Q. My dog is 14 years old and just this year have we noticed scaly skin and it is all over his body except stomach. What should we do?
JESSICA L DESROSIERS
A. Scaly skin can be caused by a number of things in dogs ranging from general allergies, external parasites, infection and metabolic disease. If your dog is already on a preventive medication for external parasites, it is a good idea to monitor for any other signs of illness. Signs such as hair loss, scratching and chewing, redness and more can help you figure out the cause. For general allergies, a treatment with an allergy medication appropriate for your dog's size and preventing licking and chewing of areas can help. If hair loss or other changes in behavior such as increased thirst, changes in weight or appetite and vomiting or diarrhea happen in addition to scaly skin, then having your vet check for a metabolic issue with bloodwork is best.