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Sometimes, no matter how much you take care of your dog’s health, the things can simply go unplanned. Dogs, like every other living being, are susceptible to suffer from certain health issues, and elbow callus is one of them. Dog elbow callus is a condition that affects almost 20 % of dogs of all breeds and can occur in any period of life.
Dog elbow callus is a condition that affects a dog’s elbows by developing thick crusts, cracked and even bleeding skin. If it’s not treated on time, it can turn into an infection. Chewing and hurting those dry patches and crusts usually become affected by Staphylococcus bacteria that is a natural habitat of the skin. In severe cases, this type of infection is followed by pains and a dog’s discomfort in front legs.
As we previously mentioned, almost 20 % of dogs of all breeds become affected by elbow callus through their lifetimes. However, large dog breeds with short coats such as Labrador retriever, Great Dane, Cane Corso, Rottweiler, and Mastiff breeds are on a higher risk to develop this condition.
It happens because large dog breeds experience stronger pressure on the elbows while lying. On the other hand, stray and shelter dogs are also likely to develop this condition because they usually sleep on a hard surface. That’s why they are otherwise called bed sores.
One of the main causes of this painful condition presents the dog’s place of sleeping. It means that a pooch who sleeps on a solid surface often experiences pressure on joints, and elbows and may develop thick pressure sores called calluses.
Elbow sores occur as a reaction to protect a bone from hard and sharp floors, or occurred cuts and wounds. Besides on elbows, bed sores can occur on a dog’s hips, and along the sides of his hind legs.
One of the first symptoms a dog will show is a discolored and hairless skin. The patches are usually colored in dark grey or sort of white color and are also followed by bony tissue that covers the affected area.
“Otherwise called decubital ulcers or pressure sores, these patches can become very itchy and painful. Therefore, it’s highly important to be treated on time otherwise, a dog can scratch the injured spot and develop a bacterial infection.”
A dog that suffers from this condition will also constantly lick the injured spots to relieve the burning pain and even show blood trickling.
Unlike callus that is described as grey or white spot on a dog’s elbow, Hygroma looks like a swollen spot filled with lymph. It is surrounded by a thick capsule of fibrous tissue that usually looks like a huge fatty tissue. Small hygromas are soft and mobile on touch and when growing, they become hard and prone to transmute into an infection. Luckily, they can be removed by trepanning the affected spot in sterile conditions.
The treatment usually lasts 4-6 weeks depending on your dog’s case of severity. The process of sores development and healing comes in several stages. In the first stage, a dog develops red patches and shows excessive licking behavior. The second stage is followed by hair loss and developing sores that look like blisters and scrapes.
The third stage includes spreading the sores into the tissue beneath the skin. In the last stage, the sores go really deep and spread to muscles and bones. In case you started to treat this type of condition from the first stage, the improvement can be seen in only one week while the treatment in severe cases can last up to 2 months.