Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Hotspots are Pyoderma

H - Hotspots or Moist Pyoderma: "'Hot spots' are also known as 'acute moist pyoderma'. What that means is that they are rapidly appearing, oozing, skin infections. This is just a description of a symptom, sort of like saying 'your dog has scabs'.
A hot spot starts because something irritates the dog's skin. The body's response is to either itch or create an inflammatory response at the site. In cases of itching, the dog then rubs, licks or chews the site and adds to the problem. These sores can develop into severe problems in an hour or two at times.
The most common irritants are probably fleas and allergies. These cause the itching that leads to the skin infection. There are many other possible sources of irritation. Tick bites, besetting, burrs, mats, mosquitos, summer heat and other problems all contribute to the initial irritation that can develop into a hot spot.
The best treatment for these is prevention. Keep fleas off your dog. Groom and bathe your dog as necessary to keep the haricot in good condition. Limit other sources of irritation to the best of your ability. If allergies are a problem for your dog, work with your vet to control the itching they cause. In some dogs, all of this won't be enough and you will occasionally see hot spots anyway. The first step in treating a hot spot is to get it dry. Bacteria like the hot moist environment of irritated skin. Using something to dry the sore makes it harder for bacteria to grow. Clipping the hair over and around a hot spot can help a great deal in allowing it to dry. There are lots of astringents that will help dry the sore, as well. My favorite is NeoPredef powder because it dries the sore, has an antibiotic that acts locally and a corticosteroid to control the itching and inflammation. Other vets and pet owners have their own favorites. People have advocated using athlete's foot powder"

--again act quickly and decisively!

Pyoderma can be caused by Mange (mites)

Mange ... what's eating your pets?: "Sarcoptes scabiei var. canis, the mite of sarcoptic mange, an intensely pruritic, transmissible skin disease, is a frequent parasite of dogs, and to a lesser degree, cats and humans in Singapore (S. scabiei var. cuniculi, the rabbit scabies mite, is also endemic here). The mites prefer lightly haired regions, and are most common on the elbows, hocks, ears, chest and abdomen. The disease spreads rapidly, and the entire body may be colonised by mites. The female mite tunnels through the skin, depositing eggs as she goes. Once these ova hatch, the larvae burrow to the surface where they browse and feed. The larval stage then rests in a 'moulting pocket' and develops to the nymph stage. These also graze the skin surface before returning to moult to the adult stage. The life-cycle is completed in approx. 3 weeks. Transmission occurs mostly through direct contact with an infected animal.

Mange ScabieInitially the pruritis is mild until the host develops a hypersensitivity to the mite, usually 3 to 4 weeks post-exposure. At this time, the itching becomes intense - hence the common name 'scabies' from the French scabere 'to scratch' - leading to self-induced traumatic wounds that exude serum, forming crusts.
However, the presenting signs of sarcoptic mange can be varied and misleading, some dogs never developing 'classical' lesions. Secondary pyoderma (bacterial infection) and alopecia are common signs, and may be confused with atopic (allergic) dermatitis, food allergies or Staphylococcal pyoderma. Microscopic demonstration of the mites from a skin scraping establishes the diagnosis, although in some cases a response to therapy is needed for confirmation.
Sarcoptes mites are quite species-specific, and usually cannot complete their life cycle on a non-definit"

