Yeast infections are rarely life-threatening and can usually be remedied within a few weeks or a few months of treatment. Relapses are possible, which may require regular rounds of treatment multiple times a year.1
A yeast infection could also indicate a more serious underlying condition. Dogs with yeast infections from compromised immune systems are at risk of more serious infections. Even if that never happens, a yeast infection is very uncomfortable for your pooch. The sooner you start treatment, the sooner your dog can return to their normal, happy self.
Most dog yeast infection treatments include the use of topical medication. Ointments, creams, and special shampoos are an essential part of dealing with the infection. Your vet may recommend a bath regiment of once every 3 – 5 days for at least 2 weeks, or as long as 12 weeks.1 A typical bath for treating yeast infections in dogs may look something like this:
- Apply a shampoo containing selenium sulfide or benzoyl peroxide to reduce the oils on your dog’s skin.
- Apply anti-fungal shampoo containing chlorhexidine, ketoconazole, or miconazole. Leave it on your dog’s skin for at least 10 minutes.
In more severe cases of dog yeast infections, your vet may also prescribe oral medication. Anti-fungal medications — like terbinafine, ketoconazole, fluconazole, and itraconazole — are administered to combat the yeast infection, as well as any secondary bacterial infections your dog might develop.1
Your vet may also want to treat the underlying cause of the yeast infection. Depending on your dog’s circumstances, this could include immunotherapy to reduce their sensitivity to naturally occurring yeast.
Because oral medications for severe yeast infections are usually given over a period of several months, it’s important to keep an eye out for the potential side effects of these drugs. Most notably, anti-fungal medication can impact your dog’s liver function.1 Symptoms of this may include changes in your dog’s appetite, tongue color, or seizures.
Although any dog can develop a yeast infection, some breeds are more vulnerable than others. This is usually due to a genetic predisposition in certain breeds, including:1
Treating your dog’s yeast infection is important, but the costs can add up. When you factor in the bills for the exam, diagnostic tests, specialty shampoos, and medication, treating yeast infections in dogs can cost $500.3 If your dog relapses multiple times a year, these expenses only increase.
That’s why it can be a good idea to enroll in dog insurance while your pup is still healthy. You can be reimbursed for exam fees and prescription medication expenses — among other things — when your dog needs treatment. Don’t wait until after a diagnosis to get your dog covered. Start today with a free personalized quote from MetLife Pet Insurance.