How to Treat & Prevent Ringworm in Dogs

Think your pup is showing signs of tinea ? Learn the signs and how to handle. many people are surprised to learn that tinea in dogs is a peel condition caused by a fungus, not a worm—it ’ sulfur named for the annular, scaly sores it much causes. While that may lessen the gross-out component, it doesn ’ t make it any less of a problem. The fungal infection can get worse over time and is highly catching. That ’ s why it ’ second important to seek treatment at an early phase when symptoms beginning appear.

What is Ringworm?

tinea is caused by a type of fungi called dermophytes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 40 unlike kinds of dermophytes can cause tinea. The fungi alive and run on the top layers of clamber, hair, and nails. tinea is more common in cats, but dogs can besides catch it. Dogs get tinea from coming into contact with infect animals, people, dirt, or surfaces like bed, furniture, or prepare tools.

Signs Your Dog Has Ringworm 

Ringworm doesn ’ t infect every cad who ’ sulfur exposed to it. “ typically, it ’ s hard for a tinea infection to take hold in animals and humans with healthy skin and a robust immune system, ” Allison Brys, DVM, co-medical director of VCA Sawmill Animal Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, says. “ But some factors can make dogs more vulnerable to ringworm. ”

Risk Factors for Ringworm in Dogs

  • Age: Puppies and senior dogs have weaker immune systems that aren’t as naturally resistant to fungi.
  • Environment: Being in a group animal setting such as a shelter, pet store, or kennel increases a dog’s chance of being exposed to infected animals.
  • Medical conditions and medications: Some ongoing medical problems and medications can lower the immune system’s ability to fight off germs.
  • Behavior: Dogs that like to dig are more likely to come into contact with fungi spores (microscopic seeds) in the dirt.
  • Breed: Boston terriers, Yorkshire terriers, and Jack Russell terriers are more susceptible to ringworm infection. 

Symptoms of Ringworm in Dogs

tinea symptoms can take up to three weeks to develop after exposure. The most common places to spot tinea infection are on a pawl ’ randomness face, ears, feet, and fag end. In the early stage of tinea in dogs, there may be alone one or two strange spots. You may notice round off hairless patches with pink, lepidote sores. The sores aren ’ metric ton always circular and sometimes they look more like acned bumps or may have a scab. typically, ringworm international relations and security network ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate antsy, but some dogs may scratch. Claws that break well or become brittle and rough can be a sign of tinea besides. Without treatment, the infection may spread creating big areas of hair loss and scaly skin .illustration of dog with ringworm symptoms

illustration of dog with ringworm symptoms

credit : Yeji Kim

How to Treat Your Dog’s Ringworm

finally, ringworm normally goes off on its own. But during the months it takes to heal, it is possible to pass it on to early pets and people. treatment speeds up convalescence and minimizes the circulate of infection, Brys says. Head to a vet if you see bald patches or sores on your dog. To check for tinea, vets frequently use a Wood ’ sulfur lamp ( besides known as a bootleg idle ). Some types of tinea radiance park under its ultraviolet light, though it can still be potential your pawl has ringworm if there ’ s no gleam. Your vet can besides look at a hair sample or skin scraping from your cad under a microscope to confirm the presence of the fungus, or they may send it off to a lab for analysis.

Home Remedies for Ringworm in Dogs

If your dog has one or two tinea sores, a home remedy could work, Brys says. Ask your vet if a topical cream for athlete ’ s animal foot might be an option. It should contain fungicidal medicine like clotrimazole ( or another medicine ending with ‘ zole ’ ).

Veterinary Treatment for Ringworm in Dogs

Oftentimes, vets treat tinea with a combination of fungicidal therapies. Your dog may need medicate ointments or shampoo american samoa well as an oral medication like terbinafine, fluconazole, or griseofulvin. The surest way to beat tinea is to follow your vet ’ south discussion plan, even if your pawl ’ randomness skin and fur look better. treatment can last respective weeks or months. If you stop besides soon, tinea will return. Your vet will test your pawl at follow-up visits to see if tinea is even stage.

At-Home Care

Remember, your pup will continue to be contagious for at least three weeks after starting aggressive treatment. It ’ randomness significant to separate your chase from areas where other pets and people are during the treatment period. besides, break gloves and wash your hands every clock time you interact with your chase to avoid spreading it .

Can Humans Get Ringworm from Dogs?

Yes. Ringworm is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be passed among different animal species, like a big cat to a frump, and to humans. The fungi that normally cause tinea in dogs ( microsporum canis, microsporum gypsum, and trichophyton mentagrophytes ) are well spread to others. You and your pets can get ringworm by direct contact with an infect favored, person, or contaminated open.

How to Prevent Ringworm from Spreading

To prevent tinea from spreading to early pets or reinfecting your cad, it ’ second all-important that you disinfect your home. Ringworm spores are easily spread through shed hair and skin cells. They can live on surfaces for years unless you disinfect them. Areas that may be contaminated include :

  • Bedding
  • Clothing
  • Carpet
  • Grooming tools
  • Furniture
  • Food and water bowls
  • Pet carrier and toys

Wash fabrics and sanitize surfaces with a load bleach solution wherever possible, Brys says. If you can ’ t wash something ( like your frame ), go over it with a vacuum. Getting rid of tinea spores is key to stopping its banquet.

besides, dogs who spend a draw of fourth dimension outdoors may need a medicate bath once or twice a week to prevent tinea contagion, Brys says. Ask your veterinarian what antifungal shampoo they recommend. Ringworm takes attempt to treat, but it is possible to struggle the fungus successfully. And while you ’ ll need to be argus-eyed about treating your pet ’ second infection and disinfecting your home, your consistent hard work will be worth it in the end. fair remember : the fastest room to help your pet ’ south skin clear up and stop tinea from spreading is by following your veterinarian ’ s treatment design, so be surely to give them a call if you suspect an infection or have questions about treatment .

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