Here is a picture of a wound on the back of a small dogs head. It had been there for a week or so and it was oozing. The owner was cleaning it but it did not seem to be getting better.
The wound looked different that normal wounds. The hole is perfectly round. The skin around the hole was thick and did not show signs of trying to heal and close up the wound. And when we sprayed fluid into the hole, air bubbled out of the hole.
So, we probed the wound with a small pair of forceps and pulled out a worm! Here is a picture of the worm:
This is a Cuterebra larvae. A Cuterebra is a type of fly and they lay their eggs near rabbit runs or rodent burrows. The eggs hatch into larvae and the larvae crawl up the fur of mammals and enter the body through an opening such as the mouth or an ear. The larvae then tunnel under the skin and set up ‘shop’ where they then mature to the fly. They are uncommon in dogs and cats and occur most often in late summer to early fall.
We pulled out the larvae, cleaned the wound and this dog went home on antibiotics because there was signs of infection. It usually heals up well but these wounds tend to heal slowly.