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When people (and some veterinarians) refer to sarcoptic mange or scabies on felines, the reference is usually to an infestation by Notoedres Cati, a mite closely related to Sarcoptes Scabiei.
This is a microscopic picture of the Notoedres Cati mite, the nasty little critter that causes mange on our feline pets
It would be more correct to refer to it as Notoedric Mange, and it generally produces facial itching and scabbing. The treatment is the same for both conditions caused by the different mites on cats and dogs. Kill the mites and the skin can heal.
The problem is that most cats don't like to be bathed so it's a little more difficult to treat them with the MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® shampoo remedy, but it will work if you can bathe your cat regularly. It will also control fleas on cats if you can bathe them.
The other Mange Remedy we provide will successfully work on cats without having to bathe them. It works really great on our feline friends to kill the mites and fleas.
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Cats & Dogs
To learn about ear mites on both cats and dogs, and our home remedy for getting rid of them, go to LEARN ABOUT EAR MITES page.
Learn About Dog Mites and Dog Mange
"Mangy Mutt!" is a curse uttered when Fido steals the barbecue or tears up the garbage, or it's a comment on the miserable condition of a dog with mange whose skin is a terrible mess, that scratches a lot and smells awful. Children are told not to touch a mangy dog for fear that the mange will jump from the smelly unsightly animal onto the kid's skin and cause him to get scaly and lose his hair, just like the poor dog. Imagine how you might feel if it was your dog. Myths about dog mange reach gargantuan proportions, and create fear in the hearts of dog owners everywhere.
Dog Mange? Not My Dog! Well, folks, maybe it could be your dog if it has the symptoms described below.
Canine Mange comes in three varieties caused by dog mites: Sarcoptic, Demodectic and Cheyletiella, which are caused by different species of dog mites, tiny eight-legged critters related to spiders.
Print this page to make it a part of our mini Dog Mange eBook after you purchase the Remedies. Following are some descriptions of the different types of mange. At the end you will find suggestions about recurrence and prevention.
These are two different microscopic pictures of the Sarcoptes Scabiei mite, the nasty little critter that causes Sarcoptic Mange and those terrible problems for our canine pets. These dog mites can
only be seen with a microscope.
The Organism and How It Lives
Sarcoptic Mange, also sometimes called scabies, is caused by the microscopic mite Sarcoptes Scabiei. Adult mites live 3-4 weeks on and in the host's skin. After mating the female burrows under the skin depositing 3-4 eggs in the tunnel behind her. The eggs hatch in 3-10 days producing larva which crawl out from under the skin leaving behind residue, and in turn move about on the skin's surface eventually molting into a "nymphal" stage and finally into an adult. The adults move about on the surface of the skin where they mate, and the cycle begins again with the female burrowing and laying her eggs. The female presence under the skin generates an inflamed response in the skin similar to an allergic reaction.
Dogs with Sarcoptic Mange dig and bite at themselves with great ferocity due to the terrible itching caused by the mites. Their skin reacts with oozing sores, and a secondary infection may set in, requiring treatment with an antibiotic in addition to treatment to kill the mites themselves. Unless the veterinarian parts the hair and carefully examines the bare skin for the characteristic pinpoint bite marks, diagnosis is difficult. Unfortunately, the Sarcoptic Mange mites can be difficult to find in skin scrapings when all the mites are burrowed under the surface of the skin when the scraping is taken, and the scabs are picked up in the skin scrapings also. The vet then has to examine the scrapings under a microscope. Furthermore, the presence of a secondary skin infection can hamper the search for the mite bite marks. Because of these conditions, it may take the vet more than one skin scraping to correctly identify the presence and this type of mite that causes dog mange.
Telltale signs of canine Sarcoptic Mange are crusty ear tips, fierce itching, and hair loss, particularly on the ears, elbows, and legs with awful scratching and a very unpleasant smell. Later on, the hair loss may spread throughout the dog's entire body including the face, and open oozing sores develop due to scratching which are then aggravated by fleas which feed on the open sores (yuk), and can become infected. The existence of other skin conditions, infections and allergies are also possible and can cause complications as a symptom of dogs with mange.
