What To Do If My Dog Has Crusty Scabs On His Back?

What To Do If My Dog Has Crusty Scabs On His Back?

What To Do If My Dog Has Crusty Scabs On His Back? – Have you noticed that your dog has crusts or scabs on their skin? Are they red or peeling? Is your pet restless and itching often? Unfortunately, you are faced with a very common problem that dogs often get.

My Dog Has Crusty Scabs: Causes and Care

Crusty scabs on a dog’s skin can be alarming. Understanding the causes and how to help is crucial for your pet’s well-being.

Common Causes of Crusty Scabs on Dogs

  • Parasites: Mites (sarcoptic mange, demodicosis), fleas, and ticks cause itching, leading to scabs from scratching.
  • Allergies: Environmental (pollen, dust), food, or grooming products can trigger allergic reactions, resulting in itchy skin and scabs.
  • Fungal Infections: Ringworm is a contagious fungal infection that causes scaly, hairless patches with crusty scabs.
  • Bacterial Infections: These infections can lead to crusty scabs, often with pus.
  • Yeast Infections: These common infections often cause darkened skin and crusty scabs.
  • Hormonal Imbalances: Conditions like hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease can affect skin health, leading to scabs.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies: A poor diet can lead to dry, flaky skin and increased risk of infections and scabs.
  • Autoimmune Disorders: Dogs with weakened immune systems may be prone to skin infections and develop scabs.

Types of Scabs

  • Yellow Scabs: May indicate seborrhea, a skin condition with oily, flaky skin and yellow scabs.
  • Black Scabs: Check for fleas and flea dirt (black specks), not actual scabs.
  • Raised Scabs: Could be due to allergies, infections, or other skin damage.
  • Itchy Scabs: Common, and can be caused by numerous conditions.
  • Red Scabs: Sign of active bleeding and potential skin damage.

Finding Crusty Scabs

  • Regularly Groom and Inspect Your Dog: Look for changes in skin and behavior.
  • Monitor Behavior: Notice excessive licking, scratching, or changes in energy levels.

Common Areas of Crusty Scabs

  • Armpits and Sides: Areas dogs can easily scratch and cause damage.
  • Belly and Back: Allergies often lead to scabs in these areas.
  • Nose: Digging, trauma, or autoimmune diseases can cause nose scabs.
  • Ears: Ear infections or allergies may manifest as scabs on the ears.

Home Treatment (for mild cases)

  • Assess severity: If scabs are minor, home treatment may be appropriate. Consult your vet if unsure.

When to Seek Veterinary Attention

  • Excessive itching or licking: Indicates underlying causes.
  • Skin changes: Redness, scaling, bald patches, or discoloration warrant a vet visit.
  • No improvement with home care: Seek professional diagnosis and treatment.

Key Takeaways

  • Crusty scabs on dogs signal potential health issues and require attention.
  • Identifying the cause is crucial for effective treatment.
  • Consult your veterinarian for severe cases, persistent issues, or if in doubt.
  • Proper nutrition, regular grooming, and awareness of behavioral changes help early detection and management of skin problems.

Remember: A healthy coat reflects a healthy dog!

What Causes Crusty Scabs On A Dog’s Skin

Dog scabs can look like anything based on their causes and also the affected area. So, let’s learn more about the most common scab types here:

Crusty scabs can appear on a dog’s skin due to various reasons. To know the proper kind of treatment, you need to understand the underlying reason for this happening to your dog’s skin.

Here are some of the internal and external causes of crusty scabs on your dog’s skin:


External factors cause scabs such as

  • Scabies (sarcoptic mange);
  • Mycosis (pitirosporosis);
  • Demodicosis;
  • Microsporidia.

Sarcoptic mange and demodicosis are caused by mites that live on the surface of the skin. To detect them, a microscopic examination of the skin is required. It is quite difficult to detect ticks, as they cause severe inconvenience to animals.

Allergies or Allergic Dermatitis

Dogs may have allergic reactions from products for their grooming, foods, and also environmental irritants, for example, insect bites or pollen. A dog with any kind of allergies will be seen to scratch relentlessly, as well as a scab on the skin usually seen.

Newer medicines like Corticosteroids can help with any kind of itchy rashes. However, the most compelling treatment is to recognize and avoid divulgence to the allergens.

Allergy leads as a factor provoking the appearance of crusts on the skin in dogs. It can be caused by allergens that affect the body from the outside or the inside. The most common allergens – substances that cause an acute response in the body, are:

  • Plant pollen;
  • Food products;
  • Chemically aggressive substances;
  • Household dust;
  • Environmental allergies;
  • Hair care products;
  • Pharmaceutical preparations;

Fungal Infection

Fungal diseases (ringworm, microsporidia) can be transmitted to humans, so the animal must be taken to the veterinarian and then placed in quarantine. UV radiation is used for diagnosis.

