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Sores on dog's nose.

Species: Dog
Breed: Beagle
Age: 2-5 years
Dr. Marie-

Our dog has been breaking out in sore/boil/blister type bumps on his muzzle and snout for about a year. They don't develop whiteheads, they aren't filled with pus, they're firm, they cause pain and discomfort. When they first start, the "boils" are smooth and shiny. After a few weeks they become puckered and sort of lumpy. If Loki scratches one of these sores, they bleed a lot, scab, then create an area without fur for a few weeks. If he doesn't scratch them, it takes 4-6 weeks to run its course and to go away. I have a photo:

http://i237.photobucket.com/ablums/ff252/breeligerent/Public/IMAG00221.jpg

We've tried different dog shampoos, antibacterial soaps, flea/tick treatments and anti-worm medicines, and using a moist warm towel compression, but they keep coming back. We don't know if it's a bacterial infection, a dermatological issue, a result of a pest or parasite, or an indication of an immune system issue or internal health problem. We don't know what direction to start in or home remedies to try. We want to take him to the vet, but finances have been really hard for us for a long time. We were hoping for any direction you could lead us in or maybe home remedies that could fix the cause of these sores, but if you think a trip to the vet is the only way to help him, we'll figure out a way to do that.

Thank you for your time,
Breeanne and Azriel


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Sorry to hear that Loki is having these problems.

Unfortunately the link you gave to his photo did not work for me.

There are a few possible things that could cause these types of problems.

I'm worried that this could be an autoimmune condition such as pemphigus or discoid lupus:

Pemphigus:

pemphigus on dog's nose

Discoid Lupus:

discoid lupus on dog's nose

Unfortunately the only way to get a diagnosis for one of these is to have a biopsy taken. These conditions are treatable, but often are difficult to treat. Some dogs with mild lesions will benefit from hydrocortisone cream but usually stronger medicines are needed. There may also be some benefit by applying Vitamin E cream to the lesions.

The other possibility is that this is a non healing bacterial infection. If this is the case oral antibiotics would be needed.

In any case, it really does sound like a vet visit is the best idea.

I hope things work out ok.

Dr. Marie

---This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.---


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.