Skin fold dermatitis is a common condition affecting the folds of skin of certain breeds, particularly bulldogs. It is caused by moisture and bacteria trapped near the skin, leading to irritation, itchiness and infection. As the skin becomes sore, it can also lead to an overgrowth of nasty bacteria or yeast, especially in areas that don't receive much air circulation—something our beloved wrinkle face dogs are prone to. The bacteria and yeast release toxins which irritate the skin and are another source of inflammation and infection for your dog.
To ensure that your bulldog stays healthy and comfortable, it’s important to practice preventive care. The following five tips are essential to preventing skin fold dermatitis in bulldogs.
1. Regular Cleaning
One of the best ways to help prevent skin fold dermatitis in bulldogs is to keep their skin clean and dry. This means regularly cleaning and drying any areas with folds or wrinkles on their body using a soft cloth or wipes designed specifically for sensitive canine skin.
Keeping your bulldog's coat short and trim can help prevent skin fold dermatitis by reducing the amount of dirt, debris, and allergens that can accumulate in the folds. Regular trims should be done every few weeks or as recommended by your groomer.
A healthy diet is important for any dog’s overall health, but especially if they are prone to skin fold dermatitis. Feeding your bulldog a balanced diet with high-quality proteins can help keep their skin healthy and strong, making it more resilient against infection.
4. Keep Your Pup's Wrinkles Dry
If possible, try to keep your bulldog’s wrinkles dry and free from moisture. This might mean limiting their playtime in wet environments or ensuring that they are completely dried off after going for a swim.
5. Avoid Overheating
Bulldogs are particularly prone to overheating due to their short muzzles and heavy coats. To prevent this from leading to skin fold dermatitis, make sure your pup has plenty of shade and water available when outdoors, and keep them in air-conditioned rooms during hot days.
What If Your Pup Ends Up With Skin Fold Dermatitis?
If your bulldog does end up with skin fold dermatitis, there are several remedies you can try at home before seeking veterinary care. There are five main signs of inflammation: redness, swelling, heat, pain, and loss of function.
Some affected sites have specific symptoms to look out for, dependent on the area in question:
- Tail Fold Dermatitis: scratching, biting, or rubbing; excessive licking near tail
- Vulvar Fold Dermatitis: Scooting, licking groin, urinary tract infections
- Lip Fold Dermatitis: Swollen, foul-smelling, sore lips; discolored or matted surrounding fur; scratching or rubbing
- Face Fold Dermatitis: Weeping sores, blisters or lesions
If an infection has developed, there may also be yellow or white discharge near the affected area. Chronic skin fold dermatitis may also present thickening of the skin as well as a darkening of the skin.
For the mildest cases, which is the majority of dogs with skin fold dermatitis, simply keeping the affected area clean can reduce inflammation in your wrinkly faced dog.
Squishface Wrinkle Paste and Squishface Wrinkle Wipes were specially designed to be extremely gentle on your wrinkle face dog's skin, while also thoroughly cleaning the affected area. Squishface products leave your squishy faced friends smelling and looking beautifully clean. Plus, the coconut oil in our products soothes inflamed skin while also acting as a natural water-repellent layer to help prevent future bacterial or fungal infections in your wrinkle face dog.
The Bottom Line
Skin fold dermatitis can be a troublesome condition in bulldogs - but with proper preventive care and treatment, you can help keep your pup comfortable and healthy. So follow these five tips for preventing skin fold dermatitis in bulldogs and take steps to treat the condition if it does occur!