Dermatology for Animals

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Animal Dermatological Services

What services does a Board Certified Veterinary Dermatologist offer?

Why visit a Veterinary Dermatologist?

  • What is a Specialist?

A veterinary dermatologist is a veterinarian with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of animal skin, ear, hair, nail, hoof and mouth disorders. Specifically veterinary dermatologists have significant training and experience in the management of allergic skin disease.

  • All pets itch, so why should I bring my pet to a dermatologist?

Just like people, pets can be overly sensitive to certain irritants that cause them distress. Additionally, certain breeds are associated with skin conditions that bring discomfort to both the pet and the owner. Dermatologists are exposed to a broader range of these conditions on a daily basis and have learned how to identify the subtle differences between each condition. Dermatology for Animals can help provide relief for the pet and answers for the owner.

  • How do I know when to consult a dermatologist?

Your pet can see a dermatologist anytime. If you are concerned with your pet's quality of life, or if a condition or disease has failed to respond to general treatment, then it is time to see a dermatologist. Here are a few signs that an appointment should be scheduled:

  • Hair Loss (Alopecia)
  • Ear Infections
  • Itch
  • Redness of Skin (Erythema)
  • Scale
  • Recurrent Infections
  • Pet's and/or Owner's Quality of Life

Intradermal Allergy Testing (IDAT)

An IDAT immediately identifies the environmental irritants that cause allergic symptoms. Various pollens and molds are injected under the skin and evaluated for the degree to which they stimulate the immune system. They appear as bumps and the more red and raised they are, the more allergic the pet is to that environmental irritant. Based on these reactions, Dermatology for Animals formulates an allergen that is injected into the pet for maintenance of allergy symptoms.

click to watch video

Video Otoscopy

The video otoscope is a valuable tool that allows for accurate diagnosis and treatment of challenging cases of chronic otitis. It utilizes a highly magnified camera lens to examine the deeper parts of the ear canal, eardrum and middle ear. It is useful in identifying foreign objects and tumors in the ear canal, abnormalities of the eardrum, and infection of the middle ear. Instruments can be inserted through the video otoscope to grasp objects in the ear canal or to flush debris out of the ear canal and middle ear.

click to watch video

Laser Surgery for Pets

Laser Surgery for Pets

The carbon-dioxide laser is a very precise instrument used for the removal of small, superficial masses. The benefits of performing this surgery include less pain and bleeding, faster recovery, and no suture material.

click to watch video

Skin Scraping

Skin scrapes are used to diagnose any parasitic component that could be causing allergy symptoms in your pet or animal. A dull blade is used to scratch the skin to acquire samples of skin cells and any parasites that may be present.

(video link of what was found on a skin scrape)

click to watch video

Skin Cytology and Trichogram

Cytology of the skin is used to identify infection and cells that are indicative of autoimmune disorders. A slide or piece of tape is pressed to the animal's skin, picking up samples of the cells and hairs and any microorganisms present.

Fungal culture and PCR

Dermatophyte cultures are used to identify ringworm (a type of fungal infection). A gel-like substance is used to isolate and identify ringworm organisms. Fungal PCR is used to more rapidly identify ringworm organisms in animals.

Bacterial Culture and Susceptibility Testing

A sterile swab is used to collect a sample from infected skin in order to grow and identify the bacteria causing the skin infection in your pet. Antibiotic susceptibility testing is performed on the isolate to generate a list of antibiotics effective at treating the specific bacteria cultured.

Hypoallergenic Pet Food Trial

A hypoallergenic food trial is used to diagnose food allergies. A pet is placed on a six to eight week diet trial that consists of a protein source (such as rabbit, kangaroo or venison) and a carbohydrate source (such as potato) that the pet has not been exposed to before. No treats may be given during this time.

Pet Skin Biopsy

A biopsy samples the cutaneous portion of the skin for classification and possible identification of the changes within the tissue sample.

Cryotherapy

Cryotherapy is a procedure where liquid nitrogen is applied to a skin lesion for a few seconds, which freezes and eventaully destroys the affected skin cells. Liquid nitrogen cryotherapy is well suited for multiple small to midsize benign nodules since general anesthesia is not necessary. Oftentimes only local anesthesia is required, making this a strong option for older patients.

click to watch video

Equine Dermatology

We are experienced in managing horses with skin problems and allergies. Equine skin allergies and chronic hives, and allergic airways disease can be be improved through intradermal allergy testing and immunotherapy.

click for picture of skin allergy test (IDAT)




Procedures at Dermatology for Animals

Using a video otoscope, saline is flushed through a rigid catheter to dislodge debris from a dog with chronic ear infections (otitis externa).

Intradermal Allergy Testing

Watch the steps taken to perform an intradermal allergy test in a dog. Also called skin prick testing, this is the most accurate way to determine what environmental (airborne) allergens are causing problems in your allergic dog.

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