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Dog Skin Problems - Impetigo

The sprightly fuzzy ball as he goes around clumsily knocking items off their place, nibbling at your shoes or even worse swallowing things he's not supposed to till your screaming

"STOP, don't that".

He fights with the ball and leash for no reason but does not forget to give you a warm welcome tugging at the end of your trouser when you come home each day from work … We're talking about none other than your puppy.

Indeed, pups are the cutest and most adorable creatures one could keep as pets. However, they also need to be cared for as they are susceptible to various dog skin problems. Discussed below is a skin infection commonly observed in pups. It's called impetigo. Read on to learn more about it.

Impetigo: Introduction and Causes

Impetigo is a mild bacterial skin infection known to affect dogs. Impetigo is thought to be caused by the Staphylococcus bacteria. This skin condition generally occurs in puppies less than 1 year prior to puberty. However, there have been cases of adult dogs being affected by impetigo as well. Impetigo is also known as puppy pyoderma. Puppies that are poorly maintained and are housed in unhygienic, unsanitary conditions face a greater risk of developing Impetigo. Poor nutrition and intestinal worms are regarded as other causes. Many ask if impetigo is fatal. Impetigo is not fatal except in very rare cases where the infection is widespread and cannot brought under control.

What are the Symptoms of Impetigo?

Impetigo is easy to identify. It leads to the development of small pimples on the underside of the body that is on the hairless regions such as the abdomen and the groin. In many pups, it is also observed on the chin. They are often mistaken for acne. These blisters grow to become filled with pus. They rupture leaving behind thin brown crusts. The surrounding areas become red and inflamed. The blisters also accompany an itching sensation which causes dogs to scratch intensely.

Is Impetigo Contagious?

Sadly, impetigo is contagious and spreads among dogs. There are two main stages. The first is characterized by the development of the small white pimples while the second marked by the oozing of the yellow colored liquid. It is the yellow oozing that causes the infection to spread to other canines and infect them. The best solution therefore is to catch and treat the infection before it progresses and gets worse. There is one myth we would like to clear here. Impetigo very rarely spreads from dogs to humans.

Treating Impetigo

Impetigo is best treated when in the initial stages. Mild cases resolve on their own while others may require topical and oral treatments. A medicated shampoo with benzoyl peroxide to bathe you pup will help. Ensure it does not get into the eyes, ears or mouth as it may cause irritation. It should be used approximately for 2-3 weeks. Severe impetigo conditions will require the use of topical and oral antibiotics. The vet will prescribe the necessary medications. House your pet in clean quarters to prevent the onset of the infection. Regular grooming is a must. Simple alterations to the diet on recommendations of a vet will boost immune system and help treat the infection faster.

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