Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, many bulldogs suffer from a dry flaky, scaly skin, though some might suffer from greasy oily flaky skin, the medical term for both conditions is “Bulldog Seborrhea”.  

There are two types of bulldog dry flaky seborrhea, uncommon to bulldogs PRIMARY type, and more common one SECONDARY type. Bulldog secondary seborrhea can be divided into a NON-ITCHY type and a more common ITCHY type.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs SEBORRHEA 

Oils or sebum are produced in the sebaceous glands.

  1. Bulldog seborrhea secca (or Bulldog Seborrhea Sicca) means Bulldog Dry Skin. “Sicca” stands for “Dry”, same as “Bulldog Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (KCS) which stands for “Bulldog Dry Eye”.
  2. Bulldog seborrhea oleosa: which means Bulldog Oily Greasy Skin. “Oleosa” stands for oily.

Dr. Kraemer’s Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs RULE OF THUMBDry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs

Most Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs is secondary to other bulldog skin diseases, thus for the best therapeutic outcome,  the underlying cause should be identified.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs PRIMARY DISEASE:

Primary seborrhea is much LESS common in bulldogs and is usually due to a keratinization defect or abnormal cell turnover. The distribution is usually wide and often includes the ears and ear flaps.

A primary seborrhea is typically a genetic hereditary condition thus it is likely to manifest early in life.

Primary Dry Coat Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs DISEASE TYPES:

  • Bulldog Idiopathic Dry Flaky Skin (unknown reason)
  • Bulldog Vitamin A Responsive Dry Flaky Skin
  • Bulldog Sebaceous Adenitis (inflammation of the sebaceous glands)
  • Bulldog Ear Margin Dermatosis
  • Bulldog Acne
  • Bulldog Naso-Digitial Hyperkeratosis

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs SECONDARY DISEASE:

Secondary bulldog seborrhea sicca is the most common one. You bulldog often present with an itch in addition to the dry flakey and scaley coat.
Itch is common with secondary bulldog seborrhea,  but there are few underlining conditions in this category that are itch-free.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs ITCHING TYPE: are secondary to common bulldog and French bulldog skin conditions such as-

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs NON-ITCHING:

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs DIAGNOSIS:

  1. Age, History, Distribution are all vital for diagnosis
  2. Skin Scraping: to r/o Demodex and Sarcoptic Mange
  3. Skin Cytology: to r/c bacteria, yeast, and abnormal cells
  4. Skin Biopsy: for histopathology
  5. Allergy Blood Testing (VARL): for Atopic Dermatitis
  6. Food Trial (RX elimination diets): for food allergies

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs TREATMENT:

Topical therapy and Supplements are essential for all Bulldog Dry and Flaky Skin Disease as well as Bulldog Oily Greasy Flaky Skin

FREQUENT: 1-2/week in the beginning, then as needed for maintenance
CONTACT TIME: shampoo’s & conditioners 10-15 min before rinse
HYDRATION: Humectants & Emollients 10-15 min minimum contact time to allow proper hydration of the skin. They are often applied as an after shampoo (conditioners) or are mixed in it.

  • Humectants attract waterDry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Advance Bundle
  • Emollients prevent water loss and soften the skin.

KERATOLYTIC & KERATOPLASIC: to help remove scales and flakes.
ANTI PURUITIC: to help reduce the itch
ANTISEPTIC: to help manage secondary bacterial infection
ANTI YEAST: to help manage secondary yeast infection
DEGREASERS: For bulldog Oily Flaky Greasy Skin (Bulldog Oily Seborrhea) to help flush the hair follicle and remove access oils.
BATHING: once or twice a weekly bath with medicated shampoo.
MOUSSING & GELLING: on non-bath days

  1. MEDICATED SHMPOOPS: provided here is the various medicated shampoo you should implement, depends on the skin state, itchiness, and presence of an infection.