After the bites of ticks, fleas, and withers, large itchy spots appear. Your dog tends to scratch such an area, damaging the upper layer of the epidermis, as a result, a secondary infection is often introduced, causing a rash and even suppuration.

Fungal infections, mainly ringworms, may cause dog scabs, hair loss, severe itching, scaly skin, flaky skin, and also red & irritated skin condition. This may appear anywhere in your dog’s body, even on the mouth.

Ringworms are highly contagious. Additionally, pups tend to get these sorts of skin infections as they have more fragile immune systems than older dogs.

Bacterial Infection

Bacterial diseases are most often caused by staphylococcus and streptococcus, pneumococcus. They are characterized by skin lesions in the anus and on the inner thighs. Later, the parasites spread throughout the body, including the mouth. Not only do crusts appear on the skin, but also bubbles.

Yeast Infections

These are among the most common kinds of skin infections seen in dogs. Additionally, it’s even among the easiest infections to detect in your dog.

This is because, with yeast infections, your dog will get discolored skin (darker than other parts of the skin) alongside crusty scabs.

A yeast infection normally appears in moist and warm parts of your canine, where yeast can easily build up. With a yeast infection, you will see your dog licking and scratching the infected area, which may cause your dog’s scab.

Hormonal Imbalances

Often hormonal imbalance causes skin disorders in a dog. And as a result, dogs get dry and itchy skin. So, it is always better to consult a veteran to find out the main cause of crusty scabs.

Hormonal imbalance generally causes hair loss, which then causes skin irritation, redness, and ultimately, crusty scabs.

It may indicate more severe health issues like Cushing’s disease, hypothyroidism, and also tumors in dogs. Thus, these conditions need veterinary therapy.


External bacterial folliculitis is a kind of infection that leads to scabs, bumps, and sores on the skin. Such abnormalities on the skin are easier to discover in shorthaired canines. In longhaired canines, the most prominent symptoms are a dull coat as well as shedding alongside scaly skin.

Folliculitis usually occurs with other skin issues, such as allergies, injury, or Mange. Treatment may contain oral antibiotics as well as antibacterial shampoos or ointments.

External Parasites

These majorly make your dog’s skin irritated a lot and force your dog to chew, lick, and also scratch its skin overly. This can also cause severe tenderness, soreness, and also crusty scabs. Such external parasites include ticks, fleas, and mites.

Hot Spots

It means pyotraumatic dermatitis or acute moist dermatitis.  It’s a skin condition that happens when regular skin bacteria infect skin that has been impaired by your dog’s licking, scratching, or chewing.


Impetigo is one of the most common bacterial infections in puppies. This infection causes blisters that may crust over. These often form on the hairless part of the abdomen. It is rarely serious as well as are easily treatable with topical solutions.

Nutritional Deficiency

Your dog needs the right components and a balanced diet to maintain a healthy body and skin as well as prevent scabs.

Additionally, you need to make sure that your dog is drinking enough liquid so that the skin does not dry out. A dehydrated dog usually has dry skin which may cause your dog to lick and scratch itself, and as a result, form crusty scabs.


Issues like Seborrhea makes your dog’s skin greasy and form scales or dandruff. It may be a genetic disorder that begins at an early age and lasts for a lifetime. However, dogs with seborrhea issues develop dandruff as the intricacy of another medical issue, for example, hormonal abnormalities or allergies. If this is the case, then it’s necessary to treat the cause so signs don’t recur.

Auto-Immune Disorder

If your dog’s immune system is weak then it can’t fight skin irritants. This can even lead to crusty scabs and these need to be analyzed by your veterinarian on time.

Types of Scabs on Dogs

Different types of crusty scabs can affect your dog. Here are a few types of scabs that the commonly seen on dog skins.

Yellow Scabs:

This type of scab generally indicates the existence of seborrhea. If your dog has seborrhea, it may often get a skin disorder. And these diseases ultimately appear like flaking, yellow scabs.

Black Scabs

These can happen, but it is essential to confirm that you see scabs on your dog’s skin and not other skin lesions. Dogs with fleas usually have small black specks on their skin and coat. These black specks aren’t scabs but fleas and eggs of fleas.

Raised Scabs

These occur for different reasons, such as allergies, parasites, and even infections. Nevertheless, if you see a scab, this could mean that your canine has a skin issue that has become infected or inflamed.

