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In cases where there is insufficient immune responses the disease is usually described by the secondary disease that results. Examples include increased susceptibility to demodectic mange and recurrent skin infections, such as Malassezia infection or bacterial infections.
Increased, but harmful immune responses, can be divided into hypersensitivity disorders such as atopic dermatitisand autoimmune disorders autoimmunitysuch as pemphigus and discoid lupus erythematosus.
Atopic dermatitis[ edit ] Dog with atopic dermatitis, with signs around the eye created by rubbing. Atopy is a hereditary  and chronic lifelong allergic skin disease.
Signs usually begin between 6 months and 3 years of age, with some breeds of dog, such as the Golden Retriever showing signs at an earlier age.
Dogs with atopic dermatitis are itchy, especially around the eyes, muzzle, ears and feet. In severe cases the irritation is generalised. If the allergens are seasonal, the signs of irritation are similarly seasonal. Many dogs with house dust mite allergy have perennial disease.
Ear and skin infections with the bacteria Staphylococcus pseudintermedius and the yeast Malassezia pachydermatis are common secondary to atopic dermatitis. Food allergy can be associated with identical signs and some authorities consider food allergy to be a type of atopic dermatitis.
Treatment includes avoidance of the offending allergens if possible, but for most dogs this is not practical or effective. Other treatments modulate the adverse immune response to allergens and include antihistamines, steroids, ciclosporin and immunotherapy a process in which allergens are injected to try to induce tolerance.
New research into T-cell receptor peptides and their effects on dogs with severe, advanced atopic dermatitis are being investigated.
Autoimmune skin diseases[ edit ] Pemphigus foliaceus is the most common autoimmune disease of the dog. Blisters in the epidermis rapidly break to form crusts and erosions most often affecting the face and ears initially, but in some cases spreading to include the whole body.
The pawpads can be affected causing marked hyperkeratosis thickening of the pads with scale. Other autoimmune diseases include bullous pemphigoid and epidermolysis bullosa acquisita. Treatment of autoimmune skin conditions requires treatment to markedly reduce the abnormal immune response; steroids, azathoprine and other drugs are used as immunosuppressive agents.
Physical and environmental skin diseases[ edit ] Main article: Hot spot veterinary medicine A hot spot, or acute moist dermatitis, is an acutely inflamed and infected area of skin irritation created and made worse by a dog licking and biting at itself.
A hot spot can manifest and spread rapidly in a matter of hours as secondary Staphylococcus infection causes the top layers of the skin to break down and as pus becomes trapped in the hair. Hot spots can be treated with corticosteroid medications and oral as well as topical antibiotic application, as well as clipping hair from around the lesion.
Underlying inciting causes include flea allergy dermatitisear disease or other allergic skin diseases. Dogs with thick undercoat are most subject to getting hot spots.
Contagious infections include parasitic, bacterial, fungal and viral skin diseases. One of the most common contagious parasitic skin diseases is Sarcoptic mange scabies.Dog skin disorders. Jump to navigation Jump to search. Skin disorders are among the most common health problems in dogs, and have many causes.
The condition of a dog's skin and coat are also an important indicator of its general health. Another is mange caused by Demodex mites (Demodicosis), though this form of mange is not contagious.
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