Pugs are one of the more popular dog breeds.
With their expressive eyes, and adorable wrinkles, what’s not to love?
But before you bring a Pug into your home, consider some common skin health issues your furry friend may be pre-disposed to.
Skin Fold Pyoderma
Skin fold pyoderma is a bacterial infection that happens in deep skin folds. It is most commonly found around your Pug’s face, tail, and groin. Symptoms include itchiness, foul odor, red or inflamed skin, and occasional crusting of the skin in advanced cases.
The good news is the treatment for skin fold pyoderma is common and affected dogs have an excellent prognosis for recovery. Mild cases of pyoderma may be treated at home with hydrocortisone wipes. More advanced cases require a trip to the vet. Your vet will likely prescribe a medicated shampoo or steroid cream for more severe cases.
Demodectic mange is most often seen in puppies, although it can affect older dogs. It is caused by the Demodex mite. The Demodex mite is not a rare pest and lives on many dogs. The problem of mange occurs when a dog’s immune system cannot fight off the mites, which is why puppies are prone to this type of mange.
Symptoms include itching, hair thinning, patchy hair loss, pink or red skin underneath the hair, and bleeding skin from excessive scratching. There is also a concern of a secondary bacterial infection caused by open wounds from scratching.
This skin issue requires a trip to the vet for proper treatment. Demodectic mange does not appear to be contagious, but there are instances of it running within bloodlines. If you are interested in breeding your Pug, checking to see whether any dogs in its family have had demodectic mange may be a deciding factor. A dog who has suffered from mange may not be a good candidate for breeding.
The folds on your Pug’s face and body are a defining characteristic of what makes a Pug a Pug. However, those same folds are the perfect breeding ground for yeast. Yeast likes anywhere dark and moist, so a Pug’s skin folds are prone to yeast infections.
Symptoms include foul odor, thick white cheese like substance within your dog’s folds, and itching. Yeast infections are most common on the neck, armpits, groin, and paws. Yeast infections are typically treated with anti-fungal shampoos and May take several weeks to clear up.
Pugs are prone to environmental allergies. Allergy symptoms include itching, sneezing, skin inflammation, and reddened irritated skin. The treatment for allergies really depends on what your dog is allergic to. Dietary changes, antihistamines, pest treatment, and lifestyle changes are all appropriate treatments. Your vet can help you figure out what your Pug is allergic to and design an effective treatment plan.
Hot spots are a common issue on many breeds of dog but seem to be exceedingly common for Pugs. A hot spot isn’t a specific skin issue, but a symptom of a variety of issues. Hot spots begin as skin irritation. Your dog will have an itchy spot and lick and chew it to relieve the itch. Unfortunately, a hot spot occurs when a dog excessively picks at an area of their skin and a raw, inflamed patch forms.
Hot spots can appear almost anywhere on your dog and can be difficult to treat. The most important part of hot spot treatment is to get your dog to leave the area alone to heal. This may require the use of an Elizabethan collar. Both over the counter and veterinarian prescribed topical treatments are available for hot spots too. However, figuring out what skin condition caused the hot spot is going to be your best bet for long term successful treatment and healing.
As you can see, having a clear skin treatment plan for your pug is an essential component of ownership. Most of a Pug’s common skin issues can be easily managed by consistent cleaning and grooming to prevent problems from happening in the first place. Take care of your pup’s wrinkles and folds, and you’ll have a happy, healthy friend for life.