Yorkie With a Greasy Coat

Supplements and specialty shampoos can help de-grease an oily dog coat.

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Q. I have a 5-year-old Yorkshire Terrier that has a very oily coat. I can bathe her and two days later her coat is oily again. I have tried every kind of shampoo there is for oily hair and have even tried bathing her in dish soap, recommended by a vet dermatologist. Nothing seems to help. Is this a normal condition for some dogs, or is there something going on in her body that I am not aware of? She does have thyroid problems and is on thyroid medication. Could that cause it?

A. The skin and coat of your dog provide clues to her health. Since she has thyroid problems and is on a medication for them, her symptoms should eventually resolve themselves but she will need periodic blood tests to check how she is responding and adjust her dosage if need be. It’s the thyroid condition, not the medication, that makes her greasy, and she probably has some flaking too.

It is somewhat unusual for such a young dog to exhibit this problem. In addition to her meds, try a dietary change and offer some supplements as well. We have seen dramatic changes in skin, coat, and vitality after owners adjusted their dogs’ diets. Consult with your vet to find a food that may be suitable for your pet. She may also benefit from supplements. Omega fatty acids, vitamin E, and salmon oil can work wonders for dogs with skin and coat problems.

As to a shampoo to get rid of that grease, I think the dish detergent might make matters worse for your dog. Household products are usually too harsh for use on dogs. In the salon, we use a de-greasing shampoo with the consistency of cold cream that comes in a jar. It is so safe and effective that I have used it on a Poodle puppy that had motor oil spilled on him. It is even used by wildlife rescuers on animals after oil spills.

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Anna   Tacoma, WA

5/11/2012 3:01:55 PM

I have toy Australian Shepherd who's coat gets a bit oily. The shampoo I use is orange base, which helps with fleas, totally terminates fleas. It staves off the oiliness for at least a month. It's called Le Pooch F&T Degreaser. It's spendy, but worth it. You mix one part with 2 parts parts water- so it goes a little further. I'd buy 2 or 3 bottles at one time to save on shipping. Here's the
website:
http://www.lespoochs.com/shampooDetail. asp?inpItemCode=ST%25

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Gina   Philadelphia, PA

3/16/2012 10:25:33 AM

I think greasy coat is related to the food dogs eat. I have a terrier-mix and we used to give him grocery store food, then we switched to Natural Balance Ultra. The difference in his coat is like night and day – he really looks great and it seems like he is happier on this food. Dogs are what they eat, just like people.

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Shelly Lawson   Chatsworth, GA

1/13/2012 7:49:39 PM

My new puppy was 9wks old. She had a terrible odor even right after I had bathed her. I took her to the vet & she had ear mites. He treated her with one treatment, I bathed her the next day & no more odor. While , I was at the vet a Yorkie was there with oily coat. The vet said it was due to a skin fungus.

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Darlene   East Yaphank, NY

11/1/2011 6:30:42 PM

I also have a six year old puppy mill survivor Yorkie that has a very greesey coat that gets a terrible odor. I have tried Seborrhea treatment, change in diet and about 10 different shampoos. Nothing helps and no matter how much I search the internet, there is nothing that helps

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