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HELP Sarcopic Mange

June 22nd, 2007, 01:56 PM
Picked up my new puppy from the Boarder today, she had gotten her puppy shots there, she told her she has somthing eating at her, to bring her in weekly and s he will dip her. but I told my daughter to bring her to the vet for a checkup. Well it turns out - she has sarcopic mange. The Dr. Is treating her and we spoke to the breader (she is picking up the bill) which is not my concern. The Vet treated her, bathing her, dipped her and administered antiobiotics. and will be sending home stuff for her and directions. My concern is if this is contagious, how do you not cuddle and play with a new puppy, how do you do play with her and cuddle her for weeks and not get this ourselves. My daughter also has a 10 week old blue heeler, it will be impossible to keep them apart for weeks. My new dog is in the house, even though we have a cage for it, do i do anything special.

I'm dissappointed. I've been so looking forward to bring this little dog home, i've visited it, its visited me. I just want to cuddle with it.

If I get it dipped and do what the dr. said, is she ok inbetween dips?

June 22nd, 2007, 02:30 PM
My only experience with mange is with the demodectic variety--which is not contagious... So I'm not sure how well the dips will protect you, your daughter, and her pup. Did your daughter ask the vet? If she didn't, I'm sure if you called the office and posed your question, they'd be able to give you an answer over the phone.

All the waiting to bring home your new pup, and now this. :grouphug: I can see where it would be awfully disappointing. But hopefully the vet will give you good news about the cuddling! :fingerscr

There are likely members here who have had experience with sarcoptic mange and maybe they'll be able to give you some pointers!

Please keep us updated--and post pics of your new arrival when you can! We'd love to see her! :cloud9:

Dr Lee
June 22nd, 2007, 08:01 PM
Sarcoptic mange is very different from demodex unfortunately. Demodex is not contagious. Sarcoptes IS contagious to other dogs and to people! Keep in close contact with your vet.

Here is a client education handout from Dr. Wendy Brooks from VIN (the Veterinary Information Network):

By Wendy C. Brooks, DVM, DipABVP
Educational Director,

Sarcoptic Mange



Sarcoptic mange is the name for the skin disease caused by infection with the Sarcoptes scabei mite. Mites are not insects; instead they are more closely related to spiders. They are microscopic and cannot be seen with the naked eye.

Adult Sarcoptes scabei mites live 3 to 4 weeks in the host’s skin. After mating, the female burrows into the skin depositing 3 to 4 eggs in the tunnel behind her. The eggs hatch in 3 to 10 days producing a larva which, in turn, moves about on the skin surface eventually molting into a nymphal stage and finally into an adult. The adults move on the surface of the skin where they mate and the cycle begins again with the female burrowing and laying eggs.

Sarcoptes Scabei: Female sarcoptes mite burrowing in the skin and leaving a trail of eggs behind her. Her presence generates an inflamatory response in the skin similar to an allergic response.

The motion of the mite in and on the skin is extremely itchy. Further, the presence of mites and their eggs generates a massive allergic response in the skin which is even more itchy.

Mites prefer hairless skin thus leaving the ear flaps, elbows and abdomen at highest risk for the red, scaley itchy skin that characterizes sarcoptic mange. It should be noted that this pattern of itching is similar to that found with airborne allergies (atopy) as well as with food allergies.

Dog with dematitis problem typical of sacrcoptic mange. Note: Many dogs do not develop the classical ear margin crusts until later in the disease.

Frequently, before attempting to sort out allergies, a veterinarian will simply treat a patient for sarcoptic mange as a precaution. It is very easy to be led down the wrong path (pursuing allergy aggressively) if one considers sarcoptic mange an unusual or unlikely possibility.

As the infection progresses, eventually most of the dog's body will be involved. Classically, though, the picture begins on the ears (especially the ear margins), the elbows, and abdomen.

The term scabies refers to mite infestations by either Sarcoptes scabei or other mite species closely related to Sarcoptes scabei. While Sarcoptes scabei can infect humans and cats, it tends not to persist on these hosts. When people (including some veterinarians) refer to sarcoptic mange or scabies in the cat, they are usually referring to infection by Notoedres cati, a mite closely related to Sarcoptes scabei. In these feline cases, it would be more correct to refer to notoedric mange, though the treatment for both mites is the same. Notoedric mange, in cats, generally produces facial itching and scabbing.

When an animal with sarcoptic mange scratches itself, it breaks open the tunnels that the mites have burrowed into and the mites are killed (though the itch persists due to toxins in the skin). The result is that the mites can be very difficult to confirm by skin scraping tests. (Probably mites are confirmed in 50% or fewer of sarcoptic mange cases.)

Since negative test results do not rule out mite infection, a "maybe mange" test is frequently performed. This consists simply of treating for sarcoptic mange and observing for resolution of the signs within 2 to 4 weeks.

Of course, if mite presence is confirmed by skin scraping, then one knows immediately the cause of the itching and need not be concerned about allergy possibilities or other diseases and the condition can be addressed with confidence.

BIOPSY - Mange mites are rarely seen on a skin biopsy sample, though, if the sample is read out by a pathologist who specializes in skin, the type of inflammation seen in the sample can be highly suggestive of sarcoptic mange. This is an example of a skin disease where it makes a difference whether the pathologist reading the sample specializes in reading skin samples.


While sarcoptic mange is difficult to diagnose definitively, it is fairly easy to treat and a number of choices are available.