--bulldog's don't have the best immune system due to their breeding

More on Pyoderma in Bulldogs

Pyoderma in the Canine: "Pyoderma
Bacterial skin disease
Pyodermas are common in small animal practice, particularly in the dog.
There are several ways of classifying pyoderma but the easiest way to understand this disease is to think about the thickness of the skin and to define the infection on how deep the bacteria infect the skin cell layers
Surface pyoderma: This is where bacteria colonise the outermost layer of the skin.
Superficial pyoderma: The bacterial infection is at the level of the intact hair follicle.
Deep pyoderma: The bacterial infection extends beneath and beyond the hair follicle.
Causative bacteria
The vast majority of cases involve a natural resident of the skin called Staphylococcus Intermedius which becomes pathogenic (disease causing) when the skin environment changes for a number of different reasons. Other bacteria and other micro-organisms may be involved but some reports suggest that over 90% of cases have Staphylococcal involvement.
What does pyoderma look like?
The most common, owner response is that the dog itches, has red areas, often with pimples or scabs and the pet may smell. Surface pyodermas may show as areas of redness and irritation, often developing in raised round, scabs. Superficial pyodermas produce yellow spots which then break out into larger wheals and scabs. Deep pyoderma can make pets systemically ill and produce abscesses and oozing, inflamed channels in the skin surface. Certain areas may be particularly prone to infection. Interdigital areas, inside ears, the groin and along the middle of the back are common sites in the dog. Other diseases such as yeast infections can look very similar and so if there isn't a rapid resolution with home treatment, seek professional advice. "
Why does pyoderma occur?

There are too many reasons to list here but a few of the common reasons are suggested below.

Primary pyoderma

There is little doubt that occasionally pyoderma may develop spontaneously and for no obvious clinical reason (idiopathic). The general consensus is that these dogs probably have a compromised immune system or a congenital / inherited factor affecting skin immune systems.


A name given to contact and inhaled, chronic hypersensitivity disorders, often with an inherited base. Certain breeds are particularly susceptible. Speak to your veterinarian at length on this complex and difficult subject. Allergens incriminated vary from the house dust mite and plant pollens to human skin cells! The inflammatory skin changes, again, leave your pet open to secondary pyoderma.


Especially fleas. Apart from the trauma and irritation of individual flea bites, many dogs develop an allergy to flea saliva causing a generalized skin inflammation. This changing skin environment allows pyoderma to develop. See Flea Control and Parasitic Skin Disease In any case of pyoderma, assume fleas may have a role to play until proven otherwise.

Dietary allergy

Not as common as people would like to believe but is occasionally seen in dogs and because of the common daily inclusion of beef, chicken and wheat based products in dog foods we are seeing dietary intolerances being manifested as skin allergies with secondary pyoderma. Change to a hypoallergenic diet, such as Hills Canine d/d after consultation with your veterinarian.

--quick action is required

Skin Infection: Pyoderma

pyoderma: "What is pyoderma?
Pyoderma is a bacterial infection of the skin. It is very common in dogs and uncommon in cats. Pyoderma frequently occurs as a secondary problem to some underlying condition or health problem.
What causes pyoderma?
Pyoderma is caused most frequently by Staphylococcus, a type of bacteria. Other bacteria, such as E. coli, also can invade previously infected skin. Several risk factors may cause an animal to be more likely to develop pyoderma. These risk factors include:
Parasites, such as fleas or mange mites
Allergies, such as flea, food, contact, or hereditary allergies
Hormonal disorders, such as hypothyroidism (low production of thyroid hormone by the thyroid gland)
Inadequate immune system, such as in young animals or those taking steroids
Animals with short coats, skin folds, or calloused skin
Trauma from grooming, scratching, or rooting in dirt or garbage
The dog has a deep pyoderma that may respond to treatment only partially and frequently recurs"
What are the signs of pyoderma?

Pyoderma frequently appears as a rash. It often affects the trunk, chin, bridge of the nose, and feet but it also may be generalized over the entire body. Skin lesions can have a sudden or gradual onset. The animal may or may not itch. If the underlying cause is an allergy, the itching usually comes before the rash. The rash or lesions on the skin may appear as small bumps, pus-filled pimples or pockets of pus, or blood-filled blisters. There can be crusting, scaling, and discolored spots on the skin. The skin may be inflamed (red and hot). Hair loss can occur, giving the animal a "moth-eaten" look.

If a hormonal disorder is the underlying cause, signs can include excessive thirst and excessive urination, pendulous abdomen, lethargy, weight gain, or signs of feminization in male dogs.

How is pyoderma diagnosed?

Pyoderma is diagnosed upon history and physical examination and by diagnostic procedures involving the skin.

--my bulldog had this many times until her diet was changed