your husky will develop a skin condition and you will need to offer a helping hand. Naturally the Siberian Husky has a thick, double layered coat and gorgeous fur but at the same time they are prone to a series of ailments that ultimately result in sore, raw skin, infections and balding.
It’s important to act upon any symptoms and seek professional medical advice from a vet as soon as possible in order to give your husky the best chance of getting better as quickly as possible and with as little discomfort as possible. Whilst you wait for your vets appointment why not check out the options below to see the common issues faced by many huskies.
Remember, this is for education purposes only, please do not take this as medical advice for your husky, always seek professional help from a vet.
It’s quite common to see a husky scratching themselves, this is due to a variety of reasons however the real problems begin when your husky starts to scratch vigorously or excessively. There are many causes for an increase in scratching from allergies, parasites and bacterial infections being the common causes seen in huskies.
You will likely notice an increase in the scratching, either an increase in intensity or an increase in the frequency of the scratching. Common symptoms will be your husky trying to rub its snout on furniture, rugs and even on the paths outside! It’s important you try to reduce this behaviour as quickly as possible as it will only accelerate the problems being caused.
There are a series of solutions you can do as a preventative measure to ensure this scenario never rises, for example make sure your husky has regular flea and worm treatment, is groomed correctly and also bathed in a dog friendly shampoo.
This is fairly common amongst Siberian Huskies and is often referred to as Nasal Dermatitis or ‘Collie Nose’. If you notice that your huskies nose changes then this may be a reason, common symptoms include a loss of pigment, nasal hair loss, red/sore areas on the nose and lesions on the nose. This will result in an uncomfortable husky that will try to nose or sooth their nose with water which can make things worse.
Quite often it is believed that the Nasal Dermatitis is due to a Zinc deficiency in the huskies diet but there are many other causes also. if you see any of the symptoms above then immediately seek veterinarian help to check for fungal infections, bacterial infections and even skin cancer.
Let’s get this straight from the start, do not shave your husky! Many owners think it is perfectly acceptable to shave their huskies fur short during the summer months but the fur on a husky actually protects them from heat by bouncing it away and keeping it off their skin.
By shaving your dog you are allowing their skin to be exposed more than it would be naturally, this in turn will lead to an increase in infections & bacteria. Whats more, it will be easier for parasites to reach the skin, allergies are likely to be harsher and more aggressive too.
In any form of heat the best advice is to keep your husky in a cool shaded area and if your in a really hot climate then air conditioning would be the best investment, not some clippers!
A slightly rarer but still common condition, this is where the thyroid glands become unable to produce the required levels of thyroid hormone. If you don’t know what the thyroid does, in the simplest way it controls and regulates the metabolism within your husky and thus various areas within the body can be effected very quickly.
You will notice symptoms such as the skin getting thicker or tougher in places, as well as hair loss and balding especially around the rump/tail area and an overall scruff look. It is essential this is checked by a vet as only a vet will be able to measure the levels of thyroid hormones in your husky and provide the relevant prescription.
This is one of the conditions your husky is likely to develop at a young age, normally in the first 5 months of their life and it will stay with them for the duration of their life. The main symptom is baldness and will require a specialist consultation with your vet in order to establish a routine of treatment to allow your husky to grow up and live a happy life.
If your husky is out of the young puppy stage then you are likely to be clear of this illness, but it’s worth knowing if you have a young husky pup. If your puppy does develop any form of Follicular Dysplasia the goal of any treatment plan will be to increase and encourage hair growth where possible and to prevent any secondary infections around the hair.
One of the most common ailments suffered by huskies which causes lesions, itching and hair loss. For some huskies they find it incredibly hard to absorb Zinc into their body due to reduced or lack of the enzymes required for Zinc absorption.
Due to the nature of this, over the counter remedies such as Zinc tablets are likely to not be any help at all as the extra Zinc will just pass through your huskies body and fail to be absorbed. You should seek immediate veterinary help, a simple skin biopsy is normally taken to diagnose the illness and a prescription & care plan to be made. Common treatment for this is Zinc Methionine which will be regularly given to your husky.
As a precaution it is always worth ensuring your husky gets lots of Zinc in their diet, due to their natural diet of plenty of fish and meats which are naturally high in Zinc they are more prone to Zinc deficiency than many other breeds. Some foods may consider to increase Zinc inc
Most Meat – Lamb, Turkey, Liver
Most Fish – Tuna, Salmon,
Veg – Carrots, Potato, Pumpkin, Sweet Potato, Yams
Eggs, Peanuts, Apples, Blackberries, Strawberries
Additives – Kelp, Fish Oil
Canine Eosinophilic Granuloma
This rarer illness causes your husky to develop some rather horrid bumps which run along the skin on the inner thighs and within the mouth. The bumps normally look a bit aggressive/sore, be very itchy for your husky and carry a yellowish colour to them.
This is normally treated with a form of corticosteroids taken orally (prednisone or prednisolone ) but each pet is different. Again, this is something which has to be diagnosed and prescribed by your local vet.
It is incredibly important to learn and understand as much about your dog as possible and we hope articles like this will help with your understanding. However please do not treat this as 100% medical advice, each husky is different so if in doubt always consult a qualified vet.