Eczema

Eczema has long been a controversial skin condition, both in animals and human beings. It is more a symptom of a disorder than a disease in itself. Various theories have been advanced as to the causes of eczema. For example, dermatologists believe that eczema is caused by faulty diet, hormone imbalance, fleas, lice and ticks, kidney troubles, and vitamin deficiencies. Other factors may be involved. As to vitamin deficiencies, it is well known that a deficiency of vitamins A and E, as well as inadequate amounts of the essential fatty acids, will cause skin eruptions.

The symptoms of eczema can easily be confused with those of other skin conditions or diseases. They include intense itching, pustules, discharge, scabs and dandruff.

Treatment: First, before any treatment can be started, the cause must be discovered. This may require many tests and the subsequent treatment may be extended over a long period. You can give the dog temporary relief by washing off the scabs with mild soap and water, and applying a soothing agent such as calomine solution or cold cream. The diagnosis and subsequent treatment will have to be done by the veterinarian.

ECZEMA NASI (COLLIE NOSE)

This form of eczema affects only the nose, eyes, and the skin surrounding the eyes. It is an abnormal reaction of the dog's skin to bright sunlight. The condition is limited to Collies, Shetland Sheepdogs and mixed breeds containing either of the aforementioned breeds.

The symptoms of eczema nasi are pawing or scratching at the nose; lesions on the nose where the hairless part of the nose blends into the upper hairy section; inflammation of the eyes; bleeding from the lesions; scabs on the bridge of the nose and a loss of hair in the region.

Treatment: Eczema nasi is chronic and should be treated by a veterinarian. You can provide temporary relief by washing off the scabs and crusts, applying calomine solution or cold cream to the affected parts, and treating the inflamed eyes with eye ointment.

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