2. NO RINSE LOTION & GELS: should be used in between baths. They are extremely easy to use, and no rinsing water is needed

3. AFTER SHAMPOO CONDITIONER: V4B Bully Hypoallergenic Conditioner.

4. SPRAY & WIPES: Antiseptic, Anti-yeast bundle

8. SUPPLEMENTS: 

5. RX ITCH CONTROL: Often itch control RX is needed at the early intense acute phase

6. RX ANTISEPTIC: often Antibacterial & Antifungal systemic RX are needed during the acute phase to help eliminate the secondary infection

Dr. Kraemer’s Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs TIPS & WARNINGS

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #1 TOPICALS & SUPPLEMENTS: Topical therapy that includes medicated shampoos, after-shampoo conditioners, No-Rinse mousse, and gel’s, as well as complementary supplements, are critical for the short and long term

  • SAFE: They Are Safe, thus can be used long term
  • $: They Are Inexpensive
  • EASY: They are easy to implement
  • CONVENIENT: They are done at home
  • TREATS: Supplements are available in chews and give as treats

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #2 SHAMPOOS & CONDITIONERS: Medicated shampoos and conditioners should be used:

  • FREQUENT: Bi-weekly during the acute phase, and less frequently thereafter
  • CONTACT: Contact before rinse should be 10-15min
  • WATER TEMP: If there is inflammation (redness) you should not bath with hot/warm water.
  • IDEAL COMBO: Most times a combination of multiple medicated shampoo’s, wipes, gels, and sprays are needed

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #3 PRIMARY SEBORRHEA SICCA:

  • Less common than secondary seborrhea sicca
  • Genetic/Inherent, thus often shows up at a young age
  • Same treatment, some might need Vit A, Zinc, Retinoid

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #4 SECONDARY ITCHY: common pruritic types are:

  • Bulldog itch atopic allergic dermatitis
  • Bulldog food allergy allergic dermatitis
  • Bulldog flea allergy

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #5 SECONDARY NON- ITCHY: common nonpruritic types are

  • Bulldog demodex
  • Bulldog hypothyroid
  • Bulldog Cushing syndrome
  • Bulldog dry no humid geographic location.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Tip #5 TREATMENT DURATION: Treating the Acute phase is usually 2-3m duration pending improvements

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Warning #1 RX ITCH CONTROL: itch control is critical due to self-trauma and injury to your bulldog barrier. In severe acute cases, drugs might be needed to control the itch.

Warning, often cortisone/steroids/prednisone are given which are usully effective, nevertheless over time can lead to serious adverse effects.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Warning #2 RX ANTISEPTIC: secondary bacteria (Staphylococcus ) and yeast (Malassezia) infection are common and often requires systemic medication

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs Warning #3 RX HARMFUL SIDE EFFECT: Many of the medication (RX) used can lead to side effects overtimes,

  1. STEROIDS: Steroids can lead to iatrogenic Cushing syndrome and a long list of serious medical problems
  2. ANTIBIOTICS: Antibiotics can lead to superbug multidrug resistance bacteria, MRSP
  3. ATOPICA: Atopica often cause nausea and diarrhea
  4. APOQUEL: possible immune suppressant when given twice a day

All RX can negatively impact your bulldog GI microbiome (“good “ gut microflora), which can leads to dysbiosis and leaky gut syndrome.

Dry Flaky Skin in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs SUMMARY MUST DO:

  1. TOPICAL & SUPPLEMENTS (NON-PRESCRIPTION): Always implement topical therapy and supplements
  2. DIAGNOSIS BASED: Systemic Rx should be given based on a diagnostic testing finding
  3. PRESCRIPTION RX: should be prescribed for maximum impact at the minimal dosage and for the shortest optimal duration.

In contrast to prescription drugs, topicals such as medicated shampoos, medicated gels, spray’s, rinses,  wipes, and supplements are  all:

  • SAFE: for long term use
  • $: inexpensive, affordable
  • EFFECTIVE: very effective when used correctly
  • EASY & CONVINENT: at home and easy to do

“An ounce of PREVENTION is worth a pound of CURE”

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