Monday, March 21, 2011

Infected facial folds: Common in pugs, and easy to treat

Pugs often get infected facial folds
Liam hides his face to keep me from cleaning it.
Once per week, I swab Liam's face with medication designed to kill yeast and dry the skin. While he's never had a true problem with his facial folds, I know pugs are prone to skin problems, so I thought it best to be cautious.

Apparently, I've not been cautious enough.

Over the weekend, Liam developed an infection in his facial folds. He started rubbing his face Friday evening, and stayed awake all night digging and licking. When I checked him closely, his facial folds had swelled, and he developed some nasty-looking green goo deep in the folds.

On Saturday, I kept wiping out his folds with the wipes, but yesterday, when we saw no improvement, we went to the emergency room and picked up some antibiotics. While the goo is still present, the folds have shrunk back to their normal size and he seems to be sleeping comfortably.

Apparently, facial fold infections are quite common, but they are very difficult to remove without hard antibiotics. While I don't like to give Liam antibiotics, if I had to do this over again, I would take him to the veterinarian at the first sign of the green goo. In the interim, I'll try wiping his face more frequently, to see if I can stave off more infections.

Researching this condition on the internet can be scary, as there are many websites that suggest that these infections are caused by a deep, underlying condition. If you've reached this blog because you're researching an infection, it's best to stop reading and start talking to a veterinarian on a one-on-one basis. Every dog is different, but the infections are painful and itchy for most dogs. The best way to help your dog is to take him in for treatment.