Ectodermal dysplasia is an inherited disease in dogs. Affected dogs are unable to produce a protein important for the tight adherence of skin cells to one another. Affected dogs show signs of disease at birth including fragile, pale skin that appears translucent on the ears, feet, nose, and mouth. This skin easily sloughs off when rubbed dry or licked by the dam. Affected dogs often die within hours or days of birth. Puppies that survive the neonatal period will continue to experience skin sloughing on the ears, footpads, sites of friction (e.g. armpits and groin), and at junctions of mucous membranes and skin, such as around the mouth, nose, and eyes. Affected dogs often have irregularly thickened footpads and small, malformed claws. By 3 months of age, affected dogs are often visibly smaller than littermates and have a sparse hair coat with areas of alopecia. Puppies surviving the neonatal period are often euthanized at a young age due to poor quality of life.

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