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Everything You Need To Know About Demodectic Mange In Dogs

Demodectic mange is a skin condition that affects dogs of all ages and breeds. It is caused by a mite and can cause intense itching, hair loss, and infection. This article will provide a comprehensive guide to understanding and treating demodectic mange in dogs, including symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options.

What Is Demodectic Mange?

Demodectic mange, also known as demodicosis or red mange, is a skin disorder caused by a type of mite known as Demodex canis. These mites are found naturally on the skin of most dogs, but when their numbers increase, the dog can develop mange. The mites feed on the skin cells, causing intense itching, hair loss, and infection.

Demodectic mange is not contagious and is not usually spread from one dog to another. However, it can be passed from mother to puppies. The condition usually affects puppies and young dogs, but it can also affect adult dogs, especially those with weakened immune systems.

Signs And Symptoms Of Demodectic Mange In Dogs

The signs and symptoms of demodectic mange vary depending on the severity of the condition. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • Hair loss – The affected area of skin may be bald or have thinning hair.
  • Itching – The affected area may be intensely itchy and the dog may constantly scratch or lick the area.
  • Redness – The affected area may be red and inflamed.
  • Crusts – The affected area may be covered in crusty, scaly skin.
  • Pustules – The affected area may have small, yellowish-white pustules.
  • Odour – The affected area may have an unpleasant odour.

In severe cases, the mites can spread to other areas of the body and cause secondary infections. These infections can cause further hair loss, skin irritation, and may even lead to systemic illness.

Diagnosing Demodectic Mange In Dogs

If your dog is showing signs of demodectic mange, it is important to take them to the vet for diagnosis. Your vet will examine your dog’s skin and may take a skin scraping or biopsy to confirm the diagnosis. They may also perform a blood test to check for secondary infections.

Treating Demodectic Mange In Dogs

Treatment for demodectic mange depends on the severity of the condition. Mild cases may be treated with topical medications, such as medicated shampoos and ointments. In more severe cases, your vet may prescribe oral medications to kill the mites. They may also recommend supplements to boost your dog’s immune system.

Your vet may also recommend other treatments, such as medicated baths, to help reduce the symptoms and speed up the healing process. It is important to follow your vet’s instructions and use all the medications as directed.

Preventing Demodectic Mange In Dogs

The best way to prevent demodectic mange in dogs is to keep your pet healthy and boost their immune system. This can be done by feeding them a balanced diet, providing them with regular exercise, and making sure they get regular check-ups at the vet.

It is also important to practice good hygiene, such as regularly cleaning your pet’s bedding and grooming them regularly. This will help to reduce the risk of mites and other parasites.


Demodectic mange is a skin disorder caused by mites that can cause intense itching, hair loss, and infection. It is important to take your dog to the vet if they show signs of the condition, as early diagnosis and treatment can help to reduce the severity of the condition. Following your vet’s instructions and practicing good hygiene can help to prevent the condition from occurring or returning.

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