The term “mange” is a very generalized one. It is not a specific type of condition, but it is a term used to describe a variety of conditions which are created by parasitic mites. Mange in small dogs is a common problem to some degree.
There are multiple types of mange, but the varieties that are specific to dogs are known as demodectic and sarcoptic mange, or canine scabies. This type of mange that is found in small dogs is highly contagious and is caused by a breed of burrowing mites which inhabit the skin of their victim. These mites burrow under the skin and cause severe itching unlike anything else. This causes the dog to not only scratch the affected area, but bite it at as well. Eventually, the biting and scratching can lead to a secondary skin infection, which can be dangerous for the dog’s health if left untreated.
So how can you get rid of mange? First and foremost, it is important to note that any dog with demodectic mange does not need to be removed and isolated from being around other dogs. With demodectic mange, it is only transferable from mother to baby, so there no harm with other dogs being affected.
However, dogs with sarcoptic mange do need to be isolated away from other dogs immediately. Another step with sarcoptic mange is that any bedding and areas where the dog frequently visits needs to be thoroughly cleaned. It is essential that these steps are taken to ensure that all mites are killed and are not able to breed and cause any other dogs to obtain sarcoptic mange.
There are several options to help eliminate mange, some prescribed by the vet and some natural. The medicinal prescription choices to choose from when treating mange include Selamectin as well as ivermectin, which is accompanied by skin scrapings. If you choose to go the more natural route, sulfurated lime has proven very successful in treatment of mange.
However effective these treatments may be, it is always in everyone’s best interest to attempt to prevent the mange to begin with. While preventing demodectic mange is near impossible, preventing sarcoptic mange is fairly easy. Though there is no absolute way to prevent mange in small dogs, simple good diet and exercise can help to ensure that your dog is healthy enough to be able to fight off the infectious mites should they come in contact with them. Annual vet check-ups are always a good idea to help be sure that your pet is in the best health possible.
Though it can be difficult to prevent, mange is a very treatable and common condition that is easily taken care of. Just like everything else about your pet, their health is ultimately decided by you. How you take care of your animal can help to prevent mange in small dogs and make it possible for your K-9 companion to live a very long and happy life.