Appearance of the Disease
The motion of the dog mites on and under the skin is extremely itchy. The presence of mites and their eggs and secretions generates a massive allergic response, which makes it even more itchy. Mites prefer hairless skin thus making the ear flaps, elbows and abdomen at highest risk for the red, scaly, itchy skin that characterizes Sarcoptic Mange. This pattern of itching is similar to that found with both airborne and food allergic reactions. The only way the vet can know for sure is to take skin scrapings and look at them under a microscope to identify the type of mite causing the problem. If there are no mites on the surface of the skin when the skin scraping is taken, then the vet will have to take another skin scraping another day. Frequently, veterinarians will simply treat for mange as a precaution to rule it out, before exploring other possibilities for the dog's skin condition.
Contagious for Pets
Sarcoptic Mange is highly contagious to canines, humans, and furry wild animals especially red foxes, squirrels and coyotes, even deer, horses and donkeys, because the mites easily jump from one animal to another.
Contagious for Humans
If dogs share sleeping places or if the infested dog sleeps on beds or furniture or in the family car, everyone may begin scratching. It is not unheard of for the family dog to infest the kids, the kids to infest their playmates, and the playmates to infest their pets and parents. Fortunately, mites on humans are self-limiting. Even though the dog mites may be able to get under human skin and cause itching, they cannot reproduce to complete their life cycle and die within a few days/weeks. Even so, the itching is terrible in the meantime. You can use the Maui Wowie Mange Buster® Remedies on your own skin (unless you are allergic to the ingredients), but be sure to use a good moisturizing cream after treatment.
The treatment would probably work for human scabies also.
Identification and Treatment
Definite diagnosis of Sarcoptic Mange is difficult even by a vet, because the microscopic dog mites burrow under the skin and this can make skin scrapings ineffective in finding the mites, and because of being complicated by the scabs and possible secondary infections. Veterinarian treatment has been simplified by the injection of Ivermectin in two doses, two weeks apart, to kill the mites. Ivermectin is very toxic and can cause side affects. Itching usually begins to subside within a few days of the first dose of Ivermectin, however the condition can return with the next batch of mites that hatch. Steroids may be prescribed short term to relieve the itching and give the dog some relief until the mites begin to die off. The problem with steroids is that they weaken the dog's immune system which then reduces the dog's ability to heal. If all the mites are not killed with the Ivermectin treatments, they will resurface on the skin, or mites can jump onto the dog from some other infected animal. Dipping in anti-bacterial or anti-itch shampoos may precede the use of an anti-mite dip injections of other medicines prescribed by the vet to kill the mites. The purpose of treatment is to kill the mites so the skin can heal. Our remedies kill the dog mites that cause mange (kills fleas & ticks & lice too).
Canine skin damaged by Sarcoptic Mange and secondary skin infections can take weeks or months to recover, depending on the scope of the problem. Frequent medicated baths or other skin soothing treatments may be necessary to reduce skin irritation and lessen the animal's stress. Patience is necessary.
Skin damage from mange can mimic that caused by other skin conditions, including autoimmune diseases, liver or thyroid malfunction, flea bite allergies, bacterial infections secondary to flea bite allergies, food allergies and contact dermatitis, making it impossible for the pet owner to correctly diagnose with any real success. If your dog suffers from irritated, itchy skin, make an appointment with the veterinarian. Skin scrapings are necessary to find the mites and view them under a microscope for absolute certainty. Early diagnosis of these problems will give you a head start on healing. Your dog will be more comfortable and so will your wallet.
Some vets recommend treatment for mange first, to rule it out, before exploring other possible causes of the dog's skin condition by using more extensive and expensive tests. You can treat dogs with mange yourself, first, by using the MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® Remedies. Except for the existence of secondary skin infections, skin allergies or other immune disorders, mange caused by the Sarcoptes Scabiei dog mites usually heals easier and faster than that caused by the Demodex Canis mites.
It is essential to clean up the dog's environment to help prevent recurrence of the mite infestation. Our Remedy includes suggestions for how to do this.
Go To Recurrence & Prevention below
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This is a microscopic image of a cluster of Demodex Canis mites in a hair follicle, and a hand drawing of a single mite, the nasty little critters that cause Demodectic Mange and such terrible discomfort for our canine pets. They can only be seen under a microscope.
Commonly present in the pores and hair follicles of many dogs, the Demodex Canis mite frequently does not cause symptoms of mange with hair loss, open sores and scratching. It is, however, particularly a problem with puppies. The dog mites are lodged in the mother's hair follicles even though they may not be active on her skin and she has no symptoms of mange that would indicate the presence of mites. These dog mites crawl from the mother to the pups while the pups are nursing, and the mange shows up on the faces and heads of the puppies first with patches of hair loss. Puppies are particularly susceptible to outbreaks of mange because of their undeveloped immune systems. Some breeds are more susceptible than others which leads to the notion that mange is an inherited disease -- which it is not. Dog mange is caused by dog mites.
