Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis is a condition dogs develop when they experience an overproduction of keratin. This condition appears on their paw pads and nose and appears as dried-out, crusty skin. Many times nasodigital hyperkeratosis can be diagnosed by appearance alone, but in some cases, further diagnostic testing is necessary.
Nasodigital hyperkeratosis can develop in any breed of dog as well as either sex, any age, or genetic predisposition. There could be an underlying cause for an excess of keratin in young to middle-aged dogs. Older dogs often suffer from this condition as an age-related issue. But, no matter what age a dog develops nasodigital hyperkeratosis, it cannot be cured, but as a pet owner, you can keep them comfortable.
Diagnosing Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis in Your Dog
If you take your dog to the vet for a nasodigital hyperkeratosis diagnosis, it will begin by providing a history of your pet's symptoms. The vet will want to know when signs were first noticed, and how quickly they are changing. The vet will also want to know if the condition is making daily routines difficult for your dog.
A complete physical exam will be conducted to look for other symptoms that could be related to or the cause of nasodigital hyperkeratosis. In some dogs, especially older dogs, the condition can be diagnosed by appearance alone. If your dog is younger, there may be diagnostic testing necessary, including a biopsy of the infected area. There may also be serology testing and blood work needed to rule out underlying causes.
What are the Symptoms of Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis?
Symptoms of nasodigital hyperkeratosis to look for in your dog include:
- Abrasions or breakdown on the dry, outer layer of skin on the paw
- Cracks, openings, slits, or other breaks in the skin on the paw tissue
- Excess horny tissue on the nose
- Excess horny tissue on the paw pads
- Digital hyperkeratosis can look feathered, rigid, or grooved
- A small region on the nose becomes rough, dry, and hard
- Sores or ulcers appear on the dry, outer layer of paw tissue
Healthy noses and paw pads on dogs have a fine appearance as there is no excess keratin. These areas on your dog will look smooth when your pet is in good health. Keratin is removed from these areas on your dog when they drink, eat, and walk around.
Some breeds' facial build is different, such as Boston Terriers, Bulldogs, and Boxers, so their facial areas do not touch the bowl when they eat or drink. Because the facial areas do not come into contact with hard surfaces to remove keratin, they become susceptible to a buildup of it. This condition is also present in dogs who have a deformity in the paw pad where it does not touch the ground allowing for natural wear of keratin.
How Does a Dog Develop Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis?
There are a variety of reasons for a dog to develop nasodigital hyperkeratosis. In some dogs, nasodigital hyperkeratosis is a hereditary disorder. In other dogs it can be caused by an infectious disease, immune-mediated, abnormal mass growth of tissue, and in some cases the cause is unknown. Some of the illnesses that can cause these conditions include systemic lupus, canine distemper, or a reaction to an injected drug.
How to Manage Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis
VetriMax has more than twenty years of experience in the animal health industry. They use ingredient-delivered technologies to develop products to benefit pets' coats and skin health. All products are clinically tested to ensure maximum benefits for your pet.
Vetrimax Solva-Ker Gel contains humectants and is a grease-less, clear topical gel formulated to treat nasodigital hyperkeratosis. This gel works quickly and will show improvement in your dog's paws or nose condition in just weeks. Contact VetriMax if your pet is suffering from nasodigital hyperkeratosis so you can provide them relief from this condition.