Sarcoptic mange is a highly contagious skin disease discovered in dogs, caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei mite. These termites will burrow through the skin triggering intense itching and irritation. The scratching that results from mange is what causes the majority of the animal’s hair to fall out. This is a treatable medical condition, however is highly contagious for other animals and people. Pet owners are encouraged to keep the dog quarantined while it is being treated for mange.
Mange in Dogs Symptoms
- Crust development in the affected area
- Skin rash
- Intense scratching
- Hair loss (alopecia).
The most common reason for mange in dogs is exposure to another infected animal, as the termites quickly move from animal to animal. Kennels, animal shelters, dog parks, groomers and veterinary centers have a high direct exposure rate of mange due to the close proximity with animals that are infected. The exposure typically takes place about two to six weeks prior to the first symptoms of mange are displayed.
After eliminating food allergies, chiggers, and bacterial infections of the skin (folliculitis), your vet will perform a physicial assessment of your dog to determine the type of microorganism that might have embedded into its skin; in this case, mites.
Treatment for sarcoptic mange in dogs
Dogs that have a non-seasonal form of sarcoptic mange will likely be treated with a scabicide– a drug that kills the itch mite. In many cases, the animal will be dipped in a scabicidal hair shampoo to eliminate all of the termites living in its skin. Continuous treatment is essential to kill all the mites as the eggs will take some time to hatch, and the majority of treatments do not eliminate the eggs, just the living mites. Treatment of this condition must be done under veterinary supervision and the dog’s entire body must be treated with the scabicide treatment and/or scabicidal hair shampoo to be sure the mites are eliminated completely. Several treatments can be used to treat the problem (and some might not work due to the fact that the termites have actually established resistance to certain treatments) and can include such scabicidal dips as invermectin, selamectin, lime-sulfur and doramectin. Depending upon your dog’s condition, it might have to be dipped on a weekly basis for as long as 6 consecutive weeks. Oral medications can likewise belong of the treatment.
Living and Management
Complete action to the therapy may take between 4 to six weeks. Also, since of how contagious this type of mange is to people and other animals, it is advised you restrict contact with the dog. In severe cases, quarantining the animal may be required.
People who do enter contact with a dog infected with mange might develop a purple rash on their arms, chest or abdominal area. The issue will generally clear up as soon as the dog with has actually been properly dealt with. A healthy immune system can help avoid the recurrence of the problem, so it’s essential to keep your dog as comfy as possible throughout the treatment. This can include keeping your dog on a regular feeding schedule and offering it a comfy location to sleep that is independent of furniture or bedding people in the home may use however still enables them to feel like part of the family.
There are currently no recognized preventative measures for sarcoptic mange.