What Causes Hair Loss In Dogs

Hair Loss In DogsHair Loss In Dogs

By Admin

Hair loss in dogs or Alopecia can be a signal of serious medical problems.  It is associated ..with skin diseases, endocrine disorders and allergies.  Excessive licking can indicate a skin problem.  Other symptoms are thinning coat, patchy areas, bald spots, itchy skin, and spotty bare areas.

What causes hair loss in dogs?

Hypothyrodism

Hypothyroidism in dogs is an endocrine disease which occurs when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone.  Signs of dog hypothyroidism are thinning hair, lethargy, weight gain, or a dull, dry coat.  A blood test which measures thyroid hormones is used to diagnose this disease.  Synthetic thyroid hormones are given to manage this disease.

Mange

Mange in dogs is a skin disease which is caused by mites, usually shows up as itchy skin with patchy hair loss around the eyes, front legs, and the body.  Skin scrapings are used to confirm the presence of mites.  Topical anti-parasitic ointment or dips can be used to cure dog manage.  If your dog has a severe case or inflamed skin, your vet may want to use benzoyl peroxide shampoo, or anti-parasitic drugs or antibiotics.

Cushing’s Disease

Cushing’s disease in dogs is an endocrine disorder that causes the adrenal glands to produce too much Cortisol.  This elevates blood sugar and increases fat and protein bread down.  Symptoms of Cushing’s disease are weeping sores, hair loss along the back, increased thirst and urination, thin skin, excessive panting and muscle weakness.  Diagnosis can be made by measuring the cortisol levels in he blood.  Life long drug therapy is used to manage the disease and in most cases in successful.

Ringworm

Ringworm in dogs is a fungal disease that affects the skin and mucous membranes.  Symptoms are thinning hair and a circular lesion with crusting around the edges.  Dog ringworm can be identified through microscopic examination or skin cultures.  Treatment involves oral and topical medications and anti-fungal shampoo therapies.

Bacterial Skin Diseases

Bacterial skin diseases on dogs can result from underlying problems which include:  Allergies, manage, and hypothyroidism.  The dog scratches until the hair falls out, chews or licks itchy areas, then damages the skin, causing bacteria to form.  A patchy loss of hair is more common than the hair loss that is seen with endocrine diseases.  To diagnose this disease your vet may do a microscopic examination of the skin lesions for the presence of bacteria.  Treatment involves a three to six week course of antibiotics.

Allergies

Canine allergies to parasites, pollens, dust mites, certain foods, chemicals, can cause itchy skin.  This causes your dog to scratch off his hair, rub his face, or lick his paws.  It may not be possible to identify the allergic disease and diagnose the allergen.  Flea bite allergy can be confirmed by the presence of fleas or flea dirt.  Flea allergy in dogs is diagnosed by itching around the tail base and flea infestation.  Bacterial and fungal disorders must be ruled out.  Treatment of allergies in dogs includes flea control, anti-itch medications such as antihistamines, and corticosteroids, supplementation of fatty acid may help an itchy dog.

Alopecia X

Canine Alopecia X is a group of unidentifiable loss of hair conditions that resemble endocrine type diseases such as Cushing’s disease.  They are treated with Melatonin.  It helps about half of dogs restore their hair.

When you groom your dog, you should look for any signs of skin irritations or irregularities.  Early detection of the problem, can minimize loss of hair for dogs.

Canine Demodectic Mange

d.mangeDemodectic Mange

By Admin

What is the mange? Canine Demodectic mange in dogs is a disease that causes hair loss without itch. It is caused by a tiny parasitic mite and occurs in dogs three to twelve months of age. It is too small to be seen without a microscope. It is sometimes called the red mange. Dog mange can be seen in all breeds. The mange on dogs can be difficult to cure.

