Ringworm is an incredibly contagious fungus that can cause health issues for dogs, cats, and even humans. If your furry friend comes into contact with ringworm, it is important to get treatment quickly to avoid it causing further problems for that animal or spreading to other animals in your home. The team at Wheaton Animal Hospital is here to provide you with some helpful tips on treating and preventing ringworm for your dogs and cats:
Treating Ringworm in Dogs
Before you can treat ringworm in dogs, you have to first know how to spot it. The fungus will cause large, circular patches of hair loss in canines. It might also turn the fur surrounding it dry and brittle. Infected hair will break off easily, which makes it even easier to spread to other mammals in the house. If you suspect ringworm is the cause, do the following:
- Schedule an appointment with your Wheaton veterinarian
- Work with the veterinary team to determine the severity of the case (the vet will either prescribe topical therapy or medications)
- Thoroughly clean your home (vacuum and decontaminate any areas where your dog has been)
Treating Ringworm in Cats
Cats are also susceptible to ringworm. However if they catch it, it is often not as easy to spot as it is in dogs. Occasionally it will cause similar patches of hair loss, but usually, it manifests as areas of fur that look like they have been brushed with cigarette ash. Some cats show no symptoms at all.
Treatment for cats is similar to the treatment for dogs, and you will need to consult with your veterinarian to see whether topical treatment or medication is the best course of action. Even while being treated, cats with ringworm are considered contagious for about three weeks.
Ringworm Prevention in Dogs and Cats
Keeping your home clean helps you minimize the risk that your dog or cat will come into contact with ringworm. Vacuum regularly and bring your pets in for regular wellness checks. If any of your pets do get ringworm, be sure to take swift action to isolate them from other animals and to start treatment with your veterinarian.
At Wheaton Animal Hospital, we offer your pets the best, well-rounded care throughout their lives. Whether you are dealing with ringworm or it’s time for an annual wellness check, we are here for you. To learn more, call (630) 665-1500.