FYI: we may earn a commission for qualified purchases made through the links in our articles (learn more).
When your dog begins losing hair, it can be worrisome. Not to be confused with shedding, hair loss in patches is called alopecia. If your dog is suffering from unnatural hair loss, there are some home remedies that can be helpful.
Dog hair loss may occur in patches or in large areas. Sometimes, dogs lose all their hair in large areas.
Alopecia causes more than simple hair loss. The condition can affect your dog’s immune system, endocrine system, and skin.
Alopecia can affect dogs of all ages and breeds. If you notice your dog’s coat is getting patchy, it is important to consult with a veterinarian. It is also important to determine if there is an underlying condition that is causing hair loss.
Hair Loss Occurs in Different Ways
Hair loss may occur in patches and different shapes. Owners will most often see patchy hair loss on the backs of their dogs. Sometimes, a dog’s hair loss is accompanied by crusty areas or red areas on their skin. The crusty areas may ooze, and flake.
What Causes Dog Hair Loss?
Multiple issues can arise and cause a dog’s hair loss problem. It is important that dog owners are aware of the possible causes so they will know when to seek treatment from the vet.
- Skin allergies
- Skin infections
- Genetic conditions
- Cushing’s Disease
- Pressure sores
- Skin rashes and hives
- Foreign body reactions
Because some of the above conditions can be serious, dog owners need to take their dogs to the vet before they attempt any home remedies for dog hair loss.
One of the most common causes of dog hair loss is skin allergies. Your dog could be allergic to environmental substances, such as dust, mites, or mold. Dogs can also become allergic to fleas.
When a dog suffers from a skin allergy, you will notice patchy hair loss and skin redness and irritation. Your dog will likely bite at his itchy skin or scratch often.
Parasites can also lead to dog hair loss. The following are some of the most common parasites that can attack your dog.
Your dog is likely to have some type of parasite if you notice missing hair around his eyes, ears, abdomen, and chest. You may also notice red marks, skin redness, and irritation.
Just as with skin allergies, your dog is likely to bite or scratch his skin often with parasite infestations. If you notice any of these signs, take your dog to the vet for a diagnosis.
Cushing’s Disease, formally known as Hyperadrenocorticism, occurs when a dog’s body is exposed to high levels of cortisol over an extended period. When a dog has Cushing’s Disease, you will notice patchy hair loss, darkened skin, and a potbelly appearance. Dogs most commonly develop Cushing’s Disease after middle age and into their senior years.
Genetics can also be a key factor in causing dog hair loss. Some breeds of dogs are naturally more prone to developing baldness. The following are some of the breeds that can be genetically predisposed to developing hair loss.
- Doberman Pinscher
- Italian Greyhound
These dogs will often develop patchy or patterned hair loss on the outer ears, chest, lower neck, back, and thighs.
Pressure sores can also be to blame for your dog’s hair loss. These sores often occur on the bony areas that come into contact with hard surfaces regularly, such as on the elbows. The friction caused by contact can lead to areas that crack open and bleed. Pressure sores can also become infected.
When to See a Vet About Dog Hair Loss
Sometimes, hair loss occurs with no real underlying cause. If you notice any of the following signs, it is important to take your dog to the vet so it can be treated.
- Foul odors
- Changes in the dog’s behavior
- Skin lesions
Having the dog examined by the vet will allow him to receive the treatment he needs. Although you could try home remedies, if the hair loss is caused by allergies or an underlying skin issue, the hair loss will likely return if the root cause is not treated.
At-Home Remedies for Dog Hair Loss
Multiple at-home remedies can be used to stop your dog’s hair loss and help him grow new hair. After ruling out serious skin conditions by seeing your dog’s vet, the following remedies can be used to treat dog hair loss at home.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is highly beneficial for treating fungal and bacterial skin conditions. If you plan to use apple cider vinegar, make sure you do not apply it directly to your dog’s skin as it can cause irritation.
Purchase an organic apple cider vinegar that has the mother. Bragg Apple Cider is a good brand. You will need to use half apple cider vinegar and half water. Mix the two in a spray bottle. Use this spray once a day on the balding areas until your dog’s hair begins to grow back. It is safe enough to use daily, even after the hair returns.
A word of caution: Never use this spray if your dog has an open wound. Spraying this mixture on open wounds will cause your dog unwanted pain.
It is also important you check your dog’s skin regularly. If the treated areas begin to worsen, discontinue use and head to the vet.
Coconut oil is one of the healthiest oils on the planet. It will benefit your dog’s skin and his coat.
This oil can be used to treat a wide array of dog skin conditions, including eczema, dry skin, dermatitis, and cuts or other wounds.