Most dogs have some Demodex mites living in the pores of their skin. They are acquired early in life from their mothers. The dog mites are usually present without causing symptoms. The mange mites are able to produce a substance that lowers dogs’ natural resistance to them, allowing them to multiply on the host.. It has been observed in kennels that certain females have a higher incidence of Demodex mange in their litters than other mothers. This suggest that in some purebred dogs there is a lowered immunity to the mite. Dogs with Demodectic mange should not be bred, because it is a genetic problem.

The disease is more common in dogs with oily skin that are short-haired. Symptoms of mange appear at puberty. At this time the sebum, which the mite feeds on , is increasing in amount.

Demodectic canine mange may take one of two forms:

Localized form – It occurs in dogs up to a year old. The first sign is the thinning of the hair around the eyelids; the corners of the mouth or on the front legs, which give a moth eaten appearance in these areas. It progresses to patches of hair loss about one inch in diameter. It can be confused with ringworm. If five patches or more are present, the disease could be progressing to the generalized form. The hair begins to grow back after one or two months. The majority of cases are healed in three months. Treatment of mange involves dipping with an insecticide dip. This must be done at least 3 times with 10 day intervals between dips. The dip will kill all parasites, but not the eggs. That is why several dips are required.

Generalized form – The disease begins as a localized case, but instead of improving it gets worse. You will see numerous patches on the legs, head and trunk. The patches coalesce to form large areas. Hair follicles become plugged with debris and mites. The skin breaks down to form sores, crusts and draining sinus tracts. It can be a severe and disabling condition.

Treatment of the generalized form is prolonged and response is slow, which requires frequent changes in medications. You should clip away the hair to facilitate topical therapy of the skin. A betadine shampoo can be used to wash the whole dog to remove scales and debris.

This form of Demodectic mange should be treated by a vet. Treat until skin scrapings are negative. Cultures from infected skin sores will determine the most effective antibiotic. Cortisone can be used to treat severe skin irritations. However, it may depress the dog’s immunity to the mites making the dog’s condition worse.

Canine Sarcoptic Mange

Sarcoptic MangeSarcoptic Mange

By Admin

Canine Sarcoptic mange in dogs is a disease caused by a microscopic spider-like creature called a mite.  Your vet can make a diagnosis by examining skin scrapings under a microscope in which he look for sarcoptic mites.  Any breed can get dog mange.  Parasitic mites, which are external parasites that cause the mange in mammals, embed themselves in the skin and hair follicles in the animal.

This skin disease causes your dog to scratch and bite at himself very intensely.  The intense itching is caused by the female dog mites tunneling a few millimeters under the skin to lay their eggs.  A mite egg hatches in three to ten days.  The immature mites then develop into adults and begin to lay eggs too.  This cycle takes on 17 to 21 days.  A mite is a round parasite with four pairs of legs.

What does mange look like?  Symptoms of  mange are small red bumps that itch.  The bumps look very much like insect bites, which they are.  The skin breaks down which allows serum to seep out, which is caused by scratching, rubbing and biting at the itch.  You can see scabs, crusts, and patches of hair loss.  The skin becomes thick and darkly pigmented in the last stages.

The mites prefer the skin of the ears, elbows, legs and face.  Crusts and early hair loss are seen in these areas.  Intense itching and crusty ear tips, make the diagnosis certain. Most home remedies do not cure mange on dogs.

What is scabies? Scabies in dogs is a common name for Sarcoptic mange. Canine scabies is highly contagious.  If your dog has scabies, they can be transferred to you.  The first sign is an intense itching of the skin at the belt line.  Mites do not live on human skin over three weeks.  The problem is self limited if the dog is treated.

How to treat mange?  Treatment of Sarcoptic mange includes clipping scabies affected areas on long haired dogs and bathe the entire animal in an insecticide dip.  At least three dips are required at intervals of ten days each.  A fourth dip may be needed to catch late hatching eggs.

Dandruff shampoos can be used between insecticide dipping to loosen scales.

Cortisone will help relieve severe itching.  If the dog has sores that look infected, they can be treated with a soothing topical antibiotic ointment.