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Skin Fold Dermatitis in Pugs

Skin Fold Dermatitis is often initiated by abnormal rubbing in the area coupled with retained moisture in an area of the body where it’s warm and there is poor exposure to air. Extra rolls of skin in obese dogs can also be a favorable place for an infection to set in. These conditions are favorable for the growth and proliferation of normal skin flora such as bacteria and fungi (yeast) leading to an inflammatory skin condition known as dermatitis. One of the most common complications of dermatitis is a skin infection called pyoderma.

Obesity and skin allergies in dog breeds prone to developing Skin Fold Dermatitis can often make the condition worse.

Skin fold dermatitis is often suspected when alopecic (hairless) areas are visible and accompanied by inflamed and stinky skin fold interiors particularly in brachycephalic dogs. In most cases the infected folds become more pronounced when pophyrin pigments in the tears stain the face.

Pugs with corkscrew tails are prone to tail-fold dermatitis. Severe cases occur when deep fistulas are formed and penetrate the body cavity increasing the risk of deadly infections.

Dog breeds with recessed vulvas often suffer from vulvar tail fold dermatitis with urinary tract infections as a common sequel due to ascending bacterial infections. This type of skin fold dermatitis is often overlooked but it has the same capacity to produce insidious systemic infections with other types.

The treatment protocol for any type of skin fold dermatitis includes thorough cleaning of the affected areas with the use of antiseptics and administering antibiotics. To prevent severe infections, topical or system antibiotics are often given regularly to treat the resulting pyoderma. However, these procedures provide only temporary relief.

In cases where animals are moderately to severely affected, surgical intervention may be needed to get rid of the abnormal skin folds and achieve successful treatment. Quick recovery and minimal cases of relapse are often experienced with surgery.

Losing excess weight and treatment of any underlying skin problem can help lower the severity or even altogether prevent the occurrence of skin fold dermatitis.

Other preventive measures include thorough cleaning with an antiseptic, weight management and effectively control existing skin problems. The best way, however, is to avoid breeding dogs with extreme body conformations.