Yellow Labrador Retriever Hairless Skin Lesions Legs

by Donna
(Crystal River, FL)



My yellow lab has 3 of these lesions. Any idea what they are?

Editor Comment

Hi Donna,

I'm not a veterinarian, but I can offer some suggestions. It's hard to know for sure without your Vet doing a needle biopsy to send to a lab to confirm the diagnosis.

First consideration is a lesion called a histiocytoma. This is a benign growth that appears suddenly in dogs less than 2 to 3 years of age. These are not cancerous and will not spread to other areas. Typically a dog would not get more than one. These can be itchy because they have allergy cells on the inside. If bumped, they can bleed. Some dogs scratch at them because of the itchiness. Histiocytomas typically go away on their own. They can take up to 2 months to fully resolve though and are not treated. You could choose to have them removed surgically, especially if the dog is bothering at it or if it continues to break open and ooze. If the lesions itch then a cortisone cream could help.

Regarding insect bites from bites are bees, these usually improve in about 1 week. If that is not the case that something else is the cause.

Hotspots are a potential cause, and can develop from allergies, flea or tick bits, moisture (in warm humid weather or after swimming), or skin abrasions. Treatment involves clipping and cleaning the area, topical antibiotics or antifungals, and addressing any underlying causes such as parasites or allergens. Given the presence of a raised
pustule in the center of the hairless area and the lack of redness or irritation, it may be less likely that the lesion is a hotspot.

Other possible causes include:

Ringworm: A fungal infection that causes round, hairless, scaly patches with a raised edge. Ringworm can be transmitted between animals and humans, so it's important to consult a veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Pyoderma: A bacterial skin infection that can cause hair loss, redness, and raised bumps or pustules. It may be caused by an underlying condition or a break in the skin barrier. Treatment often involves antibiotics and topical medications.

Allergies: Environmental or food allergies can cause skin irritation and hair loss in dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend allergy testing, dietary changes, or medications to help manage the symptoms.

Insect bites or parasites: Flea, tick, or mite bites can cause skin irritation and hair loss in dogs. Your veterinarian can recommend appropriate treatments to eliminate the pests and manage your dog's symptoms.

Autoimmune skin conditions: Conditions such as pemphigus or discoid lupus erythematosus can cause skin lesions, hair loss, and inflammation. These conditions require veterinary diagnosis and treatment.

If the lesions are bothering your dog or if they do not resolve within a reasonable amount of time, your veterinarian may recommend further treatment, such as surgical removal or cryotherapy.

As you can see there are many possible causes. Your veterinarian can quickly help you investigate the cause.

Let us know once your Vet gives you a diagnosis.


Editor and Publisher
Dog Health Guide

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