What is Impetigo in Dogs?

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What is Impetigo in Dogs?

Have you heard of Impetigo in dogs? Is this a question on your mind? Read through this article to the end. A Staphylococcus bacterial overgrowth most commonly causes Impetigo, but other bacterial strains can also cause it. It’s a skin infection in dogs caused by bacteria naturally present on your dog’s skin. 

It’s not a contagious disease like it is in humans, so you don’t have to worry about your dog catching it from another dog.

word Impetigo

The Symptoms of Puppy Impetigo

There are many symptoms of Impetigo, but the most common ones include the following:

Pustules (Inflamed skin in small patches, pus-filled bumps), papules (small, red, raised bumps), and epidermal collarettes may appear on a dog with Impetigo (circular lesions with crusting around the edges). You might also notice your dog scratching the affected skin areas. Your dog’s hair may also begin to fall out (hair thinning).

The abdomen and chin of your dog are the most likely areas to be affected. Your dog may also have Infections of the skin, blisters filled with pus, Scratching, licking, and biting infected areas. In some instances, your dog will exhibit depression and lose weight, all these resulting from Impetigo.

What Causes Impetigo in Dogs?

The exact cause of Impetigo is unknown, but if your dog has a compromised immune system, the body system is compromised, and as a result, bacteria can proliferate uncontrollably. It could be caused by any damage to your dog’s skin, immune system, or endocrine system.

Flea infestation, a food allergy, insect bites, mange, Immune system dysfunction, or ringworm are all risk factors for your dog. Impetigo can also be caused by thyroid disease or other hormonal imbalances in your dog.

Some breeds of dogs may be more prone to Impetigo than others. This can include bully breeds like Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Bulldogs, and Boxers, as well as Shar-Peis. In some cases, Impetigo in puppies can last from adolescence to adulthood.

Diagnosing Puppy Impetigo

Your puppy’s diagnosis will include a thorough physical examination, a medical history, laboratory testing, and imaging. In addition, the veterinarian will want to know if your puppy has recently been ill or injured. A typical appetite or behavior will also be noted.

Immunizations and general health are important topics to discuss with your veterinarian. You should inform him if you have given your puppy any prior medication (prescription or over-the-counter) because this can affect the diagnosis of your dog.

The veterinarian will perform a complete and thorough examination of your dog from head to tail, including a thorough examination of the skin and coat. 

The veterinarian will take a skin scraping to obtain a tissue sample for microscopic examination, samples of the fluid or pus from the blisters for cytological analysis, and direct impression smears of the lesions to evaluate the skin issue.

A bacterial and fungal culture, chemical panel, complete blood count, urinalysis, and blood glucose level can all be used to rule out infection or other conditions like mite infestation. If the veterinarian suspects an underlying illness, x-rays may be required to confirm the diagnosis. All these will be key and will help in treating impetigo in dogs.

Impetigo in Dogs Treatments Options

Impetigo is a relatively simple and painless condition in dogs. Some cases may resolve on their own without the need for treatment. If your dog’s Impetigo requires treatment, the most common treatment is a course of antibiotics. This can be topical if the condition is mild or systemic (oral), or severe.

Typically, your dog will only need these antibiotics for a few weeks, but more severe cases may necessitate a longer course of treatment. Inform your veterinarian if your dog has any antibiotic sensitivities or allergies. Your veterinarian may also recommend a shampoo to help clear up your dog’s lesions.

Impetigo is not fatal, and it usually stays localized, rarely spreading and rarely leading to deeper skin infections. Because the true cause of Impetigo is unknown, preventing it can be difficult. You can’t avert hormonal imbalances or immune system problems in your dog. However, you can ensure that they live in a clean environment free of fleas, urine, and feces.

Clean their bedding and toys regularly, using dye and fragrance-free detergent for machine-washable toys and mild dish soap for toys that cannot be washed. It is also critical to keep them up to date on their flea prevention. Numerous flea prevention products are available on the market, both at pet supply stores and at your veterinarian’s office.

However, not all flea repellents are the same. Your veterinarian can advise you on which products to use and avoid. Impetigo can be a nuisance for your growing puppy, but the majority of cases are mild, and most dogs grow out of flare-ups. Speak with your veterinarian if you have any concerns about your dog’s Impetigo.

Vet examining dog skin

Types of Puppy Impetigo

Surface pyoderma is typically mild, affecting only the top layer of skin with no hair. It’s a bacterial infection that affects only the skin’s upper layers and hair follicles. Local trauma, keratinization disorders, parasitic infestation, hormonal factors, or allergies are common causes of this infection.

Superficial bacterial folliculitis affects hairy areas of the skin and skin folds. It is a bacterial infection that attacks the upper part of the hair follicle. Staphylococcus pseudintermedius is the most common cause of superficial bacterial folliculitis, and it is almost always secondary to another disease.

Deep pyoderma can enter the deeper layers of tissue through a break in the skin caused by scratching. Although deep pyoderma is less common than superficial pyoderma, it invades the deeper layers of the skin, causing furunculosis and cellulitis.

Deep pyoderma typically begins as a superficial bacterial skin infection, particularly one involving the dog’s hair follicles. When a hair follicle becomes infected, it ruptures, causing a more widespread reaction beneath the skin’s surface.

Recovery Rate and Prognosis of Impetigo in Dogs

Once you’ve received treatment, your puppy’s prognosis is excellent. Any type of Impetigo is improbable to be fatal in a dog. The underlying condition may be more serious, but the forecast is still favorable when detected early with treatment. Follow your veterinarian’s instructions exactly, and call if you have any questions or concerns about skin healing.

Paying attention to any underlying factors may be all that is required to obtain a satisfactory response. Treatment, on the other hand, will hasten the resolution. Cases may be discovered at the time of the first vaccination, and achieving a practical therapeutic goal will be beneficial before the second vaccination; the lesions should have healed.

Applying shampoo containing chlorhexidine (which is an antibacterial agent) is helpful. The applications of ethyl lactate (with or without miconazole) or ethyl lactate should be made several times per week. A favorable response to topical therapy should be anticipated within two weeks.

In cases where your dog doesn’t respond positively within the expected time, perform a culture and sensitivity test followed by three weeks of appropriate antibacterial therapy. This is rarely necessary and should be avoided. Only if topical treatment has proven ineffective should oral treatment be considered.

Dog with shampoo

What is the Difference between Impetigo and Pyoderma in Dogs?

Pyoderma is a Greek word that means “pus in the skin.” It is common in dogs and can be caused by infection, inflammation, or cancer. Bacterial infections are the most common cause of pyoderma. Most of these are superficial and secondary to other conditions such as allergies or parasites.

Pyoderma is a medical term that refers to any type of skin infection. It translates to “pupil in the skin.” A Staphylococcus bacteria overgrowth most commonly causes Impetigo, but other bacterial strains can also cause it. Pyoderma is simply a dog skin infection caused by bacteria. Pyoderma is also known as Impetigo, especially in young puppies.

On the other hand, Impetigo is a common problem in young prepubescent dogs kept in unsanitary conditions. Coagulation-positive staphylococci cause this non-follicular subcorneal pustular condition. It’s a skin infection in dogs caused by bacteria naturally present on your dog’s skin.

This article gives you great lessons on lesions on dogs and provides you with much insight into taking care of your Impetigo dogs. However, if you are faced with a situation that you are not sure of how to go about it, always call or consult your veterinarian for professional advice.

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