Ringworm is an infection of the skin, hair or nails by a variety of fungi, although most commonly one called Tinea. These produce a red circular lesion with raised borders and a normal or slightly pale-coloured centre, which is in fact healed skin. It is this ring-like appearance that gives the condition its name because there are no worms involved!
If the condition affects the scalp, alopecia (bald patches) can occur; Tinea is also one of the skin fungi that cause athlete’s foot, groin rashes and other lesions in moist areas.
Ringworm has no species preference and will pass through pets as easily as through human beings. It is quite contagious and, left to its own devices, may persist and irritate for weeks.