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Your Dog's Skin

Bacterial Infections

Cleaning infected skin

What's going on?

Bacterial skin infection or pyoderma is very common in dogs. Affected dogs have an itchy skin, which may be reddened, have a rash, crusts and pustules (small pus-filled lesions). 


Bacterial dermatitis or skin infection (pyoderma) is often triggered by an underlying disease, such as:

  • parasites,
  • an endocrine disease
  • allergies against fleas, environmental allergens or food ingredients.

It occurs when the skin’s natural defenses break down, allowing an overgrowth of common skin bacteria (such as staphylococci). Other organisms, such as yeast and fungal organisms, can also take advantage of the skin changes and multiply. 


Bacterial dermatitis may be generalised or restricted to certain areas as in the case of skin folds, acne or hot spots. While the disease can occur in any dog, certain breeds are more prone to bacterial dermatitis, such as German Shepherds and breeds with skin folds (Pugs, SharPeis).  

Consult your vet, who will focus on treating the underlying problem and will advise you on managing the condition. 

6 tips to help clean up your dog's skin

Disinfecting the skin to help restore its natural bacterial population and a healthy skin barrier ecosystem, and soothing the irritation are the main goals of supportive care

  1. Consult your veterinarian to identify the problem and treat any underlying condition. Remedies will depend on the diagnosis. 
  2. Help control the condition by using a high quality shampoo, mousse or wipes to clean and soothe the skin and to maintain the natural skin's ecosystem. Choose special formulas with an antiseptic action.
  3. Regularly groom and brush your dog and clean skin folds, ears and between the toes
  4. Keep your pet free from parasites: treat against fleas, ticks and worms on a regular basis.
  5. Feed your pet a high-quality, balanced diet. Supplement with essential fatty acids, vitamins and minerals if and as recommended by your vet.
  6. Schedule regular check-up consultations with your veterinarian to watch your dog's skin condition. You can also send pictures of your dog to show the evolution.

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