Antifungal creams are used to treat infections caused by a fungus. While there are creams specifically formulated for use on dogs, there are several human antifungal creams and ingredients that are safe for use on a dog’s skin. These include:
Not all fungal infections are the same and you will need to use the cream that is most effective against the specific fungus that has caused the infection in your dog.
Fungal infections can be caused by ringworm, yeast or blastomycosis (inhaling Blastomyces dermatitidis spores).
Additionally, certain dog breeds are more prone to fungal infections caused by yeast. These breeds include:
- Cocker Spaniel
- West Highland Terrier
- White Terrier
- Australian Terrier
- Basset Hound
Some fungal infections can be passed from dog to dog or dog to human, so you should avoid contact with your dog until the infection has cleared.
Can I use Clotrimazole cream on my dog?
Yes, is safe for use in treating canine fungal infections. Specifically, Clotrimazole is most effective in treating fungal infections caused by yeast. This includes:
- Ear infections
- Intertrigo (rash between folds of skin)
Provided your dog is not taking medication for any other illnesses, clotrimazole cream can be used on dogs. if your dog does take other medication, you must ask your vet for advice, as clotrimazole can cause a bad reaction when taken with certain drugs.
How do you treat a fungal infection on a dog?
Treatment depends on the type of fungal infection your dog has. If the fungal growth has caused an ear or skin infection, then treatment and recovery is straightforward. Typically, ear infections are treated by gently cleaning the skin around the ear and applying a topical cream or solution.
For skin infections, applying a topical cream and keeping the area covered to prevent your dog from licking it is all that is usually needed. For more severe skin infections, your veterinarian may advise a medicated bath.
There are several fungal infections that can affect the internal organs and these require much stronger medication.
Blastomycosis: this infection is caused by a dog inhaling Blastomyces dermatitidis spores, which are most commonly found in soil and on wood such as tree bark. These spores can cause lung infections, weight loss, skin lesions, vision problems and fever. Oral treatment is usually sufficient if the infection is diagnosed early.
Coccidioidomycosis: more commonly known as Valley Fever, coccidioidomycosis is caused by inhaling dirt containing coccidioides spores. They are typically found in dry, desert areas or sandy soil. A chronic cough is the most common symptom, but it can spread anywhere in the body. Like blastomycosis, it can cause breathing difficulties, vision problems and fever.
In more serious cases such as with immunosuppressed dogs, treatment will also be needed to control other symptoms. This may include intravenous fluids, a high-calorie diet to regain lost weight and medication for vision problems or secondary infections.