Demodectic Mange is not nearly as contagious as Sarcoptic Mange for many of the reasons stated herein, and is rarely transferred to humans.
Many times a dog will have a skin condition that mimics mange but is not dog mange (see the write-up above about Sarcoptic Mange). There are times when a dog may have a skin allergy that looks like mange but is not mange. There are times when a dog may have systemic problems such as liver disease or thyroid malfunction that can cause a skin condition that is not mange but may look like mange. If a dog has an organ disease or malfunction, no matter what you do to treat mange or any other skin condition, the skin won't heal because the malfunctioning organ needs to be treated first. It's all a function of the animal's immune system. A properly functioning immune system is a primary factor in healing Demodectic Mange, or any other skin condition. If it's mange, our remedy will kill the mites. If the open sores have become infected, treatment with antibiotics from the vet is probably needed before the mange damaged skin can heal.
Demodectic Mange is particularly worrisome in puppies. A Puppy's immune system is not fully developed in order to resist the effects of the dog mites and to resist its own allergic reactions to the secretions of the mites. Also, puppies cannot be treated with any toxic substances to kill the mites because of their undeveloped immune system, at least up to 4 months (16 weeks) of age. Basically, the outbreak needs to be controlled until the puppy's immune system gets stronger and can fight off the outbreak or withstand the treatments to kill the dog mites.
Demodectic Mange on puppies and kittens can be treated with the Remedy we offer that is not a shampoo. We provide a suggestions for treating young puppies and kittens.
It's also possible that some lines of purebred dogs carry lowered immune resistance to the Demodex Canis mites. It is believed that stress of all kinds or a compromised immune system can trigger an active widespread allergic reaction to this type of dog mite. In any case, Demodectic Mange symptoms usually start by thinning of the hair around the eyes and mouth and on the front legs that evolve into patches of hair loss approximately one inch in diameter, and can spread from there. The head is particularly vulnerable to this mite. Sometimes these mange patches in puppies may correct themselves within three months as the dog's immune system strengthens as the puppy grows. Other times the patches may get worse and spread to other parts of its body, and definitely require treatment.
Demodectic Mange can begin as a localized infestation and then develop into a generalized case with multiple sites of hair loss on the dog's head, legs, and body. Such an advanced condition is far more serious and should be properly diagnosed by a veterinarian. Dogs with mange have skin that is sore, crusty, red and oozing. The hair follicles are clogged with mites and debris. Veterinarian treatment would be extensive and require multiple visits, and definite diagnosis is frequently difficult. The vet's diagnosis of mange is based upon skin scrapings that reveal the presence of dog mites when viewed under a microscope. If there are no mites actually on the surface of the skin when the scraping is done, they will not show up under the microscope, which may require further scrapings on subsequent days.
Stress levels must be reduced. It is essential and critical for dogs who are afflicted with Demodectic Mange to have their stress levels reduced. Whatever may be causing the animal's stress should be eliminated if at all possible. Much like puppies whose immune systems are not fully developed and are therefore more susceptible to an outbreak of Demodectic Mange, older dogs whose stress level has been elevated have their immune systems weakened.
Consider what may have caused stress for dogs with mange: new home; new family member or loss of a family member from the home; new baby; additional pet in the home; pregnancy and birth which alter its hormones; new carpet; owner has new job with different hours; child starts school; rearrangement of the furniture and where the dog sleeps; illness in the family; major changes to your back yard; any major change in the animal's environment, etc. These situations require additional love and attention to be given to dogs with mange while you are treating the skin condition.
The dog's environment must be cleaned up in the same manner as for Sarcoptic Mange. With patience, persistence, improved diet and lots of loving care, repeated treatments can provide the proper conditions for Demodectic Mange to heal. Depending on the severity of the outbreak, it can take a few months for the skin to fully heal, the mange to clear up completely and the coat to return to normal. The dog's stress level must to be lowered so its immune system functioning can improve, and so healing can occur. Kill the dog mites and the skin can heal. Use the MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® Remedy to kill the mites and keep fleas and ticks under control so the fleas don't aggravate the dog's skin while it is healing.
