Frequent How do you treat ringworm on a dog’s belly? A Complete Guide

Clubs Offering:

With so many parasites out there, it is tempting to lump ringworm in the same category as hookworms, whipworms, roundworms, and tapeworms. Despite its name, however, ringworm is not actually a worm—it is a fungus. This fungal infection is common all over the world and infects almost all species of domestic animals, including dogs, which is why dog owners should know the symptoms, causes, and treatment options for ringworm.

Ringworm, as the fungus is commonly called, is named for the round, raised, red ring appearance usually seen in human ringworm infections. Ringworm, scientifically known as dermatophytes, is a collection of pathogenic fungi. In dogs, 70 percent of ringworm cases are caused by the fungus Microsporum canis, 20 percent are caused by the fungus Microsporum gypseum, and just 10 percent are caused by Trichophyton mentagrophytes.

The fungus grows and lives in the outermost layer of skin and in the hair follicles of infected dogs, and occasionally in the nails. The infection is superficial, and in most cases only affects a few areas of the dog’s body. Puppies, senior dogs, and immunocompromised dogs sometimes suffer from more widespread ringworm infections.

Risk Factors for Ringworm in Dogs

  • Age: Puppies and senior dogs have weaker immune systems that aren’t as naturally resistant to fungi.
  • Environment: Being in a group animal setting such as a shelter, pet store, or kennel increases a dog’s chance of being exposed to infected animals.
  • Medical conditions and medications: Some ongoing medical problems and medications can lower the immune system’s ability to fight off germs.
  • Behavior: Dogs that like to dig are more likely to come into contact with fungi spores (microscopic seeds) in the dirt.
  • Breed: Boston terriers, Yorkshire terriers, and Jack Russell terriers are more susceptible to ringworm infection.
  • Ringworm symptoms can take up to three weeks to develop after exposure. The most common places to spot ringworm infection are on a dog’s face, ears, feet, and tail.

    In the early stage of ringworm in dogs, there may be only one or two unusual spots. You may notice round hairless patches with pink, scaly sores. The sores aren’t always circular and sometimes they look more like pimply bumps or may have a scab.

    Typically, ringworm isn’t itchy, but some dogs may scratch. Claws that break easily or become brittle and rough can be a sign of ringworm too. Without treatment, the infection may spread creating large areas of hair loss and scaly skin.

    Frequent How do you treat ringworm on a dog’s belly?

    Credit: Yeji Kim

    Can Humans Get Ringworm from Dogs?

    Yes. Ringworm is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be passed among different animal species, like a cat to a dog, and to humans. The fungi that usually cause ringworm in dogs (microsporum canis, microsporum gypsum, and trichophyton mentagrophytes) are easily spread to others. You and your pets can get ringworm by direct contact with an infected pet, person, or contaminated surface.

    Ringworm in Dogs Symptoms, Causes and Treatment | DiscountPetCare