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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 23846
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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My dog has peeling and flaking of his nose. it flakes off

Customer Question

HI. my dog has peeling and flaking of his nose. it flakes off and is sore. I tried an anbx course with him before and it did not help.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Dakota is 6. he is a husky
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Dakota?
Customer: he is otherwise healthy.
Submitted: 19 days ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 19 days ago.

I believe that you're describing nasal hyperkeratosis. Can you upload a photo(s) of Dakota's nose to our conversation? You can use the paperclip icon in the toolbar above your message box (if you can see that icon) or you can use an external app such as

This is an idiopathic (unknown cause) condition characterized by the excessive formation of nasal keratin (a structural protein). Thickened, hard, dry keratin accumulates on the nasal planum - mostly on the dorsum of the nose. Secondary erosions, ulcers and fissures may be present and represent an autoimmune skin disease (the immune system is attacking my patient’s own tissues). Autoimmune skin disease is identified only by biopsy.

The intensity of therapy depends on the severity of the lesions. The nasolacrimal ducts should be flushed because blockage of those ducts may present a contributing factor. For mild, asymptomatic cases, affected areas should be hydrated with a warm water soak. A softening agent, then, should be applied every 24 hours until excessive keratin has been removed (~7-10 days). Treatment should be continued on an as-needed basis for control. Effective softening agents include the following: petroleum jelly, A&D ointment, ichthammol ointment, salicylic acid/sodium lactate/urea gel, and tretinoin gel. (The last three are available from Dakota's vet.) For fissured lesions (as you appear to be describing), combination antibiotic/glucocorticoid ointment (Panalog, e.g.) may be applied to lesions every 8-12 hours until healed. Horny growths should be trimmed away before hydration and softening therapy are begun.The prognosis is good. Although it's incurable, this is a cosmetic disease that usually can be managed symptomatically. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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