Ringworm in Dogs – It’s Not a Worm at All!

By on October 27, 2011

Ringworm isn't in fact a worm at all, it is a fungal infection. It gets it's name because it often causes a hairless round patch on the skin of both dogs and people, which can be red and itchy.

Ringworm in dogs

The infected patch heals from the middle outwards, so it looks like a red ring on the skin. In some cases, dogs can have ringworm without showing any skin changes. Also, the fungal spores live a long time in the environment. Spread is through contacting the spores, either through patting an infected dog, or handling bedding or grooming tools such as brushes.

Ringworm in Dogs Treatment

Depending on the severity, you and your dog will be treated with an ointment, or with tablets. Because an infected dog is constantly shedding spores, you have to be persistent to completely eliminate the infection. Fortunately, ringworm is usually not a severe condition, and is easily treated.

How to Prevent Ringworm in Dogs

Teaching your child good hygiene will help prevent infection with these worms, and keep your child healthy. Ringworm, medically referred to as “Dermatomycosis”, is a fungus infection of the skin, most commonly found in young animals. Circular or irregular areas of hair loss occur on the face, body, and legs.

The skin in affected areas is usually dry and scaly. This disease can be transmitted from animal to animal, from soil to animal, and from animal to man. Definitive diagnosis is best achieved through culture and identification of the fungal agent.

Many chronic diseases that do not readily respond to treatment are mistakenly diagnosed as fungal infections.

These mistakes can be avoided by the use of fungal cultures. Therapy is specific and will result in complete remission of the disease. Topical and systemic drugs are used.

Can I Catch Ringworm From My Dog?

Yes. You can indeed. Ensure you're vigilant and take all precautionary measures to avoid contact with bare skin and speak to your vet and your doctor on how to manage ringworm should your dog be diagnosed with it.

Further Reading:

BVA Download: Infectious Diseases and Zoonoses

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