Here, Spot!

Try taking an iPhone picture of a wiggly 6 mo old puppy belly w one hand!

There’s never a good time. Late Friday afternoon before a demanding weekend is one of the worst.

First thing this morning, I noticed the hair on Gandy’s side was sticking out the way it does when there is the lump of a tick under her fur.

In checking it out, there was no tick, no real lesion, but only a mass under the skin the size of  a small pea. I suspected some kind of subcutaneous fatty tumor. But a few hours later, it had completely disappeared. Maybe a sting?

Then this afternoon, after having seen her tummy often during the day’s play, she rolls over and has these round red flat lesions. They do not seem to itch or bother her in any way. But man, I sure don’t want ringworm or that disease where your nose and fingers rot off. That would really spoil my day.

So if anybody has an educated guess what this might be–and better–what to do about it on a weekend, please let me know ASAP!

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. It sure looks like ringworm to me with the characteristic red border and central clearing. It’s a fungal infection and you might want to start treatment with an over-the-counter topical antifungal cream applied to the individual spots. It usually responds quite readily (at least in people it does). You’ll probably also have to wash her bedding and apply something like Chlorox to her plastic or rubber toys and other hard surfaces in her environment. It’s a good idea to check with your vet on Monday.

  2. Hmm… actually, it doesn’t really look like ringworm to me. It doesn’t look like there is hair loss, and the spots are too small, too many, too red, too raised…. I think it is probably a reaction from running through tall-grass. It is pretty common in the spring for dogs to have a little atopic reaction or irritation from running through tall grass/weeds, where they form papules or pustules, espcially in the groin and armpit areas. Sometimes this can lead to a skin staph infection, so I would clean her up with an antibacterial wash and keep an eye on it, and take her in on Monday.

  3. Hey Fred, we just had Ms. Ez at the vet’s today with the same type stuff. Her’s was diagnosed as an allergic reaction to the grasses that are growing down near the bayou edge. He prescribed two antibiotic since in just a few days, the spots had become infected and an antihistamine. I had been giving her Benadryl since I first noticed the bumps but obviously not enough. She is a vanilla lab and quite large so the one pill just was not doing the trick. Her bumps did start itching on the second day after I noticed them and soon had hair loss in those spots. I hope Gandy gets better soon!