What Are These Crusty Scabs On My Dog’s Back? All You Need To Know

Every dog loves and longs to be petted by its owner, it is probably the best way pet parents can show their love for their pets, and it somehow reinforces the bond between them. Patting, stroking, and brushing a dog’s coat is one activity most dogs love a lot. However, there are times it becomes difficult to do these things to your dog, especially in circumstances when they have skin disorders. Also, it is advisable to use the opportunity of grooming your dog to check for things like crusty scabs on their backs. Let us explore this dog skin disorder and what to do when you see them on your dog.

Causes of Crusty Scabs on a Dog’s Back

There are quite a few issues that can cause crusty scabs on your beloved dog’s skin, and we will explore quite a few of them now.


The very first thing to check when scabs start developing on your dog is its nutrition and general well-being. If your dog is not getting the required quantity and quality of vitamins and nutrients in the recommended amounts from its food, it will surely show on the coat. In such a case, your dog’s skin would become dehydrated and lack the necessary immunity needed to fight off skin conditions such as rashes, itching, and irritation. Needless to say, this will ultimately develop into scabs.


Either fungal or bacterial, infections constitute another reason your dog may have scabs on its skin. Dogs that usually play, roll around or sleep on soils are more likely to pick up fungal infections such as ringworm. When a dog has ringworm or other skin infections that cause it to itch and scratch, it can lead to bacterial infections if the skin is cut open during a scratching bout. One way or the other, infections should be avoided or treated on time to avoid further problems emanating from them.

Allergies or Allergic Reactions

Reacting in a negative way to certain environmental factors or in rare cases, food/dog’s diet is another reason why dogs develop crusty scabs on their skin. The inhalation of pollens by dogs while outside or ingestion of certain foods may cause allergic reactions on the skin such as rashes, bumps and redness, sores, and also scabs. Dogs that come in contact with yard-treating chemicals, certain plastics, and surfaces may also react to these things as well. Since they mostly don’t know what would be harmful to them, your dog can play with unhealthy things without minding the consequences.

Parasitic Attacks

The presence of specific parasites such as ticks, fleas, and mites, can also lead to a few skin conditions and irritation on your dog. External parasites such as fleas and mites – which are invincible to the naked eye, can attach themselves to a dog’s skin and the resulting irritation will cause the dog severe itching, discomfort, and loss of blood. Mites cause medical conditions such as scabies or mange in dogs, and if left untreated will ultimately result in crusty scabs on dogs.

Immune-suppressing or Auto-immune Disorders

Dogs suffering from immune-suppressing or auto-immune disorders are also most likely to develop sores on their skins, which would definitely lead to crusty scabs. This condition is very fatal to dogs suffering from it as it is the system of the dog that is actually attacking itself. This could ultimately lead to the dog’s death.

Hormonal Imbalance or Inherited Abnormality

Hereditary abnormalities and/or hormonal imbalances passed down the line in some dogs, can actually lead to skin issues and irritation. If left unattended, this condition could eventually lead to the development of crusty scabs on the dog.

Crusty Scabs

How to Get Crusty Scabs Off My Dog’s Back

Once you notice these crusty scabs on your dog’s skin, the first thing to do is to consult a veterinarian who would look the dog over and help you come up with the best plan of action to identify and get rid of the condition. Nevertheless, there are steps you can take on your own to ensure these scabs don’t find their way to your dog’s back.

Practicing very good dog hygiene is another way to get rid of the scabs quickly. It is always good practice to bathe your dog regularly with anti-fungal/bacterial shampoos once you spot scabs; applying medicated ointments on the dog’s skin helps too. It is also a good idea to clean your home and your yard – particularly your dog’s feces on a regular basis. Brushing your dog on a regular basis is also recommended.

The use of flea and tick collars to control pests that cause these crusty scabs are also recommended to get rid of them. It is also a good idea to consult your vet and ask for their opinion on the best collars to get for your dog.

Feeding your dog a wholesome, nutritious, and well-balanced diet is also important to help prevent or treat cases where scabs are on its coat. When the dog’s diet lacks the essential nutrients and vitamins required for its well-being and growth, it sometimes manifests through adverse skin conditions like crusty scabs. It is also good to give your dog fish oil supplements regularly; this would help to reduce flaky and itchy skin, as well as promote a very silky coat.

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Other Skin Problems That Plague Dogs

There are a few other skin issues that affect dogs in the course of their lives and we will look at just a few:

1. Certain yeast infections can affect the skin, ears, and toes of dogs if left untreated. This will usually leave the dog scratching its ears, and biting parts of its skin or toes.

2. Folliculitis and impetigo, are forms of bacterial infections that affect the skin of dogs, leaving them with bumps, sores, and scabs all over their skin.

3. Seborrhea and mange, are forms of infections in dogs caused by hormonal imbalance and parasitic infestations respectively. Alopecia – which leads to excessive shedding in dogs, is also a common skin disease.

4. Dogs are also known to develop tumors in some cases, this has to be tested to know if it is cancerous or not.

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