How to make a DIY dog anti-itch spray (2024)

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Why dogs itch

A little bit of itching is normal for dogs — you’d probably itch a little bit too, if you only bathed every so often! But itching can sometimes be a symptom of something larger, especially if it’s focused on one area.

Dog skin allergies, infections, wounds, dryness, parasites (like fleas), and anxiety are a few common culprits of canine itching. Repeated scratching at an area can break the skin, which can then become painful and infected. For this reason, it’s important to address habitual itching, whatever the cause.

How home remedies can help

Before turning to antibiotics or other medication, pet owners often want to try out some natural remedies. Whether you’re hoping to save some money or avoid medication, there are several at-home treatments known to alleviate a case of the itchies.

🚨In many cases, an anti-itch spray is enough to soothe itchy skin. But sometimes, like in the case of a skin infection, the underlying cause of the itching needs to be addressed, separately.

When you should be concerned about your dog’s itchy skin

Nearly all dogs go through itchy phases. It’s usually a quick fix, but prolonged skin irritation or itching that is so intense that it breaks the skin is cause for concern. If your dog seems perpetually itchy or scratches their skin so hard that it bleeds, you need to take your dog in for a veterinary wellness exam. Broken skin is a breeding ground for infection, which can be serious.

Also, keep an eye out for other changes, like loss of appetite, restlessness, or depressed mood. If your dog’s itching doesn’t improve or if it’s accompanied by a change in behavior, it’s a good idea to have a veterinarian do an exam.

How to make a homemade anti-itch spray for dogs

If your pooch is going through an itchy spell, there are several tried-and-true DIY solutions you can try. We’ve broken it down by what each itch relief remedy is best for to help you decide which one to try.

🚨 Always consult a veterinarian before trying a natural remedy you read about.

Best overall: Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is hailed as a superfood, but did you know that it also has antifungal and antibacterial properties when applied topically? That’s why it’s great for soothing especially dry skin and mild poison ivy exposure. It’s even a natural flea repellent! Whether you want to get rid of fleas or soothe itchy skin on your fur baby, ACV has you covered.

Homemade apple cider vinegar spray recipe
First, create a mixture of ACV and water using a 1:1 ratio. Put the mixture in a spray bottle and mist over affected areas daily.

🚨 Never use apple cider vinegar on open wounds, hot spots, or raw skin. This will be very painful for your pup and possibly even worsen symptoms.

Some suggest that essential oils, like lavender oil, also have antibacterial, antifungal properties. However, there’s not a lot of evidence to back this up, and many essential oils are toxic to dogs. If you’re looking for an antifungal, antibacterial solution, apple cider vinegar is probably the most effective and safest approach.

Most gentle: Colloidal oatmeal bath

A colloidal oatmeal bath isn’t just a human treatment for eczema. It can also help draw out allergens and irritants from your dog’s coat. The anti-inflammatory properties can soothe inflamed, hot skin in the gentlest way.

You can buy pre-made colloidal oatmeal, or you can simply grind unflavored, unsweetened oats into a powder yourself using a blender or food processor. Then add a generous amount to warm bathwater. Yep, it’s that easy! Have your dog soak in the bath for 10-15 minutes to make sure the oats have time to do their job and alleviate that itchy feeling.

Make sure that the water reaches every crevice, including the paws and area between your dog’s nails. If your dog likes to sneak a gulp of bathwater, you don’t have to worry about them getting sick — oats are not toxic to dogs.

If getting your pup to sit still for 10-15 minutes sounds like a challenge, bring some dog treats to occupy the time. While a bath is probably the best method, it may not always be the easiest or quickest method. You can also create a paste for spot treatments. Mix the ground oats and warm water together to create a paste, then apply as needed.

Best for dry skin problems: Coconut oil

Coconut oil has been linked to a number of health benefits in humans, but it can actually help our canine friends, too. If your dog has very dry skin from weather exposure, allergies, eczema, or another cause, coconut oil can provide soothing moisture. It also has antifungal and antibacterial properties, which can help ward off hot spots and infections. Coconut oil can also give your dog relief from itchy, mild insect bites.

Application is as easy as massaging the oil into the affected areas on your dog’s skin or coat. It’s okay if your dog ingests a small amount, but you can use an e-collar (cone) to prevent excessive licking.

