If your dog is tilting their head, scratching their ears, licking their paws, or having a musty odor, they might have a yeast infection.
Yeast infections are a common condition among dogs with folds or allergies. Yeast infections in dogs can cause inflammatory skin conditions in the folds between the genital region, ears, and paw pads.
This infection is quite common among dogs whose immunity has been suppressed or compromised by medications. Yeast infections can occur more often during allergy seasons, especially in dogs that have been taking antibiotics or steroids.
Antibiotics don’t cause this infection, but being on antibiotics for a very long period can diminish the dog’s normal flora, which helps keep yeast under control.
Steroids can also affect a dog’s immunity, which can result in yeast overgrowth.
7 Ways of Managing Yeast Infections
Instead of watching your pooch struggle with discomfort, trying to scratch itchy skin, try these effective methods of managing yeast infections in dogs.
Rinse Your Dog With Apple Cider Vinegar
According to The Crazy Pet Guy, the first step to managing yeast infection is getting rid of the itch. Apple cider vinegar is the best solution for fungal infections that works with dogs, especially if your pooch loves the water. All you have to do is apply diluted apple cider vinegar directly on your dog’s coat and massage his/her whole body.
Apple cider vinegar can help restore your pet’s healthy pH levels and stop yeast overgrowth. Remember, yeast loves wet environments, so you can immediately apply this solution after your dog has finished swimming or after bathing him.
Stop Feeding Your Dog Yeast
Yeast is a dimorphic organism that exists in two forms in your dog’s body. It can exist as a benign single-celled organism that lives peacefully with the bacteria. Or it can sometimes grow out of control and become toxic. So the best way to stop the growth of yeast in your dog’s gut is by removing carbs and sugar from your dog’s diet.
Carbs are complex chains that are composed of sugar molecules. Therefore, when your pet consumes carbohydrates, it is broken down into sugar that feeds the yeast. So, limit dog foods that contain millet, oat, rice, peas, corn, wheat, and potatoes.
Apply Coconut Oil Mixture on the Yeasty Region
After you have stopped the itch, you can start working on your dog’s skin’s affected parts. And one of the best homemade solutions for treating the yeast infection is by massaging the affected region with a coconut oil mix at least once every week.
Just melt about 8 oz of virgin oil into a small bottle and two drops of lemon essential oil and about ten drops of lavender oil. Shake the mixture and then apply on the affected part of your dog’s skin. This mixture can last for a few months, so you can store it in a safe place and apply it to your dog every week.
Soothe the Yeast Infected Ears
Unless the ears are in bad shape, it’s ideal to leave your dog’s ears alone. The infected ears can often show you how well you are managing the yeast infection inside the dog. But, if they are in bad shape, you can treat them using a veterinary-recommended ear cleaner.
Reduce the Amount of Heavy Metals Your Dog Consumes
Yeast has a high affinity for most heavy metals, especially mercury. These metals generate free radicals that can cause severe health problems.
Since the body cannot remove them on its own, these metals tend to accumulate over time. And a large amount of some heavy metals like mercury, lead, chromium, cadmium, and arsenic can be quite toxic to your dog.
Yeast tends to bind to heavy metals and stop them from getting into the dog’s system, which is good news. However, heavy metals are toxic to competing bacteria. The heavy metals can reduce the population of the competing bacteria resulting in the outgrowth of yeast. Therefore, if you want to stop a yeast infection in dogs, you must reduce the number of heavy metals it consumes. So you can reduce the heavy metals by doing the following:
- Avoid feeding your dog low-quality fish oil or fish-based diets.
- Stop giving your pet fluoridated water.
- Feed him organic food.
Start Feeding Your Dog Supplements and Foods That Fight Yeast Infections
Since yeast is a fungus, you can kill them by giving your dog anti-fungal foods. Look for dog food and treats containing caprylic acid, Pau D-Arco, and olive leaf.
Pau D’Arco is rich in lapachol, which kills yeast. Olive leaf and caprylic acid are believed to break down the cell membrane of yeast.
Increase the Population of Other Beneficial Bacteria
The next step is increasing the population of the competing bacteria to keep the yeast in check.
You can increase the beneficial bacteria by adding probiotics in your dog’s meal. There are numerous probiotics that cannot fight yeast that lives in the dog’s gut. So, you can start by increasing their population before you introduce probiotics like Bacillus subtilus and Bacillus coagulans.
These probiotics are spore-forming and can fight yeast infections. And since probiotics cannot live in your dog’s guts for a very long time, you can also introduce prebiotics. Prebiotics can help grow the population of beneficial bacteria at a faster rate than probiotics.
Finally, you can remove the heavy metals left in your dog’s guts by the dead yeast by giving them food containing chlorella and sulfur. Sulfur can bind to the heavy metals and lower the oxidative damages done by these metals in organs.
Helpful Products for Balancing Yeast In Dogs
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After consulting with your dog’s veterinarian to address the underlying cause of yeast overgrowth, it’s time to prevent a recurrence. While natural home remedies may suppress yeast growth, it’s best to eliminate the problem altogether. We’ve curated a list of the best products to help balance yeast in dogs. By safely and effectively keeping your dog’s yeast problem at bay, she won’t get caught in a vicious cycle of vet visits, antibiotics, and harsh medical treatments.
Best Probiotic with Fiber Supplement for Dogs
Our pick: Great Poop Probiotic with Fiber
Yeast can live and grow in any number of places on and in your dog’s body. When yeast gets out of control, inflammatory skin conditions can develop in a number of places including folds of skin, the genital region, ears, and paw pads. Pawing, scratching, or biting any of these areas can be one of the first signs of a yeast infection. Once your dog’s vet examines her and recommends a course of action, a multipurpose probiotic is a great way to prevent yeast infections from recurring.
