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Black Skin Disease in Dogs

Many pet owners want to know what is black skin disease in dogs. Hyperpigmentation isn’t really a disease as such but a darkening and thickening of the skin. Hyperpigmentation is actually the medical term used for this increase of pigmentation on a dog’s skin. It is a reaction to certain conditions.

Why is my dog’s skin turning black? Black skin disease in dogs appears as there is an upsurge in skin pigmentation. It’s the skin pigment that is responsible for giving the skin its natural color. This color is referred to as melanin and it is produced by the specialized cells in the dog’s skin. If the cells were to be damaged, it can impact melanin production.

The causes of the appearance of spots are divided into two large groups:

  • Genetic
  • Acquired

Genetic pigmentation includes:

  • Lentigo are single or group spots on the trunk, neck, abdomen, and limbs of a dog, caused by excessive formation of melanin pigment;
  • “Moles” (epidermal or pigmented nevi) are found on the skin of the animal, the upper eyelid, the mucous membrane of the eye;
  • Black acanthosis is characterized by the thickening of the skin with a darkening of the color and the formation of warts in the folds of the skin.

Acquired pigmentation may occur due to the onset of the following factors:

  • Post-inflammatory pigmentation that occurs at the site of skin inflammation or injury;
  • An increase in hormone levels, as a result of which melanin pigment increases;
  • Animal metabolic disorder. This is a process in which the wrong lipid, protein, fluid, and vitamin-mineral metabolism occurs;
  • Imbalanced diet;
  • Unfavorable environmental conditions, provoke allergic reactions and activation of histamines, leading to the failure of metabolic processes;
  • Tumors that acquire a pigmented color carry the risk of malignancy.

Hyperpigmentation In Dogs

Why is my dog’s skin turning black? With black skin disease in dogs, some breeds have freckles and these spots can appear quite naturally in areas on the dog such as the nose and on the belly, and chest.

Most times hyperpigmentation in dogs isn’t at all life-threatening. If pet owners are concerned about black skin disease, they can be taken to see the vet. When your dogs normally pale skin becomes darker, it’s called acanthosis nigricans. Why is my dog’s skin turning black?

Anything that causes trauma to the skin cells can be referred to as hyperpigmentation in dogs. As suggested, it’s not a disease as such but there are a number of reasons why it can occur. Sometimes this black skin disease in dogs is a condition that causes other shades on the skin such as red and purple.

The Vet Can Work Out A Treatment Plan For Hyperpigmentation

One thing is sure though and that is that researchers have discovered that hyperpigmentation doesn’t’ happen on its own but is nearly always associated with other underlying health issues. It’s why it is a good idea to get your dog to the vet as it’s only a vet who can deliver a proper diagnosis. When you take your dog as soon as you notice the issue the vet can get a fast diagnosis and work out a treatment plan.

Treatment of hyperpigmentation involves caring for the skin as well as any underlying illnesses. For instance, hyperpigmentation is seen frequently in canine skin problems and is most times the result of inflammation, due to bacterial or allergic skin disease.

Hyperpigmentation can be the result of many conditions in your dog. There is a primary and secondary type of hyperpigmentation and the primary type is usually evident by the time your dog is a year old.

Primary hyperpigmentation may be cosmetic and may not need treatment. If any inflammation is there, it may respond to special shampoos as well as steroid ointments. Medications can also be useful. With secondary hyperpigmentation, the concerned areas go away by themselves with the treatment of the root cause. Owners have to be forbearing with the treatment programs and for the dog’s skin to get back to normal.

The vet will determine what medicines will work best for each case of black skin disease in dogs. Some people have found that hydroquinone has been proven to be effective in treating hyperpigmentation.

Is Hyperpigmentation In Dogs A Kind Of Cancer?

Pet owners have every reason to be concerned with black skin disease in dogs. They wonder why their dog’s pink, freckled skin has now turned black and they wonder if it is not some form of cancer.

