Fungus in dogs: signs, symptoms, treatment

Fungus in dogs, or dermatophytosis, is a disease of infectious etiology that requires veterinary care. No domestic animals are insured against this disease, regardless of the conditions of detention. For owners, it is important to identify the disease in time, based on its symptoms and primary signs.


Why do dogs get sick

Fungus or dermaphytosis in dogs

Photo of fungus in dogs

There are many types of fungi, but only some of them are causative agents of dangerous infections in the body of dogs. Infection can occur during contact with another animal, walking on the grass on which pathogens are located. Even a dog that walks on a tray can become infected, because fungi often get into the house with the owners' shoes.

In addition to pathogenic species, there are also conditionally pathogenic fungal pathogens. They can always be in the animal's body, but the dog gets sick only under certain circumstances - weak immunity, hypersensitivity, etc. These types of fungi are not contagious, they live on the skin, but do not cause harm.

Young individuals, dogs that have undergone disease or surgery, have problems with the immune system, animals with a tendency to allergic and skin diseases are in the risk group for dermatophyse disease.

Symptoms of fungus in dogs

Factors contributing to the development of the disease are unbalanced diet and high humidity. The growth of the fungus is enhanced on the skin, not getting enough air, covered with matted wool and a layer of dirt. Fungi also multiply rapidly in dogs that are often washed, as this procedure eliminates sebum and reduces the protection of the skin from external pathogens. In addition, the body of the animal can not resist the disease after taking funds that suppress the immune system.

You can identify many more factors contributing to fungal diseases, but in their absence there is a risk for the animal to become infected with pathogenic fungi.

The main signs of infection with fungus

Once on the skin, the mushrooms begin to multiply rapidly, having a negative effect on the immune mechanisms of the pet. Penetrating deep into the skin, the fungus provokes serious inflammatory processes and diseases in the follicles. Injured skin is a fertile medium for the reproduction of various parasites - pathogenic bacteria, protozoa, insects, etc.

Until the origin of the causative agent of this condition has been clarified, there is a risk of infection in humans and other animals.

Among the main symptoms of the fungus are the following:

  • the disease begins to develop from one to three small spots;
  • the coat begins to fall out from the places of defeat, in some cases it is as if sheared off, leaving a small length;
  • Formed stains can be of a single size or grow for a long time, depending on the type of pathogen and the strength of the protective mechanisms of immunity;
  • the skin at the site of the lesion becomes gray or red;
  • if you look closely, you can find a white or grayish coating on the hair bulb;
  • the lesion is covered with flakes or overlapping scales that can fall off of the skin or hold tight.

Without timely treatment, baldness increases. The fungus begins to grow into the deep layers, which provokes all sorts of complications. In severe stages of a lesion, the dog completely loses its coat, which cannot be restored for a long time.

Often the fungus affects the pet's paws, in this case, inflammation and cracks are observed in the interdigital space and on the pads. The claws can also be affected, then they become yellow and curved. It hurts the dog to step on its paw, it starts to limp.

Treatment of fungus in dogs

Most fungal infections are accompanied by itching, its degree depends on the type of pathogen. In some cases, the dog may brush the skin to the blood. In this case, experts recommend to give an antipruritic drug, such as Stop itching and use a protective accessory - a collar or a blanket, before visiting the vet, as skin injuries during fungus provoke a secondary infection.

Stop itching for dogs

Stop itching for dogs

The appeared wounds should be processed by the external means possessing antiseptic action. Miramistin is suitable from a person’s first-aid kit, or you need to purchase it in a Migstim veterinary pharmacy.

During a visit to a specialist, it should be clarified where the skin was treated with the preparation, since the tissues from these areas are not suitable for analysis.

If the fungus affects the paw pads, it is necessary to protect the pet's paws from moisture. During the walk, you can use special protective shoes, after washing the paw to dry a hairdryer. It is necessary not to allow the dog to gnaw areas affected by fungus.

Chronic fungal infection

Prolonged infection proceeds more calmly. Shedding of wool is periodically observed, the coat dims, often becomes tangled, and even bathing does not correct the situation.

Owners do not realize the true causes of the condition, writing off seasonal moulting , vitamin deficiency , and a reaction to detergents. Standard measures - a course of vitamins , enhanced nutrition, shampoo change, etc. do not help.

In some cases, pets form small areas without hair - above the auricles, near the nose, on the elbows. The skin may look quite healthy or have a slight gray tint. It is quite difficult to see such flaws in long hair.

Such processes can occur with insufficient body resistance to this type of fungi, or the fungus is conditionally pathogenic, not threatening serious consequences. But at any time, with attendant factors, he can begin to progress. To find out if the level of skin fungus is within the normal range, special skin scrapings are taken for analysis.

Diagnosis of fungus in dogs and treatment

First of all, the veterinarian shines through the coat of hair with a special lamp, under the rays of which the fungus begins to glow in a greenish color. But you should know that almost half of the species of mushrooms do not glow. Such a method does not provide information about the pathogen, but only confirms its presence.

In order to prescribe an effective treatment, a full-fledged diagnosis is required, which allows to determine the type of fungus, the number of spores, to determine the sensitivity to certain drugs.

Diagnosis of fungus in dogs

Experts recommend blood donation for bacteriology, as often the fungus appears on the background of cocci. In this case, the treatment is to eliminate the original source.

Quite often, a fungal infection accompanies allergic manifestations, and treatment gives only temporary results. Here will help the analysis that determines the allergic status of the pet. Identification and allergen and its exclusion will solve the problem with the fungus.

Biochemical blood analysis will assess the overall condition of the animal and find out which organs are failing.

Considering all the data obtained, the doctor will be able to prescribe adequate treatment from the first time. This will help to avoid prolonged useless therapy with the constant change of drugs.

For minor skin lesions, ointments are prescribed - Mikozolon, Yam, Clotrimazole, etc. If the fungus affects large areas of the skin, it is not necessary to use external antifungal drugs outwardly, since this group of drugs is toxic. In this case, use detergents, such as Nizoral, Imaverol.

In addition to external preparations, veterinarians prescribe medications in pills or injections. Fluconazole is particularly effective in the treatment of fungi. Assistance is provided to the immune system of the animal in the form of immunostimulants and modulators. The use of hepatoprotective agents is also recommended.

Flucanazole for dogs

If the detected fungus is contagious, additional measures will be required: processing must be carried out with gloves and also, if possible, isolate the animal, excluding its contact with children and other pets. But you should visit the dog so that it does not feel lonely and does not experience stress.

Doctors warn, self-treatment can lead to disastrous results. Since some drugs can significantly increase the resistance of the fungus, in this case it will be necessary to treat the fungus in a dog for a longer time.

Prevention of fungal infections

As noted, it is difficult for a fungal pathogen to develop in a healthy, strong body. Therefore, it is important to care for the dog , providing good nutrition and appropriate conditions. During walking you should avoid the habitats of stray animals.

Vaccines for fungal diseases are of low efficiency and in some cases can cause complications, so they are used only in exceptional cases when the rest of therapy is powerless.

But there is no single way to exclude the infection of a pet with pathogenic fungi. In this case, it is important to identify the disease as soon as possible and to seek qualified assistance.

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