Chiggers (Trombiculiasis) in Dogs

Chiggers (Trombiculiasis) in Dogs

Chiggers are common skin parasites that exist throughout the main part of the United States. The taxonomic name for chiggers is Trombicula mites, and they are likewise referred to as harvest termites. These termites can infect and bite people, dogs, and cats, and cause severe itching. While they are difficult to prevent, they are reasonably easy to treat.
Chiggers are normally found in the highest numbers during the spring and fall in grassy areas, especially in milky soils. The chigger mite is a little reddish-orange mite about the size of the head of a pin.

Chiggers (Trombiculiasis) in Dogs

What is the life process of chiggers?

Eggs are laid in soil and around greenery. Larvae hatch from the eggs and crawl onto a host animal (e.g.; dog, cat, human). They connect themselves, feed upon fluids in the tissue for several days, then leave the host. They then molt into a nymph stage, and then develop into adults. The life process is completed in 50-55 days. In northern areas, there are 1-2 generations each year, in southern areas, the termites can replicate all year long.

What are the symptoms of chiggers?

In dogs, chiggers can be found around the legs, head, and abdominal area. In felines, they frequently take up residence on the inside of the ears and can be seen with the naked eye. They are stated to appear like paprika. Chiggers may not cause any symptoms in some animals; others may scratch at the area where the chiggers are present. In people, the mite is typically not seen, but the bite will produce a small welt, generally around the ankles, that itches extremely for a number of days.

How is an infestation with chiggers diagnosed?

The mite can be scraped from the inner surface area of the cat’s ear or off of the dog and can be recognized under the microscope. Nevertheless, because of the characteristic reddish color and location, a medical diagnosis can typically be made simply by visual inspection.

How is a problem with chiggers dealt with and avoided?

The treatment is relatively simple and consists of either two pyrethrin-based dips spaced two weeks apart, or the application of a topical antiparasite drug to a localized area such as the ears. Topical or injectable steroids can be administered to the animal for a number of days to help reduce any itching.

Preventing areas where chiggers are discovered is most likely a great idea due to the fact that they appear to reside in the exact same locations every year.

Can I get chiggers from my family pet?

It is very unlikely that you would get chiggers from your family pet. If you and your animal both have chiggers, you most likely both walked through an area where there manied chiggers in the environment.

Summary

The mites can be recognized on the dog, particularly in severe infestations. In felines, you may see the scratching of the ears and the particular pinpoint-sized red termites on the inner surface of the ears. If you believe chiggers, call your vet and get the proper topical treatment.

Also read: Sarcoptic Mange in Dogs

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