Cladosporium spp are an opportunistic fungal infection of dogs.
This dematiaceous fungus, which can cause phaeohyphomycosis, is a widely distributed soil and readily aerosolized saprophyte that is readily found as a dermatophyte on the coat of dogs. In rare cases, it can can be inhaled or ingested and cause systemic disease as is observed in cats.
Species which are pathogenic include:
- Cladosporium cladosporioides
Clinically affected dogs usually present systemic illness, characterized by vague symptoms such as fever and malaise. Granulomatous encephalitis and nephritis have been reported in a German shepherd dog.
A hypersensitivity to fungal hyphae appears to predominate as a cause of lesions.
Thick walled fungal hyphae are usually detected in impression smears from skin lesions. Staining with periodic acid-Schiff's stain is usually confirmatory. PCR assays are usually definitive in establishing a diagnosis.
Treatment with generalized phaeohyphomycosis usually requires parenteral itraconazole.
- Cabañes FJ et al (1996) Seasonal study of the fungal biota of the fur of dogs. Mycopathologia 133(1):1-7
- Poutahidis T et al (2009) Mycotic encephalitis and nephritis in a dog due to infection with Cladosporium cladosporioides. J Comp Pathol 140(1):59-63