🚨 If your dog has developed a hot spot or infection due to itching, coconut oil may help. However, it may be better to let the area dry out instead of creating more moisture.

Best for cooling hot patches: Peppermint, chamomile, and green tea

Chamomile, peppermint, and green tea are known to have cooling, soothing properties. If your dog is beginning to itch an area raw, this method can help cool the skin.

The most effective way to apply the tea is basically brewing a giant cup of tea! Fill your tub with warm water and several bags of herbal tea — you can mix and match the three. Remove the bags before you bathe your dog. Allow your pup to soak for 10-15 minutes before patting them dry.

You can also steep a cup or two of tea as you normally would, then mist it over their coat using a spray bottle.

Runner up: Aloe vera
In the same way that aloe vera can heal human sunburns, it can also draw out redness and heat from irritated dog skin. If you do go this route, make sure to find 100 percent natural aloe vera without alcohol. If it contains alcohol, it will burn any open wounds or rashy areas, potentially worsening the problem.

Best for digestive health: yogurt

If you suspect the cause of your dog’s itching to be internal, rather than due to an irritant, yogurt may help. For dogs with certain types of hives or rashes, yogurt can improve digestive health. It also may help prevent yeast infections.

According to AKC, one teaspoon of plain, sugar-free yogurt per week for small dogs may do the trick. For large dogs, use two teaspoons per week.

Best for drying out moist rashes: Baking soda

Chances are, you probably have some baking soda lying around. A household jack-of-all-trades, this substance can actually help relieve your doggie’s itchy skin, too. If your dog has developed a mild rash that’s beginning to moisten, baking soda can help dry it out and reduce the chances of infection.

To apply, you’re going to create a paste using a 1:1 ratio of baking soda to water. Then, gently apply the mixture to the skin, making sure not to rub too hard since the mixture will be slightly gritty.

🚨 If the rash is already infected or oozing, you should take your dog to the veterinarian for an exam.

How to make a DIY dog anti-itch spray (1)

Close-up of a hot spot caused by excessive biting and scratching

Other ways to help relieve your dog’s itchiness

If you don’t see quick improvement with a DIY method, talk to your veterinarian. They can help you create a personalized treatment plan, which may involve giving your dog Benadryl, antibiotics, or other medication. Some other methods of treatment they might recommend are:

Dietary changes

If your vet is able to rule out external irritants, they may conclude that the itching is due to a dog food allergy. They will probably recommend a food elimination trial, which aims to discover which food in your dog’s diet is giving them trouble.

Vitamin and supplements

When there’s a gap in your dog’s nutrition, they may experience coat problems, including itching. Vitamins and supplements are becoming a regular part of pet care because they can help with some natural deficiencies and boost your pup’s immune system. The pet supplement industry is not well-regulated, so do your research before purchasing a product. Here are two of our vet-approved dog vitamin recommendations:

Dog shampoo

If your dog experiences chronic dry skin and itchiness as a result, you might try a moisturizing shampoo. Read our guide to the best dog shampoos, or check out our top recommendations below.


A trusty dog balm is essential, especially for those that live in harsh climates. They can prevent excess dryness, which can cause itching. They’re also effective at healing and preventing hot spots. Read our guide to the best dog paw balms, or check out a few of our favorites below.

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How to make a DIY dog anti-itch spray (2)

How to make a DIY dog anti-itch spray (2024)


How to make a DIY dog anti-itch spray? ›

Nutri-Vet Anti-Itch Spray is veterinarian formulated to provide immediate relief to an itchy dog. This spray treats minor skin pain and irritations caused by insect bites, abrasions, hot spots, cuts, and allergic dermatitis.

What can I spray on my dog to stop scratching? ›

Nutri-Vet Anti-Itch Spray is veterinarian formulated to provide immediate relief to an itchy dog. This spray treats minor skin pain and irritations caused by insect bites, abrasions, hot spots, cuts, and allergic dermatitis.

What is the recipe for itchy dog skin? ›

Mix ½ cup of olive oil with ½ teaspoon of lavender essential oil. Dip a cotton ball in the oil mixture and rub on the itchy areas. You can also add a little bit of olive oil to your dog's food. One tablespoon of olive oil a few times a week should help your dog's skin and coat.

How do you make dog spray for dry skin? ›

Apple cider vinegar is a great dog dry skin home remedy that can help improve the flora on your dog's skin and eliminate yeast overgrowth. Create a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar and water and apply with a spray bottle or cotton ball to specific dry spots.

