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Mange in Dogs: Treatment and Prevention

4 minutes
Mange in Dogs: Treatment and Prevention
Last update: 13 August, 2018

Mange is visible on an animal’s skin and is caused by certain species of mites. Although it’s a canine disease, it can also be transmitted to people.

The good news is that mange in dogs can be prevented and treated, and the treatments in this article can be very helpful when they’re applied correctly.

What is Mange?

Mange is a skin disease caused by parasitic mites that feed on sebum, keratin and skin cell debris that are on dogs, cats, humans.  The most common way of contamination by direct contact with an infected animal or objects. For example, blankets or brushes.

The type of mange a person or an animal contracts are species that attacking them. This pathology is very common in stray dogs, and animals that live in crammed spaces and poor hygienic conditions.

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Demodectic Mange

The mites that cause this type of mange are from the demodex genus. They naturally live on the skin and in hair follicles. The disease appears when, due to some reason (cancer, hypothyroidism or imbalances in the immune system) the population of these microorganisms increases.

It is worth mentioning that demodectic mange is not contagious among animals or people. With that being said, it does affect purebred dogs with short fur, including Dobermans and Shar Peis.

Sarcoptic Mange

The mite that cause this type of mange is the sarcoptes scabei var canis, which has the ability to dig into a dog’s skin. It’s important to point out that this type of mange is contagious to humans. It also infects other types of mammals, including cats and foxes.

Walking Mange

Also known as “‘walking dandruff”, the etiological agent is the cheyletiella mite. Not only does it affect people, on which it causes reddish-colored rashes, but it also affects dogs, rabbits and cats.

Mange in Dogs: Symptoms and Detection

To identify mange in dogs, you must pay attention to certain symptoms and behaviors. The good thing about this infection caused by mites is that it’s easy to recognize. The extension and location of the lesions will be different depending on the type of mange. However, one of the symptoms that affects all dogs with mange is the itching that cause from this disease.

This means that you will see your dog scratching himself non-stop in the same area. Your dog will even lick and unintentionally hurt themselves in an infected area.

On the other hand, the animal will lose fur wherever it has mange on its skin, perhaps in patches or in large areas, depending on the severity of the disease. It can also cause dandruff, peeling of the skin, scabs and pustules.

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Redness and inflammation on the skin, wounds, sores, or fleshing skin are obvious signs that an animal is suffering from mange. In some cases, dogs with mange even lose their appetite, have an unpleasant odor on their skin and lose a lot of weight.

Treating and Preventing Mange in Dogs with Natural Remedies

Treatments for mange should focus on two points: applying remedies on the animal, and maintaining a hygienic environment for the animal. First, you can give your dog medications prescribed by the veterinarian. They are administered orally.

You can also increase the effectiveness of the medications by using natural remedies that involve external applications of certain ingredients. Here are a few homemade remedies for mange in dogs:

1. Garlic

This antibacterial and healing ingredient can help the animal’s skin recover to eliminate the mites. The treatment consists of grinding two cloves of garlic and mixing them with olive oil, then apply it on the affected area and leaving it on overnight. The next day you have to rinse off the olive oil and garlic solution with a damp cloth.

2. Neutral soap

Dogs with mange should be bathed with a white or neutral soap. This prevents perfumes from scented soaps from further irritating the skin. There are also medicinal soaps with very effective antibacterial and antiseptic properties, which are applied to wet skin and rinsed after two minutes.

3. Chamomile

This plant is very beneficial to the skin and is useful for preventing and treating mange in dogs. Chamomile flowers are refreshing, anti-inflammatory and cleansing. You can make an infusion by mixing hem with a spoonful of chamomile leaves for every half liter of water. When the weather is cold, use the filtered liquid to dampen the animal’s coat.


This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.