Ringworm in Animals and Pets
© by Bree Weasner, PreciousPets.org LLC
Ringworm occurs occasionally in pets and it is not actually caused by a worm, but a fungus, and the lesion is not always shaped like a ring. Fungus is everywhere, and so it isn’t easy to figure which pets will develop Ringworm. Some dogs and cats are carriers of Ringworm and they can transmit the disease to other animals and people. Ringworm is more common in young animals and those with weakened immune systems (for example-FeLV). Ringworm can be transmitted to people, but just because a pet has Ringworm does not mean they will automatically transfer it to a human.
Fungi of Significance in Ringworm
Microsporum canis- Source is typically cats, most often long-hair cats
Microsporum gypseum- This type of Ringworm typically is from dogs and cats that dig into contaminated soil
Trichophyton mentagrophytes- Infects dogs and cats that are exposed to rodents or borrows where rodents live
Which of these 3 types of Ringworm occur depends on the animal and their geographic location.
Symptoms of Ringworm
Skin lesions that show up when Ringworm is present do not always look like a ring. Hair loss in small patches occurs, and these patches will disappear and reappear on different parts of the body. It is important to know that the diagnosis of Ringworm cannot be made simply from the lesion. These symptoms may be due to other diseases or allergies.
All Ringworm diagnosis requires testing. If a human has been diagnosed with Ringworm, it is possible they contracted it from their pet, even if the pet is without symptoms. This is especially true for multiple cat households. One way Ringworm is diagnosed is with a Woods lamp aka a black light. Species will fluoresce if present. Hair is then cultured and sent to a lab to determine if the fungus is present or not.
Treatment for Ringworm
A special shampoo is used to treat ringworms, and it isn’t uncommon for pet’s hair to be clipped. Anti fungal creams are also used, especially in areas where there is little hair growth. Some of these medications include Clotrimazole, Miconazole, Chlorhexidene and Ketoconazole. Oral anti-fungal medications are also used at times, but it is important to know the potential side effects when giving the animal chemical based medications.
If you’re looking for a natural treatment that is both safe and effective, Nature’s Defender with 100% natural cedar oil treats ringworm, infections, would, lacerations, lesions, rain rot and more. This product can also be used as a dipping solution to eliminate fleas, mites and help other skin problems. Natur’s Defender replaces toxic chemicals and does not have negative side effects. In some animals, Ringworm will resolve itself on its own, but it should be treated at the first sign of infection.
“A four month old kitten had a severe skin condition that was diagnosed as ringworm. After four months of conventional therapy, the resistant ringworm infection was not resolved. We put the kitten on Transfer Factor and within 5 days there were no apparent ringworm lesions remaining. Within a few weeks all the hair had grown back – and the now 9 month old cat has a beautiful, glossy coat. The ringworm lesions have not returned.”? Sam Jones, DVM
If you happen to have Goldenseal Tincture at home, you could try this easy recipe as well.
Recommended Product: Transfer Factor
It is nearly impossible to prevent exposure to Ringworm. Routine hygiene such as frequent hand washing and keeping your pets clean will help to combat the problems. Keeping your pet healthy will enable them to have a strong immune system, which in turn will enable them to fight disease more effectively.