Objective—To evaluate a method of aerobic bacteriologic culture of epidermal collarette specimens from dogs with superficial pyoderma and compare results with those for aerobic bacteriologic culture of abdominal skin specimens in healthy dogs.
Animals—22 dogs with epidermal collarettes and 24 healthy dogs.
Procedure–Dry sterile cotton swabs were rolled across epidermal collarettes or hairless areas of abdominal skin in healthy dogs and submitted for aerobic bacteriologic culture. Hemolytic colonies of gram-positive–staining cocci were tested for catalase production, and if results were positive, a coagulase test was performed. Colonies with coagulase activity were tested for the ability to ferment mannitol. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed on all Staphylococcus spp that were isolated.
Results–S intermedius was isolated from collarettes in 18 of 22 dogs with superficial pyoderma but not from healthy dogs. Estimated sensitivity and specificity of the culture method were 81.8% and 100%, respectively. There were no significant differences in the ability to culture S intermedius, the number of S intermedius isolates without resistance to antimicrobials, and the number of S intermedius isolates resistant to penicillin G when comparing dogs with superficial pyoderma for the first time and dogs with recurrent pyoderma, dogs that did or did not receive concurrent antimicrobials, and dogs with and without underlying allergic disease.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance–Bacteriologic culture of epidermal collarette specimens was a simple and reliable method for identification of S intermedius in dogs with superficial pyoderma, regardless of history of pyoderma or current antimicrobial use. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;226:904–908)