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What can predispose a dog to develop superficial pyoderma?

Several diseases/disorders can predispose animals to developing superficial pyoderma.  This predisposition is often due to conditions that impair defense mechanisms of the skin.  The skin has innate defense mechanisms which help defend against chemical, physical and microbial insults.  Some examples of these defense mechanisms include the stratum corneum, cells that resemble a brick wall; fatty acids that have a bacteriostatic effect; defensins, which are small antimicrobial peptides; and resident bacterial flora, which will compete with the pathogenic flora for space and nutrients.  The skin normally defends itself well; therefore, it is smart to always consider a bacterial skin infection secondary until it is proven otherwise.