Health & well-being

Protecting animals from factors that can impair their health, well-being and nourishment is supreme

I often find my pug scratching the folds on his face and leaving wounds. How can I take care of these face folds?

Pugs have a heavily wrinkled forehead and facial folds that are unique to the breed. If these folds are not cleaned thoroughly – dirt, moisture, loose hair and debris can get caught in between the folds and lead to skin problems. Here's how to clean your pug's face folds to keep him clean and free from skin allergies:

- Clean the face folds daily: Maintain a routine to clean your pug's facial folds, on a daily basis, to ensure that there is no build-up of bacteria. Use a doggie wipe (not human grade or baby wipes) and gently stretch the wrinkles to clean between the folds. You can also use a clean and damp washcloth to wipe.

- Keep it dry: Make sure to keep your pooch's face dry at all times. Whether it is after a bath, swim or after a meal – keep the folds away from moisture to ensure that there is no build-up of bacteria or yeast infection.

- Routine check: Always be on the lookout for signs of irritation or infection. Pugs have highly sensitive skin and are prone to Demodectic Mange, a skin disease that compromises the immune system. Consult your vet if you see any inflammation or extreme redness.

- Don't forget those ears: Skin infection can also happen inside those doggie ears. Use doggie ear wipe to gently clean the outer part of the ear as a general routine. Consult your vet if there are symptoms of ear infection such as redness, ear discharge, itchiness, etc.

Why is my sheep losing her wool?

One major reason for a sheep losing her wool is the existence of lice or fleas that she may have got from the environment, depending upon how poor the hygiene and cleanliness is.

Another major reason is Sheep Scab. It is the most misdiagnosed and incorrectly treated skin condition of sheep. A huge amount of time and money is wasted by people who misguidedly treat sheep for wrong skin conditions. Sheep Scabs and infestations with lice are most frequently confused.

A scab is caused by a tiny parasitic mite which lives on the skin surface called Psoroptes Ovis. It looks like a crystal of brown sugar. The condition is highly contagious, causes intense irritation, scratching, nibbling and wool loss. Some sheep spend so much time rubbing that they do not eat, lose weight, start to have epileptic fits and ultimately die. However, not all sheep infested with scab mites will scratch or rub.

Dips and pour-ons can be used to prevent infestation, especially if sheep are on common land.

Some sheep can be infested with both scab mites and lice at the same time. It can get quite complicated. Either suitable dips can be used which treat for both scab and lice or pour-ons can be used to target lice, then three days later add an injectable preparation which will treat for scab.

(Views expressed and information provided are personal. Send your questions to

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