Tails 'N' Trees
How to help dogs with skin conditions
Updated: Jan 24, 2022
Dogs that have bald patches, red patches or wounds near the base of their tails or keep biting in that area are often suffering from FLEA ALLERGIES. In fact, flea allergy is often the original cause of many other skin diseases. Secondary infections such as bacterial and fungal infections set in once the skin is broken through biting or scratching.
What to do if there is a simple flea allergy and no bacterial or fungal infections:
If the dog is very friendly:
1. Bathe with tick and flea shampoo.
2. When the fur is dry, apply anti-flea spray (contains Fipronil) to the hair on the back.
3. Repeat once a week.
If the dog is not friendly:
The simplest way is to apply ‘Spot-on’ insecticide liquid. The pipette sizes come in either 10-20kg or 20-40kg. A typical lean, medium-sized street dog is 15-20kg. Apply directly to the skin on the back in three places: back of neck, mid back, and near tail. Make sure to squeeze out all the liquid. Distract the dog with some food because it is easier to apply when the dog is eating and not paying attention.
At the same time, de-worm the dog, one tablet per 10kg weight of dog. Place the tablet inside a small piece of food.
If there are any small wounds, apply an anti-bacterial such as Betadine ointment or Neosporin antibiotic powder or an antibacterial spray such as Topicure.
However, if the wound is large and infected with a lot of pus we advise consulting a veterinary doctor as the dog may require oral medications such as antibiotics.
If the skin is dark and smelly, or very pink and itchy, with a lot of hair loss, or if the dog is scratching incessantly, an infection such as mange (demodectic or sarcoptic mites), or a fungal infection may have set it. In this case it is always recommended to take the dog directly to a vet or a shelter for diagnosis and treatment. However we know that this is not always possible as shelters may be full or the dog may be unfriendly/impossible to catch.
In this scenario our suggestion is to take several photographs and videos of the dog and show them to a vet for his/her diagnosis and recommended line of treatment. While this is far from ideal, it may be the only chance of treating the dog at all. Oral medications can be added to food and left at a distance.