and indeed many other companion animals can suffer from the disease
called Ringworm. Contrary to what the name suggests this skin disease
is caused by a fungus. Ringworm is a highly contagious skin disease,
which means that it can be transmitted though direct (e.g. animal-animal)
and indirect (e.g. rug-animal) contact. Moreover, it is also known
as a zoonotic disease and can, therefore, infect humans as well.
The main fungi that are commonly responsible for ringworm Dermatophytes
can be classed into three genera:
Trichophyton: This genus mainly infects animals e.g. Trichophyton
equinum causing ringworm in horses and occasionally other animals,
and Tinea corporis (ringworm of the skin) in humans. Trichophyton
mentagrophytes can cause ringworm in rodents, dogs, cats, horses,
cattle, swine and humans. Trichophyton verrucosum causes
ringworm in cattle, and occasionally sheep, horses and humans.
Microsporum: This genus mainly infects animals e.g. Microsporum
canis and is the most common cause of ringworm in dogs and cats.
It may also cause infection in humans. It is less common in other
animals such as goats, cattle, and swine. Microsporum gypseum,
a geophilic dermatophyte causes ringworm infection in rodents, horses
and dogs. Infection due to Microsporum gypseum is less common
in humans and other animals.
Epidermophyton: This genus is virtually confined to humans
and the only widely accepted species is Epidermphyton floccosum.
This species is virtually nonexistent in domestic animals although
there have been recorded cases in mice and a dog.
For more details on ringworm goto research.