A wide variety of diseases and conditions can cause skin and foot problems in dogs. Some are very difficult to diagnose and have numerous origins. Based on examination, tests, and the dog’s symptoms, a veterinarian can usually determine the problem, or least begin to rule out some of the possibilities.
Dog Health Guide indicates that issues leading to possible foot or skin problems can include fungal or bacterial infections, food allergies, environmental allergies, fleas, ticks, mites, acne, warts, cysts, seborrhea and tumors.
Symptoms may include dandruff, dry skin, red and irritated skin, lumps on the skin, crusty skin, scaly patches, odor, loss of hair, breaking toenails and sores, a dull and dry coat, according to Dog Health Guide. In addition, the dog may persistently scratch or lick its skin.
Diagnose the Problems
A veterinarian’s diagnosis may be made through biopsy, blood tests or examination of the skin with a special light, which is used to determine the presence of some fungal infections.
Treat the Issues
Treatment of canine skin problems depends on the condition. Bacterial infections are treated with antibiotics; fungal infections with anti-fungal shampoos, or medications; and parasitic problems are addressed with the appropriate insecticidal treatment. For allergies, identification and elimination of the suspected allergen is the primary treatment, along with medications to offer relief of symptoms, according to Dog Owner’s Guide.