What is Mange?

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August 18, 2010
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Mange is a skin disease caused by mites, that are commonly found on dogs, but depending on the type of mite and your dog’s immune system, it can become a problem. Dogs have mites on their body and usually everyone lives in harmony but if for some reason or another the mites become too many in number or your dog’s system reacts, itchiness, redness, and hair loss can occur.

There are two types of mange that are commonly seen on dogs, demodectic and sarcoptic.

Demodectic mange mites are natural and can be passed from a mother dog to her puppies or from one dog to another. It is believed that demodex mites do not normally jump to people.

Sarcoptic mange is also known as scabies and are mites that dig into the skin and can cause intense irritation and infections. Sarcoptic mange mites are contagious and can be passed to people, cats, and other animals.

The symptoms of mange on a dog can be hair loss, scabbing spots, sores, and itching which are usually found on the ears, elbows, face, and legs but it can spread to other parts of the body. If you think your dog might have mange and have noticed some bald spots and redness, take your pup to the vet.

The vet will do a physical exam and if needed, take a sample of the skin to see if there are mites. If there are mites, your vet will prescribe a course of treatment.

To try and prevent mange make sure your dog’s bedding is kept fairly clean and regularly brush and bathe your dog. Keep your dog on a good diet and exercise routine as well.

Now, if you’ll excuse me I’m itchy from writing this and I bet you’re scratching your arm too!

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2 Responses to “What is Mange?”

  1. katy says:

    my dog has had some allergies..or so the vet thinks. ever since we brought her home she has always had really itchy paws..she is now 2 and still has the same issue..plus during the more hot months of the summer in TN she is always very itchy..we do a regular bath 2 times a month, use adv. mulit for fleas and ticks, we have been giving her sulfamte..something for about 2 weeks but she doesn’t seem to be responding..he belly and legs and a few spots on her hip are almost completely bare and raw due to itching and licking….i am at my wits end on what to do..any advice?? she also stopped eating her food for a few days while i was away and she was here with my partner…so we had to stop meds until she was eating again..

  2. Kathy says:

    You can always try an allergist for your dog, someone who specializes in figuring out skin rashes. It could be a food allergy. It could also be something about the weather. I know that humid climates sometimes make some dogs break out in rashes.

    Good luck!

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