What if a Human Comes Into Contact With a Dog With Mange?

by Pamela Meadors Google
    The mites that cause canine mange can cause an immune response, rather than infection, in a human.

    The mites that cause canine mange can cause an immune response, rather than infection, in a human.

    Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    Mange is a highly treatable skin infection propagated by parasitic mites. The ones infecting your pup, typically demodectic and sarcoptic mites, are unable to live for long on human skin. Unfortunately, for a short period of time before they either find a suitable host or die, they are able to cause an uncomfortable immune response in you. Dealing with the source of the infestation -- your dog -- is the only way to really combat these mites.

    Eliminating Mange Requires Veterinary Treatment

    Dogs acquire mange through contact with other infected mammals. Mange is highly contagious; all mites must be eliminated to prevent infection. A veterinarian can provide topical and antibacterial options to treat your pet. Pet owners who come in contact with a dog infested with mange will experience a temporary infestation whereby the mites will remain on the skin layer, causing an immune response such as pimples, redness or itching, but will not burrow into skin and cannot live for more than a couple days. When the infected dog is fully treated and mites are eliminated, any symptoms in humans should subside.

    Photo Credits

    • Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Pamela Meadors is a scientist, writer, avid traveler and animal advocate. In addition to earning a Bachelor of Science in biology, she has worked in the veterinary field at various clinics throughout the United States since 1997.

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