|Can Dog Get Scabies ?
Scabies, a skin infection, is caused by mites (Sarcoptes scabiei). These microscopic organisms burrow under the skin surface where the lay their eggs. Humans are highly susceptible to scabies. But what about pets? Can dogs get scabies? Yes, they can.
Even in dogs scabies causes rash and a severe itchy sensation on the infected skin. The rash occurs in the abdomen, chest, legs, and ears and is very contagious. Scaly lines are visible in the infected dog’s skin.
Dogs residing at a common shelter or boarding facility with other infected animals are prone to this disease. Symptoms include scabs on the skin caused by scratch, weight loss, hairless patches, itchy skin and pink or red sores or bumps on the body.
There are various treatments recommended for dogs with scabies. Oral or intravenous Ivermectin can be administered and is repeated every 10 to 14 days. Amitraz, another topical chemical, can be applied every 14 days. Since it has a strong odor, it should not be administered in badly ventilated bathrooms if you are sensitive to strong chemical odors.
Application of lime sulphur dip at 5 to 7 day interval can also help. This plant fungicide is very safe for all breeds of dogs but it has the smell of rotten eggs and would discolor gold jewellery if you are wearing any while bathing your dog. Selamectin is applied to the dog's skin once a month and is reported to be effective for treating scabies. For severe infection, steroids or systemic antibiotics may need to be administered.
Scabies is difficult to diagnose and hence, it is important to consult a veterinarian if red tracts of rash are seen. It is vital that you keep your dog clean and healthy in order to prevent scabies.
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