DIPPING - Anti-bacterial or anti-itch shampoos preceed one of several anti-mite dips. Paramite dip (an organophosphate), Mitaban dip (Amitraz), and Lime-Sulfur dips given weekly are usually effective. Disease typically resolves within one month. Dips are often used in combination with one of the other treatments listed below.

IVERMECTIN- This is one of the most effective treatments against Sarcoptes scabei yet it is off-label as far as the FDA is concerned. Typically an injection is given either weekly or every two weeks for a total of 1 to 4 doses. In most cases this treatment is safe and effective but some individuals have a mutation that makes ivermectin very toxic at the doses used to kill mites. These individuals are usually of the Collie family but other individuals may be affected. For this reason, use an approved treatment such as Selamectin (see below).

There is now a DNA test that can determine if any dog has the mutation that makes ivermectin use dangerous. This test is done at Washington State University. For more information, visit

SELAMECTIN (REVOLUTION®) - Selamectin is an ivermectin derivative recently marketed for the control of fleas, roundworms, hookworms, ticks, ear mites and sarcoptic mange mites. Normal monthly use of this product should prevent a sarcoptic mange problem but to clear an actual infection studies show an extra dose is usually needed after 2 weeks for reliable results. This product is probably the best choice for Collie or Australian shepherd breeds.
See information from the manufacturer on Revolution.


MILBEMYCIN OXIME (INTERCEPTOR® OR SENTINEL®) - Milbemycin Oxime is approved for heartworm prevention as a monthly oral treatment. Happily, it also has activity against sarcoptic mange and several protocols of varying success have been recommended by different dermatologists. This is another medication that one might find recommended.

For more information from the manufacturer, visit their page for Interceptor:
or their page for Sentinel:

Sarcoptic mange mites are usually spread by direct contact from host to host. While mites can live off of a host for days to weeks depending on their life stage, they are only infective for 36 hours, which means that environmental decontamination is generally not necessary.

Mite infections on humans are self-limiting (i.e., they go away on their own) as the mite is not able to complete its life cycle on the wrong host. The condition is extremely itchy, though, while it lasts. The mites are most active where skin is warm (in bed and where clothing is snug).


Date Published: 1/1/2001
Date Reviewed/Revised: 2/20/2006

June 22nd, 2007, 09:23 PM
I just want to add to Dr. Lee's excellent description and reference. Please do not let your daughter or you too close to the puppy. Scabies can be very infectious and directly caught by her from your puppy!!!

I would also thoroughly clean all bed linen (sheets, pillow cases, blankets) and clothing worn next to the skin (underwear, T-shirts, socks, pants) should be laundered in a hot cycle wash and hot drying cycle where the puppy has been!!!

In some situations, an entire family is treated if one family member - including the dog- has scabies as a preventive measure. The other dog HAS to be kept from the puppy at all costs - you will have to separate them somehow, perhaps have a friend care for him during the infectious period?

I know this will cause problems in the socialization of the puppy. What does the breeder say about this? It may have started there but she is at least acting responsibly.

Hopefully, there will be someone here who can give you advice on how to socialize a puppy that has to be kept away from his family - I would think hearing your voices, a radio nearby when you cannot be there, TLC with industrial strength gloves (I get itchy just thinking about scabies!) without allowing the puppy to kiss you. I don;t know how you will do this and you have my utmost sympathy! Poor puppy too!!!

I am so sorry you have to go through t

June 23rd, 2007, 03:12 PM
Thank ya'll for your advice. The vet did dip her gave her something over t here, and sent her home with a twice daily antiobitic and something else I have to give her Friday and Sat. But we will bring her back to the vet on Friday for a recheck. They said since she is only 6 1/2 weeks old, maybe she won't have too many or no eggs and the hopefully the dipping killed all of them.

And yes the breader is concerned, did pay the vet bill, and wanted to know if we planned on bringing her back to her or did we want to keep her. DUH, I fell in love with her when I picked her out, Went visit her and she came visit me during the last couple of weeks, what do you think.

She uses the same vet, so she is going to call on Monday to see if its ok for her to dip my puppy during the week and weekly when she does her dogs and other puppies.

How often can you dip a dog? Can I bath her between dips with an oatmeal soap?

Is she ok to play with right after being dipped - possibly before other eggs have hatched?

June 23rd, 2007, 07:28 PM
I would have the authorities look into this Breeder's kennel as she's selling sick pups and you can guarantee all her dogs are affected.

May 2nd, 2011, 11:52 PM
Dr. Lee, Can a fox tolerate ivermectin as a treatment for mange?

May 3rd, 2011, 04:20 AM
whatever wildlife center you bring the fox to will treat it before releasing it back into the wild.

Dog Dancer
May 3rd, 2011, 10:22 AM
I'm so sorry to hear about your puppy, but so far it sounds like you've got good advice. I would file a complaint about the breeder if that is possible. It concerns me greatly that she has sent you home with a very sick puppy and worse a puppy that is only 6 1/2 weeks old! That is far too young for the puppy to be removed from it's mother and litter mates, and on top of that it now has to be quaranteened from you and proper socialization. This sounds like a terrible breeder to me. Save your money for future vet visits in case this sweet puppy is not sound healthwise. Poor sweet thing.

May 3rd, 2011, 12:22 PM
whatever wildlife center you bring the fox to will treat it before releasing it back into the wild.

Can't catch it - can only feed it. Need to know if ivermectin works on a fox.

May 3rd, 2011, 12:57 PM
A wildlife rehab center will probably still be your best source for info, wclay. Here, at least, rehabbers have vets to consult and know the state and federal regulations that apply for any species. So if you can find one, they may be able to answer your question.