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Common Skin Problems of Pugs

Pugs are susceptible to a variety of skin disorders. The skin folds on their faces create a favorable environment for the growth and multiplication of bacteria and fungi which have been associated with common health problems of the skin.
Pugs can also suffer from hypersensitivity reactions to potential allergens present in dog food and in the environment. These allergies are usually manifested by intense itching and irritation.

Another possible cause of skin problems of pugs is flea bites which cause not only pruritus but also a potentially severe skin reaction.
Here are some of the most common skin problems of Pugs—

Pyoderma
Pyoderma is a skin infection characterized by the presence of pustules that discharge thick, white pus. The Pug’s skin folds are infected and may appear reddish and moist. It may also have a foul odor. A Pug suffering from Pyoderma may constantly lick and scratch at the affected areas.

Mild cases are usually treated with topical antibiotics to kill pathogenic bacteria. Corticosteroids may also be prescribed to provide relief from inflammation and itching. The hair in the affected area is usually clipped. Regular cleaning using a mild soap can also help eliminate pathogens. In severe cases, your vet may prescribe oral antibiotics and other medications that can effectively combat the skin problem.

To help prevent pyoderma, it is best to do a regular inspection of your Pug’s skin folds and keep it clean and dry. Weight loss can also help prevent the occurrence of the skin problem particularly in obese dogs.

Ringworm
Ringworm is a fungal infection of the skin. It is named after the ring-shaped skin lesion which is a common symptom of the disease. There are several species of fungi which have been implicated in ringworm infections in dogs like Microsporum canis, Microsporum gypseum, and Trichophyton mentagrophytes. Aside from the tell-tale ring-shaped lesion, a Pug suffering from ringworm also manifests hair loss and scaly skin on the affected site.

There is a big possibility that Ringworm lesions can be invaded by secondary bacterial infections resulting in the formation of pustules and papules. Adult dogs seldom suffer from a generalized form of Ringworm infection because their immune systems are strong and healthy. However, dogs with compromised immune systems are generally prone to developing the generalized form of the skin disease.

Your veterinarian may conduct a test called the Wood’s Lamp to make a definite diagnosis. A Dermatophytosis (DTM) culture can also help demonstrate and identify the specific fungal species causing the Ringworm infection.
Ringworm is commonly treated with topical antifungal preparations or rinses especially with the generalized form of the infection. Clotrimazole or Miconazole can be applied topically to treat local lesions. In severe cases, systemic treatment may be necessary.

Atopy (Atopic Dermatitis)
Atopy is a skin condition where a dog becomes hypersensitive to specific allergens such as pollen, dust, certain foods, and household chemicals. It is also called, “Atopic Dermatitis”, “Allergic Inhalant Dermatitis”, “Atopic Eczema”, or “Inhalant Dermatitis”.

Atopy in dogs is often a seasonal condition where a dog typically suffers from chronic itching that mainly affects its belly, feet, and face. Constant scratching and biting at the affected areas often lead to trauma and creates favorable areas for secondary bacterial infections to take place.

Dogs suffering from Atopy may also have nasal and eye discharges, digestive problems, and may have bouts of sneezing.

Clinical cases have shown that dogs which are prone to seasonal atopy eventually suffer year-round atopy wherein symptoms often become worse with time. Unfortunately, there is no therapeutic regimen which can cure Atopy. The skin problem can only be controlled and effectively managed with the help of your veterinarian.

Ear Mites

Ear mites are considered the most common mite in dogs. Dogs harboring ear mites are usually seen shaking his head and scratching his ears. Since mites can easily transfer from one dog to another, dogs in a household can easily get infested.

Ear mites thrive best in the environment of the ear canals. They feed on the tissues and tissue fluids within the ears. They can also spread to the head of the dog and eventually the entire body if they are left unchecked.

Puppies are more prone to suffering from ear mite infestation compared to adult dogs whose immune systems are already well-developed and have built up immunity against the effects of ear mites.

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