Is there a home remedy for itchy dogs? ›

Chamomile, calendula, and green tea have properties that soothe and cool irritated skin and reduce inflammation, making them great additions in a dog bath for itchy skin. These soaks are best for dogs who have hot, itchy patches of skin that are at risk of getting rubbed raw.

How do you make homemade dog spray? ›

Fill an empty spray bottle with 2 cups of distilled water. Add 2 tablespoons of glycerin and 1 tablespoon of fractioned coconut oil. Add 15 drops of lavender and 15 drops of orange essential oil to the spray bottle. Shake well to combine the ingredients.

Can I spray vinegar on my dog for itching? ›

Apple Cider Vinegar Water Spray

If your pet has itchy skin, this concoction of 50/50 water and ACV spray can help relieve your pet's skin allergies or irritation. This home remedy can also be used in a bath format. Fill up a small container with equal parts water and apple cider vinegar and soak your pet's paws in it.

Can I use hydrogen peroxide on my dog for itching? ›

No, hydrogen peroxide is not recommended for use on dogs' itchy skin. It can be irritating and potentially harmful. It's best to consult your veterinarian for appropriate treatment options for your dog's itchy skin.

Will baking soda help my dog stop itching? ›

Baking Soda becomes thick when mixed with water and it can dry out skin's rashes. It is also an effective dog itching relief while decreasing inflammation and redness. Apply the mixture or paste to the itchy part and leave it for 20 minutes before rinsing it completely.

What cream can I put on my dog's irritated skin? ›

Hydrocortisone cream for dogs is often used to treat the following problems: Calm irritations such as rashes and bug bites. Skin allergies.

How do you make moisturizing spray? ›

For Moisture
  1. Spray bottle.
  2. ¼ cup Aloe vera juice.
  3. ½ cup Water.
  4. One tsp Coconut oil (melted)
  5. One tsp Jojoba oil.
  6. A dime size of your favorite conditioner (optional)
Jul 31, 2018

Can I spray coconut oil on my dog's dry skin? ›

If your dog already has dry skin or dandruff, coconut oil can increase lipid levels on the surface of the skin. Simply rub a small amount into your hands and massage into the skin, running your fingers through the fur of your pet—the coconut oil may also help your dog's coat appear more sleek and glossy.

Can I put olive oil on my dog itchy skin? ›

You can apply olive oil on your dog's itchy or dry skin for fast relief since it can penetrate deeply and moisturize. You can add 5 to 10 drops of olive oil in a cup of water and apply the mixture to your dog's skin or use an olive oil-based conditioning spray.

What stops itching fast home remedies? ›

How to relieve itchy skin
  1. Apply a cold, wet cloth or ice pack to the skin that itches. Do this for about five to 10 minutes or until the itch subsides.
  2. Take an oatmeal bath. ...
  3. Moisturize your skin. ...
  4. Apply topical anesthetics that contain pramoxine.
  5. Apply cooling agents, such as menthol or calamine.

How can I treat my dogs skin infection at home? ›

Many excellent topical antibacterial products can be used with antibiotic and shampoo therapy. An excellent product, Be Soothed Tea Tree Oil Skin Relief contains natural tea tree oil, which is a powerful antibacterial and antifungal compound. It can be applied up to 2-3 times daily on affected areas of the skin.

How do you treat skin allergies in dogs? ›

Treatment involves frequent bathing with a hypoallergenic shampoo, which may or may not contain anti-inflammatory ingredients. This not only soothes itchy and inflamed skin, but rinses off allergens that are present on the coat or on the skin.

Can I spray my dog with baking soda and water? ›

For a wet wash, combine 3 tablespoons baking soda with 1 teaspoon dishwashing liquid and 1 teaspoon baby oil in a spray bottle. Spritz your dog, and then wipe them dry.

Is apple cider vinegar good to spray on dogs? ›

According to Courtney Jackson, DVM, a veterinarian and owner of the Pets Digest blog, apple cider vinegar is safe for dogs to use on their skin and take internally if given in moderation and at recommended doses.

What oil is good for dogs itchy skin? ›

When dogs develop allergies, it generally causes itchy and inflamed skin, respiratory disorders, and chronic skin and ear infections. Essential oils such as lavender, chamomile, and peppermint may be used to ease some of these symptoms. Other essential oils, like tea tree oil, can be quite toxic to your dog.

