Knowing your sweet pooch is uneasy and in discomfort is nerve-wracking, whether it's a result of pain, itching or something else. If you have a Pekingese, you have some routine care to undertake if you want to keep such irritations from occurring. Pekingese are particularly prone to an itch-inducing condition known as skin fold dermatitis.
The face of the Pekingese is one of the breed's most endearing and adorable features, with its legendary skin folds. These skin folds, though, catch matter that triggers skin infections and the discomforts that come with them.
Skin Fold Dermatitis
Skin fold dermatitis arises due to the presence of sizable face folds in brachycephalic dogs. The depth of some face folds can cause the folds to brush together and to accumulate dampness -- not a great recipe within the warm folds that barely ever make contact with the air. If you put these factors together, you get a setting that is optimal for excessive amounts of bacteria and yeast alike. In many cases, atopic dermatitis paves the way for another ailment, the bacterial infection pyoderma.
A Pekingese might experience frustrating itching over any skin that is affected by this dermatitis. He might attempt to manage the problem by scratching nonstop on it, which leads to increased havoc on the skin. Other telltale indications of skin fold dermatitis are redness of the skin, a strong and disagreeable smell, and pus discharge. Since the problem is tucked away covertly inside face folds, the initial indication of the issue might be the conspicuous odor. If you clean your Peke's folds properly however, all of these things shouldn't happen in the first place.
Other Susceptible Dogs
The itching of atopic dermatitis isn't exclusive to the Peke breed. Their fellow brachycephalic "short-faced" pooches are prone to its stresses, too. They include Shih Tzus, pugs and English bulldogs. Shar-Peis, with their world-famous big wrinkles, are predisposed to the condition. Surprisingly enough, dermatitis is a potential risk in felines, too, particularly the ones with folds -- think Persian cats.
Keep the hassles of atopic dermatitis and pyoderma at bay simply by keeping up with your pet's facial cleanliness. Make a point to diligently clean out your Peke's folds on a daily basis. The goal is to keep them dry and fresh 100 percent of the time. Gently wipe them down with a lightly moistened wash cloth. Once you're done, thoroughly pat the folds dry.
- Animal Planet: Pekingese Guide
- VetStreet: Pekingese
- VCA Animal Hospitals: Skin Fold Pyoderma in Dogs
- Universities Federation for Animal Welfare: Skin Fold Dermatitis
- Adobe Animal Hospital: Skin Fold Pyoderma
- Glendale Animal Hospital: Bacterial Skin Infections (Pyoderma)
- Skin Diseases of the Dog and Cat; Tim Nuttall et al.
- Pekingese; D. Caroline Coile
- VetStreet: Skin Fold Dermatitis
- Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images