The list of issues that can occur with a dog is quite long. Sometimes, the problem is rather obvious but at other times, it may reside on the surface and be more difficult to see. One of those potentially hidden problems is a skin irritation that may sometimes be hidden by the dog’s coat. Most of these irritations are rather minor and they only result in scratching until the problem is able to heal on its own. At other times, they may require an ointment or a cream.
It is not uncommon for a minor irritation in the skin of a dog to become worse as bacteria gathers in the area. This issue could result in an abscess, an area that has become infected and could result from any number of different skin injuries. An abscess may occur on any part of the body of a dog and is not more likely to occur in any area.
There are many different types of bacteria that can lead to an abscess. The most common type is Pasteurella multocida, which can lead to a skin infection and further irritation of the area. Staphylococcus intermedius is another type of bacteria that can lead to an infection and is often treated with a topical ointment. When those bacteria form an infection on the surface of the skin, they are easily treated. If they are able to break through the skin barrier and the infection is deeper, it can lead to a serious abscess.
Most people are able to tell if an abscess is present. It is still a good idea, however, to speak to a veterinarian and to have a swab test done to see if the area that is infected contains either of those bacteria. The veterinarian may also feel it is a good idea to perform blood tests to see if the infection has entered into the bloodstream. Fortunately, there are solutions for either type of issue.
In the vast majority of the cases, a topical ointment or cream is prescribed by the veterinarian for treating an abscess. If the infection has traveled deeper into the tissue of the dog or if a blood infection exists, may be necessary for an extensive treatment option to be considered. This could include having the wound drained, cleaned and flushed. Oral antibiotics may also be given to aggressively treat the infection.
At times, you may be able to help your dog avoid a problem with abscess by properly caring for any of the wounds or cuts that they may have. Using an over-the-counter antibacterial ointment is one option that you may want to consider. There also various shampoos on the market and dips that can clean and treat the surface of the skin over the entire dog.