What is Facial Fold Dermatitis?
Dogs with deep facial wrinkles and folds can harbor bacteria or yeast and moisture in the crevices, where the warm dark environment allows the bacteria or yeast to grow. Rubbing the skin leads to irritation and allows the organisms to gain access, causing infection.
How does my dog get Facial Fold Dermatitis?
Your dog can get skin fold dermatitis in any fold, most commonly facial folds between the eyes and nose, lip folds, or folds at the base of the tail. Tears from the eyes tend to accumulate in folds below them, and saliva tends to accumulate in lip folds and tail folds. If the area within the fold is allowed to remain wet, bacteria and/or yeast will grow and the area within the fold can become infected.
How do I know if my dog has Facial Fold Dermatitis?
Your dog may scratch at his face or chew at his tail base. If you pull the sides of a fold apart, you may notice a foul odor often along with moist reddened skin. The areas can become painful. Your veterinarian can often make a diagnosis based on appearance and location.
What can I do about Facial Fold Dermatitis?
Your veterinarian will prescribe antibiotics to combat infection, and a cleansing and drying shampoo to keep the area clean and dry.
Is there anything I can do to prevent my dog from getting Facial Fold Dermatitis?
If your dog has skin folds, wipe them dry at least daily. Keeping your dog’s mouth and eyes healthy will reduce tearing and salivating, and may also reduce the bacteria they may contain. If the condition becomes unmanageable despite dedicated washing and drying, your veterinarian may recommend surgery to reduce the folds.
Are there certain breeds that get Facial Fold Dermatitis more often?
Any breed that has skin folds on the face or body, especially snub-nosed breeds, those with pendulous lips, or those with corkscrew tails, is predisposed. This includes the Bloodhound, Bulldog, French Bulldog, Boston Terrier, Chinese Shar-pei, Cocker Spaniel, Springer Spaniel, Neapolitan Mastiff, Saint Bernard, Pekingese and Pug.