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Friday, July 25, 2014
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What Ringworm Looks Like in Puppies

By Veronica Davis
 

Overview

Ringworm is quite common fungal infection in puppies, causing round spots on any area of their bodies. Knowing what to look for and the cause of the infection in puppies can help owners more readily identify the condition and seek treatment.

Identification

Ringworm is a fungus, not a worm, but it may look as if a worm is under the skin. in a puppy looks much like it would on any other animal. Ringworm gets its name from the pink or red, shiny or even scaly ring on their skin at the site of the infection. Depending on the pigment of the skin, the ring may simply appear as a raised ring on the surface of the skin.
Dogs are not necessarily affected only on areas that don't have a lot of fur. In the areas where there is fur, the puppy may experience hair loss or patches of crusty or rough skin, usually in the shape of a circle or half circle.
If you suspect ringworm in your puppy, you should take it to the vet immediately. A vet can make the proper diagnosis and determine treatment. If ringworm is identified, a topical antifungal medication is usually prescribed for use for 10-20 days.

Size

The size of the ringworm may vary from puppy to puppy. In some cases, the ringworm presents in very small surface areas such as a half inch in diameter, while in others they infections will be an inch or more in diameter and will grow the longer the disease remains untreated.

Cause

Ringworm is caused by a fungus known as dermatophytes. This fungus survives by living on the surface of the skin and the skin follicles and feeding on the dead skin tissue as well as the hair. the fungus often causes hair loss in dogs, as it feeds on the hair.

Risk Factors

Puppies that are most at risk of catching ringworm are those that come into contact with other infected animals, such as other dogs at dog parks. In addition, puppies can catch ringworm from people infected with the disease. Puppies that are in poor health or malnourished are also more likely to contract ringworm, as their immune systems cannot combat the fungus.

Misconceptions

There is a misconception that only poorly cared-for puppies can get ringworm, but this simply is not true. Completely healthy puppies and adult dogs are susceptible to this fungus as well. Dogs of any age and health can and do get ringworm.
There is also a misconception that ringworm is caused by worms. The reason is that ringworm generally presents in a ring shape, causing people to assume that the spots were caused by worms. Although untrue, the assumption that ringworm is in any way related to worms remains a common misconception.
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