You can also apply coconut oil to treat your dog’s hot spots, bites, and bee stings. This oil can be given orally or topically, depending on your dog’s needs.
Many dog owners add coconut oil to their dog’s food to improve and protect their overall health. For hair loss and skin conditions, it is best to apply the oil directly to the affected area.
Apply coconut oil directly to the area, being careful to not use too much because it will make your dog’s fur overly greasy. You should wear gloves to massage the oil into your dog’s skin.
One of the best things about coconut oil is that it is not toxic to dogs. Even if your dog licks the area that is being treated, you will not have to worry.
You should apply coconut oil to the affected area twice a day until the hair begins to regrow. Continue to use the oil to keep your dog’s skin moisturized and his coat healthy and shiny.
Vitamin E Oil
Vitamin E oil is highly beneficial for your dog’s skin and helps it heal more rapidly. You can purchase this oil at almost any pharmacy or supermarket. You do not need to purchase a vitamin E oil made for dogs because you can use the same kind you would on your own skin.
Vitamin E is good for your dog’s skin because it fights free radicals. Vitamin E is also beneficial for your dog’s liver, heart, and immune system.
Apply the vitamin E oil to the affected area twice a day until the hair begins to grow back. This oil is safe to use on a daily basis to prevent skin conditions from arising.
Many owners are highly surprised to learn lemon juice has antibacterial properties. Lemon juice can be used to fight bacterial infections in your dog’s skin. This juice offers a natural and affordable treatment for skin infections.
A word of caution: Do not apply full-strength lemon juice to your dog’s skin, and never use lemon on open sores because it will cause burning.
To treat your dog’s skin condition with lemon juice, fill a pitcher with a quart of warm water. Add five slices of fresh lemon and allow the mixture to sit for around five hours at room temperature.
After five hours of steeping, remove the lemons and strain the mixture to remove any pulp residue. Pour the lemon water into a spray bottle and spray it on your dog’s coat twice a day. For severe skin conditions, you may use the spray three times a day until the condition is healed and your dog’s hair begins to regrow.
At-Home Dog Hair Loss Remedies Can Be Highly Effective
With most at-home remedies and good dog grooming practices, your dog’s hair loss can be treated without vet intervention.
If you notice any signs of infection, take your dog to the vet right away. Some skin conditions and hair loss can be brought on by a poor diet. Feeding your dog a healthy diet is essential for the health of his coat .
FAQ About Dog Hair Loss
Dealing with dog hair loss can be stressful. Your furry friend’s coat may not look as beautiful as it once did when his hair begins to fall out. Often, dog owners become panicked with hair loss because they are afraid something is seriously wrong with their pooch.
If your dog is experiencing hair loss, you likely have a lot of questions and need answers quickly. The following are some of the top questions asked by dog owners.
1. What home remedy will make my dog’s hair grow back?
If your dog has begun losing his hair, it is important to find the cause right away. Fungal infections and allergies can be treated. Once these conditions are resolved, your dog’s hair should begin growing again. Apple cider vinegar, vitamin E oil, and lemon juice can all be effective in helping your dog to regrow his hair, depending on the condition of his skin. When in doubt, ask your vet for assistance.
2. What is the remedy for dog hair fall?
Sometimes, hair fall is caused by a poor diet. If your dog is lacking key vitamins, he will begin to shed hair quickly. It is important you understand the difference between simple dog shedding  and patchy hair loss. Shedding can often be controlled with grooming and diet changes. Patchy hair loss needs to be addressed with topical treatments that are meant to heal the underlying skin or health condition.
3. Is coconut oil good for dogs’ hair loss?
Coconut oil is one of the best natural remedies for a dog’s hair loss. This all-natural oil can be applied to your dog’s skin and coat or given internally. When it comes to treating dog hair loss, it is best to use a topical treatment of coconut oil because it goes right to the source of the problem. Because it is completely safe for dogs, you won’t have to worry about your pet licking the area and ingesting the oil as a result.
4. What can I give my dog for itching and hair loss?
When grooming your dog, you may notice hair loss or excessive shedding. You may also find your dog seems to scratch more often. If your dog is experiencing itching and hair loss, it could be skin allergies. Vets recommend using hydrocortisone shampoo to help fight the irritation and stop the itching.
Treat Your Dog’s Hair Loss at Home
If you have noticed hair loss on your dog, don’t panic. The above at-home treatments can be safely used to treat most causes of hair loss in dogs. If you notice foul odors, oozing skin, or open wounds, it is time to see the vet. Whether you use at-home remedies or vet treatment, your dog’s hair loss issues should soon become a thing of the past.