Black spots can of course be an indication of cancer. It’s a cancer of the melanocytes in the skin that produce melanin. As with any cancer, it’s not exactly known why some of the dogs grow malignant melanoma, but skin color and genetics, as well as trauma, all play a role.

This skin discoloration doesn’t occur to your canine pet overnight – it’s a gradual thing, and in fact, there would have to be some kind of trauma for it to result.

This hyperpigmentation can occur in any breed of dog but it seems as if Dachshunds are particularly vulnerable. The areas of the dog where it is most evident are the legs and groin although it could happen anywhere on your dog’s skin. If your dog has hyperpigmentation, you may even notice other changes to the skin. The skin can become rough and scaly and even red around the area.

Dog Skin Turning Black Itching

Hyperpigmentation is linked with chronic itching. Another name for this chronic itching is called pruritus. The name pruritus is a medical term for itching. Itching is often associated with allergic skin diseases. In Fact, pruritus is a sign of many skin disorders and dog skin turning black itching can often be seen with red inflamed skin. This can lead to a skin infection known as pyoderma.

Sometimes pyoderma can become more severe and your dog can even suffer from hair loss, raw skin, and scabs. When you see this it really is time to get your pet to the vet.

The treatment of these skin diseases is never easy and the vet will do several tests to look for the culprit. Some pets will even require lifelong treatment for this itchy condition. The skin may never return to its former light color either.

Things That Contribute To Skin Irritations

There are a few things such as parasites, aging, allergies, and injuries that can contribute to skin irritation and itching, and to hyperpigmentation. Whenever your pet’s skin is in any kind of trouble, the skin cells look towards repairing themselves. The melanocytes release more melanin than usual so as to protect the vulnerable skin. As melanin accumulates, the skin turns black.

Trauma is the most common cause of black skin disease in dogs. But as suggested there are other causes such as diseases, environmental factors, and even some medications.

There are some dog breeds that don’t have hair such as the Mexican hairless and these kinds of dogs will show hyperpigmentation because of the skin being exposed and not protected. To prevent hyperpigmentation in dogs, it is wise to keep these kinds of hairless dogs out of the sun where possible and to also use dog-specific sunscreens on their hairless skin.

Natural Treatment For Black Skin Disease In Dogs

As mentioned, when hyperpigmentation is primary there is no cure. But if the pet owner gets it early it can be managed with certain treatments. When the diagnosis is secondary, your dog’s skin is able to even return to normal once the vet has discovered the underlying cause.

If you ask your vet you will find that a natural treatment for black skin disease in dogs can be very successful. Even when you do your own research you will find that a natural treatment for black skin disease in dogs comes in different forms, from tablets to drops to creams and essential oils.

Essential oils can be a safe natural treatment for dogs with black skin disease, soothing your pet’s irritated skin. There are even some essential oils that can be of tremendous benefit to soothe your dog’s skin.

Alternatives To Drug Treatments

Natural is a wonderful alternative to the regular drug treatments people use. When you use natural products exactly as they are meant to be used, you reduce the risk of side effects. Essential oils come from flowers, barks, and plants that are very concentrated but can be wonderfully helpful in treating black skin disease in dogs.

Frankincense oil is safe and can be used in pets in several ways to treat this black skin disease. When it comes to treating black skin disease in dogs, there are many minerals and trace elements that dogs require. Dog owners find it helpful to give things such as kelp to their dogs. Natural products are great for dogs and apart from helping with black disease skin disease in dogs, they help with a host of other things to ensure your 4-legged friend looks and feels his best.

Natural Health Products Offer Amazing Results

Skin diseases are a frequently occurring health problem with dogs of all ages, and when dog skin turns black, itching that part can lead to other infections caused by continued licking and biting.

Maintaining healthy skin is important for the general health of a dog. With black skin disease in dogs, there are some great natural products that can help with skin diseases as well as with other body ailments, and a review of some of these great products can offer some amazing results.

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