Puppy impetigo, also known as puppy pyoderma, is a form of skin infection. Pyoderma is actually the medical term describing a skin infection of any sort; its literal meaning is ‘pus in the skin.’
All unpleasantness aside, puppy impetigo does not always have to be a serious challenge. Many dogs get impetigo, and understanding the condition and how to avoid/prevent it can help you and your dog remain happy.
What Causes Puppy Impetigo?
Puppy impetigo is generally the result of a bacterial infection – usually the Staphylococcus strain. That said, there are numerous other strains of bacteria that may cause impetigo.
In either case, impetigo can strike dogs of all makes and ages. It’s more likely to affect dogs who live in unhygienic conditions, but it can affect healthy, clean dogs as well.
The Staph bacteria already live on your dog’s skin. However, when there is an overgrowth of the bacteria, this can create infections and problems.
There are a number of things that can lead to an increase in these bacteria and an increased likelihood of getting impetigo such as:
- Flea bites
- Allergies to different foods
- Bites from insects or mosquitos
- Urine scalding
- Immune problems
- Damaged or weakened endocrine function
How to Tell If Your Dog Has Impetigo
If you’re not sure about whether or not your dog has impetigo, it can be helpful to understand the symptoms. These are some of the most common symptoms associated with the condition.
- Pustules may appear on your dog’s skin
- Papules, which are little red bumps, may also arise
- Epidermal collarettes are circle-shaped lesions that may be crusty
- Your dog may start scratching itself more frequently
- You may notice hair loss on your dog
- Your dog may become depressed or unmotivated
- Weight loss can occur in serious cases of impetigo
Most often, dogs get impetigo on their abdominal area or their chin.
Managing Puppy Impetigo
These are some of the most common treatments given to dogs struggling with impetigo.
- Medicated shampoo. Your vet will most likely prescribe some form of medicated shampoo to help your dog manage their impetigo. There are a number of options that they may suggest.
- Antibiotics. There are two forms of antibiotics that veterinarians may prescribe to help your dog with their impetigo. The first form is a topical antibiotic, which can be applied directly to the infected area. Your dog will also likely receive oral antibiotics which can help them develop a stronger resistance to impetigo.
Once your puppy receives treatment, then they will most likely have a speedy recovery.
Puppy impetigo is a challenge, however, it is not a difficult one to treat. Take your dog to a vet. They’ll be able to help you move forward.
If you’re not sure what type of rash your dog has, don’t fear. Our article on puppy belly rashes can help you identify any other problems. If you’re struggling to afford a veterinarian, you may want to read our article on how to get the best puppy insurance.