Why is my Labrador Losing Hair?

by Marge and Suggestion from Our Vet

Reader Question:: Help for a Lab that is Losing Hair

My 7 month old Labrador Retriever is suffering from thinning hair. Every time I turn around it appears as if more spots are hairless. It has gotten so bad that her hips look like they have stripes.

Fast forward to this morning and my son pointed out red splotches all over her chest. The red skin was not in areas where my girl suffered dog hair loss.

Please provide some advice as to how to the cause and how to treat the rash and hair loss.

Suggestions from our Veterinarian

There are several possible reasons why a dog can lose hair. Possible dog skin problems include:

Problems that frequently develop as secondary to problems like hormonal disturbances or allergies:

  • Yeast infection

  • Bacterial skin infection

Other possible causes includes:

  • Fleas

  • Mange mites

  • Ringworm

If your dog were treated by our veterinarian, we would suggest starting with a complete health physical and some basic skin tests such as a cytology for bacterial skin or yeast infection, a skin scraping for mites, and of course a test for ringworm.

The treatment approach would be based on the test results. This can include medicated baths, antibiotics, medications to kill parasites, and anti-inflammatories.

We suggest seeing a veterinarian for evaluation and a specific diagnosis. I'm sure your vet can come up with an effective treatment plan once the exact cause of the hair loss and dog skin problem is identified.

For additional reading we suggest this guide to dog skin care.

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