- Complete all-in-one formula to form a high fiber solution for gut and immune health
- Firmer, well-formed poops mean less straining and discomfort to defecate
- Contains beneficial bacteria in a handy chewable form
- Two billion powerful CFUs (colony-forming units) for proper gut balance
- American-made without corn, soy, artificial preservatives, or flavoring
- 120 chicken-flavored chews per container which can last months
Things to Consider
- May take a few days to see desired results
- Only available in a chewable version
Best Dog Ear Cleaner For Multiple Symptoms
Our pick: Great Ears Multisymptom Dog Ear Cleaner
Cleaning your dog’s ears doesn’t require any special supplies, but not all ear cleaners are created the same. Liquid ear cleaners are better at dislodging waxy junk deep in a dog’s ear so she can then shake it out. Instead of reaching for multiple ear cleaners to target ear wax, odor, and itchiness, use a safe, effective, all-in-one canine ear cleaner. Great Ears Multisymptom Dog Ear Cleaner won’t deplete the skin’s natural lipid barrier while conditioning and moisturizing the ears. Best of all, it’s safe for use on adult dogs and puppies over 12 weeks.
- Plant-based natural formula from coconut and palm
- Non-irritating wash eliminates odor and waxy gunk without alcohol or sulfates
- Convenient 8-ounce bottle lasts a long time
- At-home maintenance with Great Ears may decrease veterinary visits from waxy buildup
- Highly effective for floppy-eared dogs (Spaniels, Bassets, Retrievers, Poodles, etc.)
- Gentle formulation won’t harm a dog’s delicate ear canal
- Made in America without MEA, DEA, or parabens
- Light, pleasant “clean” scent
Things to Consider
- Dogs with excessive waxy build-up may require a second application
- Suggest maintenance cleaning is one to two times per week
- Ensure your dog’s ears do not require medical treatment before using an ear cleaner
Best Cleaning Wipes For Yeasty Dog Folds
Yeast loves to grow and thrive in dark, moist places on a dog’s body, such as facial folds, in between toes, underarm areas, and in the groin. Unlike liquid cleaners, Pet MD Chlorhexidine Antiseptic Dog & Cat Wipes are mess-free pre-moistened wipes. Formulated with an advanced veterinary formula of chlorhexidine and ketoconazole, fungal and bacterial infections don’t stand a chance of advancing. Keep a container on hand for travel and in between baths.
- Helps control the itchiness of hot spots, yeast-prone areas, and canine acne
- Easier to use than dog shampoo
- May lessen the amount of itching, scratching, and licking in yeast-prone areas
- Advanced veterinary formula from a trusted name brand
- Made in a regulated manufacturing facility in small batches in the USA
- Soothing skin-friendly formula with aloe and glycerin
Things to Consider
- Alcohol-based solution
- Do not allow your dog to lick the treated areas until the product dries to prevent ingestion
- Do not use on open wounds, cuts, or raw areas
- Wipes include a fragrance
Best Topical Cream For Inflammation Relief
Zymox’s veterinarian strength formula targets canine skin irritations caused by yeast, itchiness, hot spots, dermatitis, and more. The no-sting lotion formulated with 1% hydrocortisone is formulated without harsh chemicals that may irritate a dog’s sensitive skin. No need to pre-clean or disinfect the skin thanks to Zymox’s patented LP3 Enzyme System that reacts with the yeast to form antimicrobial properties. This cream is good to keep in your dog’s first aid kit for topical infections, wounds, cuts, and yeast prevention.
- Gentle enough to use every day for one to two weeks
- Suitable for use on and in surface skin folds such as face wrinkles
- Available in a non-hydrocortisone formula
- Recommended for hot spots, wet eczema, yeasty areas, dermatitis, cuts, and wounds
- Gently soothes and cleans the skin without burning or stinging
- Product has a catheter tip for easy, direct application
Things to Consider
- Intended for external use only
- If the condition worsens or persists for more than seven days, seek veterinary help
- Do not on mucous membranes
- Do not use on animals with known or suspected sensitivity to corticosteroids such as pregnant or lactating females
Best Daily Dog Multivitamin Supplement with Probiotic
Canine yeast infections happen for a number of reasons. Increasing the beneficial bacteria in your dog’s gut may help. Great Pet’s Daily Great all-in-one multivitamin contains 5 million CFUs to help digestion. Forget having to add multiple supplements to your pup’s diet. Daily Great supports a dog’s skin, coat, and joints with vitamins and minerals. For dogs over 12 weeks of age, this 4-in-1 multivitamin gives your pooch the support she needs to live a happy, healthy life. Since many dogs aren’t fond of having a pill shoved into their throats, Daily Great is formulated in an easy-to-dispense soft chew. No more hiding pills in her food!
- Contains glucosamine and chondroitin for hip and joint support
- Infused with omega 3 for healthy skin and coat
- Loaded with vitamins and minerals in a soft, tasty chew
- Made in America with a probiotic digestive aid
- Tasty chicken liver flavored chew dogs love
- Proper balance to support a dog’s daily needs
Things to Consider
- Suggested to give one dose with each meal
- Serve two chews per day for dogs 30 pounds or less, more depending on weight
- Divide the dosing between AM and PM
Yeast infection is a severe infection that can affect your dog’s peace. This infection can leave them biting the itch off their skin the whole day. And in severe cases, it can leave them with an ear infection that causes odors and discomfort.
So, you must start treating them as soon as you notice the symptoms of yeast infections. Make sure you consult your veterinarian to ensure you don’t confuse yeast infections with allergies.
Sponsored by The Crazy Pet Guy
About the Author
Cynthia Garcia is the editor and content creator at the Crazy Pet Guy. She’s a passionate pet rescue supporter and in her free time, she’s always looking for ways to help the community.