Dog Hair Loss
Dog Articles and Personal Stuff
Dog Author: Champi
Dog Hair Loss is a terrible problem to have. Also for your Doggie it isnít nice. There are several causes for Dog Hair Loss. Mange is one of the causes I will talk about.
Mange is an irritation of the skin, generally resulting in hair loss and sometimes including itching and inflammation. There are several forms of mange. Keep in mind that the mites are microscopic and can't be seen with the naked eye.
a) Demodectic Mange Mites:
This usually starts with small hairless patches (around the eyes). Many people and Dogs have those mites called Demodex Canis, but are not affected by it. All Doggies raised normally by their mothers possess this mite as mites are transferred from mother to pup via cuddling during the first few days of life. The problems really start when those mites spread over the whole body and infect the Dog.
You have to know that:
- Mites are not transmitted to people or other Dogs except from mother Dog to pup as described. Demodectic mange (unlike Sarcoptic mange) is not contagious.
- Mites live inside hair follicles.
- Mites are a normal residents of Dog Skin, which can turn in problems for some Doggies.
There are three sorts of demodectic mange:
A red, scaly, well-circumscribed lesion on the face or forelegs is present. It generally goes away on its own. Often it is best not to treat this and to simply allow it to resolve on its own. Especially with puppies this is important. When a puppy develops localized demodicosis the chance of the condition resolving is almost 100% unless there is a family history of demodicosis in related Dogs. Donít treat these puppies so that you can see if the condition will stay localized and resolve or if it will generalize. If it stays localized and eventually resolves without treatment, the Doggie is still usefull for breeding. Otherwise your Doggie could better be sterilized. Enlarged lymph nodes often foretelling generalized mange.
The entire Dog is affected with patchy fur, skin infections, bald, scaly skin. Most generalized demodicosis starts as localized demodicosis. Most demodicosis take place in young Dogs. An older Dog should not get demodicosis unless it has an underlying problem. This could be his immune system or even cancer. You could better consult a veterinarian if this is the case.
This form represents demodectic mange confined to the paws. Bacterial infectious usually accompany this condition. Often as generalized demodicosis is treated, the foot is the last place to hide for the mites.
b) Another form of Dog Hair Loss causing mange is Sarcoptic Mange;
This mite burrows into the skin. It usually causes severe itching and crusting that can quickly become infected. It is contagious to other Dogs and even people. Even though it is contagious, it is easier to treat with a faster recovery. This sarcoptic mite can also affect humans and cats. But this will not happen that fast as its natural host is Dogs. It also cannot reproduce on other animals.
Veterinarians usually try to get a diagnosis by scraping the dogs skin. Those pieces of skin are then examined under a microscope for mites. Because they are burrowing creatures, mites are not always present on or near the surface of the skin when the scraping takes place. Affected Dogs need to be isolated from other Doggies and their bedding, and places they have been must be cleaned. Shaving is sometimes necessary.
It is possible to treat mange with parasiticidal shampoo, topical or oral medication, or even injections. This treatment takes time and patience for repeated applications, and almost always requires veterinary care. The younger the Dog, the better the chance of cure. Cure is not always possible. But generally these mites thrive only on very specific hosts (dogs) and transmission usually occurs only from the mother to nursing puppies during the first few days of life.
There are two other causes which can cause Dog Hair Loss without the help of mange:
c) Allergy (with excessive licking)
d) Nutrient deficiency (if there is no skin irritation)
Things which are always important to prevent this sort of trouble are:
- Get a good brand of food to avoid any nutritionally related problems.
- Keep your Doggie worm and flea free.
- Give your Dog always his vaccinations.
Always consult your veterinarian if you are not sure and if it gets worse, itís still your friend so extra consult is always better.