This is a microscopic picture of the Cheyletiella Mite, the nasty little critter that causes a type of mange called walking dandruff. These mites are larger than the ones causing the other types of mange but still need a microscope to be seen.
Cheyletiella Mange is also known as "walking dandruff." It affects dogs of any age but particularly puppies and is caused by large reddish dog mites that can sometimes be seen under a strong magnifying glass. This dog mange is identified by the dandruff dusting that occurs over the dog's head, neck, and especially its back. Skin scrapings can usually identify this mite.
Walking dandruff is highly contagious but short-lived. It causes mild itching. The dog mites that cause this mange usually die a short time after leaving the host, however it's a good practice to treat the symptoms caused by this mite, including the animal's environment. Clean up the environment and treat the animal as for Sarcoptic Mange. These dog mites have been known to live in your yard, so every time your pet goes there, it could get a new batch of mites.
Keep in mind that puppies cannot be treated with anything toxic to kill the mites until they are more than 4 months (16 weeks) old.
Cheyletiella dog mites are known to jump onto humans and cause intense itching. If this happens to you, treat yourself with the same MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® Remedy to kill the mites on your body unless you are allergic to the ingredients, and be sure to moisturize your skin very well after treatment.
My lay person's understanding is that an animal's immune system is the key to its ability to deal with mites, particularly the Demodex Canis mites. A weak or stressed immune system is unable to fight off a dog's own allergic reactions to the secretions of the mites, resulting in skin conditions that won't heal, thus you have the reason it is called "incurable" mange by some people. Reducing the stress in an animal's life to take the strain off its immune system is critical and essential to the healing process.
Some dog owners who used the Maui Wowie Mange Buster remedies have told me their vet diagnosed their pet with a thyroid or liver condition that was weakening the animal's immune system. Where treatment for the systemic problems was not implemented, the mange would not respond to treatment on a long term basis and would continue to flare up and get worse. When the systemic condition was properly treated, the mange healed with proper treatment. Our remedy kills the mites so the mange damaged skin can heal.
Do the Laundry: While dog mites spend almost their entire lives on the host animal, they will occasionally jump off onto the pet’s bedding and from there to you or other animals, or back onto your pet just when you thought they were all dead. Keep your pet’s bedding clean.
Screen Your Pet’s Friends: Dog Mites can be picked up from contact with other animals or from contaminated areas. Don’t let your pet near another animal that appears sort of bald and is scratching a lot.
Feed Him Well: Mange often affects pets that are poorly fed and otherwise poorly cared for. Giving your pet quality food can keep your pet healthy, which helps provide protection against infestations by critters. Make sure your pet gets some fat or oil in its diet. If you prefer dry kibble, add some ordinary vegetable oil to the food daily, or use bacon fat. Remember to care for your pet regularly.
Fight it With Fat: Fatty acid supplements are also fairly popular for keeping your pet healthy from the inside out and promote a glossy coat. Ask your vet which one is right for your pet.
Keep Your Pet Clean: Regular grooming helps remove scaly skin and scabs caused by mange and flea bites, promoting a healthy coat. Regular bathing, brushing and combing helps keep your pet free from mange caused by dog mites, particularly if it has been keeping company with a "mangy" crowd.
Keep Your Pet Flea Free: Regular use of treatments for fleas keep you pet's skin in good condition. Also, if your pet gets mange from mites, the fleas greatly aggravate the skin sores caused by the mites. Use the MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® Formula to control fleas, especially if your pet spends time outdoors.
Immune System Builders: You might also c0nsider giving your pet a supplement specifically designed to help build its immune system.
Skip the used Motor Oil Treatments: Pouring used motor oil on your pet is an old-fashioned home remedy for mange that not only doesn’t work but it is harmful to your pet, as well as harmful to the environment. If you use motor oil, the dog will lick it off and ingest the oil making it sicker than the mange, and your pet will still have mange. Also, pouring it on your pet is not a recommended disposal method approved by the EPA. Please dispose of used motor oil properly.
Take Your Pet to the Vet: Regular check ups by your vet are important for your pet's health. If your pet suddenly starts going bald or scratches incessantly, don’t take chances, take it to the Vet’s office first. It could be mange, or something more serious and more difficult to treat. At the same time, don't hesitate to use MAUI WOWIE MANGE BUSTER® if the condition is mange or fleas. This home remedy won't harm your pet when used correctly, and both human and animal will be happier.
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