Itchy Scabs

These are very common types of scabs. This can appear due to parasites, allergies, or even infections.

Red Scabs

These often show that your dog is getting active bleeding in the area where you discover the red scabs. These generally appear due to puncture wounds and abrasions.


Although different types of scabs have different appearances, all of them indicates skin damage. So, without further delay, take action to treat your four-legged best friend.

How to Find Crusty Scabs On Your Pet?

Regularly check your dog to find any irregular symptoms or reactions, and then take note. You may see your dog itching often, during a certain season, or in case you have done any housework recently, all of which can mean an underlying atopic dermatitis or skin allergy.

Always keep an eye on your dog’s behavior. Take note whenever you notice any changes in their behavior.

Common Areas Where Dog Scabs Appear

Crusty scabs can occur anywhere on your dog’s body, but certain parts are more prone to get affected. So, here are the common places where your dog might get crusty scabs.

Armpits & Sides:

Scabs that appear due to excessive itching or any other self-trauma, generally, tend to arise in the armpits and sides of your dog’s body. This is because your dog’s armpits and sides are the places your dog can badly scratch itself.

Belly & back

Often allergies cause extreme scabs on your dog’s belly as well as back. Scabs caused by allergies are sometimes accompanied by itching, hair loss, and also skin redness.


Scabs on your dog’s nose may have several distinct causes. A few dogs rub their noses and this trauma often ends up inviting a scab.

Dogs that often dig using their nose may get ringworm problems on their nose, causing a scab. On the other hand, some dogs’ autoimmune diseases can lead to scabs on your dog’s noses.


If your dog gets scabs on its ears then it may indicate the existence of an ear infection. sometimes, itching in your dog’s ears isn’t caused by infections and is because of allergies. So, it is better to consult a veteran to know the exact cause and treat your dog accordingly.

What To Do at Home Treatment When Your Dog Has Crusty Scabs on His Back

As long as your dog’s crusty skin irritation is minimal, you can consider doing a home treatment. As soon as you discover a crusty scab on your dog’s skin, measure the seriousness to understand if you can treat them using any homemade recipes or using shampoos or ointments.

If the crusty scabs do not lessen after using these things then do not delay and consult the veteran. This is because there are types of crusty scabs that need professional care from an expert.

So, if the seriousness of the crusty scabs is extreme then it is better if you do not consider doing home treatment. If you do so, then there is a high chance that you will end up hurting your four-legged best friend in the end.

When to See the Vet And Take Veterinary Medicine

While most skin conditions aren’t emergencies, it’s essential to get a precise diagnosis so that the skin disorder can be treated on time and properly. See a veterinarian in case your dog is licking or scratching itself excessively, or in case you notice any abnormalities in your dog’s skin or coat, including redness, scaling bald patches, or discoloration. As soon as the cause is determined, most skin conditions respond well to therapy.


If you notice alarming symptoms, you should immediately consult the veteran for quick treatment of your beloved dog. Regardless of what causes the appearance of crusts on the dog’s skin, the pet needs help and alleviate the condition.

The main prevention of the appearance of crusts on the skin of a dog and the development of other diseases is strong immunity. A sufficient level of activity, proper nutrition, and pet care help to ensure it. Do not forget about regular walks and loads that will help your pet to be in shape all the time.

Nutrition is the foundation of your pet’s health. Since crusting on the skin of dogs is often a symptom of an allergy, the first step is to eliminate the allergen. As part of unique veterinary diets, in addition to a safe composition, there is another advantage – the inclusion of capsules with extracts of medicinal plants.


What Should I Do If I Nothing that My dog has crusty scabs on his back?

Plantain, aloe vera, turmeric, cranberry, papaya, oregano, and other plants contain unique substances that have a healing effect on the body of pets: they relieve inflammation, increase immunity, cleanse, prevent the effects of free radicals, etc. So, you can use these to treat your dog or can contact a verterian in your area.

Which dogs are prone to skin diseases?

The risk group should include dogs prone to allergies:
French and English Bulldogs;
German Shepherds;
Often, allergic reactions occur in snow-white animals: Spitz, Samoyed Laikas, American Staffordshire Terriers, etc.

Why does my dog have scabs but no fleas?

Skin diseases often develop against a background of weakened immunity with:
diabetes mellitus;
diseases of the gastrointestinal tract;

Aapt Dubey
Aapt Dubey

Aapt Dubey, a devoted canine enthusiast and experienced dog Owner, brings boundless passion to our team. With a heart full of love for our four-legged friends, Aapt is dedicated to sharing insights on dog care, behavior, and training to make every pup's life happier and healthier at ItsAboutDog.com.

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