Skin Disorders in Dalmatians

Primary Skin Disorder: Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome

Definition: Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome is a discoloration of the coat and a skin infection.

This skin disorder is common in Dalmatians.  There could be a connection between this skin disorder and the Dalmatian’s uric acid metabolism problem.  Not all Dalmatians will be affected with Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome, but ALL of them have a problem with uric acid. ALL Dalmatians have a problem with uric acid, but NOT ALL Dalmatians will develop urinary stones

Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome is affectionately nicknamed “Dal Crud.”  Dalmatians with this skin disorder develop a wide band of pinkish-bronzed fur. There is spotty hair loss along the top.  Hair loss may also extend to the head. There is discoloration starting from the skin and traveling up the hair shaft.

Causes of Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome

A large majority of Dalmatians with Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome suffer from allergies.  They may be allergic to pollens, molds, certain foods, and flea saliva.  Direct skin contact with an irritant may also cause a reaction.  All of these circumstances can trigger an allergic reaction and can cause redness, scratching, or hair loss. Some Dalmatians have allergies to grasses and dust, and some are just allergic to everything! 

It’s tricky finding our exactly what your dog is allergic to. Herbal formulas such as Canine Stimmune are often helpful in reducing your dog’s symptoms.

Check with the breeder.  Ask if the parents of the litter have skin disorders.

Anxiety linked with travel, excitement, change in schedule, and diet all play a role. If irritation or redness already exist, stress may allow bacteria on the skin to multiply.  Normally these bacteria would be kept under control. If you are concerned that your dog is suffering from some kind of stress, an all-natural supplement may help.

Humidity and heat
Changes in humidity and temperature are also  factors which may contribute to this skin disorder.

Is Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome inherited?

Perhaps.  Again, check with the breeder.  Ask if the parents of the litter have skin disorders.

How is Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome diagnosed?

Your veterinarian will remove a small piece of your dog’s skin for analysis. This is a simple procedure done with a local anesthetic. The skin sample will  be evaluated by a veterinary pathologist. Your veterinarian may also want to  measure your dog’s blood uric acid levels at this time.

How is Dalmatian Bronzing Syndrome treated?

It is treated with antibiotics and antiseptic shampoos.  Your veterinarian may also recommend a change in diet and suggest medication to reduce uric acid levels.

Breeding advice

Affected dogs should not be used for breeding.