Unfortunately our four legged friends can get sick just like us, and it can be worrying for pet parents. Some of their health issues are similar to ours, and others are unique to dogs. It’s important that we know what to look out for with the health of our pets, and to also consider the best treatment options for if they do get sick.
Mange is a common skin disease that dogs can suffer from, it comes from an infestation of mites taking up home in their skin, it usually results in extreme itching and hair loss. CBD products are known to help treat numerous ailments in dogs, but can it help in the treatment of this potentially fatal disease?
This article will discuss the different types of mange in dogs, how it can be diagnosed, traditional treatments, and how CBD can play a part in treating dogs with mange.
What is Mange?
The term ‘mange’ comes from the French word ‘mangeue’, which translates into ‘to eat or itch’. It is a parasitic skin disease that comes from a large infestation of mites living on the dogs skin and hair. It can be extremely itchy and irritating and they may start to scratch at the infected areas so much that their hair will begin to fall out. It can become very painful and if left untreated it can kill dogs.
Types of Mange in Dogs
There are two major forms of mange in dogs, each caused by different mites. The first form is Sarcoptic Mange (also know as scabies) and the second is Demodectic Mange (also know as know as red mange or demodex). Let’s have a look at each type in more detail as its important to understand the differences to help prevent or treat it.
Sarcoptic mange is also known as canine scabies. This disease is caused by sarcoptes scabei mites burrowing into the skin, where the female mites will lay their eggs. These eggs will hatch around 2 weeks later and the young feed on the host’s skin and will multiply quickly. Unfortunately, sarcoptic mange is very contagious, most dogs get it from being around other dogs that have this infestation.
Sarcoptic Mange Symptoms
Symptoms will generally appear within about 1 to 8 weeks after exposure to a dog with scabies. The first symptom of sarcoptic mange is itching and scratching at small areas on the skin, typically around the ears, chest, elbows and belly. As they continue to scratch, sores will likely start to develop and if they keep itching these areas they will be exposed to bacterial infections entering into the bloodstream. The most common symptoms of sarcoptic mange include:
Thickening of the skin
Diagnosis of Sarcoptic Mange
A veterinarian will need to take skin scrapings and look under a microscope for mites and eggs.
Demodectic mange or demodex, is caused by demodex canis mites. Unlike sarcoptes scabei mites, these mites are always present on dogs skin and are usually harmless. They are passed on from mothers to their pups, and live in the skin with no trouble in healthy dogs, as they develop immunity to regular mites on the skin. However, dogs with a compromised immune system may not be able to fight off a large infestation of mites leading to skin disease.
Aging, sick or neglected dogs are more at risk of demodectic mange due to weaker immune systems. Puppies also have weaker immune systems as they develop stronger immune systems as they grow older, this makes young dogs more at risk of a mite infestations also.
Thankfully demodectic mange is not contagious, so pet parents won’t need to worry about it spreading to other dogs living in the same home.
Demodectic Mange Symptoms
Demodectic mange can be localized or generalized. If its localized it can show up as patches of redness, hair loss and maybe bald spots. It can be extremely itchy and uncomfortable for dogs.
Generalized demodectic mange can be seen all over the body and can sometimes develop bacterial infections, swelling and fever. They can experience a lot of discomfort and pain. Symptoms of demodectic mange include:
Red Skin and rashes
Sores and scabbing
Diagnosis of Sarcoptic Mange
A veterinarian will need to take a skin scraping to look for mites under a microscope.
Traditional Mange Treatments
Both sarcoptic and demodectin mange will require treatments to heal the skin and control the mites. It is important to seek guidance from a trusted veterinarian because of how quickly mange can grow.
Treatment for both forms of mange include clipping the dogs hair and bathing in medicated shampoo on a weekly basis to help heal and soften the skin. To eradicate the mites topical applications are necessary to kill them. Formulations such as selamectin and imidacloprid-moxidectin may be used, for severe cases Amitraz and Ivermectin could be prescribed. Sadly some of these medication can come with some concerning side effects.
CBD as a Mange Treatment
Seeing your fur baby stressing over the itchiness and pain from skin diseases can be very stressful. Helping them feel more comfortable and easing their pain will be a priority for many pet parents that have a dog with mange.
CBD is an all-natural treatment that can benefit your dog with mange. Cannabinoids in CBD are know suppressors of inflammation, and it has been shown to effectively relieve discomfort from extreme itchiness and irritation associated with mange, ultimately reducing hair loss and sores on the skin.
CBD can also help calm your dog’s nerves to alleviate some of the anxiety and stress, to make him or her feel better, whilst fighting this horrible skin disease. In addition CBD can influence the Immune system to improve your pets overall health.
For those concerned with the unwanted side effects of traditionally prescribed medications, CBD is a good option. CBD has no intoxicating properties, it has little or no THC, which is the psychoactive component of marijuana, so you don’t have to worry about your dog getting ‘high’. Instead, it is completely natural, derived from the hemp plant, entirely safe to consume and packed with lots of health benefits.
As of yet these, CBD have not been proven to entirely get rid of the mites associated with mange, so it is still important to follow guidance given by your dog’s trusted veterinarian. Combining traditional medicine with CBD will give your furry friends the best care possible to help them deal with the pain and discomfort during the treatment of mange.
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