Owner’s Guide to Discoid Lupus in Dogs
Author: D Swain
Discoid lupus in dogs is an autoimmune condition that results in discoloration of the nose. In rare cases, it can also affect other areas of the skin. Professionals have yet to find a specific cause for this problem, but genetics may play a role due to the fact that certain breeds as more affected than others. Some of these breeds include Siberian Husky, German Shepherd, and Collie.
As you already know, this condition begins as loss of pigment around the nose. As the disease gets worse, your dog may develop scaling of nasal tissue and sores. The nose’s surface may also become smooth instead of having it’s normal cobblestoned texture. These sores aren’t bothersome to some dogs, but others are very bothered by them.
Discoid lupus in dogs causes symptoms that mimic other diseases. They include ringworm and different types of dermatitis, especially solar dermatitis. In order to diagnose this disease accurately, the veterinarian will have to perform a biopsy of tissue from the affected area.
Treatment of this condition will depend on how advanced it is. Mild cases can usually be treated using a strong, topical ointment. Severe cases of discoid lupus have to be treated with corticosteroids. It may also be useful to supplement your dog’s diet with vitamin E. However, you should be aware that any benefits of vitamin E supplementation will take months to take effect.
As mentioned earlier, discoid lupus in dogs causes sores to form on your dog’s nose. Ultraviolet light only makes these sores worse. Therefore, you should try to limit your dog’s exposure to ultraviolet light. This is especially important during the summer months. Applying sunscreen to your dog’s nose will help, but you need to make sure he doesn’t rub it off.