Do Golden Retrievers Have Sensitive Skin? 5 Solutions That Just Work


There is a lot to be loved and admired about Goldens, but they are not perfect, and they have their own shortcomings and problems.

For example, goldens need a lot of care to keep their coat and skin healthy, and they are prone to many skin and coat- related issues.

But do golden retrievers have sensitive skin? Golden Retrievers don’t have sensitive skin, but they are prone to many skin issues due to their heavy coats which usually retain a lot of heat and humidity which can negatively harm their skin and make them vulnerable to health issues in this area more than other dog breeds.

So you can say their skin is more sensitive than most other dog breeds, but it’s not like every golden retriever out there will suffer from health problems related to their skin and coat.

To understand why goldens have a skin that’s more sensitive than other dog breeds and what you can do about it, we need to take a deeper dive, so let’s get to it.

Why Do Golden Retrievers have sensitive Skin?

An image of a golden retriever with the wind blowing their coat and tail to illustrate why do golden retrievers have sensitive skin

Golden retrievers have a skin that’s more sensitive than most other dog breeds because of their heavy coats. The heavy double-coat of your golden retriever can retain a lot of heat and humidity near the skin which can cause a lot of problems if not handled correctly.

Some of the problems the heat and humidity can cause include:

  • General irritability
  • Hot Spots
  • Skin inflammation

Do golden retrievers have skin allergies?

Yes, Golden Retrievers are susceptible to certain skin allergies such as Atopic Dermatitis which is a heritable condition that causes golden retrievers to develop inflammatory reactions to things like fleas, ticks, mosquitos, dust, mold, grass, pollens, and ragweed.

Some food intolerances in goldens can also cause skin allergies. Gastrointestinal disorders can also trigger skin allergies in golden retrievers.

You can reduce the risk of skin allergies triggered by foods by avoiding these humans foods you shouldn’t ever feed your golden retriever.

How to Know if your golden retriever has sensitive skin?

There are some telltale signs that can tell you that your golden retriever could have a sensitive skin or is having skin problems.

Here are some signs of a sensitive skin:

  • Excessive scratching
  • Itchy Skin
  • Constantly licking a certain area
  • Red or inflamed skin
  • Hair is falling out in patches

These problems can present at any part of the body and at any age. Skin issues are not alos limited to certain seasons, but I have noticed that they are a lot more common during the summer, which make sense.

If your golden seems to also suffer more during the summer, the easiest solution would be to help them adapt to the weather and cool down, and you can learn how to help your golden adapt to hot weather here with 13 really useful tips.

But what if the cause is not in the weather? Let’s see 5 easy ways to manage your golden retriever’s sensitive skin…

How to manage your golden retriever’s sensitive Skin

Here are 5 effective ways to manage your golden’s sensitive skin:

  1. Limit Their Time Outside
  2. Minimize their exposure to dust
  3. Reduce humidity levels in your home
  4. Use medicated shampoos
  5. Discuss treatments with your vet

Okay, we need to talk just for a minute about each of these, so let’s dive in.

Limit Their Time Outside

If your goldens’ skin issues are triggered by environmental allergens, you will need to limit their exposure to these allergens, and the easiest way to do that is to limit their time outside at least temporarily.

This can mean that you have to keep them indoors most, if not all, day during the peak of the pollen season. You will also need to cut down your grass and maybe ask your neighbors to be so kind and cut theirs as well.

This, however, should only be a temporary measure as goldens should not be kept inside all the time. Use the time you keep them inside to figure out what is triggering their allergies so you can work on effectively avoiding exposure to the allergen itself without trapping the dog away from the world.

Pro Tip
When your dog absolutely needs to go outside, wipe down their nose with a wet cloth once you’re back home to remove the pollen from the fur and skin.

Minimize Their Exposure to Dust

Your Golden could be allergic to dust and dust mites, and if that’s the case, then simply keeping your house clean and as dust-free as possible can greatly help them.

Here are some tips to limit their exposure to dust:

  1. Vacuum your house at least once a week
  2. Wash their bedding with hot water regularly
  3. Change your air filters regularly
  4. Use the AC when it’s hot outside
  5. Keep your golden out of recently-vacuumed areas
  6. Remove carpeting from the rooms your goldens spend most of their time in
  7. Avoid stuffed toys as they accumulate dust

Reduce Humidity Levels in your Home

Humidity leads to mold and mold is one of the most common allergens to dogs. If you live in a humid area, you should seriously consider using a humidifier.

Dehumidifier can significantly reduce the humidity in your house and keep the air dry, which in turn keeps your golden dry. I like the Kesnos pictured above because it’s effective and works in large spaces, so you don’t have to get a humidifier for every room your golden spends time in.

You can check this Dehumidifier’s price on Amazon here.

Use Medicated Shampoos

Of course, bathing your golden retrievers is essential to keep your golden retriever’s skin and coat healthy. Using a medicated shampoo can also help as they will remove allergens and soothe your dog’s skin.

Medicated shampoos also often contain oatmeal and essential fatty acids to keep their skins from getting dry. You should never use human shampoos on your dog’s skin.

If you want, you can check out my full list of recommended shampoos here. If you are looking for a quick recommendation, I have been using the Veterinary Formula Shampoo for a long while now and it’s been fantastic. You can check it on Amazon here.

If you are looking for an overall awesome Shampoo, my recommendation for the Adams Plus Shampoo still stands. You can check it here on Amazon.

Discuss Treatments with your vet

You should consult with your vet regarding different treatment options. There are many options available such as Antihistamine which are commonly used to treat allergies in dogs, steroids as anti-inflammatory treatments, and Cyclosporine which is a more long-term treatments for inflammation in dogs- but it could be quite expensive.

Your Vet will likely test the dog to find out what exactly they are allergic to and you may need to test out a few treatments to figure out which one works best for your dog.

Related Questions

Do Golden Retrievers have skin allergies?

Yes, Golden Retrievers do have skin allergies as do all other dog breeds. Your dog’s skin allergies could be caused by an environmental allergen such as trees pollen, insects such as fleas or mites, or even certain foods such as grains.

The best way to treat your dog’s skin allergies is to take them to the vet and figure out what they are allergic to and then limit their exposure to this allergen as much as possible.

The vet could also prescribe certain medications to manage the dog’s allergies.

Why does my golden retriever Scratch so much?

Your golden retriever could be scratching excessively because of a physical problem like insects, inflammation, or pain in this area, or it could be a psychological issue like boredom, anxiety, or stress.

If you have any more questions, please feel free to reach out to me either via the Twitter account linked at the end or via my reach me page and I will be more than happy to get back to you with the answers!

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