The appearance of weeping lichen (weeping dermatitis) in a pet may go unnoticed for a while, until the lesion begins to cover large areas. Most often, it occurs in those dog breeds that have long hair, and short-haired breeds suffer less often. Owners need to know the symptoms of this disease in order to immediately identify the problem and go to the veterinarian to prescribe treatment.
Often, weeping lichen is mistaken for an infectious pathology and try to protect households from the animal, but in fact this disease is not transmitted to humans, just like other dogs, so you should not be afraid of contacts.
The reasons why this disease appears are most often of internal origin. To provoke lichen of this type are capable of:
- allergic reactions to individual components of food;
- disorders of the endocrine system;
- decreased immunity after acute pathologies;
- improper treatment of allergies;
- emotional overload and stress;
- non-compliance with the hygienic principles of keeping a pet.
Sometimes weeping lichen becomes chronic with periods of remission and exacerbation. There is a hereditary tendency to this disease, so you need to find out if the puppy’s parents suffered from such disorders.
Symptoms and signs
The first thing the dog owner can notice is the inflamed areas on the skin the size of a ten-coin. Such formations appear most often on the abdomen, back, cheeks and near the ears. But sometimes symptoms can occur near the tail, on the neck and on the legs. It feels to the touch that they are hyperemic, that is, hot, and when they are felt, the dog shows signs of anxiety.
Further symptoms develop in this way:
- At the sites of inflammation, bubbles appear with a yellowish or pink liquid. After a few days, they burst, and the sticky contents come out, smearing the hair.
- After a couple of days, the opened areas begin to bald partially or completely. As a result, a bald spot or a very rare coat remains through which inflamed serous skin is visible.
- At the last stage, purulent mucus is produced, which dries out over time. Scales and dried pieces fall off in scabs, leaving behind a thin shiny skin of bright red color or with a bluish tint.
Further weeping places spread over the new territory, repeating the development cycle.
From the very beginning of the manifestation of the symptoms, the depriving dog expresses anxiety: it actively scratches itchy places with such intensity that it can damage them and tear them to blood. Often, a pet tries to lick the wounds, interfering with their healing. Because of this, signs of additional infection of skin lesions are often attached to the primary symptoms.
Weeping lichen leaks slowly. Sometimes it seems that it begins to pass, but then resumes again. If you do not take measures aimed at treatment, the disease spreads throughout the body and leads to a serious condition of the animal, which becomes shabby or almost bald. The pet can behave uneasily, aggressively, depressed, and sometimes - refuse food and water.
It is impossible to establish to a layman that his dog is sick with weeping dermatitis, and not a skin disease of another type. Even a professional veterinarian-dermatologist for this will not be enough simple visual examination. Hair loss and thinning, the appearance of red spots on the skin accompanies the course of many pathologies.
To fully identify the symptoms and prescribe treatment, you will need a diagnosis consisting of such examinations:
- Inspection in the light of a Wood lamp from a distance of 15-20 cm. By the color of the affected area, the veterinarian can judge the causes of inflammation.
- Microscopic examination. Helps detect the presence of parasites or germs on the hair, which can cause pathology.
- Scraping and bacteriological analysis. It allows you to grow microbes on the nutrient medium that caused the onset of symptoms, as well as determine their sensitivity to different groups of antibiotics, which will help with the appointment of treatment.
By excluding other types of dermatoses and confirming the initial diagnosis, the veterinarian proceeds to prescribe a course of treatment.
Treatment of weeping lichen is carried out comprehensively, it implies not only the use of prescribed drugs, but also requires the implementation of certain rules for caring for the dog.
You need to tune in to long-term treatment: an average of 3 to 10 weeks. It is impossible to predict in advance how quickly it will be possible to get rid of lichen. Only the veterinarian will determine how the pet’s body responds to treatment, and will tell you when to stop the course.
The main points of therapy are as follows:
- Correction of diet and nutrition. All fatty foods, meat and potatoes are removed from the menu. The transition to hypoallergenic types of feed is possible.
- Such drugs as Mercury Corrosivus or Sulfur-3 are used orally to reduce inflammation.
- Appliques of dressings soaked with ointments and creams that reduce itching and hyperemia are applied to the lesion sites.
- For gentle scab removal during hygiene procedures, the entire body is treated with creolin or carbolic soap for animals. Especially carefully carry out the treatment of dried scabs.
- To increase the immune status, vitamin complexes and immunomodulating drugs (Immunofan or Gamavit) are prescribed.
For the time of treatment, lichen may need to wear a muzzle or a special collar for animals, which prevents the licking of drugs and damage to wounds.
Hygiene requirements for the period of treatment of weeping lichen are very strict and include such measures:
- carrying out wet cleaning in the entire apartment or house daily using disinfectants;
- daily replacement / washing of the bedding or sleeping place of the animal;
- daily cleaning of dog feeders and toys using disinfectants.
Compliance with all these requirements will make it possible to alleviate the condition of the animal as soon as possible, and at the end of treatment to forget about an unpleasant disease. To prevent the occurrence of lichen in the future, you will need to periodically check the dog with a veterinarian and independently examine the skin for foci of inflammation.