What causes the brown stains on your dogs coat and what can you do about it?
This brown staining is a result of porphyrins which are molecules that attract metal ions, as the metals rust they cause brown stains.
Porphyrins are excreted by bacteria. Some dogs also excrete excess porphyrins in their tears, saliva and urine
Because the browning is a stain the only way to remove it is to bleach the color from the hair, if you choose to do this make sure you use a commercial product such as ‘crystal eye’ specially designed to remove the stains gently from the dogs coat, you can pick up something like this from your local pet store. However they are very mild, to ensure not to damage the dogs skin and will take daily use to gradually fade away the stain. The best treatment is prevention by reducing the amount of bacteria on the dogs skin. This can be done by improving the dogs natural skin barriers and eliminating bacteria through adding oils such as coconut to your dogs diet and regularly using topical treatments such as antibacterial shampoo, antibacterial sprays like ‘Itchy Scratch’ for dogs or ‘Colloidal silver’ which has antimicrobial properties (which is also completely safe around the eyes and can also be used to wipe away bacteria). Some experts also suggest reducing excess metals and ions in your dogs system by giving your dog filtered water.
It is also likely that the skin may be affected by allergies, compromising skin barriers and causing the skin to react and weep, creating an opportunists environment for bacteria to flourish.
The most common food allergens to dogs are beef, dairy, wheat, egg, chicken, lamb, soy, pork, rabbit, and fish however it is very rare that they will be allergic to all kinds so is best to eliminate from the diet one-by-one. If your dog is allergic to one ingredient they are likely allergic to other ingredients as well so continue to eliminate in isolation to be sure.
The most common environmental allergens are fleas, molds and pollen’s from varieties of grass, trees, weeds, flowers and chemicals.
Working out what your dog is allergic to usually comes down to elimination and being very observant and vigilant.
Supplements you may like to try include ‘milk thistle’, ‘dandelion’ (both are antioxidants that protect against cell damage) and Colostrum (said to reduce the permeability of the intestine and protect against various allergens that try to attack the body).
You may also like to read Tips on improving your dogs diet