February 24, 2024

It’s common for pets to experience skin problems like rashes, itching, dry or flaking skin, and even hair loss. When pets suffer from skin complications, they may scratch, lick, or bite on themselves excessively, leading to a nighttime disruption for everyone. Detecting a skin disorder could be challenging due to the similarity between many of them. Vet dermatologists will need to run examinations and use their understanding of allergies and other disorders to determine the cause of the issue.

Common Diagnostic Tests for Pet Skin Conditions

Various skin diseases can influence both dogs and cats. They may also experience skin problems and ear infections due to food allergies or environmental allergens. Additionally, some dog breeds are more likely to have skin complications than others. Complications with a pet’s skin can distress the animal and its owner. When pets scratch, they usually create additional skin infections that worsen the initial problem.

If you’re curious about the kinds of examinations a veterinarian will execute to arrive at an exact diagnosis for your pet, keep reading.

Skin and Ear Cytology

Studying cells is known as cytology. By carefully pushing a glass slide against the atypical location of your pet’s skin or using a cotton-tipped applicator or a little piece of tape, veterinarians can acquire skin samples without creating pain. The vet will inspect the slide for bacterial and fungal growth.

An ear infection in your pet requires a trip to the vet, who will gather a sample of the unusual discharge from the ear and test it for the presence of ear mites, bacteria, and yeast. In addition, having your pet examined by an emergency vet in Torrance is essential if they are experiencing skin conditions. This permits them to offer your pet the correct medication.

Tape Strips

Tape stripping is an easy-to-use and versatile approach to diagnosis. It’s simple, cheap, and can reveal some intriguing clues about what’s wrong. Since it can discover superficial pyoderma, bacterial overgrowth, some autoimmune diseases, and parasites, it is a standard diagnostic tool for vet dermatologists.

In addition, a vet laboratory at a reliable animal hospital like Torrance Companion Animal Hospital must be contacted if you observe any skin or ear problems in your pet.

Skin Scraping

When parasite involvement is suspected but less invasive tests are negative, skin scraping is a required but time-consuming step in the diagnostic process. Demodicosis, scabies, and other mites like Cheyletiella can be detected with it, as can other surface and burrowing mites.

On the other hand, if you’re keeping your pet up-to-date on their dog and cat vaccinations, you can rest assured that they’ll be safeguarded from infectious skin disorders.

Coat Brushing

This easy examination is underutilized yet is a good test for ectoparasites, eggs, flea farces, and follicular irregularities. The animal should be brushed over a brownish paper or black consulting table. Therefore, it is essential to gather the hairs and epithelial debris and separate the hair from the scale.

To study the hairs under the microscope, they are first mounted in liquid paraffin with a cover slip and then positioned in a petri dish for use with the Wood’s lamp. A cover slip is put over the scale once it has been installed in liquid paraffin.


If your pet is experiencing a skin or ear issue, your vet can run these diagnostic tests to determine if parasites or conditions cause the complication. An accurate diagnosis lets your vet suggest the most efficient treatment for your dog or cat, quickening recovery.