Can I spray my dog with vinegar and baking soda? ›

Baking soda works to remove odors from your dog's skin and fur. The baking soda paste should be applied before the shampoo and can be washed off as you lather homemade dog shampoo and then rinse both items off the dog with warm water. In a big spray bottle, put 2 cups of warm water with 1/2 cup of white vinegar.

Can I put something on my dog to stop itching? ›

For home remedies to help relieve your dog's itchy skin, try applying 100 percent aloe vera gel. Skip shampoos. And feed them probiotic supplements, flaxseed, and fish oil for added itch-relief benefits.

Can dogs lick hydrogen peroxide? ›

Hydrogen peroxide is an irritant to the dog's intestinal tract. Basically, once it is swallowed, it generates oxygen bubbles in the stomach. When there are enough bubbles, they stretch the dog's stomach and trigger vomiting.

Can I use witch hazel on my dog? ›

While witch hazel is safe to use topically on dogs and is not known to interact with other medications, there are some risks pet parents should be aware of, vets advise. Tilford advises against applying witch hazel for dry skin conditions. “It tends to tighten and dehydrate, thus exacerbating such conditions.”

Why is my dog itching like crazy without fleas? ›

When dog scratching gets out of hand, it is often the result of allergies to food or environmental triggers, including mold and pollen. Dogs may also develop a skin irritation called contact dermatitis when they encounter substances like pesticides or soap. Boredom or anxiety.

Will witch hazel help dogs itching? ›

Simply soak a cloth or cotton ball with witch hazel and rub it on your dog's skin. Witch hazel is great for soothing itchy skin. It's also great for itchy paws.

Can I put cortizone 10 on my dog? ›

You can use hydrocortisone cream on dogs to soothe minor irritations like bug bites and small rashes. Vets often recommend it to treat skin allergies, inflammatory skin diseases, infections such as hot spots, and to help decrease ear inflammation in dogs with severe ear infections, says Butzer.

Why won't my dog stop itching? ›

Flea allergy dermatitis, seasonal allergies or atopy, food allergies, contact dermatitis (e.g., soaps and perfumes), and sarcoptic mange (mites) are some of the most common causes of pruritus in dogs. "Pruritus due to skin disease is one of the most common reasons dog owners seek veterinary care."

Will Vaseline help my dog's itchy skin? ›

While vaseline might feel soothing, there is no scientific evidence that it works. Furthermore, if your pup has a rash or skin irritation, your best bet is to consult your vet and get a diagnosis and appropriate treatment for whatever is going on.

What can I put on my dog's irritated but? ›

Make a compress out of a warm wet washcloth and hold it to your pup's bottom for 5 minutes to encourage better drainage. You may need to rewet the cloth to keep it warm while you do this. After a few minutes, try to empty the scent glands.

How do you make spray gel? ›

  1. Whisk together warm water with gelatin until smooth.
  2. Add Aloe vera gel and essential oil, whisk to combine.
  3. Pour (using a funnel) into your spray bottle.
  4. Shake well before spraying on to your hair (can be used on wet or dry hair)
Dec 28, 2013

What is a hydrating setting spray? ›

Hydrates & locks in moisture. Leaves skin visibly replenished. Keeps makeup looking fresh all day. Can be applied as a primer under makeup. Use to prep or set makeup.

What happens if I leave coconut oil on my dog? ›

Coconut oil may improve the appearance of your dog's fur. When applied to the skin, it can make hair shinier and less prone to damage. This is because lauric acid, the main fatty acid in coconut oil, has a unique chemical makeup that allows it to easily penetrate hair shafts ( 2 ).

How do I stop my dog from itching with coconut oil? ›

To use coconut oil topically, apply it to the skin about once a week, and let it be absorbed for a few minutes. After five minutes or so, rinse your dog off.

What oils are safe for dogs dry skin? ›

Unfortunately, figuring out what's causing scratching can take time, but there are some at-home remedies — olive oil, coconut oil, and fish oil — that may provide some relief by helping to moisturize your dog's dry, dandruffy skin.

Can dogs lick olive oil? ›

Thankfully, olive oil is okay for dogs to eat in small quantities. In fact, it can even be beneficial for them. Regular consumption of olive oil can encourage healthy skin and help give your dog a lustrous coat.

