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How to get rid of mites on dogs

How to get rid of mites on dogs



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How to get rid of mites on dogs

Many pet owners are unaware of the role mites can play in their dog’s skin, as they generally appear as red, inflamed and itchy skin conditions, which can also affect your dog’s coat, making them look patchy or scruffy.

Mites are small parasites that live on the fur and skin of animals, including dogs, and will feed off the dog’s oily sebum and skin cells.

Their name originates from the Greek word ‘mythos’, meaning miasma – or bad air, as they are associated with the smell of decaying flesh.

A mite infestation is usually caused by two parasites, each carrying its own unique set of symptoms.

There are three main types of mites that are commonly found in dogs:

Sarcoptic mange mites: these are one of the most common types and are spread via direct contact with an infected dog

Demodectic mange mites: these also cause mange, but they are typically spread by biting fleas

Cheyletiellosis mites: these can infect dogs, but rarely cause skin conditions, as they primarily feed off the insects and birds that live on fur and skin

Dogs are often susceptible to more than one type of mite, and while they can’t always be cured, it’s possible to control the symptoms.

Some dogs may have no problem with mites, and their health may even improve when their owner addresses the underlying issue, such as diet or stress.

Symptoms of mites

Symptoms of mite infestations generally appear over a few weeks, though they can also appear in less than a week if the dog was stressed or infected prior.

Symptoms of sarcoptic mange include red, scabby patches on the dog’s skin and hair, this is particularly common on the head and ears, but will also affect areas including the paws, and is especially common in adult dogs.

Symptoms of demodectic mange include patches of scaly, scabby skin, particularly on the legs and back, as well as on the ears, and in this case the spots may get bigger as the dog gets older.

This is because the mites are feeding off the dead skin cells, and can grow and spread more easily if the dog has a thick, oily coat.

Mange can be easily treated with a combination of an oral and topical steroid.

However, the symptoms of demodectic mange, such as the dry, scaly patches, will generally take longer to resolve, so you may need to resort to harsher methods.

Symptoms of cheyletiellosis include a general rash on the dog’s skin, which will be dry and itchy and usually starts in the folds of the skin, such as around the ears, nose, and mouth.

This can be caused by a variety of different factors, including stress, as well as an increase in the amount of dead skin and oil on the dog’s coat.

Treatment for mites

If you’re noticing your dog scratching a lot, especially if they’re also suffering from an ear infection, this may be an indication of a mite problem, and it’s advisable to see a vet as soon as you notice them.

However, if you’re still unaware of what they look like, then it’s important to take the following steps to stop them spreading:

Clean the dog’s bed and bedding

Clean your dog’s coat

If you notice any spots that appear red, scabby or crusty, wash the dog with warm soapy water

Remove any clothing that could potentially be used as a means of spreading the mites, such as belts

Avoid taking your dog to places where they may pick up the mites, such as other dogs, other animals, and places where you may have picked up the mites yourself

Avoid letting your dog have contact with your face, as the mites can also live on your face and spread to your dog

Apply a topical steroid, such as fluradine to prevent your dog’s condition worsening

Regularly apply a topical oil or cream to prevent mites from multiplying

Once your dog has been mite free for a while, check in on them every week or two to check for mites. You should be able to tell if they have been mite free, and the mites will usually come back if you let them.

There are a number of different types of mites that can infect your dog’s coat. This can cause a range of conditions, but most commonly these include:

Pimples: these can appear on the face, paws, feet and body as tiny red and scabby spots

Scabies: these are often known as ‘pruritus’ and can be itchy and red, and appear most often in the ears, paws, and belly

Mite allergies: these can cause itchy, scaly spots, especially on the face and around the eyes, and usually appear in the spring

Allergic reactions: these cause the dog’s fur to become dry, itchy and patchy, usually on their back, head, or paws

To keep your dog free from mites, it’s important to pay attention to their fur, especially on the head, paws and belly.

To prevent mites, follow these steps:

Avoid picking up any dead skin and body hair

Use products with a fragrance to repel mites, such as those with a coconut-scented spray, and check your dog’s fur regularly

Use an anti-mite shampoo and conditioner with a pH level of 6-8

Check that your dog’s diet is balanced

Keep your dog’s skin clean, as this will prevent the mites from laying eggs


Watch the video: How to Treat Mange in Dogs: Kill the Infection with 6 Home Remedies All-Natural Treatments (August 2022).

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