Stolley Park
Veterinary Hospital

3020 W. Stolley Park Road  Grand Island, Nebraska  68801  
Phone:  308-384-6272   Fax:  308-384-0984

February Newsletter
Intertrigo

Intertrigo is the short-hand medical term for skin fold dermatitis, or inflammation and infection of skin folds. Bacteria and yeast contribute to the infection. Most of the time we think of animals with wrinkles (The Shar-pei, Persian, or Bulldog) but other animals can have infected skin folds, depending on the area affected.

1)Facial fold intertrigo is seen in the wrinkles of breeds with flat faces (like the breeds mentioned above).

2)Lip fold intertrigo is seen in dogs with large, floppy lips like Spaniels, St Bernards and Mastiffs. This can cause some serious bad breath.

3)Body fold intertrigo is seen in wrinkly dogs (those Shar-pei and bulldogs again!) or overweight dogs. Overweight female dogs with extra fat in the mammary tissue can get infection in the middle of their bellies.

4)Vulvar fold intertrigo is seen in older females with extra folds (and fat) around a small vulva. This usually occurs in females that were spayed at a young age, as these would be the ones to have a small vulva. These dogs are also prone to licking the itchy area, which then worsens the infection.

5)Tail fold intertrigo, seen in dogs with corkscrew tails (those bulldogs, Boston Terriers and pugs!). Due to the conformation of their tails, they can get infection under the corkscrew and in the tail fat.

Diagnosis of intertrigo is made based on exam, and the culprit (organism causing infection) is found by cytology and culture.

Treatment is varied, and depends on severity of the conditions and area affected. Some are medically managed with medicated wipes, topical ointments and/or oral antibiotics, antifungals or steroids. Others may only respond to surgical intervention, which usually involves removing the offending fold (who says animals don’t need plastic surgery?).

If you have questions or your pet is exhibiting some of these symptoms, let your veterinarian know. We can help!

Australian Veterinary Association Proceeding 2008