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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28931
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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My guinea pig has developed a scab on her nose above her

Customer Question

My guinea pig has developed a scab on her nose above her mouth. What is it and how do I treat it?
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the guinea pig's name and age?
Customer: Pepsi. I'm guessing she's around 2 1/2 to 3 years
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Pepsi?
Customer: She doesn't seem her normal peppi self but she's eating and drinking ok
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

Can you upload a photo(s) of this scab to our conversation? You can upload photos by using 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

I can be more accurate for you if I can see what you're seeing. Dermatophytosis (ringworm fungus) is our primary concern when lesions show up on the face of guinea pigs.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I have attached a photo.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Here is a better photo
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

Thank you! Give me a moment to take a look, please...

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

Ideally, the area just above the scab should be fungal cultured by a pocket pet vet but my working diagnosis is ringworm fungus. This can be treated in a number of ways but the simplest is with an over the counter foot fungus cream containing either miconazole or clotrimazole applied twice daily. You can't treat the scab but you can treat the surrounding skin. Once the scab falls off, the skin might be normal underneath and not need treatment with the cream. If the skin doesn't look normal to you, however, go ahead and treat it. You'll need to rub the cream in well lest she rub it off. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Ok. I'll treat the surrounding skin and hope it clears up! Thank you for your help.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

You're welcome! Wash up well after handling her. Ringworm is zoonotic - it can spread to you! I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
One last thing. How does a guinea catch this? I'd like to try to avoid it in the future.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 8 months ago.

They come to you as carriers of the fungus. It's not something they would contract in your home as the fungus is a soil organism.