West Highland Terrier Skin Problems
If you own a West Highland terrier, chances are you’ve seen him or her suffering from various skin issues. While atopic dermatitis is the most common cause of these issues, it is not the only one. There are several other reasons that your Westie may be suffering from unpleasant skin conditions, and you should see your veterinarian immediately if you notice any changes. Fortunately, many of these problems can be easily treated.
Some dogs may have hyperplastic dermatitis, a condition that is genetically predisposed in some breeding lines. This disease can result in scaly patches of skin and hair loss. While it’s rare in this breed, it can be triggered by allergies and a yeast infection. If your Westie’s skin problem causes him to lose his hair or scratch itself excessively, it’s important to see your vet as soon as possible.
Atopic dermatitis can be caused by a Westie’s immune system’s overreaction to allergens. The resulting inflammation can make your Westie itchy all over or may affect only one specific area. The condition is thought to affect 25% of West Highland terriers, so you should consult your veterinarian if your dog exhibits any signs of the disorder.
The West Highland White Terrier breed is prone to certain musculoskeletal problems.
Those who have an affected dog should have it tested for liver damage early in life, as it can lead to death if left untreated. Copper hepatitis in West Highland Terriers usually manifests symptoms of jaundice in dogs between two and four years old. Taking care of this disease early in life is crucial to preventing a dog’s symptoms from progressing to the point of no return.
Hip dysplasia is another problem that may occur in your West Highland Terrier. This disorder involves a lack of blood supply to the head of the femur. This causes painful swelling in the rear legs and is often accompanied by a deformity of the hip. While the cause of the disease is not completely understood, it usually strikes between six and nine months of age and results in pain in the rear legs. Treatment is usually surgery.
Another common problem in Westies is itchy, dry skin. Westies have dry skin and are not shed very much. But they still need to be groomed regularly, and if these symptoms persist, you should see a veterinarian. The vet will take into account the breed and may perform a skin scrape and bacterial and fungal cultures. Sometimes, the vet will recommend a skin biopsy to determine what is wrong.
The treatment of atopic dermatitis in Westies is relatively straightforward.
Some people choose to treat it on their own. However, for severe cases, it’s best to see a vet. Your vet can prescribe special shampoo for Westies, which should be applied once or twice a week. Your vet may also provide tips to improve your Westie’s skin condition. You should avoid breeding any Westies with atopic dermatitis, which can lead to a permanent skin condition.
Aside from allergies, Westies can also experience various skin issues. Aside from itching, dry skin in Westies can cause dandruff. Your pet may scratch incessantly and produce a lot of red flakes. Your vet may prescribe a medicated shampoo for dry skin. They may also recommend dietary changes and supplements for your Westie. Always consult with a vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet.
Yeast infections are a common cause of skin problems in Westies. These infections cause itchy skin, hair loss, and a foul odor. Sometimes, you’ll even notice ear infections in your Westie. While a yeast infection isn’t serious in your Westie, it’s important to seek treatment for this infection as soon as possible. And if you have an infected Westie, you can consult with your veterinarian for more information.
Other skin problems in Westies can be severe, and they may require medical attention. Atopic dermatitis, or dry eye, is one of the most common conditions. It is characterized by incessant itching and is usually treated with antihistamines. The cause is unknown, but it’s important to see a vet as soon as possible because it can be debilitating if left untreated.