Can you put vitamin E oil on dogs for itching? ›

Vitamin E can be orally supplemented, but vitamin E oil can also be applied directly to the skin. It's a popular vitamin recommendation from vets for dry skin and itchiness as well as for certain allergies that manifest in dermatitis, especially in the ears. But be aware that your dog can get too much of a good thing.

How do I use apple cider vinegar on my dog's skin? ›

Apple Cider Vinegar For Dog Skin Allergies

ACV can help relieve itchy skin and rashes caused by yeast and poison ivy. The best way to apply it is by making a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Apply it directly onto itchy spots. Caution: Do NOT put it on open wounds.

Can I give my dog Benadryl to stop scratching? ›

Benadryl is commonly used to treat itchiness in dogs caused by skin allergies, and it also reduces many of the other symptoms of allergies, including: AKC is a participant in affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Will coconut oil stop my dog from scratching? ›

Topical Benefits – It's been known to help skin conditions like hot spots, bites, stings, or itchy, dry skin. Shampoos made with organic oils such as coconut oil can improve damaged skin and reduce allergens. Some pet owners have even made a DIY paw balm with coconut oil as one of the ingredients.

Does baking soda stop itching dogs? ›

Baking Soda becomes thick when mixed with water and it can dry out skin's rashes. It is also an effective dog itching relief while decreasing inflammation and redness. Apply the mixture or paste to the itchy part and leave it for 20 minutes before rinsing it completely.

Why is my dog scratching and biting himself all the time? ›

Pruritus in dogs is the sensation in the skin that causes them to scratch. It is a symptom caused by dry skin, allergies, parasites, or other underlying conditions. Anxiety and boredom can cause dogs to lick, chew, and bite as a response. Changing your dog's diet may be the key to stopping obsessive licking behavior.

How long does it take for Benadryl to work in dogs for itching? ›

It will usually take 30 minutes for Benadryl to take full effect, and you want your pup calm and anxious-free. In terms of what form of Benadryl, that's entirely up to your vet. It doesn't really matter if you use the brand name medication or not.

Can dogs take human Benadryl? ›

Yes. Benadryl is an over-the-counter medication that is labeled for humans but is generally considered safe for dogs in the appropriate dosage. Always consult with your veterinarian before giving your dog any medication.

How long can I leave coconut oil on my dog's skin? ›

A coconut oil skin treatment about once a week can make a big difference in the health of your dog's skin and nails. For good results, apply to the skin and let the oil absorb for about five minutes. After the five minutes, you can apply and a very light rinse.

How long to leave coconut oil on dogs skin? ›

Leave the coconut oil on your dog's skin and paws for about seven minutes. The longer it stays on, the better it will work. Rinse the coconut oil with water and then bathe your dog with a skin-friendly, hypoallergenic shampoo to remove the greasy feel from the skin.

Can hydrogen peroxide help a dog with itching? ›

Hydrogen peroxide can slow wound healing and cause skin irritation. Most vets recommend you not use hydrogen peroxide to treat dog wounds. It is natural to feel overwhelmed and panicked when your pet gets hurt. And many people may instinctually grab their human first aid kit to administer care.

Can I use witch hazel on my dog for itching? ›

Simply soak a cloth or cotton ball with witch hazel and rub it on your dog's skin. Witch hazel is great for soothing itchy skin. It's also great for itchy paws. You can put some in a plastic bowl and dip your dog's feet in it and then pat dry.

Why does my dog itch but has no fleas? ›

Although scratching with their feet is the most common way a dog will address skin irritation, they may also choose to bite or lick themselves to try and soothe the irritation. This could be brought on by food allergies, bacterial infections, environmental allergies and plenty of other complications that aren't fleas.

Can I put Neosporin on my dog? ›

If your pooch got into a scrape, chances are good that you can use a small amount of Neosporin to help prevent infection in the wound. Superficial injuries, such as scrapes, abrasions, and small cuts, may benefit from this trifecta of a topical antibiotic. However, be cautious of usage on the nose.

What is the most common food allergy in dogs? ›

"The most common food allergens in dogs are proteins..." The most common food allergens in dogs are proteins, especially those from dairy, beef, chicken, chicken eggs, soy, or wheat gluten. Each time a pet eats food containing these substances, the antibodies react with the antigens, and symptoms occur.


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